TheJakartaPost

Please Update your browser

Your browser is out of date, and may not be compatible with our website. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.
Just click on the icons to get to the download page.

Jakarta Post

Fasting and the ethics of reciprocity to ‘the other’

  • Azis Anwar Fachrudin

Yogyakarta   /   Mon, June 6 2016   /  07:08 am

The time has come for Muslim preachers to prepare what they will deliver in the daily sermons during the coming Islamic fasting month of Ramadhan.

Ramadhan is probably the only time in which Islamic sermons will talk more about ethics, morality, patience and anything related to controlling emotions — as these are among the key meanings of fasting — rather than issues pertaining to Islamic identity and politics. The Arabic word for fasting, siyam or sawm, literally means “to refrain/abstain from something”.

The ritual obligation of fasting is to abstain from the physical needs and desires: eating, drinking and having sex during daylight hours.

Yet to perfect one’s fasting and upgrade his/her spiritual level, s/he should refrain from negative emotions (anger, envy, arrogance, hatred, etc.) and materialistic ambitions to achieve, as the Koran explicitly says,...