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In the past I have talked about exams and examinations and how we should use our experiences of examinations in this world and compare them to the examination which will take place in the Hereafter.

Our efforts and preparations for the examinations in this world are vast and this should be the same, if not more, for the exams of the Hereafter.

However, my focus on this occasion was more on Graduation, something I’ve been giving more thought to on this occasion. It’s not going to be my first graduation and I’ve been considering whether I should even attend or just receive my degree in the post (or collect it).

Why should I go? A day when there will be loads of people attending, even family members; everyone looking at us whilst our degrees are handed over to us on a stage by an honoured individual.

At the same time, it is recognition of an achievement; maybe even an occasion that can really allow parents, families and friends to appreciate what has been achieved, a sense of pride and happiness.

And lastly, it’s a time to be with friends and family; to show that you have appreciated their support and friendship all the way through the course; a time when they’ve encouraged and helped you in various different ways. So why not just make this that special day when you show them your achievement and congratulate them on theirs?

POINT

Whilst thinking about the entire process of graduation, my attention and focus went to my previous articles on examinations. I thought of the Hereafter and the ‘big test’ that we associate with it. But this time I thought what about graduation?

The Day of Judgement becomes the Graduation Ceremony. T

The venue becomes the plain of Arafaat.

The Time and Date could be in the next few moments, it will become the Hereafter.

The dress code and preparations will be the Kafn (Shroud); we will be clothed and perfumed; ready for the big day.

The Honoured and Exalted will be Allah سبحانه و تعآلى giving out our Degrees (Books of Deeds)

Imagine this ceremony; will it be a Graduating or Degrading Ceremony. Will we pass or will we fail?

The stage will be set, the audiences will be our parents, siblings, spouses, teachers, friends, family members, cousins, work colleagues and everyone else from those we know and those we don’t/

The graduation process will be two-fold; a review of our lives played in front of the entire audience and the results will be immediate. Will we qualify or disqualify?

At this point we will remember our friends and families; and if we have passed then we will be pleased and grateful for their support and guidance; for their help in keeping us on the right track. But, Allah forbid, if we were to fail and be disqualified, then no matter how much we lament and blame friends, deep down within our hearts we will be cursing ourselves for keeping such friends and avoiding the company of the good. We will remember the times and opportunities we had to choose a better crowd and company and make a difference yet we let our own desire take the better of us.

In this world, we are saved from such humiliation and dishonour; if we don’t qualify we don’t attend the ceremony. Imagine if we had no clue as to our results and we all had to go to the ceremony; we all have to go up on the stage and on the stage our modular exam results are read out, our thesis, dissertations and assignments are read out and finally we are told that we didn’t only fail but we had made no effort and progress. We are told to walk off the stage, empty-handed, with thousands of people looking at us, our family members and friends having their eyes on us. We’ve just seen the person sitting next to us having passed, we know the one following has made such an effort that he won’t fail… If such a shame was experienced in this world it would be an eye-opener despite the consequences being minimal in comparison to the Hereafter.

Let us think over this and use our own experiences to remember and associate with the Hereafter. For those Graduating, I hate to spoil the experience, but think about this on Graduation and when you are Graduating; don’t forget that moment when you walk on to the stage and your eyes meet with the eyes with the audience… imagine if this was the Hereafter… Would you graduate?

May Allah سبحانه و تعالى make us all graduate in this world and, most importantly, in the Hereafter. Aameen.

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