Ramadan: A Time to Reconnect with My Faith
When I was younger, Ramadan to me meant waking up at a dreadful hour, then eating as much as I could during sahur (much like a bear preparing to go into hibernation) and then minimising all activities that would require any movement during the day, preferring to be horizontal as much as I could. With my eyes closed.
I used to love the weekends during Ramadan because then I could wake up at noon and that meant I would effectively have to fast for only a couple of hours until dusk broke. Such was my unfathomable logic then.
Back then, Ramadan meant I couldn’t go about my normal activities, not because I had plans to focus on my ibadah, but because I would have to endure the lethargy, the thirst and the hunger if I left the house. After iftar however, it was all systems go.
This is where the Ramadan bazaar would seduce me into immersing myself in its hot, oily and smoky atmosphere. In my head, the bazaar was my reward for having abstained from food and drink the entire day.
Now that I am older (and a little wiser, insya Allah), all I can say when I look back is, Astarghfirullah al azim. May Allah forgive me for my transgressions.
Excited for Ramadan
This year, the meaning of Ramadan has completely changed for me. Instead of dreading the ‘difficulties’ that came with it (the lethargy, thirst and hunger), I find myself excited to welcome this holy month that is bestowed upon us only once a year. Without realising it, I had been counting down to Friday 20 July, so I can finally begin my tarawih prayers and gain Allah’s blessings.
I am not sure what happened or how my perspective changed, but I think it has to do with seeing how committed my husband of a year is to his ibadah. He has inspired me to be a better Muslim, that is for sure.
I think age too had a part to play. The recent years have forced me to come to terms with the fragility of life, having lost an uncle and three aunts, and seeing friends who lost their parents. I have been so caught up with the allure of the dunya, not remembering that this is all but temporary. What I had also forgotten was that my ibadah would be the one thing that would greet me in my grave.
With this newfound appreciation for the holy month of Ramadan, I look forward to fulfilling my fasting obligation as perfectly as I can, that is, with constant reminders to myself that to fast is to not only abstain from eating and drinking, but to also ensure all of my body parts do not partake in anything that Allah dislikes.
This Ramadan would also be a good time for me to get reacquainted with the Al Quran, and the tafsir copy so I would not be reading Allah’s words without fully appreciating them. I also have big plans to stay away from the Ramadan bazaar until after tarawih prayers, and even then, to not give in to my nafs when ‘rewarding’ myself with the delicious treats there. Although, I know it would be a great struggle when it comes to keropok lekor and the Japanese takoyaki balls. But I shall try!
I still have a long way to go towards being the perfect Muslim, but I hope this Ramadan will set the tone right for the rest of the year, and the years to come. May Allah guide me in this endeavour and may I reap the benefits and blessings of Lailatul Qadr this Ramadan, insya Allah.[divider]