Fasting and Abstinence
We fast for many reasons. Even if there were no other reason to
fast, we fast out of obedience as Allah (SWT) tells us to. We
also fast to discipline the body so that we can focus more
intently on the spiritual. And we fast to do bring patience and
honestly in our lives with hope of the greatest profit. Fasting
also demands that we satisfy divine justice with some
sacrifices, almsgiving, prayer, and other works of the spiritual
life. If this teaching is constantly implanted in our minds, and
if we drink deeply of it, we can discarded degraded habits and
wash our sins clean through fasting
We Can honor our fasting; The honor of fasting consists not in
abstinence from food, but in withdrawing from sinful practices;
Don’t limits your fasting only to an abstinence from food. Give
proof of it by the works! If see a poor, take pity on him! If we
see an enemy, be reconciled to him! For let not the mouth only
fast, but also the eye, and ear, and the feet, and the hands,
and all the members of our bodies. Let the hands fast, by being
pure from rapine and avarice. Let the feet fast, ceasing from
running to the unlawful spectacles. Let the eyes fast, being
taught never to fix themselves rudely upon handsome
countenances, or to busy themselves with strange beauties.
Looking is the food of the eyes, but if this be such as is
unlawful or forbidden, it demeans the fast; and upsets the whole
safety of the soul. Let the ear fast also. The fasting of the
ear consists in refusing to receive evil speaking and calumnies,
and avoid receiving and spreading false reports,
But what are the ground realities. For majority of us fasting
Ø Black marketing of items of daily use specially groceries to
sale at high price during fasting month.
Ø Theft and briberies in the offices to earn more for
preparation of Eid and to eat batter during Ramadan
Ø Keeping ourselves on zero tolerance on our own mistakes and
mistakes of others.
Ø Records show the crime rates drastically increases in fasting
Ø Two to three murders per fasting month has become very regular
over the past many years even in peaceful Chitral.
Ø Fighting on petty issues is seen in every street every day
during holly moth of Ramadan.
Ø New enmities are generated in this month of forgiveness.
Ø The activities (prayers) mostly detached from its objectives
are frequently practiced.
Ø We think we are fasting because of fear of Allah: in fact
majority of us are fasting as customary practice. We are
predominantly satisfying our ego instead.
Most of the time I have heard the imams saying “Look we can
drink or eat sitting in hidden place like bath room, but we
don’t do that only because of fear of Allah” It is true in
majority of the cases but a good number of us don’t eat or drink
in bath room not because of fear of Allah but as challenge to
our ego. Let’s be honest with ourselves. If we can not bring the
spirit of fasting in our daily lives during and after Ramadan,
lets be courageous to beat our ego, and don’t punish ourselves
through restraining ourselves from eating and drinking only.
May Allah give us understanding and courage to honor our fasting
(Ameen) --Dr. Khalil (Jughooru), Hamilton
ON Canada, 26 Aug 10
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