A Very Private Ramadan

Life trudges along parallel threads for most men. They have either made up their own minds or someone has done it on their behalf. At one point, they’ve decided to head north or south, east or west. Then they marched on. Subsequently, there are those who had gone astray and followed diverging paths leading nowhere in particular. With the passage of time, they were left with a bitter existential aftertaste and perhaps no more. Could it be that the uncommitted and ambivalent deserve an ambiguous present, and on a more proufound inference, an uncertain future? What am I in the grand scheme of life? Who is to answer this question without drawing bitter tears to my eyes or instigating a fit of hysterical laughter, one that will echo endlessly within the dark maze of my nocturnal essence.

The choices we inexplicably make mature into experiences and later age into memories. As long as I am willing to tackle another challenge, to climb yet one more step, I chance on crossroads and follow my instinct or perhaps trail after an educated guess. Once I abandon my quest, however, like a rivulet of water, the hypnotic downhill path is inevitable. All of them roads, the well-traveled and the obscure, the scenic and the dull, the glorious and the shameful ultimately lead to death. Is that why we humans tend to think so much about the next world since by all counts life is but a short journey? Will anyone ever answer the eternal question: did we make it all up or is it real?

There's more to the month of Ramadan than the fasting, the praying, the devout rituals and the inevitable gluttony and feasting. Of the prescribed rites I have only committed myself to fasting. I have never found it easy to fast. I normally drink a minimum of 3 liters of water per day. Whether thirsty or not, a cold bottle of water is my constant companion. I even have severe doubts concerning the bodily benefits of fasting, in particular as related to water deprivation. I wholly believe that, on the physiological level, thirst is a sign of eminent danger. My productivity at work is greatly reduced. I become easily irritated and my attention span is diminished to almost zero. For most of the day I resign to the terrible and annoying burden of waiting. After breaking fast, I feel even worse, my stomach being glutted with solid food and fluid. Yet I find solace in the long arduous hours of self-denial, comfort in the brief fleeting moments of reflection.

On the deepest of levels, I am like this year-round. I’m not a pious man and religion, organized institutionalized religion in particular, gets on my nerve. I don’t accept it in its literal manifestation but tolerate the general idea of goodwill to mankind. I loathe preaching in any form, I resent indoctrination, abhor the self-righteousness of devotees and fear the rising tide of religiosity. But I never find it within me not to fast in Ramadan. In a way, fasting is my only physical, truly private expression of faith. And despite being a restless soul, in the vast blackness of space within the recesses of my inner universe, one light among my Pleiades emanates from a star of supreme belief.

I see no reason to live if I’m not fully alive. There’s a burning fire inside, fueling on a geographical and chronological fidelity to a mystical place and time, feeding on unbending loyalty to friends and the good times, shining on the hunt for the unknown, glowing with the exhilaration of a ride on a twisty mountain road, blazing on passion for beautiful women and beaming with love and dedication to my family.

I also see no reason to live if my vanity is not subdued by my private notion of faith. I have rejected trekking along a railroad track that could only reach a predetermined destination. I have as well abandoned the delusion of sauntering in an open desert without a compass in hand. My chosen path is shunned at from believers and agnostics. It’s an inacceptable compromise to both, a shortcut leading to a cul-de-sac at best. Yet I persist and when the moment comes and I can’t walk no more, I will look behind from wherever I happen to be and lip-sing with Frank Sinatra: “I did it my way”.


bint battuta said…
Beautiful - and thought-provoking - post.
Dubai Jazz said…
Dear Abu Fares,
Even after reading your post twice, I don't know what to say exactly. One's belief is one's own business, and I don't intend to breach religion to anybody... However, there is a small detail that disturbs me a lot when it comes to such kind of logic, it is the notion that if somebody is adherent to Islamic teaching, then his life is going to move through a prefabricated mold. This was reflected in your line:

I have rejected trekking along a railroad track that could only reach a predetermined destination.

My argument is that the richness and the colorfulness of a person's life has nothing to do with his/her religion, that, in my humble opinion, is also applied to one's achievement in life.
An atheist can become a nuclear scientist if he has the faculty, a highly devoted Muslim can be a successful poet if he has the potential.. and so on..
The challenge which is facing Muslims nowadays is this: could a devoted Muslim live his life to the full and enjoy it, and at the same time keep his values intact?
The answer is yes, we can Abu Fares, we can... and if I fail to find the formula, then it is my own shortcoming not Islam's...

