It is turbulence in the world in some region or the other that leads to the assertion of the will of God. He either incarnates Himself as a human being, as the Hindus believe, or manifests Himself through a Prophet. It was the turn of Prophet Mohammad to guide humanity in the disturbed Middle East 541 years after the crucifixion of Jesus. Both had to face the corrupt and dogmatic rulers of the age. They were inspired by the will of the Almighty to be known as the saviours of humanity. Prophet Mohammad established Islamic faith and laid down rules and laws in the Shariat for the guidance of the people.
The faith spread like a wild fire. Today near about 1100 million people wait for the sacred month of Ramzan or Ramadan, as it is known in some counties. It is a month of fasts for the devout Muslims. Before the day dawns there is a call from the local mosque you have to take Sahari (food) before the sun rises. The fast continues for the whole day. In the evening you can break the fast at a particular time by having After (symbolic food) As the prophet belonged to the Middle East it is quite natural you break the fast with fresh dates (Khajur) Biscuits or any other dish of your taste would do Hunger and thirst Won’t trouble you the whole day. How can they? You have taken a vow for piety for the purification of the soul Fast is just symbolic to the sacrifice one practices During fast at least one remembers the virtues of truthfulness, humanity, peace and not to fall a prey to vices If one can’t practice all these m the materialistic culture of modem times one can sock to them at least during the month of Ramzan The devout won’t have even water the whole day and would bow before the Almighty five times in Namaz. The rich would arrange ‘After’ parties to be attended by all and sundry. Of course they have now become a tool of pleasing people in the political spectrum of India Still the devout invite their poor relatives and friends to be obliged by their presence.
The pious month of Ramzan is coming to a close The Prophet came out of his seclusion – so do we all. The children look forward to the day when the moon would be visible in a curved streak of light after the last dark night of Ramzan. People start making preparations for Idd that follows the night on which the moon is seen – moon that too had participated in the penance for fourteen days after having a full bloom on the 14th of the month It too teaches the lesson how even after gaining the peak of prosperity one has to start growing meek – enduring depletion with patience. The period of penance over, the moon again symbolizes the growing hope m human life slowly but certainly
Preparations for kid start at least a week before Idd New clothes are purchased – new shoes – chapels for women – new suits or ‘pyjamas’- ‘Achkans’ and ‘Sherwanis’ for the well to do. Houses are whitewashed. ‘Sewains’ (a sweet dish from wheat) are prepared There are other dishes for the guests and the members of the household. Houses of 1100 million people in the world are agog with laughter. Fairs are not arranged. They spring up in every nook and corner of cities and towns. It is a day of fan and frolic, for the children and the young boys and girls. They have their own choice of toys — sweets and dresses. All is gay and beautiful. Peace and pleasure rule supreme.
Islam has a great social bearing through religion on its followers. Idd is a witness to the largest disciplined mass. The Idd Namaz at a particular time in the morning is the biggest congregation of devotees in the world. The young, the old, children all go to the Jama Masjid or the Idgah or to smaller local mosques to say their Namaz. On this pious day one can see long lines of Namaz is on the roads before the big mosques. The postures of the devout are quite spontaneous – all rising, sitting or bending at the same time. It shows the unity of the people.
The Namaz is over. All the people greet one another with ‘Idd Mubarak’ and affectionate embraces. Enmities, if any, are forgotten. Members of other religious communities used to greet their Muslim friends and vice versa. After the kid Namaz the atmosphere it full of gaiety. Merrymaking is the word for the young. They may enjoy a cine show, join a pleasant party, have snacks and sweets in a restaurant or just enjoy the evening with family members before TV. Sweet dishes of course would pass on from member to member. Children have their own ways. Toys they have. They won’t be tiled of playing till it is dart. Back home they cat to their fill the dishes of their choice. And for the older ones there is sobriety all around. For them the festival is an occasion to praise the benevolence the Almighty. They may remember him a thousand times telling on the beads of the rosary – of course not disturbing the pleasant atmosphere. They would remember God and His Prophet besides participating in the cheerful atmosphere in the household and among friends.
The rural setting is more amiable. Religious differences are general forgotten. People meet one another in a friendlier, sociable and congenital atmosphere. It is their prerogative to come close on this pious sad happy day. They just feel that happiness comes out of love and not animosity. Let Idd bring peace and prosperity to all -specially the poor and the needy. Oh God! Let your will pervade. ‘Amen’.