August 16, 2009

Nine Thousand Miles

If the opportunity was presented to you to start a new life, over nine thousand miles away from everything you knew and loved growing up, would you consider it?

Many people live their entire lives within a small radius that doesn't even exceed the daily commute of many people working and living in large cities.  The home they were born in was the home their parents were born in, and their children would live there too, or if they were adventurous, then perhaps they would settle a few miles away.

In this part of the world, it is uncommon for people to stay in one place for so long; sedentary lifestyles are looked down upon, and it is often considered a vice to remain physically attached to one's roots.  I was the adventurous one in the family, settling only a couple hundred kilometres away from the rest.  In my pursuit of a livelihood, I was happy settling on the mantra, "anywhere but Toronto".

During the fifteen months that my rizq was spread out across the country, I travelled over two hundred thousand miles, more than the distance to the moon.  And since then, my wings have been clipped, grounded in one place for two years.  While life has been extremely kind to me and my family, I've always wondered about what else may be in store outside the artificial boundaries I have constrained myself to.

Nine thousand miles is a long distance to cover.  "Permanent" can be a long time.  And a life away from everything I knew and loved may be difficult to bear.  But the Prophet Muhammad Salallahu'alayhi wa salam taught us to live our lives as travellers, as there is nothing permanent about this life.  And Allah Subhana Wa Ta'Ala has made this earth vast, and has placed within it many colours and cultures for us to experience and learn from.  What better way to live that life and experience those realities than by taking that step into the unknown?

And with a new life coming into this world, isn't this an appropriate time to consider a new life for myself?


  1. Nine thousand miles isn't a lot in today's world. You would be able to cover the distance in a couple of days - at the most.

    Good luck.

  2. It's not the journey itself that scares me so much; it's the thought of leaving so much behind. But such is life.