I am off my soapbox and apologies for the long comment...
KJ said…
Man do I have a lot to talk about

*rolls up sleeve*

First of all I agree with what you said as well as what JAZZ said.

But when it comes to religion people have to keep a lot of things in mind, not only because it is a sensitive topic, but because it is a highly debatable subject to begin with. My attempt here to give in my two cents on religion will certainly make a lot of completely-by-the-book believers frown, by simply stating the fact that I am one of those who "yattabee3ona ahwa2ahom wa yaqooloona ma la ya3lamoon". They would also say I am customizing religion to suit my own needs and not seeing it for what it is.

My question is, then, what IS religion? I have done (along with the other Kinan) an extensive research on religion and almost everyone interviewed and surveyed summed it up as a social way of life.

Now I think that is just a bit sad, to have religion only to regulate your social and moral life and nothing else. I mean, here are many Muslim-by-name people around me who dictate their lives according to their religion (well mostly, people like to drink alcohol eventually and date girls) but shun a lot of other things as 7aram, but they don't anything other than the face value and in the end don't take the spiritual benefit of the religion.

It also upsets me when I see the everything-is-7aram type of people, those who hold rule their lives with an iron fist, see everything is a sort of propaganda, anti-Islam and a Zionist attempt to rule over the world. Then to them I tell, "doesn't your religion tell you the battle with them won't end until they reach Makkah?" and they say yes, and to them I say "then why do you bother yourself by postponing the inevitable? It is as silly as taking anti-aging pills". And to that they read out to me texts of how we should kill like we are to be killed and such. These are the people who reject all other forms of knowledge, and while I admit the the holy book is an immense source of knowledge and wisdom (when and if deciphered correctly, and no one knows what correct is to begin with), you can't preach the hadith of going as far as China (metaphorically) to seek knowledge and then you sit here and shut all the propaganda out.

How I live my religion is that religion is a pact exclusively between me and God and no one else has the right to probe into it. You can't standardize something that depends highly on individualistic responses and feelings to the subject matter. I keep my own values, which are mostly guided by religion, and I have other built in values that happen to correspond to the values of my religion (like not drinking). I try to seek knowledge and not limit myself, as well as try to find the formula that JAZZ mentioned. It is a difficult process, but in the end when I manage it (and I know I will), I will be greatly pleased because I know I would have fulfilled, hopefully, my religious and spiritual duties as well as have seen most or all what I would have liked to see and experience in my non-confined life while maintaining my social standards and values.
Abufares said…
Bint Battuta
Thank you for your kind words. Your comment means a lot to me.
Abufares said…
Dubai Jazz
I always love to read your comments.
If this is the message my post ultimately portrayed then I failed to express myself.
My intention, if I had any, was to defend a way of life shared by the real majority of humans. However, for reasons I would like to tackle eventually, the majority within this majority feels guilty. Thus, they will confess: \\\"Someday I will repent\\\", or \\\"God willing I will find the way\\\", ...etc.
I believe that the pious and the atheist both have an easier ride than the average (in-between) person. Railroad tracks lead to either of two points depending on direction and the engineer\\\'s mission is to regulate speed with no concern at all to navigation.
The average (in-between) person has to be a very skilled navigator. If not, soon enough, he will have to jump on a train, going either way.
Does it really matter?
Who we are is a biological accident which we absolutely have no control over. Race, ethnicity and religion are unavoidable by virtue of birth.
Does that mean anything?
Where are the absolute answers? Which single religion can claim rights to absolute truth?
Abufares said…
Your comment carries more depth than my post.
I\'m simply stating that one can be truly faithful to GOD without adhering totally to the full, exact and literal prescriptions of any single one religion.
Besides, (and let\'s try to keep the focus of the argument within control by addressing only the three major monotheist religions) although they agree on many humanly benevolent points, behind closed doors, the priests, rabbis and sheiks have serious doubts about the validity of the other two parties\' arguments and even existence.
Where does that leave us as humans? Any attempt to answer who is right or who is wrong is a futile effort into the absurd.
Man, you have turned this into a serious discussion.
KJ said…
Abu Fares, I am pretty excited about this topic as is :D

What you said holds true, that one can be faithful to God without adhering to religion. To many this seems preposterous, but a closer inspection reveals that there is a deep difference between "faith" and "religion".

