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Sunday, September 7, 2008

Ramadhan Kareem

It is almost a week since the month of Ramadan has started. For Muslims who observe the teaching of Islam, it is the month when they fast during the day, beginning from dawn until sunset. During this time, one should not only prevent oneself from eating and drinking, but also avoid doing things that can cease the fast and stop doing unbeneficial actions. It is the best time to double one’s ibadah and recite the Quran, aiming to conclude reading the entire book in one month.

Nevertheless, Ramadan does not stopping us from doing activities together with family and friends. There are two types of pleasures promised for those people who fast: one in the day of judgement and another is during Iftar, or breaking the fast. And these two ni’mah will only be enjoyed and experienced by true Sa’im. It will be more blissful if we can get together for iftar, prepare food for other people, enjoy different kind of food together and perform Solat Tarawih jointly, which only present during Ramadan.

It is the third Ramadan for me and my wife in Australia. Fasting in a foreign country, where the majority are non-muslim, is an experience not everybody will have. “OH! It is that time again! I’m sure you will lose some weight”, said one of my friends. “I’m sorry. I’ll try to eat slowly in front of you, since you can’t eat” said another thoughtful friend. Meanwhile, some just bite the Pringles hungrily. I keep on telling them to just proceed as usual, nothing different is happening. I am just fasting, I am not starving myself to the point that I can’t control myself when food is around me. In fact, these type of challenges will make us stronger.

So, to celebrate the beginning of this holy month, a few friends around Sydney have gathered for an iftar at Abg Ghazali’s house yesterday, Saturday, in Blacktown. Among the special menus are satays, curry mee, sup kambing (not sure whether lamb or mutton), bubur lambuk and a lot more. There were lots of food that everybody ended up with full tummy, and have some take-away before going back home. We also enjoyed performing solat Maghrib, Isya’ and also Tarawih in jamaah. Another special event, there was also a Fathers’ Day cake, prepared by the mothers, since today is Fathers’ Day celebration here in Australia. Thanks to all mothers who have done a really good job in remembering special events like this, not like us fathers, haha. Hope you guys were not looking forward for the same kind of thing in the coming mothers’ day celebration…

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