Sunday, November 13, 2011

Purpose and Benefits of Fasting

An old but good reminder...

The purpose of fasting is to rein in one’s desires and wean oneself from habits and control one's physical desires, so that one will be ready to start seeking that which will ultimately bring happiness, and purify the soul to live in Paradise forever. Hunger and thirst can reduce these desires and their overwhelming effects, and remind a person of the situation of the starving poor. 
Fasting also reduces the influence of the Shaytaan, just as his food and drink are reduced. It restrains the faculties from following a person’s inclinations in a way that could harm him in this world and in the Hereafter.
So every faculty and every desire is restrained. Fasting is the rein of the pious, the shield of the fighter, the paradise of the righteous…
Fasting has a wonderful effect of protecting physical faculties and mental and spiritual energies, and protecting them from going to extremes in following inclinations that could adversely affect the health. Fasting protects the physical and spiritual well being and restores that which was damaged as a result of following whims and desires. So it is one of the best aids to attaining taqwa (piety).

From the words of Ibn al-Qayyim:
Fasting brings a great reward which, if the fasting person could imagine it, his heart would soar with joy, and he would wish that the whole year was Ramadaan. This was the understanding of the earliest generations of this ummah.
Fasting brings many health benefits and achieves the interests of both communities and individuals. And Allah is All-Knowing, Most Generous. 
The texts indicate that whoever does the duties and obligations of Islam, and avoids the things that are forbidden, will be one of the people of Paradise. Talhah ibn ‘Ubayd said:

A man came to the Messenger of Allah (sws) and asked him about Islam. The Messenger of Allah (salAllahu 'alayhi wa salam) said: “(You have to do) five prayers every day and night.” He said: “Do I have to do any others?’ He said: “No, not unless you do them voluntarily.” 
The Messenger of Allah (salAllahu 'alayhi wa salam) said: “And fast the month of Ramadaan.” 
He said: “Do I have to do any more?” He said: “No, not unless you do it voluntarily.”
And the Messenger of Allah (salAllahu 'alayhi wa salam) told him about zakaah and he said: “Do I have to do anything else?’ He said: “No, not unless you do it voluntarily.”
The man left, saying, “By Allah, I will not do any more or any less than that.”
The Messenger of Allah (salAllahu 'alayhi wa salam) said: “He will prosper if he meant what he said.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 6956; Muslim, 11.)

May Allah accept our prayer, our zakaah, and our fast and may it be the reason to enter Jannah, ameen.



Black Pearl said...

Assalamu Alaykum waRahmatullahi waBarakatuh,
Great Reminder. Fasting is like a shield. It's especially good to fast them to avoid such whims and desires.....

Jazakallah khair. =)

Safyiah said...

@ Black Pearl

wa aleikom al salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu

wa eyiaki sis =)

Post a Comment