Faith is a difficult word to describe, mostly because it is an individualistic experience. Faith is ‘felt’ at different levels depending on the individualistic differences and psychological make-ups. It gives a direction and promises a future. A belief system means that it is a naturally-spawned phenomenon that grows from within us, providing us for explanations and interpretations to things we would otherwise not understand. This is exactly why faith is individualistic: It spawned from within us, therefore it is our manifestation. Understanding this concept is very problematic to many people because it is a natural phenomenon and we are unaware of its process.

When a person says that he or she has ‘faith’ in a particular person or object, it implies the fact that the person believes that the person/object being referred to possesses a certain virtue which should provide some sort of internal spiritual balance. This is what is meant by a belief system; the process by which this ‘feeling’ that is faith comes to life inside a person.

We can now understand that faith can come about from within us by two different forms: Psychological or emotional. They are two closely related aspects, but we should be very careful in differentiating between them. Psychological contributions to faith grow over time, while emotional contributions spark instant bursts of faith. They may be short-lived in some respects, but usually they become permanent as they are easier for humans to identify with than the psychological reasons. To have faith means ‘to believe’.

There is also the impossibility of finding an appropriate or specific definition, if any, for religion. Customs, traditions, ideologies, the way people think, act, etc. are all characterized by the respective religion being followed.

Religion is the control expressed by the human mind; religion subconsciously controls your actions and reasoning. Religion defines how people interpret their surroundings; how they view other people, their cultures, their behavior, how they interpret their own thoughts and how they set their ideologies.

Now to separate them and make them more understandable, look at atheism. Atheists surely believe in something, thus they do have faith; this faith might be in oneself, science…etc. They do not have a religion, unless you take a strict definition of the word - a way of life - then their religion is not to have a religion (with a God). But it is a fact that atheists do believe in something; whether it be stones or charms or themselves or people; they do have faith. Basically anyone who says he or she doesn’t have faith is lying.

In the monotheistic religions we can easily capture the main theme that constructs the very strong link to the frameworks previously mentioned. In other words, when reading the Torah, the Holy Bible or the Holy Qura’an, we can clearly notice that they all imply the same social message; that is, they all discuss and set off the laws and rules that should be obeyed in order to keep track with the right road that would lead humans into a better life. Such laws include forbidding humans from committing adultery, theft, lying…etc. This proves that religions have an effect on the lifestyles of those who believe, but this does not necessarily dictate a faith in God, but rather, a faith in order.

I hope I didn't make things more confusing.
Abufares said…
You took the words right out of my mouth ;-)
Maysaloon said…
You're not alone Abu Fares..I'm reading this as if I wrote it myself.

I was told recently that there is a hidden message to fasting. Like death, fasting is meant to make you feel for the other.Your fellow man. In both situations, the rich and the poor man are made to feel the same way whether with no food and water or six feet under.

Health implications of fasting? Perhaps there are and precisely for that it is to make us understand what a person with no food and water goes through, what they might do, just to avoid this health implication. It makes us feel the other and understand them. When a human is buried, the rites, the rituals, these are not for them and they couldn't care less. They are for "us", so we remember that we too, like them will be in a box or kafan one day. One day you are throwing that fistful of earth, the next it is thrown on you. It's a warning and a gentle reminder for all of us and there is much to contemplate. Great post, thank you.
Abu Fares,

Thank you for beautifully articulating what many of us -as is evident by the comments- think and have struggled with.
The Syrian Brit said…
You know something, Abu Fares.. I could have written that post myself.. except it would not have come out this eloquant.. but I recognise myself in every word..
God bless you..
saint said…
On Iftar, I asked my wife, if the message were born in South America instead of Mekah, could we now fasting on Papaya instead of dates. Just a thought.
I love your writing abu fares, it is refreshing and I prefer it on many high notch writers in the State I live in. I follow your post admittedly and I like the variety of subjects you present, and I wonder what are doing out there? :) . I have noticed you avoid talking politic but you talk social, and man you are absolutely right.

Abu fares, very smart post and may be timely. You have enclosed under one umbrella of humanity the feelings of (the religious, the atheist, the agnostic, the skeptic, the doubters, the evangelic atheist, secular ethic, the early part of the Sufism, and much more). I don’t know who once said, if there is no doubt thee is no faith (yakeen).

