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How A Hindu Sees The Holy Month Of Ramadan? – Fasting Month Of Muslims

How A Hindu Sees The Holy Month Of Ramadan? – Fasting Of Muslims - is an article for peace and prosperity of mankind.

My earliest remembrance of Ramadan is receiving sweets, mutton curry and pathiri (a flat white bread) from our old Muslim neighbor at end of the month long fasting of Muslims (cheriya perunnal or eid). This was 32 years back. In the present context, I even writing about the holy month of Ramadan will invite criticism and harsh comments. Ramadan observance and fasting in Hindu religion have so much in common and I cannot ignore these facts.

It is believed that the observance of Ramadan began in the 7th century and it commemorates the month when the Prophet Mohammed retreated to a cave north of Mecca for spiritual contemplation.

Ramadan is also the month in which the Quran was divinely inspired to Prophet Muhammad in 610 AD. He called his people away from the chaos and commerce of the city of Mecca to remember God in their trading and travels. That inspired text is the Quran. The Quran repeatedly calls its readers to reflect on creation and renew our commitment to doing goodness to humans and God.

Fasting in Hinduism began much earlier, and the exact origin is lost in time immemorial.
Fasting in Hinduism is part of spiritual contemplation and is also directly associated with physical wellbeing through the cleansing of the body. Fasting is part of Yoga. Fasting and abstaining food is part of many Vedic rituals.

Today, two of the most important fasting in Hinduism is the Ekadashi and Pradosh. Ekadashi is observed on the 11th day of a lunar fortnight and occurs twice a month and Pradosh is occurred on the 13th day of lunar fortnight and occurs twice a month. Apart from this there are numerous other fasting as Hinduism is largely individual based, people observe fast on any day of a month like Monday fasting or on the fourth day of lunar fortnight etc.

Hindu Fasting And Ramadan Similarities Or Common Goals

  • Spiritual Introspection  And Spiritual Contemplation
  • Charity
  • Sin redemption
  • Keeping the materialistic world shut for a certain period and engaging only in thoughts of god.
  • Getting closer to religion.
  • Moon plays an important role in fasting of both communities.
  • Abstinence from sex and other lavishness.
  • Avoiding all kinds of intoxicants.

Hindu Fasting And Ramadan Differences

  • There is no continuous month long fasting in Hinduism. Hindus do have 41-day fasting, four month fasting of Char Maas, fortnight fasting and four day fasting. But majority of them concentrate of pujas, rituals and eating only vegetarian food.
  • Fasting and religion in Hinduism is never associated with conquest and war.
  • As per Muslims many key battles were won in the month of Ramadan including 630 AD conquest of Mecca under the leadership of Prophet Mohammed.
  • In Hinduism fasting usually ends with temple visit or visit to a sacred place or performing an important puja or charity.

Current Situation – Harsh Realities Of Hindu Muslim Relationship

Islamist fanaticism and Jihadists have completely changed how Hindus look at Muslims and their festivals. Extremists inspire other extremists. Common people have started taking sides. There is distrust and intolerance on both sides. The mistrust is growing day by day.

The only way to change this is to keep religion out of politics and public life. Things will improve only when people learn to keep religion private. Belief should not be advertised. Religion should never be the reason for bloated ego. Religion should not be used to show physical strength and unity. Violence will always be met with violence and the scars will always remain.

Respecting another person’s belief and ideology is essential for a peaceful and prosperous society.

Politicians, liberals, newsreaders, columnists and all other noise makers on various platforms will not solve the situation. It is for Hindus and Muslims to initiate change. Weed out all those elements that are sowing the seeds of distrust. The worst elements are the liberals those who take sides of a particular community to attack the beliefs and leaders of another community. Liberals want anarchy to thrive and they will always create and only see anarchy in any society.

Hindus and Muslims need to learn about each other's religion. They should respect each other’s beliefs and rituals. Learn to forgive and forget. Apply the teachings of both religion in daily life to make the world happier and peaceful.  

Let there be a time when all Hindus will walk to Muslim neighbors without hesitation and unwillingness to wish Eid al-Fitr. Similarly, all Muslims will wish Happy Diwali without any doubt and reluctance.