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  • Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

Why travel is more spiritual

When we think of encountering God, we likely picture ourselves in mosques; or praying at home , reading Quran , fasting, and giving charity and performing other rituals. Considering that faith is such an integral part of life, it makes sense to associate it with our daily routines. Yet stepping outside our typical environments and seeking God in a completely new context is very Scriptural. Travel yields many benefits for our spiritual lives

Travel lets us behold new beauty.

Quran celebrates the majesty of the created world and invites us to travel the world and actually see and experience the Beauty and Art of God . Not only is the earth God’s masterpiece, made for us to steward and enjoy, it also reveals His character.

“It is God who has subjected the sea to you so that you may sail thereon by His command, and so that you may seek His bounty, and so that you may be grateful. He has subjected whatever is in heaven and on the earth to you; it is all from Him. In that are signs for those who ponder . Quran Chapter Kneeling 45:12

Visiting new regions exposes us to different aspects of God’s majesty which helps us Glorify God in our prayers and daily lives.

Travel challenges us to trust God by getting outside our comfort zones.

Whether it’s the jitters some experience on an airplane (even though flying is the safest form of travel), or facing the unknown by visiting a different country, culture and climate, travel gets us outside our box, or outside of our routines. We have lots of opportunities to grow spiritually as we trust Him through unfamiliar circumstances outside our control.

“Everything is so well organized in this Kingdom of God! I always am enchanted by the layouts and designs of valleys , mountains, oceans, lakes , forests and and everything happening and felt very relaxed and comfortable the entire trip.” However there may be some discomforts related to food, sleep, travel fatigue and so on, but the benefits outweigh the discomforts in the form of richness of spiritual, physical and psychological experiences"

Do you not see that whoever is in the heavens and whoever is on the earth, as well as the sun and the moon, and the stars and the mountains, and the trees and the beasts and many human beings—all submit to God ------ Quran 22:18 The Pilgrimage

Travel unites you with the diversity of people in unique and unforgettable settings and enrich your experience as He heals you!

Stories roll in all the time of lifelong friendships being formed in tours, hotels and places of worships . Not only does traveling bond you with friends and family you already know, it also extends your circle by allowing you to meet and befriend new people. We meet people of all faiths along our way and learn from them as they leave an impact on us. Sometimes it is other way around, we can also leave an impact on them and this could lead into friendships, sisterhoods and brotherhoods. To me, it feels as God is leading me to go and meet people, learn from them and enrich my spiritual experience. One of my friend who was healing from the loss of her husband shares, “What healing it brought to me. The love God surrounded me with through the people and breathtaking scenery was unbelievable. It was wonderful and beyond words!”

Travel can get you out of a spiritual rut and give you a fresh perspective.

Setting out into the wide blue wonder gives you a glimpse of how big the world is—and how small we are by comparison. Travel can engender a feeling of humility and dependence on God and people as well as fueling our desire to learn and try new things. When we return home, everything will seem a bit different. Not we feel grateful for the comfort of your own bed, we see every aspect of our life in a new light.

And while we are traveling, we have the chance to meet fellow people—who are, like us, created in the image of God—that we otherwise would never encounter. The fact that God’ Great Commission to us begins with the words, “Go ye into all the world…” should be a clear understanding that Islamic life isn’t all about staying in one place and spread the word of God to others by showing the face of Islam to all. This is why I encourage everyone to go and travel the world, sharing the love of the God and returning home different than when you set out.

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