The regular fasting, devotion and generosity in the month of Ramadan develops a clearer sense of a successful life, a relational life and meaningful life. Here I explore these key features of this ‘Spring of righteousness’.
Ramadan is one of the richest, most transformative times of the Islamic calendar. A season for actively pursuing spiritual growth and going deeper with Allah and knowing more about oneself. Fasting is spiritual training for the whole year. The community fasts in Ramadan and this shared discipline across the community is really the key to successful social training of Ramadan similar to a football team training together. In addition to its moral benefits, spiritual development and social impact, Ramadan has clear health benefits, it’s a great medicine for society sitting on a time bomb of obesity and over-eating.
Consumerism has a drowned people’s capacity for independent judgement, self-control and simple living. In our consumerist society fasting enables a person to resist the persuasive power of advertisers and ensures that we do not march to the beat of a drum, but move to the beat of the Azaan that is in itself an act of courage. The 30 days of fasting is short enough to endure but long enough to actually change even an old habit.
Fasting is a clear indication that man does not live by bread alone and that we are much more than just consumers with a body. We have a spirit, to say no and to deny things is simply self-denial and by learning to say no we are learning to control ourselves. We are practicing self discipline. Saying no is really a fantastic way of saying I am not controlled by my bodily instincts and desires. I am able to choose what I would do and not to do, it is actually a way of being master of oneself. Fasting is therefore an important spiritual discipline. In many ways the spirit of sports and the holy month of Ramadan share core essence: sacrificing the self and practicing self-control in the bid to achieve success and perfection.
We are very familiar with the concept of fasting as a means of cleansing the body or detoxifying it, here is another benefit of the month of Ramadan. It is a great opportunity for digital detox. If you are spending too much time online and not enough with your children, family, relatives, friends, then Ramadan is an ideal opportunity to control this habit. Addiction to the Internet is a serious growing problem all over the world. Psychologists are warning that IT addiction can lead to marital discord, lack of personal hygiene and social interaction and loss of good eating habits. Read more