Black Crust

Soak the blackheart in the shoreless sea of mercy and purity. The stains will lift.

These thirty days make up the holiest month of the year, where one gets the chance to atone for their sins committed in the eleven months prior. Where one tries to tame their desires and unpleasant habits, disciplining themselves through ever-conscious will and fortitude. Where one serves his Creator through service towards his fellow humankind.

Where one has the opportunity to scrape, chisel, scrub, and rinse off the black crust that has been deposited, coated layer upon layer, hardening their hearts. Where one gets to feel their heart beat again, tasting the sweetness of the month, rejoicing in peace, purity and solace.

Reality check. Those thirty days are almost over. It’s the 22nd night.

As I type, I wonder if I have done enough for the past 21 days.

Have I done enough to scrape and claw my way through these stone-hard, cold layers surrounding the heart? Chiseling bit by bit, hammering, dissolving the black grime. An arduous process. It’s not easy when there’s other things to attend to. But I did try. My heart was essentially dead, a cold, black lump, full of nothing but wrongdoings, missed opportunities, grudges, jealousy, bad thoughts, overthinking, bad habits. But I did try. I tried stopping the source of this black ooze. I tried focusing on cleansing my mind and spirit. Removing the crust bit by bit, layer by layer, aided by the pure waters of the month as they wash away the blackness. And I have seen results.

The heart started to slowly beat once more, no longer restricted by the black crust. It finally sees scintillas of light breaking through. Coldness replaced with warmth. Jealousy replaced with thanks. Seizing opportunities. Reveling in the company of beautiful, luminous souls, learning how they did it, how they tried to cleanse their hearts, ridding them of the creeping blackness.

It’s the 22nd night in this month of change. The heart is still in the process of purification. Have I done enough? There are still bits of crust, covering parts of my heart, hindering it from beating fully. There’s still grime for me to clean, char for me to scrape, soot for me to scrub. I’m still an unfinished business. I fear that I may not get to taste the full sweetness of this month, for my black heart hasn’t completely turned red yet.

But it’s probably that same fear that makes up the remaining bits of black crust.

Stop fearing. Keep trying.

8 nights left.

– ر


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