riyada in arabic means "training" or "discipline". It was used by the arabs in relation to horse taming. Sufis refer to their discipline as "riyadat an-nafs": disciplining the soul / training the ego. Today, the word riyada has come to mean "sports". There is an Arabic proverb that says: "The purpose of sports (riyada) is not to win cups, but to discipline the soul". This blog is here to help me discipline my soul and train my body.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Silencer 3, Nafs 0

Yep, I'm finally back to prayer after having had to stop because of the hand thing and then not being able to come back to it for a while. Alhamdulillah, I'm back to it. Three nights so far, doing all my prayers together.. well except tonight since it's friday, I did the friday prayer in the mosque and then after it I made up for the fajr prayer. At night I just did isha, maghrib and asr. It's much better this way since you get at least two prayers in their right time and because doing all prayers at night is really long and tiring. So inshalla starting tomorrow, I'll start doing the same schema, and eventually move up to praying three times a day (morning, zuhr+asr, maghrib+isha). This is actually how many- maybe most- Shiites pray. The Qur'an only actually mentions three of the five prayer times and many Shiites combine zuhr+asr as well as maghrib+isha, praying three times a day. They also rely on certain ahadith that say the Prophet used to combine prayers thus in Medina when it rained or something, but of course such a hadith is actually proof that they're wrong because it presents the Prophet's doing so as an exception and not the norm. And of course, why would there be five prayers to be done at 3 times? That's completely illogical. If there were only three prayer times a day, there would only be three prayers a day, not five.

But anyway, for now my goal is to do that, until I get myself back to doing 5. Remember the rule: don't start something that you won't be able to finish because you'll give up soon. Always start gradually with things you can stick with until you feel you're ready to move up and you'll be able to stick with the next goal.

The point is: counterattack against the nafs is underway. (Images from "Battlestar: Galactica" are going through my head as I'm in the middle of season 2 and it kicks ass!) This is exactly what this blog is here for, to incourage me to stick to my duties and discipline myself. Starting this blog was such a good idea!

It's also here to help me improve my body... which brings us to:

Reason 54 to get BIG:

I was walking last night to the gym, but not to work out as it was a rest day. The gym is just down the street from my apartment and i got a craving for one of their shakes as they're far tastier than any shake I can do. Turns out however, that vanilla flavoured egg protien powder mixed with milk and strawberries, without sugar, is not that good. Should have stuck with the usual milk and bananas.

Anyway, on the way there, this tall muscular guy gets out of a car and heads into the park i'm passing by. He had no beard at all, but a super long moustache, like the ones you see in moustache competitions, and I think he was holding it together with a gel. It came out about 5 inches each side from his face. Now not many people can walk around sporting such a thing... you just can't get away with it. But he did. Why? Because of how huge he was. In fact, I was looking at hime in awe.

He instantly reminded me of the following picture and caption from an old T-nation article:

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Scott Abel demonstrating how big you have to be to wear pants that ugly.

Hilarious. And it's true.. at one point you're so big you can get away with anything. In fact, you can make the weirdest stupidest things cool. Like the moustache guy... He actually looked cool in it. And back when I was studying in Canada, I practiced the Systema martial art for a short while (had to stop cause of some knee problems), and there was this HUUUUGE russian guy who once came in wearing all red. Yes, red. And he turned red into such a manly color. He actually looked scarier in red than any other color.

Of course being 5'7 I'll never be big enough to get away with anything, no matter how big I get. You need to be tall too. But i'll get big enough to get away with some things, haha (inshalla).

I'll leave you with a useful tip: After finishing every prayer, the Prophet (pbuh) used to ask God's forgiveness three times (say astaghfirullah three times) and then say:

"Allahumma antassalaamu wa minkassalaamu, tabaarakta ya dhal jalaali wal ikraam": Oh Allah, You are Peace, and from You comes (all) Peace, Blessed are You Oh Majestic and Honorable One.


Blogger Elizabeth said...

Exercise can be an addiction: Be careful.

Also, women don't like misshapen weightlifters, for the most part. We like trim and svelte men.

Which reminds me--where's a picture?

May 4, 2006 at 4:54 AM

Blogger Silencer said...

yes i am addicted.

i thought about posting pics but i dont know.. a lot of ppl post pics of their bodies to show progress, and it really helps with not only motivation but with seeing the difference, but i'm not sure how islamic that is. i think if i cover the awra part (which for men is between the knees and the navel) i can show the rest. but i may not show anything between the knees and navel.

we'll see..

May 4, 2006 at 7:43 PM


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