Wednesday, October 13

Fasting Is Here...

... And I'll admit that I always kinda dread it. I know I shouldn't and it's a weakness etc. Perhaps you'd understand if I explained a typical day in Ramadhan for me:

0530: Wake up for Sehri. Now, we're kinda used to waking up for Fajr so this isn't that tough, apart from the fact that we stay up a bit longer.

0615: Get back in bed for a snooze or two. Might not be particularly beneficial since I'll be getting up at...

0700: ... To get ready for work. This is ok though, 'cos I don't have breakfast (duh) or brush my teeth (did that at Sehri), so it's just pee, dress, and go.

0815 - 1730: Work as usual. Although I'll be breaking my fast at Maghrib. By myslef. Sigh.

1845: Get home. Attempt to chill for a bit before heading off to the Mosque. Not likely since there's always stuff to be done.

1915 - 2100: Head off for Tarawih prayers.

2130: Go to bed, seeing as I have to be up at 5 the next morning.

Okay, I'm guessing a lot here since this is my first Ramadhan in a real job (Exertris was terribly lax in timekeeping), but that's the general gist. It's tiring and takes up pretty much all of my time. But hey, at least I don't have to worry about lunch, right?

I remember once in RE (I think that it was in Year 9), Ms Hyatt asked the class why Muslims fasted. Mr Smart Arse (no not me, there was another at that time) answered "So we know what poor people feel like". Ms Hyatt accepted this as the correct answer and further offered health, discipline and even bleeding detox as others. I kept quiet in my perplexity.

These concepts never sat well with me. I mean what, did that mean if there was no poverty in this world a Muslim wouldn't need to fast? People on a good diet didn't need to either? Nah. On top of that I didn't recall reading anything of the sort. Nope, the reason I fasted then (and now) was cos I was told that it was what I had to do.

Not by my parents or my Madarassa teacher, of course. I mean, yes, they literally told me, but I only did it 'cos I had been commanded to by God. It was another form of worship and obedience, much like the five daily prayers that I had become accustomed to too - and you don't hear people claim that they bow five times a day towards Makkah in order to remain flexible now do you?

I have a point here, so bear with me. It's probably obvious to most Muslims reading this but the main reason why we follow our religion so closely isn't cos of the benefits these actions may bring us in this world. Heck, it's not even for the reward we'd (God willing) receive in the next. We do it cos we've been commanded to. Off the top of my head I think there's a Hadith or something saying that the companions of the Prophet (SAW) would have been exactly as they were even without the promise of paradise that they had been given. And so it should be with us.

Anyway, if I'm not around the next month or you now know why. I'll be busy doing my duty as a Muslim who has been commanded to work that much harder during this time.


  1. The practical elements definitely be hard work (fasting of the eyes especially!)... but in themselves they're only the key to Ramadhaan's spirit I would venture.

    And Ramadhaan Mubarak for tomorrow/Saturday/whenever!

  2. In Islam, action is judged by intention; If that's to get yourself detoxed, rather than to follow God's ordinances, it'll be rewarded as such, afaik. Ramadan is quite a bit more than just not eating or drinking for a few hours - which you can do on any random day for 'detoxing' - of course ;).

    I stand to be corrected naturally, this is just from what little I know.