‘Fasting is not an excuse to avoid responsibilities’

National 2 minutes, 13 seconds


MUSLIMS observing the Ramadhan fast are to ensure that they do so with the best practices, said imams during yesterday’s Friday sermon.

Imams reminded congregants to not merely conform to the overt norms of abstaining from food and drinks but to do so in accordance to the pillars of the fast while observing proper fasting etiquette.

“In order to achieve perfection in our fast, it has to be enjoined upon us to know and to understand these issues relating to the fast. Surely we do not wish to gain only hunger and thirst from our fast,” said the imams.

They quoted a hadith narrated ny an-Nasa’ie by which Prophet Muhammad SAW said, “Many receive nothing from the fast except hunger and thirst.”

“Verily fasting is strength. It is a jihad, it is success and efficiency in actions and in work. It is not weakness, defeat, fatigue, laziness and an excuse to avoid responsibilities,” said the imams who acknowledged that fasting can reduce physical strength but only to a certain extent.

“However, this should not be used as an excuse to be unproductive, lazy and to spend one’s time sleeping, performing useless and vain activities such as playing games and watching entertainment programmes the whole day, so as not to feel tired due to the fast,” they said.

They noted scientific studies that have shown positive results from fasting, along with wisdom from the fast itself.

“During the fast, both energy and blood supply are concentrated to the brain. This enables the brain to work efficiently, thus giving us the opportunity to perform mental and physical activities effectively,” explained the imams.

Muslims were also reminded that they are encouraged to perform as many sunnah deeds as possible such as taking the pre-dawn meal (sahur).

“Although this practice is sunnah, we suffer a loss if we were to neglect it because there are blessings in the partaking of the pre-dawn meal and it has its own special merits,” they said, adding that it is also sunnah to expedite the breaking of fast.

They also explained that the Ramadhan nights should be enlivened with various acts of worship such as reciting verses from the Quran and performing Terawih and Tahajjud prayers.

“Therefore, Muslims who are fasting should constantly strive to achieve perfection in their fast by avoiding and averting any form of error or misdeed that may tarnish their fast,” they said.

In ending the sermon, the imams quoted verse 183 of surah al-Baqarah that translates, “O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you, even as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may ward off (evil).”

The Brunei Times