Many questions and myths could be resolved if some kindly organization undertook a study or survey of consumption patterns and volumes during the month of Ramadan. Marketing agencies may have already taken a head start, but probably at cross-purposes with the spirit of the month, if laden shelves, overflowing shop fronts, and hectic purchasing – of every packed and unpacked food item particularly, it may be noted – are an indication. If the month of austerity and self-denial does not bow out in a blaze of high turnover figures, is one to conclude that the weeks of voluntary privation have missed the mark?
Lest the observation be twisted into an advocacy of rejecting or denying the Lord’s blessings, or enjoining a general air of assumed indigence, self-reminders would be in order to the effect that the restraint and reserve insisted upon during the month were meant to be carried over into one’s life afterwards as well, and apply not only to food and drink, but also to conduct, language, and expression of one’s emotions and feelings. This admittedly is a little pretentious for what is meant to be a light-hearted take on society’s ways, a take likely to cause hurt and offense, again a violation of the spirit of the month, yet there is ample hope in the forgiveness of generous hearts.
Therefore, expectations have to heighten that the process of introspection and reform meant to have unfolded over the period has had a decent, high-calorie warm-up and is all set to be set into motion with the appearance of the crescent, and has adequate provisions for contingencies. The post-script to a catalogue of fresh resolutions could also include the phrases describing the holiest night as the one of peace till the break of dawn. If some soul, if only out of pity, step out in the midst of remembrance, and lend ear, what would be odds of him or her finding something sharply amiss?