Do Not be Disturbed by the Arrival of Ramadhan

Some people feel disturbed and scared by the arrival of Ramadhan.  Once in a village, a visiting scholar mentioned to the people of the village that Ramadhan is coming, and now they will have to fast.  The people of this village were so ignorant that they began to ask the scholar what exactly does fasting entail.  The scholar replied that it entails abstaining from food and drink from a little prior to sunrise up until sunset.  Once the sun sets, you may break your fast.  The villagers asked, “We cannot eat or drink the entire day?”  The scholar replied, “Yes.”  The villagers then asked, “How does fasting become obligatory?”  The scholar replied, “When Ramadhan comes from the west” implying that the sun will set and the moon will be visible in that general direction, but he made no mention of the moon.  So when the villagers asked where Ramadhan comes from, the scholar mentioned that it comes from the west. The villagers then asked, “What day does Ramadhan arrive?”  The scholar said, “Either the evening of the 29th or 30th of Sha’baan.”

Anyway, the scholar departed and the villagers were anticipating the arrival of Ramadhan.  On the evening of the 29th of Sha’baan, the villagers stood on the western boundary of their village armed with sticks.  They decided to beat up Ramadhan and drive him away so that Ramadhan will not have come to their village and therefore they will not have to fast.  Towards the west, they saw a man riding a camel approaching them after the sun had set.  They asked the man, “What is your name?”  The man replied, “My name is Ramadhan Ali.”  The villagers exlaimed, “This is Ramadhan! He will make the fasts mandatory upon us!”  Consequently, they beat the poor man with their sticks and canes.  Poor Ramadhan Ali fleed from there on his camel, without even knowing why he was being chased out and beaten.  A month or so later, the same scholar visited again, and asked the villagers, “O brothers, did you all fast?”  The villages collectively replied, “We didn’t even let Ramadhan come into our village!  We beat him up and chased him away.”

So Ramadhan is not a time to be scared or disturbed.  The manner in which the obligation of fasting is stated by Allah in the Quran is proof that Allah is the Only One True God.  He is not merely a ruler over His creation but also the Most Merciful.  A ruler speaks in a style that is similar to martial law, such as, “You all must fast, or else there will be sever consequences.”  Compare that to the kind and sweet style Allah says, “O you who believe, fasting has been made obligatory upon you, just as it had been obligatory upon those before you…”  In other words, “Don’t worry, this is not a hard or difficult task.  ‘Allamah Aalusi (RA) states in his tafseer, Rooh ul Ma’aani, “The mention of how fasting was also obligatory on previous nations is to instill the idea within His servants that fasting is easy and simple.  People can function just fine without eating from sunrise to sunset.  People do not die from fasting in this manner.  The people who fasted in a similar manner before you were fine despite fasting and abstaining from food and drink all day.  Therefore, O the followers of My beloved (Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wa Sallam), do not worry and stress.  It is a little sacrifice but the reward is extremely superb.”  If a person were to receive a great reward in the end, they would easily sacrifice whatever is required in this world.  It would be the month of June, a hot summer, and the government announces that whoever walks 30 miles to a certain place will be given a large plot of land with a gas station on it, basically coming out to about $500,00.oo (five hundred thousand dollars) for free.  Think of all those people that are currently sitting in air conditioned rooms that would now leave their nice cool environment to acquire that plot of land.  Similarly, the reward that Allah wants to give for fasting is easily attainable, and thus there is no reason to be perturbed and inconvenienced by the arrival of Ramadhan.

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