By Samina Farooq
Crying was your first sign of being alive. If you didn’t cry, doctors made sure you did because you were supposed to live. Cry to live. You had to learn to cry before you were supposed to learn to smile.
As babies, we used to cry to communicate anything and everything. Then with time, we learned to express ourselves with words instead of tears. But until now, when words fail to express feelings bursting inside, tears replace them.
When feelings are beyond words, tears take over.
Extreme joy, suppressed anger, helplessness, sorrow, loneliness, regrets, repentance, pain, stress, loss, disappointment, empathy, smothered tears etc; all can result in crying.
They are not a sign of weakness. Just a mode of communication. A silent one. And not all tears mean depression or sadness. True weakness isn’t acknowledging your emotions by crying: it’s hiding from them.
Too often, we feel ashamed, silly or weak when we cry in front of anyone. Perhaps it’s because we feel vulnerable when we don’t want to. Though havoc, the unacknowledged feelings may wreak is greater than feeling of vulnerability.
In reality, we are simply connected with our feelings. It’s also an opportunity for people to become closer. If we cry in front of someone, chances are we either feel attached to that person or will eventually be attached.
Which is why shedding tears for the sake of Allaah brings us closer to Him. Tears in sujood (prostration) or tears in du’a are one of the most beautiful feelings.
Tears are our way to connect to Allah in the closest manner possible.
And those are the tears that make us feel afloat above all our burdens. It feels like this was the reason why Prophet (PBUH) was ever smiling even when his life had hardships upon hardships. He shed tears and it didn’t make him any less manly. He just knew how to blow away the heavy load with the power of tears. Smiling is sunnah and so is crying(not equivalent though). Hence, it’s nothing to be ashamed of.
…Allah does not punish for the shedding of tears or the grief of the heart, but punishes or bestows mercy for the utterances of this (and he (PBUH) pointed to his tongue). [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
So next time when you try to suppress your tears, let them flow. Fall in prostration and let them reach Allaah. What others can’t understand and sometimes not even you, Allaah will. Tears will strengthen you instead of making you feel weak. So let them flow…