“Be like the star which never wavers from the crescent, but is fixed in steady faith.”
“Islam is a word which denotes not a particular religion but a state of mind, the state of total surrender to the Will of God. Islam means Dedication, Surrender, Peace and Tranquillity. Islam denotes the social community whose members have achieved supreme peace through surrender to the All-Merciful, All-Powerful God and who have vowed to live in peace with their fellowmen. Islam taught something higher, it directed attention to the One in the Many, the Unity in Diversity and led people to the Reality named God.”
Ramadan or Ramazan is the month when the Holy Qur’an was revealed to Prophet Muhammad in the form of the Voice of the Angel Gabriel, saying, “Cry out the Sacred Name of Thy Lord.” It was the Divine Communications reaching him through waves of Divine Vibrations. Since the Qur’an originated from God, it cannot be changed or modified, to suit ‘changed’ conditions. They are all eternal verities. It contains expositions of the five vital principles of human life: Mercy, Truth, Sacrifice, Love and Tolerance. These principles, really basic to the good life are emphasised in all religious texts of humanity. If one assimilates the truths declared in the Qur’an, they can live in full concord with all others. No religion praises violence or falsehood.
Fasting/Upavas (Upa–‘near’, Vas-`living’) means ‘Living near God’. It was laid down during the Ramadan, in order to make people experience the benefits of sense control and in order to cleanse the spirit and the passions of man, so that he may be rendered fit to approach God. This fast is intended to enable Muslims to set aside all sensory desires and to spend an entire month in the Holy Presence of God. As man gets the cool heartening breeze when he approaches the air conditioner, or fan, so too when man approaches God, his sorrows will vanish and he will have his good aspects flourish by His Grace. Cultivate during this Month of God all the Godly qualities, charity, unity, love, service, detachment, tolerance. And, see that you practise them, not only at home, but, spread the joy outside your household also.
Fasting entails not merely abstaining from food and drink from sun rise to sun set, but, the mastery of the more difficult discipline of giving up violence, falsehood, anger, envy, and the maligning of others. One may have to face ridicule and persecution, obstructions and troubles when he decides to lead the good, holy life. Prophet Muhammad was persecuted thus and he had to leave Mecca for Medina, similarly other great persons have suffered voluntarily, for the sake of their beneficent beliefs. In spite of hurdles and handicaps, Prophet Muhammad did not give up his conviction; He declared that there was only One God and that His Name was Allah. He commanded his disciples to serve mankind, and treat all others as fellow beings, children of the same God. Study the Gift of God to man, namely the Quran and holds its teachings as valid for all time, because they are universal and basic.
“Since Islam means surrender to God, all who in a spirit of surrender and dedication, live in peace and harmony in society, do really speaking, and belong to Islam.”
It is the feeling of Total Surrender, and Not the belongingness to a particular religion, that is important. Examine how Quran explicates this, “Those, who have faith in God and the day of final reckoning and perform good deeds, receive return from their saviour, no matter whether they are believers, Jews, Christians or Sabeans. They never have sorrow or fear.”
The Unity of God is most fundamental and the heart of God’s revelations to Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon Him) in the Qur’an. This is expressed in the primary Kalimah of Islam as “God Alone is” (La Ilaha Illa Allah).