Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Ramadan Reflection: The wisdom and depth of a date at iftaar time



As the Adhaan is called, most hands reach for it. Putting it in our mouth signifies the end of another fast . Another spent day in worshiping Allah in the most subtle ways, but giving up food ,drink and our desires and of this only Allah is Truly Aware, SubhanAllah. 
As I look at this small brown fruit , I can't help but marvel at its size and the benefits we reap from it. I also feel that it signifies something much more then just the fulfillment of a beloved Sunnah at iftaar time. I feel it the one thing that we all agree on a Muslims. What we call the Ummah is now fragmented in to a million different pieces. We all have our differences and you will find us constantly bickering and disagreeing about something or the other . Even this Blessed Month was marked by differences even in the same country people don't fast at the same date and have Eid at different days too. We disagree when the moon was sighted or if it was sighted at all and the list goes on. But I think whenever and where ever we open our iftaar: separated by millions of miles, cultures , time zones when we break our fast there is no argument that to open the fast one must eat dates (there is the option of water but you associate breaking your fast with the date.) 
It may seem like an insignificant thing and an almost non existent similarity in the face of our differences as Muslims but nonetheless we agree on it. 
We all savor the sweetness of the date, we relish that moment as our hand hovers close to our mouth and we seek the acceptance of duas right before the sweetness obliterates all other sensations in your mouth that we feel throughout the day as we fast.Just as we all savor the sweetness of the date, you will agree with me that we are united in purpose to fast too. We are all hoping that Allah will be Pleased with us, Will Bless us and our family members and grant us freedom from our sins. Of course, there are exceptions to that rule but the general spirit of Ramadan  is the same.
It makes me hopeful when I see how unanimously we agree on something that is from among the vital tenets of our faith. There is no bickering and no arguing that this THE MONTH to worship and please Allah. It also leaves me wistful that as Ramadan leaves us we will be even more bent on keeping up our differences. I try to justify the reasons why we are so fragmented, why we  also find a reason to disagree on matters that are clearly defined by the Qur'an and demonstrated in an exemplary form by our Beloved Messenger of Allah (pbuh) . Its uncomfortable to realize that sometimes there is no other explanation except that we follows our Nafs more then we follow Allah's Command , is it not true? 
I pray that just as we accepted that meaning and spirit of fasting to heart we are guided to take all the commandments of Allah to heart the same way, without hesitation , without argument. And I pray that just as we accepted that eating dates are not only the Sunnah at iftaar time but also so very beneficial for us for we can take Allah's Commands to heart and not always feel that they are something up for debate and very beneficial for us. I know truth always shines though the depths and misery of lies and fabrications and as I break one more fast with the same bountiful date I feel that one day the light of Imaan will shine though and we break free from the shackles of differences and misgivings that tear us apart on the inside as an Ummah. 

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