Fasting for Ramadan

10 10 2007

Nectar A couple of weeks ago I was asked to partake in a sponsored fast on 10th October. The idea being to better understand the Muslim faith.

During Ramadan one is not allowed to eat or drink between sun-up and sun-down. That translates to 5.30am to 6.30pm.

At 5pm the few at the college who are doing this will drive down to Radio Ramadan, Bristol to join a group of Muslims who run the station break their fast.

I couldn’t resist writing a blog…

<< Written @ 8am >>

I woke at 5.30 to organise breakfast, of course it took half an hour to get out of bed so i rushed to get my large meal organised by the 6.30 cut off time. Bacon, eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms..mmmmmmmmm. I finished it off on time and went back to bed for an hour! Still woke feeling groggy 😦

At this point I must admit to forgetting the nil-by-mouth rule by groggily brushing my teeth at 8am. I am sure all willl be ok 🙂

<< Written @ 12.30pm >>

It’s now 12.30 and I neeed to stop thinking about the hugh nosh-up at Radio Ramadan this evening – the more I think about those steaming bowls of rice and veggie’s and…and….drooooooll!! How Muslisms do this in hot countries for a whole month I don’t know. I was thirsty about half an hour after leaving for walk….no water all day..aggghh!

Well, if millions of people can do this for weeks on end, I am sure I can!!

6 hours to go!

<<@1pm>>

Ok, so now my concentration is going, I feel a bit spacey as my blood sugar level drops below critical! If this was a nuclear reactor men in silver suits would be running around waving their hands in the air. But it’s not and I must peresvere. It’s a shame I haven’t vast stores of fat on me to cushion the blow. Ahh, the perils of being thin.

5 1/2 hours to go.

<<@2.30>>

I am flagging. I feel spacey, a touch high. Complete lack of concentration and I don’t care about anything. Tired because I woke early and from a lack of food. But its strange I don’t feel that hungry. 4 hours to go!

<<@4pm>>

I just want to eat, give me sugar. My legs are weak and my hands are shaking slightly. I am SO tired!

2 1/2 hours to go.

<<@6pm>>

I have arrived at Radio Ramadan, Bristol and it appears we are expected to be on the air to talk about ourselves. If anyone would like to tune to 87.7fm and are in the Bristol area they will hear me and a couple of tutors talking about our experiences of the day. Can’t write anymore, i’m going into the studio!

<< @7pm >>

Well my brush with local fame is over. It was interesting having the headphones over my ears and hearing myself talk. I sound studly! Apparently, according to their website there are 30,000 Muslims in bristol….i wonder who was listening to my dribble. It went something like this. …

Presenter: ” So Andy, you have told us that you work with students with learning difficulties. What do you think are the benefits of having a multi-faith community at the college”

Me: “erm…right..well….i think it’s great that there are people of all faiths at the college, it’s helpful to learn about people with different faiths to your own”

I started to loose it a little here…no idea what to say next and was completely unprepeared for this question so my brain was saying… ‘you are repeating yourself Andy, wrap this up, now’ so I said the killer line…

Me: “….and after all, we are all the same right, just with different beliefs. ”

OOOH baby, a rubbish beginning with a cracking end…..ahhh. the fonze is back!

<< @8pm >>

We started eating at 6.30 and boy was I looking forward to that! Rice, meat, potatoes and bahji’s after my low blood sugar level induced babbling over the airwaves..LUSH!! I even got a doggy bag to take home. Thanks to all those at Radio Ramadan 87.7 Bristol.

So that was the text about how much I missed the food….but seriously…

I learned that Ramadan exsists amongst other things ‘ help learn self restraint ‘ (wikipedia), because Muslims are commanded to (person at Radio Station) and because it helps us to understand starving and water deprived people all around the world (another person at the station). So essentially, it is part of their belief system and they do it for a number of reasons. All of which, strangley for a non-relgious person, an infidel, makes sense.

I appreciated the experience, I can see the reasons and I would do it again next year, but perhaps no more than that.

<>The next day>>

I feel really good! I could concentrate and was more focused than normal. Coincidence?


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