19 May A Fortress of Brotherhood
Before Baitur Rahman existed, we’d hold ijtema there. The grass was dotted with tents everywhere. It got real humid inside those tents. Some blunt twig kept nagging your back or side any time your try to get comfortable to sleep. Nevertheless, each majlis took great pride in their tent. Especially we Atfal. Pranks were pulled on rival tents, and they were not taken lightly. It may have been just a tent, but those were our tents. We’d protect them like a fortress is protected by soldiers who’d lay down their lives.
One ijtema, we got hit with a grizzly rain storm. Parts of the field we’re quickly flooded. Everyone ran to take cover. Many took to their fortresses! The storm was so severe that the wind gusts were thumping tents, literally sending them tumbling. Perhaps those tents still contained Atfal too? We weren’t sure!
In our tent were Atfal from Houston and Brooklyn, as one. Ultimately most retreated to the brick house. Not us. Our pride in the tarps of our tent was worth defending. The true picture is that this spirit blossomed into something much more meaningful with every passing ijtema.
But, that’s where it started.