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Saturday, July 21, 2012


Let me understand the act of Mahesh Bhatt. He is not a religious man, but he wants to fast during Ramadan to commemorate his mother, and his daughter joins him. I guess, next he will go to a Ganesh Temple with his daughter to please his father. Interesting! I like it. 

Jiten Roy

--- On Sat, 7/21/12, Farida Majid <> wrote:

From: Farida Majid <>
Date: Saturday, July 21, 2012, 4:47 PM

               The last line:
Isn't this at the end of it all what culture is all about?

Date: Sat, 21 Jul 2012 20:47:04 +0100

 Mahesh Bhatt's article about Ramzan

Collective force By MAHESH BHATT
The Famous Film maker and Human Rights activist MAHESH BHATT
observes daily fast (roza) during Ramdan ? Why?
On the 14th day of Ramdan, as I drove back home to break my
daily fast (Roza), a beep on my cell phone alerted me to an incoming
message. This is what the message said: Hello, Mr. Bhatt, I understand
through your utterances and writings that you are not a religious man and you
do not believe in the efficacy of prayer. But I have now learned that
you maintain Roza in the month of Ramdan. Your actions, Mr. Bhatt,
bewilder the Hindus and shock the Muslims as well. May I ask why you keep
Roza? This question from a stranger made me smile but since the query
was an innocent one I instinctively punched in my response, which was,
Islam is a part of my heritage. I was born to a Brahmin Hindu father
and a Shia Dawoodi Bohra Muslim mother. When I was a child my mother
would ensure that I fasted for at least one day in the month of
Ramadan. I remember her telling me that during the month of Ramadan the
Muslims say that the gates of heaven are open. This is the month when
Muhammad received his first revelation. After my mother died six years
ago I realized that the only way to keep her alive within me was to
fast for every single day in the month of Ramadan.?

That evening when the distant Azaan was heard and the clock
announced that the day's fast had come to an end, my parched body welcomed
the first sip of water that I had taken in 14 hours like a desert 
would welcome rain. As I bit into an overripe date I discovered that
at this particular moment I was a part of this collective release which
bound me together with millions of people in my country and all over the
world with such unnatural force that I experienced a sense of
exhilaration like I had never experienced before. And it was then that for
the first time I realized what the spirit of Ramadan is really all about.
When so many people together wholeheartedly share a common purpose, they
are united in a way that one has to experience to truly comprehend.
And the exhilaration comes from the fact that it's not about the
individual alone but about all of us, together, doing something so
completely. And it is perhaps this feeling of brotherhood that makes fasting
in Ramadan such a unique and joyous experience.

In this buy, consume and junk age where one's consciousness is
being bombarded by all kinds of pleasure peddlers who market their
mouth-watering food and drink on the hour by the hour, it is
such a relief to shut the door to them and their wares and protect your
body from an overdoes of pleasure. In the month of Ramadan one takes 
a break from the hedonistic way of life. One gets off the treadmill of constant
pleasure seeking and lives a life of austerity and simplicity. This rejuvenates the
physical organism and fills one with unusual vigour. As days turn into
weeks you being to realize that the human organism spends too much energy
in trying to process excess food intake. The maxim that man is
killed by too much food begins to make sense.
In the first few days of Ramadan, when the pangs of hunger gnaw
at your insides leaving you to constantly stare at the clock, you
suddenly feel as if there is an invisible umbilical cord connecting you to the
sea of otherwise faceless people all over the world that often go for
days without a square meal. Your apathy and indifference slowly begin
to fade away and your heart begins to wake up to the all-pervasive
suffering of your fellow human beings

Another thing that makes this Ramadan even more special for me
is that my 13 year old daughter Alia has for some strange and unknown
reason spontaneously decided to fast along with me. Like you fast for
your mother, I fast for you, she said simply after I asked her what
prompted this unexpected decision. No wonder a wise man once said, "What
you teach you children, you also teach your grand-children." I
wonder whether years ago while my mother was shaking me awake in the
hush of the morning light and whispering, "Beta, time for Sehri", she
knew she was also awakening her future grand-children. Isn't this at the
end of it all what culture is all about?


Mukto Mona plans for a Grand Darwin Day Celebration: 
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"I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it".
               -Beatrice Hall [pseudonym: S.G. Tallentyre], 190

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