Qumi's picture

Average: 3.7 (3 votes)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) made it very clear that if a person abstains from food and drink, yet does not abstain from evil deeds, his fasting will not be fruitful at all.

"He who does not abstain from falsehood in words or deeds, Allah has no need for him to abstain from his food and drink." (Al-Bukhari)

Therefore, the main purpose of fasting is to refine the souls of believers, make them feel the sufferings of the poor, and the needy, and on top of that, give them control over their desires. There are many people in the world today who pass away because of starvation; yet many others, in other parts of the world, get rid of their extra food by throwing it in the oceans. The experience of fasting teaches Muslims how to feel the need of those who are suffering from starvation. It teaches them how to appreciate the gifts of Allah and His overwhelming blessings. It also teaches them how to control their desire for food and drink and realize the main purpose of their existence.

Every sane, adult, able Muslim is required to observe the obligatory fasting during the blessed month of Ramadan. Fasting Muslims, who have emptied their stomachs from the desire of food and refined their manners, are definitely more qualified to fulfill this task of making the world a better place than anybody else. Fasting gives such a power to change the world to a better place.



To some extent fast is good for physical health, mind and spirit.

NIDHI PARKASH | Fri, 09/18/2009 - 16:15
sisi's picture

Fasting as a reflection and not as a counterbalance to deeds

The words of the prophet are extremely wise in the sense that they try to prevent people from hiding behind the fasting and in return continue doing bad deeds. He declares that the fasting is not meant to be a counterbalance to the deeds but a reflection of the deeds.

And therefore I do not think that it is meant for the fasting to be "to refine the souls of believers, make them feel the sufferings of the poor".

Fasting is usually meant to bring up to the surface our many desires represented in the root survival desire for food. In this way, one is witnessing first hand that not satisfying the burning desire is possible and can inflict no suffering. He can stand in front of the desire instead of identifying with it due to fear of suffering.

In Judaism for example it is indeed meant for atoning our bad thoughts and deeds, but only those between the individual and God (not those between the individual and other individuals).

sisi | Fri, 09/18/2009 - 16:33
Qumi's picture


thanks a lot for your inspiring reply

There is one brother-hood, the human brother-hood
which unites the children of earth indiscriminately in
the brother-hood of God

Qumi | Fri, 09/25/2009 - 08:45