Ample is being written and published, and enough is being said through pulpits about the importance of Ramadan. Some say it is the month of blessings, but to be honest with you, what made me write about this holy month is that it is the only month in the entire year in which we truly act like humans, not like beasts. It is a month where we see different facets of Islam in every nook and corner of the Muslim world. It is a month where we search our souls and seek forgiveness sincerely. If I am not mistaken, Ramadan is the month that brings us out from deep dungeons of darkness and awakens us from deep slumber. It teaches us to remain self-disciplined and exercise self-restraint. It is the month where we seek betterment and reformation, a spiritual atmosphere, a pious undertaking that purifies our body, mind and soul.
Almighty Allah revealed the holy Quran in the month of Ramadan. The Quran makes it clear that “the month of Ramadan is that in which was revealed the Quran for guidance of the people and clear proof of guidance and criterion (of right and wrong) and whosoever of you is present, let him fast this month, and whosoever of you is sick or on journey, let him fast the same number of other days. Allah desires for you ease; He desires not hardship for you; and He desires that you should complete the period and that you should glorify Allah for having guided you, and that perchance you shall be grateful” (Surat ul Bakarah). If our lord has chosen this beautiful month to give this beautiful gift for the entire humanity, it speaks volumes about the importance of this month. This means Allah is giving us an opportunity to know who governs every breath of our life. Yes, it is an opportunity by which we can wash the filth and stain of our inner being. Ramadan is a month that brings humility in our dealings and brings human pride to its knees. If this month does not change us for good, we are the lowest of the low, not the crown of creation.
Ramadan provides us with a full and complete programme for our spiritual overhaul. It is a month that provides a kind of opportunity to us to find the human within. It teaches us how to gain self-control, piety, humility, sympathy for the poor and pure devotion to the divine. In this month we observe that a person often speaks the language of love. The basic philosophy of fasting is not merely to abstain from eating and drinking but actually a shield against chastisement. The beloved Prophet (peace and blessings be upon Him) warned us, “There are those who get nothing from fasts except from hunger and thirst, there are those who get nothing from night prayers except loss of sleep’’. So, those who observe fasting, their ears, eyes, tongue and all other parts of body must also observe fasting and they must not perform any action that is unlawful within the Shariah. A fundamental principle of fasting is self-control. In this month the feeling of an empty stomach brings a kind of sympathy towards those who are struck with poverty by destiny. May this Ramadan prove a life changer for all of us and may it mould our relationship stronger with our merciful God.
The writer has a PG degree in Islamic Studies from IUST Awantipora. [email protected]