By Rachid Khouya
By Rachid Khouya
Morocco World News
Smara, Morocco, July 10, 2013
When we talk about Ramadan, the first thing that comes to the minds of non-Muslims is that it is a month where Muslims do not eat, drink, or sleep with their wives from sunrise to sunset. This is not right.
Ramadan is a month where our lives are well organized. Everything is done according to a schedule. We pray, eat, wake up and work at the same time every day. The night is for eating, worshipping and sleeping, and the day is for working, worshiping and fasting.
Ramadan is a month where we do not only fast, but we eat as well. It is the only month where special tables are prepared for thirty days, the month where all kinds of food and drinks are served and the month where women show their skills and artistic cooking talents.
Muslims are asked to eat and fast. Those who are healthy have to fast, but not for the sake of fasting, being hungry or starving. God does not want to make us suffer as some people make it sound. This is not the objective behind Ramadan.
When Muslims fast, it is an opportunity to control their whims and instinctive desires. This is a chance where we are put to a real test to see to what extent we can enslave the calls of desires and whims, and to what extent we can control ourselves.
It is hard for someone feeling hungry to stand in a kitchen full of food and control his hands without daring to take some of the sweets and cakes and put them in his/her mouth.
It is even harder for a person being alone at his home to open his fridge and find all kinds of drinks and fruits, cold water and cold juices and alcohol, being both hungry and tirsty, and still challenges his nature and his addiction and says no to drinking and no to eating.
Another objective behind Ramadan is to let those who eat for a whole year and those who have never felt what it means to be hungry or thirsty, to discover the sufferings and the pain of the poor people who die of starvation, poverty and drought.
This is the month where we sympathize with those who do not have, we share with them, we feed them, we invite them, we help and support them, and we understand their social status and their pain.
On the other hand, as God asked healthy humans to fast, he ordered those who are unhealthy and those who cannot fast to eat. Thus Ramadan is a month where the sick people, the pregant women, the small, the old, and the travelers are given a divine permission to eat.
God ordered us to execute his orders as well as to perform his permissions. It is a sin to fast when you are given an order to eat. So, if you are travelling for more than eighty six kilometers, if you are sick, pregnant, or old, then you must eat your daily dishes as you usually to do. This is a permission not from the doctor or the nurse, it is a permission from your creator.
This is why true believers feel so happy to eat as they are surrendering to God’s orders. They eat because God wants them to eat. But they should feed a poor person every day or give the price of a dish for those who do not have it. This is to strengthen the social ties between the poor and the rich, the ill , and the healthy.
Frankly, this is the best month of the year where we eat, fast, practice sports, worship God, share with our neighbors, spend more time with the family, visit our friends and relatives, forgive each other, reflect on our lives, our past, present and future and we think about our purpose and mission in life.
Only in Ramadan, do we dare to stop our bad habits and give up our addiction. It is the best time to stop smoking, and drinking. In Ramadan, a lot of people give up this bad and unhealthy habits in the Muslim world. People defy themselves and stop drinking and smoking. Something they can only do in Ramadan.
Normally as humans, we should live all the other months of the year the way we live in Ramadan. A month where we wash our hearts, minds and bodies from the filth of sins and the darkness of evil, corruption, greed, selfishness and anger. A month where we are linked to each other and to our creator, and a month where we wear white and do our best to cleanse our hearts from sins and wrongdoings.
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