The ancients woke up before sunrise, got their share of the early morning energy and lived their days fruitfully. Today, however, getting up early is a problem for most people for many reasons such as going to bed late and being exposed to the blue light of screens until night. We had an interview with Abdullah Sak, leader of the “Saklar Hareketi” (Light Sleepers Movement) which gathers people who intend to get up early, on the benefits of getting up early and the Muslim time.
Can you tell us about yourself first?
My name is Abdullah Sak. I am a student and an educator. I try to acknowledge myself as the humble passenger I am and know my place. I serve at the Personality Academy.
What is Saklar Hareketi? Why did you choose to call it this?
“Sak” is a first name given to people who get up early in old Turkish. “Sak adam” is an expression to emphasize that a person is an early riser, a hard worker. This word is still used among the nomads. Our movement has two names: Saklar Hareketi and Light Sleepers Movement. The English version is aimed at reaching fellows from different nationalities and platforms over time. The Saklar Movement is an organization that gathers people who intend to get up early and turn it into a lifestyle.
What is the starting point of the project? To what problem do we owe this creation?
I grew up in a family that set its whole routine according to morning prayers. Of course, even though I wished to keep this beautiful habit in my life after my family, I did not have the knowledge to explain to myself why. I was indeed born and raised that way, but what was the purpose of getting up early? Then one day, while I was giving a speech on getting up early, I couldn’t help remembering Surah Muzzammil. I had read it many times and even knew it by heart yet missed the meaning terribly. As it is clearly stated in the interpretation of the surah and in the sunnah of our Prophet, there were many secrets peculiar to the time of tahajjud and dawn. Under the influence of the culture that promotes going to bed late, we were negligently wasting these precious times with sleep, thus were deprived of the secret benefits. This project emerged for the sake of regaining our lost time as Muslims.
Who should be Involved in this movement and why?
I think anyone who wishes to experience abundance firsthand, who wants to live their lives in order and peace, who has the ideal of becoming productive and doing business should be involved in such a movement. Be it this movement or a self-made alternative, doesn’t matter which. Transformations and movements are often doomed to fail unless practiced with a community.
What does a person who starts the day early gain?
In his famous article Muslim Hour, Ahmet Haşim says, “We had a short, light, easy-to-live day of twelve hours, beginning and ending with light. These were the days when Muslims were happy; they measured the time of honorable days with these hours.” The laws of human biology are determined by Allah ta’ala. Therefore, a person who abides by these laws should start the day with the morning prayer at the latest. In this program, everyone starts the day with the morning prayer and organizes their lives better due to this early launch. Activities such as studying language, writing, memorizing and reading are practiced more productively in the early hours of the morning as the human brain performs better. The psychological and physiological benefits of morning hours are also notable. It gives an enormous sense of well-being to go to bed early at night and wake up early in the morning. It makes much more sense to start the day with things that are normally heavy for the mind such as reading books, writing, reading the Qur’an. Because one does not want to compromise sleep for challenging work, at least during those hours.
Also, some physiological results suggest that the digestive system works more healthily, body regeneration and rejuvenation occur, the risk of obesity decreases, and the neuron activity of the brain increases in people who are at risk and then start an active day.
There is an incentive to get up early in different parts of the world, and even getting up early is one of the habits of successful people. Robin Sharma has a book on the benefits of waking up early called “5 AM Club”. Were you inspired by such studies?
I know that getting up early, which is one of the common traits of successful people, attracts the attention of academic communities. So much research was done on the subject for years. Maybe it can be considered as a shortcoming, but we did not resort to any work or publication in the emergence of this movement. My community’s main starting point and source of inspiration have been our own resources, experience and knowledge; hadiths and the Qur’an. Probably, similar ideas and movements emerged in different geographies.After all, minds think alike. I do not believe that our movement is unique, because we have only systematized and adapted this practice according to the verses of the Qur’an, sunnah and the lifestyle of Muslim scholars.
How many people are in this movement right now?
I started this movement with two other people about a year ago, and now we have grown to thirty-three people.
What kind of feedback did you receive?
I often include the statements of Ahmet Haşim. In fact, I would like to share with you the following sentence which describes those who wake up during the Muslim hour. “However, the hour of dawn is the end of a dreamless sleep and the beginning of purification, worship, joy and hope for a Muslim. The Muslim face is one of the most beautiful manifestations of dawn, like the sounds of birds and the scent of flowers.” In summary, we received countless prayers. People comment on how great it is that such a movement emerged and how lucky they are to have joined. Some blessed us even though they left the movement after a while for certain reasons. I don’t think we ever had such a happy movement before. Nobody loses even if they quit.
How can one participate?
I leave them three video addresses and a text where they can access necessary information.
What would you recommend to Bi’ Dünya Haber followers? What would you like to say?
First of all, I would like to congratulate the followers of Bi’ Dünya Haber for spending their time on such a beautiful platform in this era where there is more harmful content than useful publications out there. I had the opportunity to have a brief conversation with the readers of the site. Many times when I describe this movement, the audience expects me to invite them. However, we do not intend to persuade or invite anyone to participate in the early risers movement. Because it is not a movement that can be tolerated or sustained by persuasion. On the contrary, this movement is one that we think should be demanded by people who have realized the importance of getting up early and decided to change their lives for this cause. If the esteemed readers would like to participate, we would of course be delighted to have them among us. Through this article, I have only one humble request from them: “As the Ummah, let’s meet in the realization and the aim of regaining the Muslim clock! Otherwise, as the poet says, we will be people lost in time, like those who are stray in the desert.”