by Damon, Pennsylvania, USA, Thursday, July 25, 2013, 19:16 (1486 days ago) @ amirabbas

Dear Brother Amir Abbas, Thank You for your thought provoking post. I would like to address your points one by one.

First of all, the majority of the so-called Muslims (with a minority of them that actually abstain from drinking and eating), are not aware of the Qur'an! So we cannot expect them to adopt themselves to a Qur'anic frame by practicing abstinence in this period of time! For them, not eating and drinking is a mere worship that, according to hadiths, will bring them rewards and erase their sins!

I think this point is misguided because the majority of so-called Muslims "CLAIM" that they get their fasting ritual from The Quran. Specifically ayaat 2/183 through 2/187. They claim that they get their understanding of Siyaam from The Quran which does, in fact, mention something called As-Siyaam. BUT, according to The Quran Surah 2, ayat 183 the observation of Saum makes a person become a MUTTAQEE! But we look at the so-called Muslim world who have been engaging in this ritual for hundred of years and see that they are far, far , far from being Muttaqeen. It has not made them Muttaqeen even though they've had hundreds of years to prove that their ritual makes them Muttaqee. If it hasn't been working for the past 2,000 years then I must acknowledge that it NEVER will. So either The Quran was wrong and lied when it said that As-Siyaam will make one a Muttaqee or the so-called Muslims are misinterpreting and misunderstanding those ayaat which talk about Saum. So which one is it Brother? Is The Quran false or is the N2I understanding and interpretation false? Please tell me.

Please consider that, a Qur'anic order is for those who already study the Qur'an and try to understand it and respect every other order in it! Not for those who blindly follow Mullahs, their desires, their Imams, forefathers, and etc. etc.!=

The response I had given above applies to this statement as well. Regardless if they actually follow and obey The Quran or not, the fact remains that they get THEIR IDEA OF SAUM from ayaat 2/183-2/187 of THE QURAN. If they at least made the claim or admitted that they are getting their idea of Saum from somewhere else, then I would not have an argument to make and we probably would not be having this discussion.

Secondly, i believe the direct command for NOT eating and drinking would be out of place since it will actually turn the program into a mere ritual of not drinking and eating ONLY!

First of all, not eating and drinking IS a mere RITUAL. Specifically a RELIGIOUS ritual. Secondly, I have to say it again. There many, many, MANY ayaat in The Quran in which a direct command is given to either do something or not do something. This is how The Quran expresses it's laws and ordinances; by commanding us to do certain things and commanding us to not do certain things. If The Quran wanted to command The Momineen to not eat and drink then the command would have been given for that just like the countless other commands we have in The Quran.

The purpose of this program is to become righteous and powerful[لعلكم تتقون], and to develop a stronger character when one has already attained a good knowledge of the Qur'an.

I agree. The purpose of SAUM is to guide a person towards becoming a Muttaqee; i.e. more mindful of The Laws and Ordinances of The Quran. So far we agree.

For instance, i am aware of a certain weakness in my character, so, this abstinence program is a good opportunity for me to focus on that weakness and try to absolve it.

This is where I have to disagree for two very important reasons;

1). If you are aware of a character flaw that you have, HOW can not eating and drinking correct that character flaw? This is not a rhetorical question. I am asking that you please answer it and explain how so. So if your character flaw is that you habitually throw rocks at pigeons and geese and killing them. HOW would not eating and drinking correct that unrighteous practice/habit of yours? How? You do not need to stop eating and drinking to correct that behavior, you need to STOP throwing rocks at those harmless and beautiful animals that are doing you no wrong. Plain and Simple.

What you can do to help you break that habit is you can perform Saum and 'itekaf by secluding yourself for a little while so you can EDUCATE YOURSELF on the damage you are doing to the eco-system by killing pigeons and geese. You can also learn the many values these creatures have such as pigeons eating the food that we dispose of as litter. They also eat seeds, one of their favorites is weed seeds and weeds are something all of us who have gardens detest. Even to this day pigeons can still be used as messenger birds to deliver letters and medicines in those places that lack travel technologies such as trains, trucks or boats.

Geese are truly beautiful and amazing creatures. Next fall when you see geese heading south for the winter... flying along in V might consider what science has discovered as to why they fly that way: As each bird flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in V formation the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range, than if each bird flew on its own. BEAUTIFUL!!!!

when a goose gets sick or is wounded by gunshots, and falls out of formation, two other geese fall out with that goose and follow it down to lend help and protection. They stay with the fallen goose until it is able to fly or until it dies, and only then do they launch out on their own, or with another formation to catch up with their group.
If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by each other like that.

