Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Maghrib was not as dignified as I planned

Guest Post By Daniel, the fasting newbie

Just after my first post here I got a phone call from a colleague, she asked me if I wanted to work for her and since it's Ramadan I could not say no : ) so I had to run home prepare iftaar (pineapple and apple salad). I poured a big glas of cold water got my cigaretts out and sat watching the sun set behind the mountains. I said thanks and started eating. Dont know if eating is the correct word... I attacked my plate with a fury not seen since I picked up a smoke after being without for 2 weeks. I ate and drank fast and then I had 2 smokes before I had to run to work. I started at 1900 so there was time to eat before work today, a luxury I won't have the rest of the week.

My colleagues were quite supportive of my decision to fast for a month, but most of them thought it was weird as I'm not a Muslim. I tried to explain that I believe in God and that there is only one God so it does not matter if you call him/her "God "Allah" or "Jehova" its still the same God and that I was curious about Islam.

I worked for 4hrs and had a lot of water while working. After work I went to a friend's house for dinner around 2300 and when I came home from that I had a light snack (more fruit and veg) bedtime was around 0200 so I missed fajr as I was sleeping. I promised myself that I would wake up and go eat breakfast but I was in a deep sleep (but I think I drank some water from my bed) so today is going to be hard as I have not even had breakfast. But no one said it would be easy to fast for the first time.

Two of the girls I live with had a big night out last night so they were quite slow this morning. We went to do some shopping. My trolley was filled with fruits and veg and slow carbs for morning and fast carbs for night and some nice beef. The girls got egg, meat, mayonaise, white bread and so on... a nice fried Australian brecky. I was a bit hungry but I still helped them to cook. And I sat there watching them eating about 2 days worth of calories and drinking cold juice and milk. When they lit there smokes I had to leave for a while but I think I handeld the temptation quite well : )

I spend alot of my thirsty hours thinking about my spiritual journey and I'm thinking back about the journey I did when I was in my late teens (I went to England then). In my young ignorant years I experimented with drugs and sin and now still young but a bit wiser I experiment with religon and culture.

Day 2 of my first fast is coming to its end and I will soon go home and prepare a nice feast for me and my friends, as I'm really having a day off today. Two courses of couscous, one vegetarian and one with beef will be on the menu both served with cold sauses and flat bread. Fresh fruit and milk for dessert. And plenty of cold water and tobaco through the meal.

I hope you all enjoy your days and don't forget to tip your waiters tonight as they won't be able to eat until you leave the restaurant...


Anonymous said...

Tonight i had a more dignified break of my fast. 1830 and the sun set behind the mountains. 2 min later I was looking at the moon and happely nibbling away on a date (thnx for the advice) and i had a big glas of water in my hand.
My mind went to the conections of the larger religions in the midleeast and the unfortionate fights they have had beteen themself for over 2000yrs.
I said a small prayer for peace and went inside to eat my dinner, I had alot of time on my hands and I was looking forward to taste what i had spent the last 2hrs cooking, this was the first time i have spent more than 3 min in the kichen cooking without trying out the flavours of my broth the texture of my veg and so on... the food was perfect and i was smiling to myself at the result, to bad my friends had to go to work so i was eating alone again but i dont mind a bit of solitude...

greatings from the far south.

Destitute Rebel said...

Daniel, its good to hear of your adventures this ramadan, hope you enjoy the experience and May God accept your fasts and prayers.

Shaykhspeara Sha'ira said...


I had a similar thought today after reading Liruns commenst explaining the jewish fast. Why people who have so much in common can have oceans between them.

I hope your prayer for peace is granted :)

Dinner sounds yummy :) I am actually feeling a bit hungry now...

Ha Ana Za said...

That's really interesting. It's great to see how non-muslims interpret the fast and you interpret it in a beautiful way.

Boo! said...

You're doing well Daniel. Your Maghrib was a lot more dignified than mine.

I actually ended up missing my Maghrib prayers today. I was so busy with work that I just had a drink of water and an apple at Aftar and kept on working. Never realized the time passed.

kaya said...

Great job daniel.
Jazak Allah khair.
I almost didn't fast today, as I was feeling so unwell since the morning. But I managed to divert my mind and the day passed untill it was time for Maghrib.
I made pakoras today for the first time this ramadan. Its always been a regular all these years on our sufra/dastarkhaan/ table.BIG MISTAKE!!
Pakoras are like LAYS CHIPS! (NO ONE CAN EAT JUST ONE!!!)

Anonymous said...

Oh pakoras.... So so so good! I find I'm having to be a bit careful not to eat too much at night though, since I start work early in the morning. So I can't expose myself to the temptation of pakoras! Daniel, it's amazing that you're working around all that food and watching people eat and still managing to fast! You must have a very strong will. Is this the first Islamic activity you've done? Do you have Muslims friends who inspired you to try it?

(This is Hannah but I can't log in to Blogger so I'm posting as anonymous.)

Walking sister with flip flops said...

Masha'Allah Daniel! You truly give other religions and cultures a chance!


Today it was couscous,what's tomorrows' menu, insha'Allah?

Something Egyptian, Eritrean, Somali?

Keep us posted!

CG said...

Daniel, you are truly an inspiration. Your mind and body will benefit from your fasting.

RIJJU said...

It must be said that you are showing great courage and understanding of the value of ramadan. Keeping your regular lifestyle and not shying away from work is a plus point for you. Ramadan does not mean that we make fasting as an excuse and shy away from work. You must be appriciated for your patience. May God Bless you and guide you to the right path.

BuJ said...

Daniel, infinite amounts of respect go out to you..