Thursday, November 06, 2003

Fasting For Body And Soul

A lot of Muslims think that if they stop eating and drinking from the break of dawn till sunset then it means they're fasting the right way in the holy month of Ramadan. This is completely wrong, for fasting isn't only for the body. It is meant to be for our souls and minds as well.
Our minds should fast, they should stop thinking of any bad thoughts, destructive acts or negative manners. We should be clean inside-out. We mustn't curse or say bad words to each other, even if the other person doesn't hear us.
We must think of our poor neighbors and all those people in need. We should try our best to help them, if not with money then at least with sharing. Sharing meals, extra or old clothes. We should help them find a job or anything we could offer. A sweet word to cheer them up, a "good morning" from the heart, and even a kind smile makes a difference to them, and shows them that they're not totally forgotten.
Just like when you fast and stop eating for a period of time in Ramadan they feel that you share them a bit of their suffering and that all Muslims remember them.
What's so funny and yet sad at the same time is how most of the people create an unbelievable kind of chaos in the streets and start driving crazy when "Iftar" time comes (Iftar is the time of sunset when Muslims are to end their fasting). How they're in such a hurry and have angry faces and rush everything in a very weird way.
It's all because they don't want to be late one minute for food. They forget that the main reason God wants us to fast is to teach us patience and tolerance. To make us feel with the poor. And at the time tables stuffed with every kind of most delicious food are waiting for us, the time when our hunger will come to an end and our thirst will be finally quenched, they forget that the poor will still be starving and will continue to be thirsty.
The main point of fasting was never to be on yours nerves or fulfill your duties badly or maybe don't fulfill them at all. NO! Fasting was never meant to spend large quantities of money on shopping to serve most expensive food on your table. NO! Fasting was never the cause of uncontrolled temper and chaos. NO!
Fasting was and shall always be the way to unite all Muslims of the world, make them feel for each other, make them patient, and help them tolerate tiresome days and fulfill their jobs the best way they can. They should stop being materialistic and for once put money and food in the end of their "priority-list". If they're late for Iftar, never mind, at least they know that there is food awaiting them. When they're tired, it's ok, they know they can rest. If they face a problem, they know that having faith and never giving up will solve it for them.
So to all Muslims who believe fasting was meant for their bodies only, PLEASE be fair to fasting. When you're wrong, admit it's your fault and stop blaming it on Ramadan. Prove to yourself that you're free from materialism, and that your strong will can help you take your responsibilities the right way even if you were tired and hungry. You should be tough to survive, but yet you should be full of tender feelings towards your fellow humans.
Ramadan is a holy month in which our love to our humanity should grow stronger. The month in which our relationship with God should become real by fasting, praying and knowing more about our religion.
Ramadan is the reminder of some people, who are almost forgotten. Ramadan is tolerance, help, love, care, freedom and commitment…
Words that are crossed out of our dictionaries, where there is space only for materialism and interests… and where good manners no longer exist!