A lot of ideas thrown here, but I like what kj have added. The idea that we born with a religion, but we choice faith, which can be the same religion we born with or a deviation from it. And faith is as powerful as religion. In the USA you can choose your religion, but in the orient you still can’t. Then the factor of aging, we born liberal, and we die conservative.
abu feras and kj. The last thing must be added is that religion is the shield which common people wear to protect themselves from themselves and from other humans. Pronounce faith is specific to thinkers and particular individuals, and as kj added they are also a believer in their own way. And I would like to add religion rise as a substitute to chaos when human laws vanish, it could be a Godot case, but it is the ultimate revenge from fascism, we try to believe.

sorry too long comment!
Abufares said…

"Je2tou Lil Dounia Wahidan
Wa Wahidan Azhabou
3ajabon Sirrou Maji2i
Wa Zahabi A3jabou"

"I have come to this world alone
and alone I shall go
Eerie, the secret of my arrival
and my leaving more so"
Abufares said…
Hi Bu Kareem
Your posts often made me feel that I'm not alone. I'm just trying to return part of the favor.
We still need to meet one of these days :-)
Abufares said…
Syrian Brit
This is very flattering. After I read my own post I thought to myself I wonder if not most people feel like this but for some reason or another just keep it inside. I asked myself whether I should be wise and keep quiet or whether I should say what I really feel inside. It was an easy decision in the end.
I miss your posts my friend, come on hit us with a new thought provoking one.
Abufares said…
I'm a great fan of your comments (really).
You wrote: "I wonder what are doing out there? :)"
My answer is : my geographical and chronological fidelity to a mystical place and time.
I miss what you have over there, but I'm sure you too miss what I have over here... It's a "lose-lose proposition" sometimes in life, isn't it?
I tackle politics with a passion of one being forced to clean a public bathroom. Does the fact that I hate politicians count? I really don't give a shit about politics out of its effect (often negative) on the social issues. There's a post brewing in my head and in a way, it might be qualified as political. We'll wait and see.
Thank you Saint for dropping by, always do it, please.
Anonymous said…
what does agnostic mean and why are you always like "oh oh I'm so different from everyone"?

The annoying Syrian

p.s. I saw your post on the tartoussi wedding. Well, there is no end of the world. Life goes on and it doesn't need anyone to go on. Syria was more liberal in the 60-70s than now and we are seeing the change and we feel estranged. Well that is exactly how all the very conservative Syrians felt at the end of the 19th century. But that did not signal the end of the world. We just can't model a whole society to our personal taste.
Abufares said…
Hi Annoying Syrian
Nice of you to drop by.

A- For your reference, please find at the end of my reply the definition of the word AGNOSTIC as per http://dictionary.reference.com/

B- Why am I \"always like Oh Oh so different from everyone?\" I have no idea. But in any case, I really believe that there\'s still plenty more of me where I come from. I have also noted that most of the commentators agree with at least a few of my ideas. Have you ever considered the possibility that, after all, YOU might be different from everyone?

C- If the point behind your b.s. oops sorry, p.s. is that \"we just can\'t model a whole society to our personal taste.\" then I must agree with you. Nobody can, and hopefully not the forces trying to do so today.

Again, thank you for your refreshing comment.

1.a person who holds that the existence of the ultimate cause, as God, and the essential nature of things are unknown and unknowable, or that human knowledge is limited to experience.
2.a person who denies or doubts the possibility of ultimate knowledge in some area of study.
3.of or pertaining to agnostics or agnosticism.
4.asserting the uncertainty of all claims to knowledge.
[Origin: < Gk ágnōst(os), var. of ágnōtos not known, incapable of being known (a- a-6 + gnōtós known, adj. deriv. from base of gignskein to know) + -ic, after gnostic; said to have been coined by T.H. Huxley in 1869]
Anonymous said…
Sorry to take away from the gravitas of this thread. I tag you...5 reasons you wish you were 3!
Abufares said…
Ahlan Wa Sahlan Arima
Tikram 3aynek. I\'ll respond to your tag in my next post.
Anonymous said…
thank you for the definition..and if most the commentators agree with you and I often agree with you then you are not alone..you can be more confident in your analysis..anyway it is my job to annoy you

the annoying syrian
Anonymous said…
btw: I am different from most people becuase I like to annoy but I am like most people in that I am annoying. Will you please take me as your blog idiot. I come free of charge.
Abufares said…
Again, hello Annoying Syrian
Whether we're alike or different we can sure get along.
I would never consider you anything but a most welcomed guest.
Lujayn said…
In all honesty, Abu Fares, I see no value in starving oneself or being miserable in order to reflect inwards. I think the value of a fleeting moment of reflection doesn't equal the hours of irritability and edginess that are characteristic of most people who fast, and it certainly can be arrived at with far less effort in the course of one's normal day, even over a meal. I certainly don't believe fasting makes people better human beings. It just makes them hungrier versions of who they are the rest of the year.
Dubai Jazz said…
you forgot 'thirstier' Lujayn, because fasting also includes abstaining from drinks...
Lujayn said…
arent we sticklers for detail, Dubai Jazz? :) Tayeb, thirstier too.
Dubai Jazz said…
Okay, usually, I wouldn’t have responded to Lujayn, but such a sweeping comment need to be addressed….

