Avoidance of the Things that Contra-dict the Spirit of Fasting

Spirit of Fasting
 

Avoidance of the Things that Contra-dict the Spirit of Fasting

Fasting is one of the best acts of worship. It is mandated by Al-
lah (SWT) to purify the soul along with the practice of good
deeds. Thus the faster ought to be aware of acts or behaviors
that may spoil his fast so that he or she will attain the highest
benefit physically and spiritually.

Fasting is not only restraining oneself from fast-breakers –
food, drink and sex – that restrain only the mouth and the pri-
vate parts. Every limb (jawarih) must be restrained. The tongue
must desist from slander and back-biting. The eyes must re-
strain themselves from any unlawful look. The hand must not
touch or take what does not belong to it. The ears must not lis-
ten to idle talk, gossip, lyrics and notes that contain obscene
and indecent things; the nose must fast also by not sniffing,
smelling unlawful things. The feet must fast by not going to
places where sinful acts are propagated. When you eat sahuur
and iftar, make sure the food on the table has been obtained
lawfully. If the servant has observed the fast in these terms and
acted accordingly, he or she will have gained positively by
Ramadan and will receive the maximum reward.

Hence, fasting is a state of mind that transcends the physical
restraint. In a hadith by Abu Hurairah, the Messenger of Allah
(saas) said:

“It is not fasting, just to restrain from food and drink,
instead the fast is to cease from idle talk (laghw), ob-
scenity, and should anyone insult or provoke you, or act
ignorantly towards you, respond to it by saying, ‘I am
fasting, I am indeed fasting.’ ” (Ibn Khuzaimah)

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In another citation reported by Abu Hurairah (raa) the Messen-
ger of Allah, (saas), said:

“He who does not stop from false talk or stop from act-
ing upon false talk, Allah will have no need that he ab-
stain from his food and drink.” (Bukhari)

Again, in the same spirit, the Messenger of Allah (saas) said:

“Many an observer of fasting will not receive from his
fasting any reward but the pain of hunger, and many a
night worshipper will not receive any reward from his
prayer but the loss of sleep.” (Nasaie and Hakim)

These three ahadith are evidence that the most important thing
in the eyes of the Lawgiver is not merely physically restraining
from the obvious food and drink, but the total commitment of
the servant’s body and soul to the letter and spirit of fasting.
The curfew of the body and mind during the state of fasting
enables the person who has fasted in the true spirit of Ramadan
to have the necessary requirements to withstand the turbulence
of life for the next eleven months.

When the Messenger of Allah (saas) said in the hadith,

“Allah will have no need…” (Bukhari)

He was indicating the depth or seriousness of this case. If you
fail the test, Allah will have no need that he abstained… in that
test. If Allah rejects the test, who else will accept it? Nobody!
Hence, the pain of hunger and the burning of thirst will go un-
rewarded.

Essentials of Ramadan The Month of Fasting