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Monday, May 9, 2016

SURVIVING RAMADAN 2016

   SURVIVING RAMADAN!   

This blog post is an opinion based upon actual conversations, social media posts and behavior traits that I have witnessed over the past seven odd days by the “peoples of Karachi!”  The opinions and suggestions presented here are based upon not only common sense but on the lines of immense respect for our beloved Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) and the way that he spent Ramadan!  This is not your colorful rendition or a Dr. (who’s degrees are questionable) cum TV show host version where you win a blender or a baby at the end of thirty days!  This document is something, if you read it correctly and decipher it properly, could help you become a better person!  

Now we all know that Ramadan is coming a few weeks from now so all our religious lessons and righteousness should tell us that we need to prepare our selves for a month ahead that will cleanse our souls and help us attain a higher plateau where our conscience is concerned!   Realistically, in the month of Ramadan we should be peaceful, calm cool and collected!  Guess what!  NOT TRUE!   

This year according to a lot of people the spiritual month of cleaning has inconveniently come at the time of the last financial quarter, Olevel Examinations & Summer Holidays and that too when the summer heat will refuse to be kind to anyone!  Traditionally if one observes their own behavior it goes without saying that the first 10 days of this holy month are when the most amount of road rage happens because people do not follow a fasting ritual properly according to the Islamic way! 

A lot of the road rage that happens is because people love to delve into the sin of gluttony with mid night deals and tons of pakoras and samosas and everything unhealthy when they should be eating right!   Due to forced hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) people are extremely irate and lash out at others unknowingly!  Even the most loveable Daadi Jaan becomes a world class churail when she does not get her way and the bijli goes!

When you fast you need to understand that it is not about starving your self!  The basic fundamentals of Islam do not allow one to torture themselves so starvation is just simply ridiculous!  One needs to “abstain” (NOT starve) from certain gifts of Allah that we take for granted such as food and water to know the reality of the fundamentals of the pillars of Islam!   In order to abstain or fast properly the most important element that you need to look after is your body and its medical condition!

Yes, you need to have a proper diet that is very balanced!  Gulping down soft drinks and gobbling mass quantities of unhealthy fried items only add to the medical complexities that one has to face as the human body goes from one extreme to another!  Most heart attacks occur during Ramadan because us humans ingest an entire two years’ worth of carbohydrates and sugar within these 30 odd days that arteries clog, belts become tight and people need to refit and loosen clothes because after their food orgies they smoke a cigarette, loosen their belts burp, then fart and eventually high on food simply pass out with happiness thinking they will wake up amidst 72 virgins!

Not only should you eat right you need to move around to get all those goodies moving in your gastric chamber before they come out in an aerated form thus making you complain that you broke your Wudu!  Don’t laugh!  This is very serious, as shorter workdays enable you to have an excuse to sleep and believe the lies you tell yourself that you are tired and fatigued!  This lack of movement makes the food just clog up your intestines and when it cannot be broken down any further it gives you an immense amount of not only flatulence but severe gastric cramps!

The human body is a fantastic creation of Allah where it conditions its self to undergo the harshest of conditions!  This conditioning comes from the mind and if you condition yourself mentally that you are NOT doing the world or anyone a favor by fasting then you are a true Muslim! 

In the days when the world was blessed with the physical presence of Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) as he walked this earth, him and his favorites fasted under the harsher conditions than we do today (we have air conditioning & cars which did not exist at that time) and they set an example by showing humility in the truest of forms!  If you set your mind to it and plan your Ramadan out, then this month will bring you blessings in ways you cannot imagine as not only does one condition the mind but that conditioning of performing normal daily tasks also enables one to attain excellent time management skills and discipline that can not only help you in your personal but professional life as well!

If you truly want to fast, then you should do so without depending upon people or taking them for granted!  As you have shorter work hours you should not look at the clock as to when you can run home to hop into bed and pass out till 10 minutes before the Azaan and then gulp down 25 glasses of Rooh Afza and an entire kilo of jalebi’s!  Make the best of this time to set your matters right and try to add as much value as you can simply focus on getting the maximum amount of work done!

After work when you head home and now that you have time sort out those issues you put on the back burner for the past 11 months and be productive!  Make your Roza into something whereby you are actually satisfied that you have added value to your family and life rather than being a log on a bed and a waste of space for the next 4 odd hours until iftar!  Ramadan is the best excuse to get a lot of things done that are time consuming and you put off rather than making it an excuse to tell the world you are simply too tired!

The first seven days are supposedly the worst for your body as it conditions its self to go through the next three weeks!  In these first seven days make sure that you drink an immense amount of water (more than you would consume in your daily average) as the initial excessive urination will happen but that is exactly what your body needs to do to flush out all the toxins that have built up over the past eleven months of abuse you put it through!  (carbonated artificial and sugar loaded drinks & juices do not classify as safe) You need to consume an immense amount of water between Iftar and Sehri and ensure that you do not ingest toxins of caffeine willingly (avoid it where you can) as they themselves create other problems related to body hydration matters!

Further to this you should always eat planned meals and ensure you have a very balanced diet!  Forget what Zubaida Aapa is selling on television as she really wants to justify the money she is getting paid to make an idiot out of every woman who aspires to be a Master Chef!  Ensure the food that you buy is wholesome and not pre packaged and does not contain preservatives, rather the food you eat should contain a lot of protein (for strength) and fiber (to help bowel movements).  Ramadan is a fantastic time to have evening BBQ’s for the entire family!  

It is simply too expensive not only on your body and health but on your wallet when you run around trying to please the likes of fast food chains that try to get you blow your entire paycheck on the element of a SIN!  Yes, greed!  All fast food outlets hammer deals that cater to one of the deadly sins known as greed and in this case it is true!  We fall for un healthy deals and they are not only expensive on our wallets but the entire body as it suffers immensely when we abuse it with bad quality food!

Families like to spend the month of Ramadan coming closer together as they usually eat together so it is advisable that during Ramadan you take full advantage of the fact that you break down all those invisible barriers and boundaries within your family and start talking to each other and forgiving & also forgetting past mistakes!  This conditioning of your mind over the Iftar table can help you resolve a lot of those saas and bahu issues that you do not have time to address other wise because time does not allow you to do so!

Ramadan is not so serious at all!  Ramadan is all about fun as well!  If you look at these thirty days in a positive way there are so many activities that you can do during Ramadan that you will actually miss the honesty of emotions displayed by your actions that you will forcibly display trying to go to Jannah during these thirty days because for the rest of the months until Ramadan comes again you will be at the mercy of social and corporate and emotional politics of sin!   This year actually celebrate your freedom from sin by going out with your families and loved ones and have a great time!  Our cities are beautiful at night and the weather is awesome so enjoy your selves as an entire family and come together as one!

One last request!  If you don’t mean it…  Don’t say it!   Every time, every Eid we are forced to meet “those” relatives whom we only meet or see when we welcome someone into this world or celebrate that day or when six gaz of lattha is required!   Every Eid we make promises to come closer and meet the next day after the Eid Feast and that never happens!  This year make a difference!  You drive the change and make an effort with the family as Ramadan is all about Islam and Islam is all about “family”.  We are all Allah’s children… so we are all ONE family!


Have a blessed, healthy & safe Ramadan!  I am free for any Iftar parties if you are treating! my email address is amyn@ghulamalis.com