Oh. My. God. We’re half way through Ramadan already!! How did that happen so fast? I must’ve blinked. 😦

Last week I reviewed my progress with regards to my goals for Ramadan to figure out what I needed to work on. Time to do the same for week two.

1) Read the Qur’an.
Alhamdulillah, I’ve stuck with this. I did get a bit behind during the week, but I caught up quickly.

2) Qiyam ul-Layl / Tarawih.
Last week I wasn’t praying, so I had no idea how I was going to fit Tarawih in: either pray four rakat after Isha and four before Fajr, or all eight together, after Isha or before Fajr. As it turns out, I’ve been praying it after Isha, usually leaving a gap of about an hour between some of the rakat. I did miss one night, but I can’t remember why. I think I was tired after having guests, but I’m not sure. All in all, I’m happy with how this one is going, Alhamdulillah.

3) Dua.
Yeah, this was the one I didn’t think through properly last time and it wasn’t until I was doing the dishes that I realised that it’s pretty much impossible to do tasbih at the same time. Not my brightest moment. This meant that I had to make a more concerted effort to make dua and include adhkar, so now I’ve been taking out 5 minutes when I wake up, 5 minutes after Asr or Maghrib and about a minute before I go to bed. But I’m doing it, so that’s all that matters. 😀

4) Revise Qur’an.
I was hoping that praying Tarawih every night with surahs that I’ve memorised would encourage me to revise during the day to prepare for it. Hah! Yeah right. I just pray reading from the Qur’an, but only doing the surahs that I’ve already memorised – I’m not trying to recite the entire Qur’an during Tarawih. There’s no point, I’d already be a week behind!

I guess this is going to be the goal that doesn’t happen. I’m not going to give up on it entirely, but I won’t be beating myself up about it if (when) I don’t do it.

5) Avoiding gossip and backbiting
Ok, overall, I think I’ve done pretty good with this. But I could probably improve. Dang, this is a hard one! Although, it’s worth mentioning that the one thing I’ve done perfectly is not look up online gossip sites, and that I’m very proud of. Because I’ve been sorely tempted. Seriously. It’s amazing how many celebrities I’ve been wondering about – did X get married yet? How ugly is Y’s divorce getting? (I wouldn’t mind, but I’ve never even been interested in either X or Y before. )

6) Increasing sincerity in prayer.
Two words for this: Oh. Dear.
Seriously, forget sincerity, I’m just trying to concentrate. This needs a lot of work. Grrr… *flexes muscles in determination*

Oh, and do you remember those other little non-religious goals that I had for Ramadan? Let me remind you. They are:
– not eating too much: Lemon Cheesecake. Need I say more?
– working out: Did I write this? Really? Because this week, I haven’t shifted my butt once. May try to change that. Then again, I may not. 8)
– keeping a positive attitude: succeeded! (N.B.: I’m talking about a broad-based, general definition of a positive attitude, here. Not a new age-y serene cheerfulness. Cause that aint me.)

So, how are things going with you? How do you concentrate in prayer? And is it just me, or is this Ramadan whizzing by?