Friday, June 26, 2015

Special: Some 'Cool Things' That Happen During Ramadan

By Mufti Riaz Ahmed
Group Feature Editor
Fasting gets tough in summer, and tougher for those who work outside air-conditioned offices. But I am not going to talk about how to stay cool (body temperature wise) in summer. That’s for the physical trainers and nutritionists to tackle. 

What I am going to point out here are things which we do in Ramadan that we do not realize are cool (awesome) for us as common Muslims. Realization of completing one level gives a boost of confidence to excel in the next, in turn, pumping more taqwa in our souls. If we take a minute and have a look at our mirrors, we should say to ourselves “Abdullah (you), you are doing great; and yes, you are better than this”. 

Super Fasting of Inputs in summer is the next level of fasting. The heat consumes all the comfort of our movements throughout the day and gives us nothing but tiredness and intense thirst. That’s why I said “Super Fasting”, rather than ‘fasting’. Inputs to our bodies includes eyes, ears and feelings along with our mouths (for consuming food), which are strictly monitored. We remind ourselves while browsing,  press the mute button when the music comes up and keep away from our spouses during the day. In other words, different senses in our bodies are fasting as well. Isn’t it cool that we are able to strictly monitor our senses and keep calm while consciously depriving our physical needs for the sake of AllahSWT? I think it’s great. 

Super Fasting of Outputs is nothing but how we monitor our output devices, in other words, how they fast with us. Tongue and limbs keep working for us throughout the day. Hunger, thirst and tiredness act as catalysts to ignite a flamethrower in us when anybody makes a tiny mistake. It’s indeed a miracle when we manage to keep our anger in control and let our hands and tongue work in the opposite direction i.e., by showing good behavior. Isn’t it cool to stretch and twist our bodies and souls with patience in difficult moments just to be a good Muslim (in turn, obeying AllahSWT  continuously and to be precise, developing taqwa (Qur’an 2:183))? I think, it’s awesome. 

Iftaar with a few dates and some water will literally make you forget that it’s Ramadan. By the end of maghrib prayer, I feel so light and normal, like as if I haven’t fasted the whole day! A normal dinner makes my night prayers much more active. Isn’t it cool that Allah SWT magically makes you so normal and calm after a tiring sunny day? I think, it’s incredible.

I still wonder why some people are so concerned about their food shopping before Ramadan when a  single date box can act as a perfect brotherly gift.

Praying Taraaweh (the night prayer) wasn’t our habit. We didn’t even think that we would go for an extra mile to pray nawafil prayers regularly. However, during Ramadan, we pray taraweeh in the peak active hours, which on a regular day, would have been reserved for friends and hobbies. Isn’t it cool that we lift ourselves from being an average worshiper and try to reach excellence?

Praying Witr was hardly an option before Ramadan. Many people are not even sure how to pray witr. Ramadan teaches us the two (sunnah) ways of praying witr accompanied with lots of duas. Can you recall how many days went by before you raised your hands to ask something from AllahSWT? In Ramadan, we ask so much that it kicks back a feeling of being a helpless needy servant in front of AllahSWT. Isn’t it cool to realize one’s real status in front of AllahSWT at least for a month in a whole year? Isn’t it cooler that these acts of ours is *in* Ramadan when AllahSWT said that He SWT is looking out to answer His servant’s prayers? Woohoo! I think, it’s amazing how Allah SWT wants to dip us in His Blessings and Mercy in this month. The pleasure is all ours. Let’s shift the gear to push ourselves to the next level of worship, insha Allah.

What are some cool things you do in Ramadan which you wouldn’t have done otherwise? Please share them in the comments section below 

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