25 Mar

Text and image by Rick McVicar 

     Muslims are currently observing Ramadan, a month of fasting commemorating the revealing of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad.  

     “Ramadan” literally translates as “scorching heat.” The fasting period ends on April 9 this year, according to several news organizations, such as the BBC and PBS. 

     The name, Ramadan, has so many ramifications for our current crisis of climate change. Perhaps fasting could be a means for reflecting on the problem. I do not practice fasting myself, although I do refrain from eating meat to reduce my carbon footprint. 

     I am also not a Muslim, as I am a practicing Christian instead. I rely on the Internet to research what “scorching heat” might mean to a Muslim. I have found an interesting article at aboutislam.net by Deana Nassar, “7 Will Enjoy Allah’s Throne Shade: Are You One of Them?”             After one dies, a person must bear the brunt of the sun’s most intense heat on the Day of Judgment.  

     “This day is 50,000 years long and we will be only miles from the sun,” Nassar writes.

     Afterwards, the Muslim believer will be rewarded with the wonders of Paradise. Nassar quotes the Quran in describing Paradise, “Beneath them, rivers will flow in the Gardens of Pleasure.” 😍           

     Here, references to nature are certainly evident. Paradise will be filled with rivers flowing with water to provide nourishment for gardens, which must be beautiful as they are sources of pleasure.             

     Nassar’s article goes on to describe seven types of Islamic piety that will bring the relief of Allah’s (God’s) shade during the Day of Judgment, shielding the true believer from the sun’s intense heat.             

     As you reflect on “Ramadan,” or scorching heat, may you find artful health today.           

A man struggles in a red heat wave.

                 "Scorching Heat" Click on image to go to trance music video on YouTube.

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