“Ramadan is a holy month for us as Muslims. The reason we fast is so that we can feel what it is like to have nothing to eat, and it helps us sympathize with the poor.”
Said every Muslim parent and interfaith speaker since the dawn of time.
But is that really 𝐰𝐡𝐲 I fast or is that one of the plethoras of wisdom that I gain from fasting?
I mean if sympathizing with the poor is the goal, why then at the end of fasting do I have more food than my impoverished brothers and sisters have seen in their lives?
If the goal was to experience what it means to be poor, why then do I spend more money in Ramadan than I do outside of the month, and heap up a grocery bill that could feed countless people in poverty?
Maybe, just maybe I haven’t actualized my own cursory understanding of fasting?
What if the purpose of fasting was to attain God consciousness?
What if a wisdom of fasting 𝐢𝐬 to experience what it means to be poor?
But what the poor experience and my mock attempt at being impoverished are two entirely separate realities.
For me, as I sit hours before Iftar, there is an aroma of Biryani, Maqlooba, or Jerk Chicken that is so strong I could break my fast just smelling it. I have my choice of water, zam-zam, ajwa or regular dates. Not to mention that dessert will accompany it all.
𝐅𝐨𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐭𝐫𝐮𝐥𝐲 𝐩𝐨𝐨𝐫 𝐨𝐧𝐞, 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐞 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐧𝐨 𝐜𝐡𝐨𝐢𝐜𝐞𝐬.
There is, however, complete dependency upon God.
Complete and utter need for Him to provide what currently does not exist.
There is all-out brokenness when everyone around them seems put together.
If I have yet to experience the truest sense of Ramadan, I need but ask myself one question,
“𝘈𝘮 𝘐 𝘥𝘦𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘵𝘶𝘵𝘦, 𝘱𝘦𝘯𝘯𝘪𝘭𝘦𝘴𝘴, 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘯𝘦𝘦𝘥𝘺?”
If not, how will I ever gain the feeling of the complete and utter need of the one who told me,
“𝘖 𝘔𝘺 𝘴𝘦𝘳𝘷𝘢𝘯𝘵𝘴, 𝘢𝘭𝘭 𝘰𝘧 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘢𝘳𝘦 𝘩𝘶𝘯𝘨𝘳𝘺 𝘦𝘹𝘤𝘦𝘱𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘰𝘴𝘦 𝘸𝘩𝘰𝘮 𝘐 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘧𝘦𝘥, 𝘴𝘰 𝘴𝘦𝘦𝘬 𝘧𝘰𝘰𝘥 𝘧𝘳𝘰𝘮 𝘔𝘦 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘐 𝘴𝘩𝘢𝘭𝘭 𝘧𝘦𝘦𝘥 𝘺𝘰𝘶.”