Monday, August 9, 2010

Ramadan

Ramadan starts August 11th this year. I struggle with it every year. It isn't my tradition, but rather something I do so that my husband won't be observing alone. I don't like it. It's hard. I complain about it. I feel guilty for complaining about it. I know it's not the proper spirit with which to approach the experience. So I was struck in the heart while reading Esther deWaal's Seeking God when I came across this passage from The Rule of St. Benedict: "If a disciple obeys grudgingly and grumbles, not only aloud but also in his heart, then even though he carries out the order his action will not be accepted with favour by God who sees the grumbling, unless he changes for the better and makes amends" (5. 16-19).

de Waal goes on to say that "...obedience is really about love. It is our loving response to God which a murmuring response altogether wrecks...The outcome of obedience undertaken in these terms is that it brings with it an inner freedom." As the beginning of Ramadan approaches I'm still unsure of how exactly to put this into action. Obedience is not exactly my strong suit. Growth is not an all at once thing, I suppose, so perhaps acknowledging my reluctance to fast and the complaining spirit it brings out in me is a first step.

Image found at Global Voices Online

3 comments:

Valarie said...

Ramadan Kareem. We are in the same boat. My husband is muslim from lebanon and we are getting ready for the holiday as well. It is a very difficult month but I focus on the time my family spends together and the slowing down for the month. I'm glad we share this one thing in common.

Bending Birches said...

very interesting....I have always wondered about this holiday...by the way, I so love your header photo!

mouchini's playground said...

believe me it's is hard even for muslims. not an easy thing to spend the day starving and behaving!! anyways, I agree with you that is harder to have to deal with the event; espacially if you're not used to it. you see yourself and your daily habits all changed and it is disturbing. add to the fact that you don't share the same ideology. the same background. what you do for your husband ( funny way to talk about him huh?! lol) is just the nice thing to do. it is nice to feel that the person you love respects what you do or who you are. tha,ks for sharing your thoughts.
with love and respect

Dalila

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