The holy month Ramadan (also pronounced as Ramazan) is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, the blessed month in which Quranic Revelation started. It’s a special month of prayer, meditation, contemplation and devotion.
I’m not a scholar of any creed but a wanderer who quests for understanding of the Holy Message. To my understanding Ramadan is a blessed month to celebrate the spirituality in which one remembers the creator, contemplate their life, imprison all their senses, sacrifice the ego and remove all the barriers that cloud the mirror of Perfection.
Fasting (restraining oneself from food) for the day and feasting at night isn’t the real essence of this month. To abstain ONLY from food and drink is child’s play, one must abstain from sins, from unlawful pleasures and acts, not eating ONLY from lawful foods. Abstinence involves many obligations which are beyond a cetain period. For the ones who know, it is the month of union with the Universal Soul. The wise ones seek the inner self, they relinquish all the worldly desires and pleasures because they know the’ hidden self’ is behind the veil of ones own physical, emotional and mental bodies.
As Kabir says:
Within this body
Are enchanted landscape and woods,
The seven seas and the innumerable stars.
Within this body
The Eternal keeps singing
And its spring goes on and on flowing.
If you ever get a chance to read Rumi’s Mathnavi, you will be touched by amazing experiences and you will realize why he compares the human body with the reed flute. To connect oneself with the Divine Spirit, first we need to become hollow like a reed.
In Rumi’s language again:
There’s hidden sweetness in the stomach’s emptiness.
We are lutes, no more, no less.
If the soundboxes stuffed full of anything, no music.
If the brain and belly are burning clean with fasting,
every moment a new song comes out of the fire.
The fog clears, and new energy makes you run
up the steps in front of you.
Be emptier and cry like reed instruments cry.
Emptier, write secrets with the reed pen.
When you’re full of food and drink,
Satan sits where your spirit should,
an ugly metal statue in place of the Kaaba.
When you fast, good habits gather
like friends who want to help.
Fasting is Solomon’s ring.
Don’t give into some illusion and lose your power,
but even if you have, if you’ve lost all will and control,
they come back when you fast,
like soldiers appearing out of the ground,
pennants flying above them.
A table descends to your tents, Jesus’ table.
Expect to see it, when you fast,
this tablespread with other food,
better than the broth of cabbages.
Masters of the truth have said that our physical strength depends on food and drink while, our spiritual strength depends on going hungry and thirsty. Our spiritual masters used to mediate without food and drink for many days. In Allah’s dominion, hunger is a divine food -according to them. Even in the holy scriptures of the Prophet Mosses and the Prophet Jesus you will find the similar wisdom.
Here is selection to share with you from the book Discourses on the Sufi path :
A Bedouin was walking with his dog in the desert, carrying a leather skin of water on his shoulder, and crying pitifully as he went along. When asked why he was crying, he replied,
“Because my dog is dying of thirst!”
“Why don’t you give him some of your water, then?” the person said.
“Because I might need it for myself.”
So it depends on ones spiritual station, revelations by Universal Wisdom to discern between the two “Fanna and Nafs.” I have seen many pseudo figures, who seem to be very genuine in their speech but when it comes to practice their nafs appear and unfortunately our land is full of such heretics who rule not from a place of highest Truth.
As Nasir Khusraw Says:
By day you fast and moan and finger your rosary,
By night you’re enjoying music and wine.
You’ve memorized the Book of con quite smoothly,
So now you’re grand mufti of Balkh, Nishapur and Herat.
Your words are very heavy with fruits as a date palm
But when it comes to action your thorn appear.
Baba Bulleh Shah, the mystic of Punjab also alludes the same notion and criticize religious orthodoxy of his time.
“Parh nafal namaaz guzaarey
Uchiyaan baangaa chaaagaa maarey
Mimbar te charh waz pukaarey
Keetaa teynoo hirs khawaar”
You say prayers upon prayers
You scream and yell loudly
Sitting on the pulpit, you deliver sermons
Greed has brought disgrace upon you
Those who are successful in unfreezing their heart from worldly desires will recognize soon the Divine reality as confirmed by Mustafa and His progeny. May Allah Almighty bless us all , may He fulfil our prayers and wishes and may He makes us understand the spirit of Ramadan . Ameen
In service to the Real,
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