Wednesday 6 May 2020

Ramadan 2020/1441: Ramadan Gratitude Journal Day 13

What season are you grateful for? What is good about the others?
One of the many things I love about Islam is the way it flows and fits with the natural world. The times of our prayers run according to the time of day and so change according to the time of day (long summer days or short winter ones).  Our calendar is lunar and so many of our most important religious dates are according to the moon sighting.  The lunar calendar also means that the Islamic year is slightly shorter than the Gregorian (western) one, so the important dates like Hajj, Ramadan and Eid move about 10 years each day. This means that we get to experience our important days in different seasons over the years.

A winter hajj is easier because the days in Makkah are cooler, winter fasting is easier because of the cooler, shorter days. Prayers in summer are easier because there are long hours between them, so you can do things in between.  I like that we become attuned to the seasons, lengthening and shortening of days and the waxing and waning of the moon.  Our family life and routines are based around prayer times – so sleeping after the night prayer,or eating before or after the evening prayer depending on what time it falls.

With this, my favourite season is the one we are in now – leaving spring behind and moving into the longer, warmer days of summer, but before it gets too hot. The world is blooming alhamdulillah, with every corner become green and flowering. I love the new life pushing through. I love the warmth of the sun on my face. I like not feeling cold all the time or having to wear a coat. I like looking forward to day trips in the good weather.

What is good about the other seasons?
I like the long days in summer, I feel like I get more done and the bright days keep me cheerful. The summer holidays mean no uniforms, no homework, no school run. My garden is full of flowers and the kids love their water fights (when they get to trample my plants and flowers).

I have always loved the dramatic colours of autumn and the relief from the hottest days of summer as the weather cools down.  A chance to get my cuddly cardigans out again.

I like the bedding in of winter, closing the garden down, warm, filling meals, long evenings in and cuddling under blankets. Long nights with plenty of time to sleep, late dawn prayers and if we get lucky the magic of snow.

What season are you grateful for?

You can find the original Ramadan Gratitude journal challenge here and my take on it here.

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