Sunday, June 12, 2016

An OPNO Family-Style Ramadan: Puting the Lanterns out for Taraweeah

To get my younger kids involved in Taraweeah prayer time I simply cannot bring them to the Mosque...  Especially not for prayers as long as taraweeah ones. We would be disturbing all the other worshippers.

I've tried Jumah with them (Jumah is Friday prayers). The five year old steals chairs from old ladies praying, to make forts out of prayer mats and the disability-prayer-chairs, and my husband says the two year old occasionally jumps on people's backs and takes money out of men's pockets and eats it [which makes me seem like an awesome mother I know].  Trust me, it just doesn't work yet. ...Then there's the sister who writes the Salafi Feminist blog and her daughter is only a year older than mine but mashaAllah she stands for Taraweeah.... So I accept my sucky Muslimah-mommy status with patience....(afterall, my parents were worse with me as a kid... so. Although apparently I liked Bible Study when I was under ten, go figure. ...Liked to show I could memorize more than the adults).

Most Omani Muslim parents don't seem as in tune with getting kids to learn to pray and hang out at the Mosque as Canadian Muslims seem to be... They do take them for eating out, and to the malls and parks to play in the evenings, and do a whole lot of visiting, which seems super fun for kids nonetheless. But I want my kids to get into Taraweeah. I want to go again one day....;).
So, while my husband and the older kids and ladies who have housemaids or relatives to watch their brood of kids float out to Masjids to pray Taraweeah, I give my kids the special responsibility of turning on the lights (if we have strung any decorative lights) and puting out lanterns we keep just for Ramadan. I try to buy a new one once a year.
...That way, when the people praying come back, they come home to a beautifully lit home, and the younger ones feel that the time then is special. After Taraweeah is over and the worshippers come back, we turn off the lights, and blow out the candles.
For the last days of Ramadan I let them keep the lights on for the whole night for those praying the whole night. InshaAllah, it is kind of an experiment, but it seems to make the kids appreciate the unique prayer times of Ramadan.

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