Ramadan: Pursuit Of The Original Self
Ramadan: The Pursuit Of The Original Self
“The month of Ramadan is that in which the Qur’an was revealed, a guidance to men, and clear proof of the guidance, and the Criterion. So whoever of you is present in the Month, he shall fast therein.” ~ Holy Qur’an 2:185
Ramadan Mubarak! Blessed Holy Month of Ramadan to all!
The Month of Ramadan is the 9th month of the lunar calendar in which Muslims are prescribed fasting as an obligation upon those that have reached puberty and can physically fast without causing medical difficulty. Allah (God) Willing, the Ramadan Fast will begin this year beginning the day of June 6, according to astronomical calculations.
Observers of Ramadan are to refrain from the consumption of food, drink and the urge of sexual desires with their husbands or wives during the daylight hours. The Ramadan Fast also requires one to guard oneself from immoral conduct to break bad habits, remove the blemishes of sin, character flaws, and purify our hearts, minds and actions.
The Month of Ramadan is a time in which we strive to deepen community relations through acts of kindness and focusing on the common needs of our human family suffering under the tyranny of poverty and want. The spirit of the Holy Month of Ramadan is to establish a tone of peace and self-analysis to advocate for justice among ourselves and others as our way of devotion to Allah (God), Most High.
Allah (God) teaches us in the Muslim book of scripture, the Holy Qur’an Chapter 30, verse 29, “those who are unjust follow their low desires without any knowledge” and in Chapter 25, verse 43, Allah (God) asks the question, “Hast thou seen him who takes his low desires for his god? Wilt thou be a guardian over him?”
One “colored” by the Satanic influences of idle talk, gossip, slander, sport and play, wrongdoing and wickedness is far from the Original State of the “Self.”
“O you who believe, be maintainers of justice, bearers of witness for Allah, even though it be against your own selves or (your) parents or near relatives whether he be rich or poor, Allah has a better right over them both. So follow not (your) low desires, lest you deviate.” ~ Holy Qur’an, 4:135
The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan gives us guidance in these words, “Whenever the human being lacks discipline, the society reflects that lack of discipline in the manifestation of excesses: excessive eating, excessive drinking, excessive sex, the lust for material things, the greed for power, the overpowering of our intelligence by anger and envy. All of these excesses break the spirit of brotherhood and destroy human society … Practically every evil comes out of a hunger that we desire to satisfy. Since, we cannot discipline that hunger, we exceed the limits. Fasting, therefore, is prescribed.”
Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) is reported to have stated, “Hunger is the lord of all action.”
Our worship of Allah (God) through the devotion of self-denial of our natural urges of thirst, hunger and passion are designed to return us to the innocence of the naturally instilled Guidance of our Original disposition by taming these hungers. This natural Guidance, which is the fiber of our existence, is referred to in Chapter 30, verse 30, of the Holy Qur’an in the Arabic word Fitrah.
The Honorable Elijah Muhammad writes, in “Message to the Blackman in America,” pg. 58, “Islam is actually our religion by nature.” He also writes on pg. 42 of “Message to the Blackman,” “You should remember that you have a great offer made to you in the words, ‘Accept Your Own.’ To accept your own means yourself and your kind, your God, Who is of you and you are of Him.”
The Honorable Elijah Muhammad points us to the True Reality of “Self” as righteous servants of Allah’s (God’s) Will in these beautiful words, “Spiritually, He (Allah, God) says that your own self (referring to you) is a righteous Muslim,” “Message to the Blackman,” pg. 244. The word Muslim is an Arabic word that simply means “one who submits” to the Will of All Mighty Allah (God).
We are Blessed to meet another Holy Month of Ramadan! There are many that have passed away this year but Allah (God) has seen fit to give us life to pursue another opportunity to renew ourselves for a purpose. All Praise is due to Allah (God), we now have an opportunity to achieve a more perfect observance this year of the Holy Month of self-purification and service to humanity than we have in previous Ramadan observances.
Let us take this Blessed occasion as an opportunity for self-improvement and renewal to change our condition for the better. As Allah (God) warns us in the Holy Qur’an Chapter 13, verse 11, “Surely Allah changes not the condition of a people, until they change their own condition.”
(Imam Sultan Rahman Muhammad is the national imam of the Nation of Islam and resident imam of Mosque Maryam National Center, tweet him @ImamSultanM or e-mail him at [email protected].)