Eid Mubarak Lovelies…
As we celebrate the end of the Holy Month of Ramadhan, a vague sadness fills the heart. Ramadhan is a month that comes to teach us many lessons. However, there are some amongst us for whom fasting does nothing but bring about hunger pangs, and the prayers of worship result in nothing more than sleepless nights.
This Ramadhan, I had chosen a different journey for myself. (Read Here). It may be too soon to validate whether or not I did gain my goal at the end of it (it’s only been a couple of days, cut me some slack), but I can definitely say it’s been a humbling, illuminating, enriching, and spiritually ascetic month for me.
Here are some of the lessons Ramadhan taught me this year…
1 – Non- Attachment
To food, to sleep, to thoughts and emotions. Food was simple. Second helpings were uncommon. No sweet treats to tease the palate, and only enough water that was required for my body (beats downing 3lts of Water in 2 hours).
Disturbed sleep patterns were rightly acknowledged. I can’t remember having stolen a nap over the weekend this year. I survived on barely 4 hours a day.
There was a lot of release – of things that did not serve me anymore – emotions mostly, and towards the end, relationships linked with these emotions. I did a lot of introspection during this month; paying close attention to how I felt about things and then releasing them accordingly.
2 – Discipline
I am guilty for not having stuck to the “religious” norms of this month – completing an entire Quran, performing Nawafil & Tahajjud prayers, being engrossed in Dhikr. But I stuck it out with my Spiritual Fasting. I started the day with meditation and before we broke the fast, returned to my mat for simple asanas and more meditation.
I stuck to a Low Impact exercise regime, daily, and continued with my tennis sessions. I tool a stroll on Sundays in the Forest and used this as an opportunity to be ‘present” in nature and give thanks for all that is within me and around me.
I also began my Spiritual Mentorship programme on Sunday Mornings (5.30am to be precise).
3 – Patience
With my self, and mostly with Others.
Ramadhan is a test. It makes you question everything that you thought you needed to survive in this world, but in essence, can do without. Your thirst, your hunger, your sleeplessness, your habits, your comforts all bear testimony that you have been created greater than all these things. After all, it is only to pain and discomfort that we grow.
Ramadhan is a personal journey for each each one of and we may choose to walk the path differently.
Fasting is an act of ‘Ibaadah. ‘Ibaadah (Worship of Allah SWT) is categorized as worship of the heart, tongue and limbs.
I left my heart open this month to love, reverence and hope. When faced with the pangs of hunger during the day, my tongue would praise the Almighty with Alhamdulillah. My prayers and asanas were the acts of worship that my limbs performed.
And although I may not have perfected my religion this Ramadhan, I pray that the subtle acts of worship that I performed left me a better person.