Ramadan Musings – 15 things I learned from fasting Ramadan
Currently we are in the holy month of Ramadan.
Before I was Muslim I never knew when Ramadan happened, let alone what it was all about. At the completion of my first Ramadan in the hot Aussie summer of 98/99, I joyfully wrote of list of about 30 amazing things I gained from that month. I don’t know what ever happened to it, it was hand scrawled on a loose sheet of A4 and contained things like “learned to cook”, but almost 2 decades later the list continues to grow.
In case you are unaware (as I once most certainly was), Ramadan is the 9th month on the lunar calendar. It begins with the sighting of a new crescent moon, and falls approximately 10 days earlier each Gregorian calendar year – so it moves through the seasons. During this month – of 29 or 30 days (dependent on the sighting of the next crescent), put simply – Muslims don’t EAT or DRINK a single thing from just before the dawn till the sun has set. No, not even water.
But this is just the tip of the iceberg. A key that opens a door. And whilst the spiritual and heavenly benefits are extolled greatly within the Islamic scripture, here I share my own experience.
So what is Ramadan really?
It is a month of deep reflection – detach from the material world, contemplate the grand, the great, the eternal
It is a month of struggle, of striving, of self discipline as we endure mild and temporary discomforts, a mere glimpse of what it’s like for the less fortunate of our world
It is a month of hope – change is possible, anything is possible, knowing God presides over all things
It is a month of blessings – where we witness for ourselves internal and external amazements and bounties
It is a month of charity – of genuine empathy and giving, giving, giving
It is a month of worship – where we stand in prayer at night, humbling ourselves before the All Mighty, acknowledging our great need of Him, in awe of His Greatness
It is a month of forgiveness – forgiving others, overlooking their faults, that the Lord of The Worlds may overlook our own
It is a month of cleansing – a chance to detox from our physical addictions and gain control over those desires which drag us down
It is a month of patience – of learning to wait quietly without complaint till you can have what you want
It is a month of deep gratitude – even just for being one who partakes in this epic month of blessings, even for a simple glass of water
It is a month of healing – without the task of constant digesting the body can divert its resources to healing and restoring itself where needed
It is a month of connection – with 1.6 Billion other people who are doing the same thing, following in the footsteps of the Prophets, and those who believed before us
It is a month spirituality – rejuvenating the soul, deepening ones belief, strengthening ones connection to The Creator of the Universe
It is a month of peace – where the heart and the soul finds deep contentment, stillness, just being, just worshipping, just reflecting, just connecting, to God
It’s a month of striving – to try to become a better version of yourself.
It is so more than a month of just ‘fasting’.
May it’s fragrance gently brush by you,
may it’s sweet dust fall on your weary shoulders,
may it’s bounty enrich your life,
may it’s contentment touch your heart,
may it’s peace reach your soul.
Love & Peace.