29 / 04 / 21
by Samatar Aweys
This year has been the first year I have fasted while working, since graduating in 2020. Throughout the last decade or so, Ramadan has always been aligned with the summer and the holidays. This year it is different and has meant I have had to adapt and be more patient, which is great as I learn more about myself and challenge myself – which is the essence of this holy month in Islam.
Time is going by so fast (as it always does every Ramadan), however as we are at the halfway point, I felt it was a good idea to write down some thoughts and observation, which hopefully can give an insight into fasting and some experiences I have had so far. One of the major observations so far has been how the speed of time alternates between fast and slow depending on what you are doing. When I am waking up for Suhoor (the meal right before the fast begins in the early hours of the morning) time goes by so fast that I feel I am constantly in a rush, on the other hand, when I have just finished work at 5:15pm and counting down the hours it feels like every minute drags on. What I took from this however was more about making the most out of the moment you are in, instead of wishing time would fly by. This does not just apply to this month but also to my time at this organisation and how quick it will go. I hope to be able to look back in September and say that I made the most of the time I had, by growing and/or enjoying the moment.
Another observation from this month is the concept of speaking. I usually am a chatterbox, and my extroverted nature can make me ramble on for days, however due to the fast draining much of my energy, it has made me (willing or unwillingly) more reserved and more often I speak with brevity. From that I believe there are plenty of positives I can take away from this experience. One of the principles here at The Faith & Belief Forum is based around listening and learning. Being drained from fasting has allowed me to listen with greater clarity and ponder on what people say, both at work and in everyday conversations. This has also made me reflect on a hadith (sayings from Prophet Muhammad SAW) stating to either “speak a good word or keep silent”, this is profound as I far too often find myself speaking just for the sake of it, with no substance and it especially applies to arguing and debating, where far too often it is of no avail. Thus, this observation taught me that being economical (for a lack of a better word) with your words not only allows you to learn from others, but also makes your words hold greater currency.
Working at Faith & Belief Forum feels like contributing to sewing the fabric back into society, now more than ever with so many local and global issues happening. Therefore, working here in the month of Ramadan feels extra special as I can reach a better spiritual place while working on benefitting society. To sum up the observations I have made and my general thoughts, I hope that the rest of the month, at work at least, can be about using time wisely & relationship-building, and even better if I can spend time building relationships, as that is what allows us to be better and feel comfortable. “To go fast go alone to go far go together”.