Faizel Patel – Cii Broadcasting (02-08-12)
“Die fast kry baie vir Faizie.” (The fast gets Faizie a lot) chortled my aunt as we sat around the kitchen table after ifthaar to the amused giggles of the rest of my family. I tried to make sense of what she was saying and reminisced about the day’s events that made her reach that perception of me. Was I really grumpy and did the fast really get to me?
Ramadaan is a month of infinite mercy and blessings. Muslims try and extract every ounce of blessing from this holy month in the hope that they purify their lives in way that they follow the straight path to righteousness and attain God fearing statuses.
However with the coming of Ramadaan, there also lurks in the shadows, a host of behaviors and mannerisms that are totally contradictory to the spirit of the month in which the Holy Quraan was revealed.
Trying to navigate in Lenasia during the month of Ramdaan is like walking though a minefield; ready to implode with every step you take. Everybody is in a rush and some are in moods that are 50 shades of grey!
On a typical Saturday afternoon during the holy month, a series of encounters left my mood somber and that’s where my observant aunt drew her conclusion that the fast was sort of having an effect on me.
It all began with a trip to Fruit &Veg City. I was driving my little jalopy with my family in tow until we almost had the wind knocked out of us. A Mercedes Benz C63 AMG drove with such speed that our little abode reverberated with the vibrations. My little 5-year-old daughter thought I was pulling a stunt and retorted with, “Daddy stop driving like Schumacher!”
However it was at Fruit &Veg City that I was left speechless. After we got the necessary healthy stuff, I came across two aunties arguing over a bunch of carrots! I overheard the one aunty say to the other “I saw them first, they are mine!” yelling with a commanding voice.
Intrigued, I approached them to find out if there was something special about the bunch of carrots they were tugging like a rope between them? Apparently it was nothing special and it’s just that both aunties grabbed the bunch of carrots at the same time. So I told them, “Why are you arguing? There is a whole shelf of carrots, just grab another one.” They both looked at me with contempt and stormed off, to continue their shopping.
But seriously, it seems Muslims are always in a rush during Ramadaan flogging rules of the road at the expense of others. A non-Muslim friend once asked me, “ Faya, ek se bru, why are Muslims in such a hurry in Ramzaan?” All I could muster up was to say they had to get home and prepare, lots of things to do.
The plethora of personalities in Ramadaan are attached to very short fuses, ready to unleash a tirade of obscenities and bad behaviour. Another friend of mine shared my sentiments after a crazy shopping frenzy at a material store. She changed her status on her BBM to read, “Pay & Save, Allah give me Sabr.”
I am sure that what we really need is Sabr to get us through the days of this beautiful month. However, it seems that some people lack this beautiful quality, which is much loved by Allah (SWT).
It is unfortunate and very sad that on that same Saturday, Goolam Hoosein Camrodeen Haffejee, a 93-year-old Muslim man was knocked down opposite Rose Park by a lady driver. My uncle relayed the story to me and said, “I can’t believe it. He was on his way to masjid when a woman driving a Toyota Tazz knocked into the elderly man killing him instantly. The road was splattered with his blood.”
It was a sad moment for me trying to fathom the emotions of his family, especially his 86-year-old wife Amina Haffejee who was married to him for the past 65 years. Little did she and her family realize as they eagerly awaited his return from masjid, only for him never to return and never to share an ifthaar with them ever again. I drove past the scene a little later and it haunted me for the rest of the night.
How does one even begin to comprehend the loss suffered by sister Amina? This was her soul mate, a love story that lasted 65 years and all to be dissolved in just a split second of madness.
When I finally did get home after the days escapades,I was sad, solemn and even agitated but halcyon. I vied to escape into another world for a few moments to gather my thoughts, emotions and make sense of the crazy day which prompted the light hearted comment by my dear aunt. Little did she know that the fast has nothing to do with my demeanor.
It was a torrid day and I am sure we all have those at some point in our lives. In Ramadaan, things move at break neck speed, and I guess we all want to “Carp Diem” (Seize the day) because we never know if we will ever see another Ramdaan again, like the Marhoom Goolam Hoosein.
It’s all good and well that we want to sponge the virtues and rewards this beautiful month has to offer. But…Also take a moment to reflect and consider the feelings of others, whether they are Muslims or not.
I make dua to Almighty Allah to grant us the inherent quality of Sabr, make us tolerant and let us reap the riches and benefits of this beautiful month. Allah is so great, that His Mercy and blessings is infinite and we can all share in it.
AmeenTags: Anger, Faizel Patel, Lenasia, Quraan, Ramadan, Sabr