Joined: 06 June 2008
From the Heavens
I looked at my feet in surprise, confusion clearly evident in my eyes, as the white soft cottony material hugged my feet. I was wearing different clothes too and suddenly feeling fresh and relaxed. I couldn't comprehend what was happening, it was a sight I had never seen before only heard the vague descriptions.
It was like the world had changed in a blink of any eye. Like someone had replaced the canvas of yellows, reds, and oranges with that of the greens, blues and purples.
She couldn't believe what she heard, neither could he but they knew it was true, they just didn't want to accept the harsh reality. In the corner of their hearts there was a pinch of hope, that it would all be a misunderstanding and he would return any minute.
I don't know how I landed here, in a world completely opposite to where I was a second ago.
People were running around, there were dead bodies, fire and blood. I couldn't see anything properly it was a blur, but I very well knew what it was, I just knew it was another one of those, another one of those moments where I had lost my loved ones. My grandfather who was our guidance, who stood strong like a shelter for the whole family and who kept us all tied and united. My uncles who always generated the positive vibes when our family would be in crisis and never turned their backs and come to our aid whenever we needed. They were the ones we could rely on and unexpectedly all three left us at the same time, in the same incident, all six years ago, and it was coming again.
I don't know what happened. I was trying to reach out, to this kid who looked twelve. He was bleeding, he couldn't move because his leg was injured. He was lying at the side of the road and no body came to his aid. I couldn't move, there was no blood on me but my insides were drowning, I could feel everything becoming more and more blurry, as I felt like I was teleporting to another world. I could see people were screaming but I was loosing my hearing too.
When suddenly I felt a hand of an unknown touch my shoulder, who was that? I still don't know. But from the touch I could tell it belonged to someone who held high power. I was led to what seemed liked a spaceship, but not the normal kind. It was white as if made from cotton and it was so bright that it could blind a naked eye. I don't know why but I followed and I was taken near that bright light and all that fire, blood and dead bodies were gone. I was in a place where I didn't know anyone except a few faces that seemed familiar but I couldn't register them and didn't know what had happened.
She threw the glass of water her sister had offered, before it hit the wall breaking in pieces, not being able to absorb the sudden most tragic news she had been exposed to. She yelled, she screamed and pulled her hair. She didn't want to believe what these people were telling her. She wanted to slap them all for uttering such nonsense. She held her eldest son's shoulder with such force that it scared the young adult, asking him to go look for his brother, he must be lost and couldn't find a way back home, she reasoned.
He cried and hugged her tight trying for the millionth time that it was true and she needed to accept it, running from reality won't change the facts.
He looked at his youngest brother who now sat in the corner. He seemed lost and in his own world, not blinking for the past few minutes and had become a statue not moving, eating, talking or even crying for that matter.
His dad who was also in denial earlier now seemed to be absorbing the news.
I felt something in my pants and to my surprise I found a tasbeeh in one of my pockets. Again, don't know how it got there but it was beautiful. The beads were made of white marble and were connected with a white smooth silky string. The end of it, where there was a pony tail of the strings which felt very soothing and gave a heavenly feel.
Instantly I knew this was a special one.
The men of the family who had gone looking for him returned in despair, their hands and clothes showing the color of blood and the amount of lives that had been lost.
They came empty handed and it angered her even more, she thought they didn't look hard enough and were just making excuses so she wouldn't send them again to look for him.
She remained in the state of denial as each of them stood speechless with their heads bowed as none of them had the courage to deliver the heart wrenching news to his mother. She was his mother after all.
He guided me and I felt blessed under his supervision. He was always my hero and today being with him physically took me over cloud nine. But at the same time there was emptiness somewhere at the bottom of my heart. For a second I couldn't understand what was causing the dullness in my existence but then I realized I was no longer with the people with whom I shared my life. I didn't know if I should be happy that I was in this heaven or that I won't ever see my family again. Before I could decide I was taken to the area where all the others had gathered. I could tell they were preparing for a speech and maybe prayer afterwards. I could not tell what time it was in this world. It always seemed like that morning which was bright but breezy at the same time.
Soon his body was found and alas she had to accept, that her son had left her. Left her for good and there was no turning back.
She sat there keeping his head in her lap and stared at the peaceful face for what seemed like hours. She didn't cry she just sat and took in his details as she caressed his face and hair. Remembering the times when he would get annoyed when someone touched his hair she smiled at the memory immediately which was replaced by the salty water running from her eyes that she could no longer control.
She shook him, tried to wake him nicely and then getting mad at him for not waking up. When her brothers and sisters tried to calm her down she replied that he always used to do this when she tried to wake him up every morning. Seeing the condition of his mom, the eldest son felt his resolve breaking. Handling this all would be harder than he thought.
