By Arooba Zaffar
Ever wondered what it’s like to be child at Jalsa Salana? Let’s take a peek into their world and discover the delightful moments they experience amidst the bustling atmosphere:
A parent’s Jalsa Salana joy is always made all the sweeter by the innocent and pure excitement of their children, who count down the days and minutes before arriving at the Jalsa Salana.
Backpacks packed with, children are filled with excitement and joy on first sight of the huge tent city that forms the Jalsa Salana. An excitement only surpassed when they see their beloved Huzoor.
As beloved Huzoor speaks, they hear his words with a child’s mind, focusing on simple messages: ‘‘remember your salat… be good people… treat others with kindness… establish a connection with Allah.’’
As the lines are formed for prayer, children feel the enormity of the event and take comfort in praying next to their parents or relatives.
At lunchtime, a child’s sweet tooth emerges: “I want another cake!” The mother negotiates, “Finish your aloo ghost and rice first, then we can think about it.”
In the bazaar, wide-eyed with wonder, the child spots countless temptations: “I want toys, balloons, jellies, chocolates, ice cream… (and the list continues)”. The mother wisely guides, “Choose only one thing.”
Inside the marquee, a small voice cries out, “I can’t find my shoes.” Patiently, the mother responds, “Do you remember which gate you left them? Let’s start searching from gate one.”
When fatigue sets in, the child utters, “I’m sleepy.” The mother, invoking Dad duty, picks up the phone. It’s time for a tag-team effort.
At the end of a long day, the child expresses genuine joy: “I love coming to Jalsa, can’t wait for tomorrow!” The exhausted but happy mother replies with gratitude, “Yes, Alhamdulillah.”
Navigating this experience can be a real challenge for parents, but ultimately an incredibly enriching one. For most parents, experiencing these first Jalsa Salanas with their children is a milestone of parenthood!
The children’s world at Jalsa Salana is filled with simple joys, challenges, and cherished memories. Amidst the exhaustion, their excitement and anticipation for the next day, coupled with the gems of knowledge they pick up and surprise you with, affirm the special place Jalsa holds in their hearts.