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A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with writer and broadcaster Salma El-Wardany.

A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with writer and broadcaster Salma El-Wardany

Good morning.

This exact time last year, I was struggling. My days were long and empty. My to-do list was longer than my days, and the motivation that had previously propelled my life had fled me. Everything existed just out of reach, on the other side of an invisible barrier that I couldn’t penetrate or scale. The days were fuzzy and numb. Life seemed to be happening to everyone but me.

Nothing was wrong, but everything was out of place. My mind, once my greatest ally, had become my biggest enemy. I had quietly and gently slipped into a depression that I thought would never leave me. Mental health awareness week has just ended, and I hope a new wave of conversation, education and understanding has begun.

In the Quran lies the verse, “Verily, with every difficulty there is relief;” a hint at the cyclical nature of life. That with the help of others and with understanding and care, we can always start again. Eventually I did, stepping out of my depression and though I may experience it again, it will be with the hindsight that every hardship is followed by ease.

Our mental well-being can be shaken for no apparent reason or by life’s bigger trials and tribulations. The isolation of lockdown, the loss of a loved one, the lurking fear of what tomorrow may bring, the threat of deprivation or the constant pain of a chronic illness. All these and much more. We need to acknowledge that nurturing and caring for our hearts and minds is as important as protecting our physical health from the danger of a new virus.

This last week has been about creating space for one another and coming together. Lord may you always fill us with compassion and mercy, for ourselves and for others as we walk though dark days.


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2 minutes

On radio

Tomorrow 05:43


  • Tomorrow 05:43