When Ramadan Is Over ….

Last night I addressed the Islamic Society of the Washington Area on “Improving the World” at their Lailat-ul-Qadr observance. My thesis was that Ramadan is a time in which Muslims exercise their free will to make it stronger. Just as an athlete exercises his muscles to make them stronger so he can prevail in actual competition. By denying ourselves food, water and sexual intercourse, we resist the three most powerful animal passions in order to be able to resist any temptations in the serious game of life.

Islam is, by definition, “submission to the will of God.” The irony is that a weak-willed person cannot submit to the will of God. It takes a strong will to fulfill our responsibilities as the “khalifah.” People think of a “khalifah” as the leader of the Muslim ummah, but that is not how the word is used in the Qur’an. The Qur’an identifies every man and woman as “God’s vicegerent on earth.”

So when Ramadan is over, how do we fulfill these responsibilities with our renewed strength of will? Serving God is not easy because He needs nothing from us. We serve God by serving man, and that means “improving the world.” Individual Muslims can do this by being active in their communities, their PTAs, civic associations and homeowners associations, writing letters to the editor, involvement in politics, and being good neighbors. At the Minaret of Freedom Institute it means doing research and educational work that will promote understanding between religious communities and advance the cause of liberty and free markets. In these tasks we welcome the help of all who share our vision, or any part of it.

Ramadan being a time when many Muslims, having denied themselves, seek to engage in charitable work, we remind our readers that promoting our work is an act of charity. To donate click here.

Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad, Ph.D.
Minaret of Freedom Institute
www.minaret.org

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