The thinned out line of the women who were returning from the dining hall was crowded in the lit prayer hall. The young, sharp, enthusiastic, and clear voices were reciting the short Surahs from the Quran.

Her kind, old hands opened the little cream embroidered piece of cloth and brought out of it two rings; a turquoise, and an 'Aqiq. Her gentle, sincere voice, murmured the recommendation that this new, young sister of hers whom she had recently met, wears the 'Aqiq ring on her finger. The night was that of the Power, and an 'Aqiq ring would make the possibility of a worship accepted much more, she had simply explained.

The young confused one moved by this act of generosity had simply obeyed without a question. Much into the night, as she was being guided in the a'maal of the night, she had hesitantly murmured a question about the significance of this stone. It was the first stone that had attested to the prophethood of Muhammad al-Mustafa (pbuh&hf), and the wilayat of 'Ali (as), she had learned.

Her hand had grown heavy with the weight of the ring. She was in the proximity of a one which had attested to the truth, however irrelevant to its existence it had seemed, she thought. What relevance does Nabuwwat, or Imamat had to a stone, she wondered, yet it had attested to this truth.

She avoided looking at the stone, for it was reminding her of her kind's disloyalty; a human ashamed of her kind. The ring had grown heavier and heavier on her hand.

Well past midnight when they were driving to another Masjid for the rest of the night, in the dark back seat of the car, she had broken down into a flood of tears, as she had finally glanced at the stone, in the light of the passing cars, and rubbed this dear being to her eyes. She had praised it, and envied it.

And now with a hopeful heart was pleading to its creator that He grants her and her kind loyalty, sincerity, and truthfulness like that of this stone.

Contributed by Mahwash Hirmendi, . An excerpt from “My Sisters”