All of us were lead to an unknown destination. We were oblivious to the surroundings as the fog covered everything. Soon enough we were out of the foggy area and in the terrains of huge mountains. We had crossed a huge dessert followed by a huge mountain. At first it all seemed like a very tiring and long journey, but an unknown hand guided us all and helped us reach our destination one by one. When we finally reached the top of the mountain, it was all cloudy up there. In a matter of a few seconds the clouds disappeared into thin air and revealed a magnificent palace of white marble. There was a huge space in the center surrounded by fresh blue almost surreal water. It screamed royal and noble and definitely seemed like a property of some king. This was beyond the best monuments of the universe and it held the most valuable gems.
Suddenly we heard a voice that held power and authority and gave strict orders to feed us first before we continue any further with our journey.
Then it struck me that all of us hadn't eaten anything since sehri.
We were seated on the floors in the middle of that palace. A shiver went up my spine as my body came in contact with the cold marble, for some reason it was a very comforting chill.
Before we even took the date to our lips, the same authoritative voice came informing us of the arrival of the Prophet's daughter (a.s.) and son-in-law (a.s)
A huge black cloud appeared out no where, and I then realized it was to cover Bibi Fatima (a.s) from the gazes of na mehrums.
Imam Ali (a.s) moved towards the small river flowing inside the palace to perform wuzu.
Before he started washing his hands he looked at me and called me to help him complete the wuzu. I was surprised but very honored at the same time. I felt blessed.
When I removed my hands from my pockets, it was all bloody and my confusion increased to no end. While I was staring at my hands, an angel took me near Imam Ali (a.s.) and washed my hands in the same water as his.
After that I helped Imam Ali (a.s.) with his wuzu and he disappeared shortly.
The next instant we were gathered in a circle in this area where we weren't taken yet and were asked to throw burning pieces of coals at those who had been against Allah and his people. I was scared to touch that piece of coal, lest my hands got burned, but then the voice of an angel told us that it won't affect us as we are the special people of Allah and love his Prophet and his family. We were still in that trance when we saw these creatures appearing in huge chains, as if they were imprisoned for a grave mistake. Then it was revealed that these are the people who had torture the daughter of the Prophet (s.a.w.). After they were attacked with burning coals they were taken away from there and then an order was given to take us to our homes.
I was happy that we would be given another chance to go back on earth and meet our families but I was wrong. The heaven had now become our homes and the people in there our families.
I don't know how but in a blink of an eye we were at the top of the highest peak. I could see an old house, I could almost feel the homely warmth as we moved closer.
When I stepped in the hall I was shocked at what I saw. There was a name plate of my name on one of the doors. When I opened the room I saw my brother and sister sitting there admiring my paintings that were very valuable to me I remembered. I smiled at the bickering that the two were having, just like always. She was mad at him for coming here without her and not telling her about this place earlier. They looked at the paintings with teary eyes, I couldn't comprehend what was happening. I told my sister to not cry because she gets emotional too easily. I went and sat against one of the walls. She came and sat near me, still carrying that expression of despair. She told me that she misses me a lot, I was confused. How can they miss me when I see them every other day? She cried and said she misses me ever since I left.
I smiled at her love and she asked me a question.
" jab koi shaheed hojata hai to uske baad uske saath kya hota hai?"
"yeh aik bohat haseen safar tha"
I smiled at the recent journey that left me baffled and out of senses with sheer pleasure.
I narrated the whole story from the vanishing of the earthly matters to appearing of the heavenly possessions.
Her eyes popped open and she heard the Azaan and immediately got up to pray Fajr.
Near the end of her prayer, she had thanked Almighty for showing her that her brother was now in a better place, in peace and harmony, something he would have never gotten here on earth.
Grey: events on Earth, Turquoise: life after death in heaven
This is based on real life events.
Three years back in the month of Ramadan my mother's cousin who was around the age of 24 got martyred in rally of Yom-e-Quds (Quetta, Pakistan). He has two brothers and he was the middle child.
The entire experience that took after death was seen in a dream by his cousin sister. She is the one who told me all about it. It was her who had met him in the dream and her younger brother as they were attached to him.
The paintings in the room in heaven, that was because he was an artist and made incredibly amazing paintings. And he had received his acceptance call from NCA (National College of Art in Pakistan) two days later after his death.
Things that happened on earth after he died are not accurate as I wasn't there when it happened. It is just from my imagination and from what I heard.
About the part where I mentioned "It was all happening again", a similar incident has occurred in our family in 2004, except at that time there were 3 deaths at the same time. It was the suicide bombing at the Friday prayers (Quetta, Pakistan)
Please please please be very respectful about this specific piece, this is very close to all of us and holds great importance.
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