On 6 February 2023, an earthquake hit southern and central Turkey, and northern and western Syria with a magnitude of at least 7.8. It was followed by more than 1,000 aftershocks, including an unusually powerful 7.7 nine hours after the mainshock. It was Turkey’s deadliest earthquake in 80 years.

Reuters reports that at least 23,800 deaths, 83,000 people with non-fatal injuries, nearly 400,000 people displaced, 7,500 buildings destroyed, and at least 24 million people affected.

(Photo Credit: The wreckage of a collapsed building, Diyarbakır, Turkey. Photo by Mahmut Bozarslan - VOA)

And so we pray this news . . .

Bismillaah ar Rahman ar Rahim
In the name of God,
the infinitely Compassionate and Merciful.

Ya Rahim,
the embodiment of divine mercy,
our hearts and prayers go out
to the victims and the survivors
of the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.
May they feel the healing activity
of divine love.

Ya Halim,
the gentle and kind loving one,
with your tenderness
wipe away the tears of those
who have lost their loved ones
and give them the courage
to carry on as they rebuild their lives.

Ya Hafiz,
we invoke your protection
for those who are homeless
and living in shelters,
and for those suffering from
fear, despair, and hopelessness.
May they and we always remember
that, as it says in the Qur'an,
"Allah's protection extends over
everything that is in the heavens
and the earth."

Ya Wasi,
we are thankful for those
who have been your faithful
servants after the earthquakes,
becoming your face to the
survivors: neighbors who came
together to dig people and animals
out of the rubble and transport the
injured to the hospitals;
relief workers and medical
personnel tending to the
many needs of the victims.

Ya Wali,
you who are our protecting friend,
even though many of us
praying this news are far
away from Turkey and Syria,
we feel connected to these
people through our shared
friendship with you.
In the days ahead, may
they be aware of the world's love
and caring regard for we are all
members of one family.

__________________________________________________________________________ * The names of Allah and interpretations used in this prayer have been taken from Physicians of the Heart: A Sufi View of the 99 Names of Allah by Wali Ali Meyer, Bilal Hyde, Faisal Muqaddam, and Shabda Kahn

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