How to Sum Up Ramadan in 4 Words
For every person, Ramadan brings about different feelings and words associated with the Holiest month in Islam. For us, there are 4 words in particular that sum up the spirit and essence of Ramadan and why it’s the best and most blessed time of the year.
1 – Patience
Fasting from dawn to dusk sounds a lot more romantic than a solid 18.5 hour fast this year in England. It sounds hard because it is – and that’s the point! There’s not better a time to learn patience and self-discipline in the year than in Ramadan. Pacing yourself and organising your time to get the most out of your day means that the hours aren’t wasted and don’t feel as endless as they do when you’re in bed all day. Patience is an incredibly important virtue to learn and Ramadan gears us up to be patient not in terms of waiting to eat at iftar, but patient on a grander scale in life knowing the reward you will receive for the sincerity you feel in your worship to Allah.
2 – Humility
Started from the bottom and we’re still here. Humility is another virtue that Ramadan instils in us! For many observing Ramadan this year, there is a guarantee of being able to eat or drink after a long fast. Even though you can go out and buy that huge lunch or buy all of the clothes you’ve kept in the “save for later” tab, it’s about scaling down and humbling yourself with what you have and can have with the will of Allah. It’s also about appreciating that all we have is a blessing in and of itself and that it can also be taken in any moment. Humility is hard to knuckle down, but it’s also one of the most rewarding and defining characteristics of a Muslim.
3 – Empathy
You can’t avoid feeling absolutely awful throughout Ramadan knowing that this is a daily reality for many around the world who have no guarantee of breaking their fasts or even have the luxury of being around family and friends observing the same practices during Ramadan. It’s not just about being rich or poor – it’s also about thinking of those without the comfort of being around a mosque or Muslim community, those who are new to Islam and are struggling to fast or recite prayers or those suffering from illnesses and aren’t able to fast. Empathy is not sympathy nor pity – Islam encourages us to transform that empathy into action, particularly in Ramadan by reaching out to friends and family, meeting new people at the mosque and visiting those who are ill and giving to charity often, which leads us on to the next point…
4 – Charity
We get it – sometimes student life does not allow for us to dish out all those bills for all the appeals you’ve been spammed with in your emails and at the mosque. It’s about being generous in every sense of the word and not just through donating money (although that’s a major key). In Islam, something as simple as smiling is a form of charity. Think about that! So, this Ramadan, turn that hunger frown upside down and stack up all those good deeds.
What are the 4 words that sum up the essence of Ramadan to you? Share the Ramadan spirit with us over on our Facebook page!