Sunday, September 24, 2006

First Tarawih...

The first night of Ramadan - the anticipation of a new month... of opportunities, for seeking forgiveness, for renewing the faith and aspiring towards a life on the path of Islam... Just back from the First Tarawih ..

The picture is of Nakhoda Mosque, a 75 year old and perhaps the largest mosque in Eastern India, lit up on the eve of Ramadan. It is a routine to light the lamp at the top of the Minara (Tower) at the time of Iftar every evening to let people from afar know that the time to fast is over. Similarly, for Suhoor the light remains on until Subah Sadiq, after which it is put off. This light based signalling system was used in the olden days when there were not many mosques in the city... reminds me of a similar practice using cannons (!!) in Ajmer to signal the sighting of moon (as well as Suhur and Aftar times) during Ramadan.

During the entire month, there is tremedous Raunaq in this part of th city with some major roads covered into markets selling assorted varieties of dishes for Aftaar and dinner. There are also cloth stalls, Perfume (attar) sellers and cap (topi) sellers who make the environment truly wonderous and memorable.


Shaykhspeara Sha'ira said...

Abrahim, welcome to the blog!

I am so happy to read your posts and hearing about a place I have never visited. What a beautiful thing to light a lamp at the top of the minaret.

*For all our non urdu/hindi speaking readers, raunaq means ambience, or good spirit or mood in a place.

Diligent Candy said...

Wishing all of you - Ramadan Kareem....

Shaykhspeara Sha'ira said...

Thank you and Ramadan Kareem D candy!!! So nice of you to stop by :) How are things in Tulip land?

Boo! said...

Interesting. I had never heard of the lighting of a lamp on the top of the minar. They definitely don't do it in Pakistan.

Anonymous said...

Ramadan Kareem and many thanks for this wonderful Ramadan Blogg and many thanks to everyone's sharing their ramadan-spirits!

I've enjoyed reading your blogs and hope to read more further on insha'Allah.

Keep up the Ramadan spirit!
Soona, Sweden

kaya said...

Abrahim khush amadeed.
Waqaii mai what a lovely idea the lighting of the torch.
We do the cannons thing in UAE too. I remember when i used to work in Satwa(an area of Dubai), and I would hear the booming cannon at iftaar time.
Some of the older traditions make you long for times gone by, some times I guess.
Of families sharing their food, walking in and out of each others houses.
Of a beggar or two everyday turning up at iftaar time, and getting his plate of iftaar, as he would sit on the doorstep and eat.
In every house there was always 1-2 steel kay plate and glasses for them.

nzm said...

Beautiful image, Abrahim!