Once you have properly educated yourself through the training program of Saum, not only should you cease in harming these creatures, but you must educate others about these creatures and implore them to not harm them ass well. By doing this, what you are doing now is establishing JUSTICE. You are now acting in a just manner yourself and you are standing up for justice in defense of the defenseless just as The Quran tells us to do. This is what Saum is. Going through an INTENSIVE study session of The Quran with the goal of UNDERSTANDING it's Laws and then attempting to IMPLEMENT those very laws in your society. When we have hundreds or thousands or tens of thousands of people engaging in this program which is the true and correct Quranic program of Saum, it is THEN that we can start to see Millati Ibraheem develop. A "SYSTEM" of Justice will emerge to replace the present system of injustice.

2) Okay, the second reason I disagree with your point above is because if you know you have a character flaw, you should seek to correct yourself as soon as you realize and acknowledge the character flaw. Why wait until a certain time of year to work on your character and correct your behavior? How does that even make sense? The present N2I Ramadaan is scheduled to end in two weeks. So, by your understanding, if you discover this coming September that you have a character flaw in which you like to cheat and steal from others, are you going to wait until next year for the N2I ritual to roll back around before you correct yourself? So if that's the case, human beings will continue to be victimized by you until August of 2014. Is this how you understand The Quran Brother? Is this what The Quran tells us to do?

But, in order for me to become serious about it, i first have to abstain from drinking and eating.

Brother if you are REALLY SERIOUS about it, you CORRECT it. Plain and Simple. If I mistreat my wife and have relations with other women behind her back and I wish to amend that behavior, what does not eating and drinking have to do with that? How does not eating and drinking even fit within this scenario? NO!!! If I am REALLY serious about not mistreating my wife, then I STOP MISTREATING MY WIFE! I, you or anyone else do not need to refrain from eating and drinking in order to cease mistreatment of our spouses. Stop mistreating your spouse and that is all there is to it.

We may conclude that not eating and drinking, abstinence from sex or other worldly desires, is a pre-requisite for embarking on a higher purpose/mission which is building a stronger character according to the Qur'an.

Brother, I have not reached THAT conclusion at all. In fact, I am still asking you HOW this builds up character but at the same time the N2I world has the WORST character of all people on this planet? If you want to embark on a higher purpose (whatever it may be), then go ahead and embark on that higher purpose.

In ancient times, too, some people rejected their comforts in order to attain higher goals. My point is that, we always need the physical training for character building. A man good in theory, cannot be a good performer unless one begins to really challenge himself in order to see their true merit!

Brother what you are doing now is clutching at straws. So far, you have not been able to go into The Quran to defend and justify the N2I ritual of fasting. But you still wish to justify your reason for practicing this ritual by going to ideas and religions that have nothing to do with The Quran. What people have done in ancient times is NOT the criteria we should go by. If we are upholders of The Quran then The Quran must be our criteria. As far as your physical training aspect, what do you think of Aaron Hernandez? Just google his name and you'll see what I am talking about. A TRULY FIT, well conditioned physical specimen. As an athlete, his regimen also dictates that he makes "EDIBLE SACRIFICES" and his physical stature shows the results of those sacrifices and limitations of his eating habits. But look up his history from when he was still playing for The Florida Gators and look at the situation he is in now. Look up what his ex-team mates are saying about him and you tell me what positive impacts his physical training has had on his character.

In my opinion, it's not fair to reject the physical training here only because some N2I folks are ignorant and not aware of the Qur'an. They will always be that way unless they change themselves and study the Qur'an!

Brother, I am not rejecting the N2I ritual of fasting because of ignorant N2I people. I reject it because it is not in The Quran. If the entire worlds population engaged in this ritual I would still reject it as long as I ascertain that it is not in The Quran.

I wish you can offer a better practice for this period! I gave up reading Namaz because i found a better argument and could accept it with heart. But regarding what you are suggesting, i am in doubt; and perhaps i need to study more and wait more!

My duty is not to make you accept the information I am offering you. My only duty is to share the results of my own research and studying. What you do with the information I am sharing is out of my control. You are free to accept or reject. My best advice is to NOT rely on the arguments of me, Dr. Shabbir or anyone else. Do some serious research into this issue and ask yourself some very serious and difficult questions and most importantly....BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF!!

I sincerely hope you can get around to answering all of the questions I have asked you. Please answer and address them one by one if you would be so kind.


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