A time for togetherness

A time for togetherness

Fasting period

A time for togetherness

For many across the city, the month of Ramzan (fasting) is on the doorstep, in accordance with the crescent moon. This fasting period, which ends with the celebration of Eid-ul-Fitr, has a special meaning for all those who will be observing it — be it in terms of bringing families together or as a cleansing process. Bengalureans share with Metrolife, their stories associated with the month of fasting.

Many recollect the period as one of sharing a close bond with their families and observing the prayers and rituals. M Basheer, a senior assistant PR with HAL, says that he remembers going with his father for the prayers in the evening and coming back to a home full of delicacies. “We would break the fast in the evening with water, a little ‘payasam’ like mixture and varied fruits. Then we would do prayers again, which would be followed by dinner. After this, we would wake up in the wee hours of the morning and begin the fast again with prayers,” he says. Basheer adds that this whole month brings about a closer bond among families and in the community.

Others like Habeeb Nalakath, a manager, who lives here with his wife Jisna and daughter Jiaan Maryam, says that the month is about purification and reformation. “People who aren’t able to follow the regular prayer schedules, throng the mosque during these days. One follows the rituals strictly and reads the Quran and related texts ardently during this time.”

He adds that this time also helps develop the mental strength of a person. “The willpower that develops over the fasting period is like none other. It is inspiring and makes one want to follow the schedule through the year,” says Habeeb. He remembers breaking the fast with different food items like ‘samosa’, cutlets, ‘unaikai’, ‘pazham nirachathu’ and more. “I remember how my brothers and I would rush to break our fast with lime soda right after the prayers,” Habeeb adds with a smile.

For youngsters and old alike, the period is about learning many life lessons. Suhail Ali, a BCom graduate, says, “Every year, this month teaches us to value life more and to appreciate the things we have. It also reminds us to give ‘zakat’ and share whatever we have with the poor. We share food, clothes and money with the needy and this selfless deed also helps us realise the value of what we have.”

He adds that while one is busy with the fast pace of life through the year, the fasting month reminds one to slow down and cleanse oneself. “The fasting period helps rejuvenate and cleans the mind, soul and body. While one abstains from various foods and has a certain food pattern during this time, believers are also expected to be calm and more devout. They are expected to think, say and do only positive things, which should continue during the year ahead,” details Suhail.  Suhail also eagerly awaits the line of food stalls that pile on Mosque Road and around. “It is a huge celebration. I eagerly await this time of the year to indulge in Turkish and Arabian delights, after breaking the fast.”

Umme Saarah, another youngster, says that the fasting period always reminds her of the fun she has, being with family and being humbled with prayers and rituals. “After the prayers, we roam around a lot. From waking up during the wee hours for prayers to shopping around, I find all parts of the fast endearing,” she says.

     She enjoys with her brothers Mohammad Sulaiman and Mohammad Usman during the fasting period. Her mother, Zareen Taj, adds, “This is the time when family and friends get together. Apart from seeking forgiveness from the almighty, this month also helps us appreciate the little things in life. It teaches us to share things and be humble.”

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