Ruby Khan’s Ramadan Diary: My Soul Is Burning!
- IWB Post
- July 3, 2015
You know Ruby Khan, right? She is the same woman you have seen advocating her thoughts on ‘How to raise a son’ and ‘Women and Youth Empowerment in India’. A Human Rights Activist, Writer and a Journalist, Ruby has also interviewed Dr. Veerbala Bhavsar and Jaipur based entrepreneur Deeplai Chugh for JWB!
Like you, even we were curious to know all about Ramadan. So we zeroed in on her. This blog is a part of her journal she is writing during Ramadan. Aren’t you eager to read it? Go ahead….
Ramadan, a month every Muslim in the world eagerly awaits for. It is the 9th month of Islamic calendar. The word Ramadan means Burning. It is in its very meaning, the essence of Ramadan lies: the burning of our earthly desires, greed, anger, envy, hatred, lust, stinginess and every other negative feeling and emotion that during the year slowly turns our souls black with darkness.
30 days of fasting in Ramadan burns our souls in the furnace of the self-constraint, over more time with our Lord Almighty in Salaats (Namaaz), via Recital of Quran and over all a spirit of the holiness of Ramadan; and brings souls out like gold purified in fires of Furnace .
My house was filled with excitement for the arrival of Ramadan, and especially my kids who were waiting for a new array of delicacies to be served in the “Suhoor” or “Sehri” (the beginning of fast in morning at 3:00 Am) and “Iftar” (breaking of the day long Fast at around 7:27PM). This time we decided to make it a healthy mix of diet friendly specials avoiding heavy and fried items like pakodas etc.
My heart was eagerly awaiting for Ramadan, as for me it was a month in which we are directly connected to God because we offer Salaats for our forgiveness and granting of wishes from Allah, we give Zakaat (Mandatory Alms in Islam on every Muslim to the weak and downtrodden) for protection and increase in our wealth… BUT we keep Fast in Ramadan ONLY for Allah – to show how much we love Allah and how much we can give up for his mercy and love. Dear prophet Muhammad (May peace be on him) says:“every action of the son of Adam is for himself except Fasting, for that is solely for me. I give the reward for it.” (Al Bukhari).
During the month of Ramadan Allah also bestowed us with his best gift – The holy Quran. Sura Al-Baqara of Quran mentions that, “Ramadan is the month in which we sent down the Quran, as guide to mankind, also clear signs for guidance and judgement between right and wrong.”
Finally, the Holy month arrived on the 18th of June this year with the moon announcing its arrival. The moment we heard the moon has been sighted, all of us ran to our terrace just to catch a glimpse of the beautiful moon which gave the glad tidings of the beautiful arrival. Then we greeted each other with “Salaam” which means ‘May Allah showers you with peace, blessings and prosperity’.
Kids were jumping and asking us to wake them up in the Suhoor so that they can be a part of it; and we gladly accepted as the school vacations were going on. The Salaat in the night is longer than usual, as from now the recital of Quran called “Taraveeh” takes one part each evening thereby completing its all 30 parts by the end of the Holy month.
In the morning we were woken up by the beautiful announcements in the local mosques and its volunteers. We started setting the table with special “Sheermaals” (special sweet bread made in Ramadan), milk, cornflakes, boiled eggs, fruits especially bananas and of course water in order to get a wholesome but light meal which can give maximum nutrients to body for the day without making it heavy. Kids woke up like they never slept and enjoyed every bit of the “Suhoor”.
At 3:50 AM the Fast started. I was very excited as I could feel the holiness of Ramadan surrounding me like a Halo; I could feel myself getting nearer to my Lord with every minute passing, with every grumbling of my empty stomach and every moment when my throat was dry with thirst. But, this was just a part of the Fast or “Sawm” or Roza as it is called. The burning has yet to start, I have to burn my negative feelings, I have to learn to forgive and let go, I have to give up my desires – physical or hidden.
As a man and wife, I and my husband have to follow strict physical restraints on our intimacy during the Fast. Because “Sawm” the Arabic word for Roza means to refrain, and it means to refrain not only from food and drinks but also from evil and salacious actions, thoughts and words.
In the evening, we started preparing for “Iftar” along with Dinner. It was a wonderful feeling, our day long “Ibadat” or worship was closing to the end. We decided to make the Iftar light with Khajoors, Fruit salad, lemonade, sprouts and some yummy Saboodana dahi badas. Finally, with the Magrib Azaan at 7:27PM our first Roza was successfully finished. I was overwhelmed when I took the Khajoor and sipped the cool lemonade.
I felt the importance of a single bite of food and drink which we never realise during our daily routine. I realised the pain of hunger and thirst which numerous people feel daily when they are not able to get enough to eat. I realised how thankless we are to Allah who gave us so much. I had tears in my eyes Thanking Allah that how blessed I am to be sitting with my whole family with a table full of delicacies and savouring them in this Holy month of Ramadan.
This is the true essence of Ramadaan, to burn your soul and polish your inner core, opening your soul’s eyes to much broader horizon of yourself, your surroundings and of humanity as a whole.
First 10 days of Ramadan or the first Ashra or the days of blessings of Allah have passed. Now the 2nd “Ashra” or the days of Forgiveness are going on. My house has been still bustling from morning 3:00 AM to late evenings with a new list from the kids department ready for Iftar every evening.
Amidst the hustle-bustle of the worldly life of family, job and society my heart is asking for Forgiveness of my sins, no matter how big or small, and an inner strength to be a better person with each passing day of this most beautiful month of the whole year.
Like it? Keep an eye on this page because there are two more journals to come before Eid!!