Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Ramadan, continued

Ramadan is the month in which was sent down the Qur'an, as a guide to mankind, also clear Signs for guidance and judgment (Between right and wrong). So every one of you who is present at his home during that month should spend it in fasting, but if any one is ill, or on a journey, the prescribed period (Should be made up) by days later. Allah intends every facility for you; He does not want to put to difficulties. He wants you to complete the prescribed period, and to glorify Him in that He has guided you; and perchance ye shall be grateful.

-Qur'an, Al-Baqara, 2:185

Going without food or drink from dawn to dusk requires good discipline and a strong will. Mummyji's proud to say that the babes possess both. Sure, they complain a little, "why is it that the other religions do not fast like us, mummy?", and sometimes, after a long day in school, "Mummy, I'm hungry..."
But not once, not at all, have they whined to be allowed to break fast before it is due.

The thing about us fasting is that we get to look forward to and plan quite elaborately for the meal at Iftar. We, or at least mummyji and daddyji do, browse through cookbooks and websites in search of new recipes to dish up. We pamper ourselves after a day's fast, have a good meal at Iftar, simply because we have the means to do so. And it is in fasting that we are able to reflect upon the hunger we experience, and compare ourselves to the impoverished ones. We must not forget that for these people,hunger is a way of life, and not just for a month. They eat what they can get, with probably not that much of a choice, to fill their rumbling stomachs.
And so we must appreciate that we have been blessed with a good life and give thanks to Allah. For all the luxuries we enjoy, we are grateful and should never waste.

And perhaps mummyji shouldn't be so uptight about loading the babes with enough calories at Sahur to last a whole day. Perhaps mummyji should just let them eat what they think they can hold, instead of insisting they finish a whole muffin or a whole pack of noodles, only to have them leave behind half, or worse, throw up the entire meal.
After all, Mummyji's read recently that human beings are able to survive a whole month without food, but only a week without water. We do not need to wait that long to break our fast, so perhaps Mummyji should just relax and let the babes experience the hunger, and pray that they will, in their own time, reflect upon how blessed they are.

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