The spirit of Ramadan

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Here we go again, stocking up early on meat, fruit and vegetables in preparation for the fasting month of Ramadan as if that was all that counts during this holy month.

The spokesperson of the Ministry of Agriculture recently assured the country that the ministry intends to increase the quantities of fruit and vegetables during Ramadan in order to make sure that supply exceeds demand and thus prices are kept stable or even decreased.

He also said that meat will be supplied in abundance, also in excess of demand, as about 300,000 sheep from Romania, over and above the 30,000 local and Australian heads of sheep, will be made available.

Still, people behave like during a famine, amassing foodstuff ahead of time and unnecessarily.

Ramadan, one should be reminded, is a month of contemplation, spirituality, attempt to come closer to divinity and get more attuned to the rest of humanity.

It should not be a time when people are more preoccupied about how to fill their stomachs once they break their fast, but one when they should feel for the suffering and hungry brethren in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, when they should strive to help others and be better themselves.

The spirituality of the holy month of Ramadan must be assured and observed first and foremost, and not the material needs of the fasting faithful.

Medically, people are encouraged to eat more frugally during Ramadan. Especially in a country like Jordan, where there is a high incidence of heart and other cardio-vascular diseases, diabetes and obesity, overindulging during the fasting month could be detrimental.

Friday sermons between now and the start of Ramadan could help deliver this message.

Moreover, religious figures should stress the spiritual value of the month and enjoin the faithful to behave as true Muslims who care about themselves, their families and their near and faraway neighbours.


Suggested Reading

Religious History of Fasting: How it Establishes the Truth of the Holy Quran

Categories: Arab World, Fasting, The Muslim Times

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