First of all, one should differentiate between Muslims habit during Ramadan and what fasting meant to be. Majority of Muslims who fast nowadays are subjecting themselves to habits are rituals that has nothing to do with the essence of fasting…

Staying late at night, attending social gathering under the ‘tents’ with the nozzle of shisha in one’s hand all night’s long, eating at Iftar like there is an upcoming famine, all these things … and I am talking out of experience, they simply ruin the spiritual experience…

It is not within my specialty to conclude whether or not fasting is good for health, but let me share this with you, and it only requires common sense to comprehend: isn’t obesity a problem in this day and age? Why do people become obese (apart from hormone defections), isn’t because of the excessive intake of food during normal days?

In fact, and if performed correctly, fasting doesn’t only improve one’s eating habits, but it also relief their bodies form some poisonous fats. Your body transfers the excessive food (that doesn’t get burned by the daily physical activities) it transfers it into fat, this fat gets stored beneath your muscle and it only takes a long period of abstaining from food or running the Marathon to get rid of those fats and other sort of poisons.

Ask a Marathon runner, they call this process ‘hitting the wall’, it is when the blood glucose finishes. And then the body would search in the ‘cellar’ for sources of energy, that is the time when fat gets burned.

As for concentration and work productivity, I am sorry to admit that people who are nicotine and caffeine dependent cannot cope well with fasting, that is absolutely true. But it is still good for them, ask a physician and he will tell you that the best way to reduce the bad physiological and psychological effects of dependencies is to ‘taper off’ that very material that is causing it. Take me as a sample if you will, I used to breath shisha / argelih before Ramadan, 3 to 4 hours of murderous ‘chain’ smoking, but for the last ten days, al hamdulilah, I haven’t taken one pull and I feel great about it. of course, I could have quit otherwise as well, but it was going to take much more time, energy and grief. Fasting has simply helped me break my bad DAILY ROUTINE, and that is the key to getting rid of bad habits…

There is still the spiritual effect of Ramadan, the feeling of tranquility, peace and happiness; Endorphins are released in scores during this month, this is a first hand observation I am telling you. You don’t have to believe me. After all, Ramadan, as Abu Fares has said in the preface of his post, is a religious experience. Fasting is only one side shining side of the diamond…
Lujayn said…
What do you mean, you usually wouldnt have responded to Lujayn, ya Dubai Jazz? rah iz3al minak.
Dubai Jazz said…
Come on, this is not what I meant :), the blog is Abu Fares’s and your comment was addressed to him, so it is none of my business to step in (usually). But this case was different…. No offence was intended..:-)

Excuse my lack of clarity, fasting must be taking its toll..lol
Lujayn said…
Dubai Jazz, you have told me of the physical benefits of fasting, which if done properly, I would definitely agree with you on. However, Ramadan is not a weight loss or detox program, and the spiritual aspects are what I was discussing and questioning. Note that fasting is a common feature of most religions so this is not a critique of a particular religion.
Dubai Jazz said…
Ramadan is not a weight loss or detox program

You are right Lujayn, It not ONLY a weight loss or a detox program, but since they come with the territory I wouldn’t mind them, nor I would deny they are there. You know …Robert De Niro said once: ‘You are only as healthy as you feel’, I think he’s quite right…and since I am feeling spiritually great, then fasting must be healthy…

Besides, the nerdy IT experts at our company have decided that we can surf the net at our own discretion this month, no holds barred, which allowed me to have this interesting exchange with you… this is not but one of the blessings of Ramadan!

Lujayn said…
Well, you got me there! Unhindered Dubai Jazz Internet access is a Ramadan benefit I can live with :))

Katia said…
Hi Abufares,

Whether you're different or not is so totally not the point here! (I thought I came across such a thought while skimming through the comments). What matters is that you're true to yourself and to your believes, whatever they are.

Religion is a very private matter after all, which is exactly the reason why I loathe the fact that people are born into it (generally speaking). It's one of those birth-related confinements that I, personally, cannot live with, but I do respect its historical and social value and other people's attachment to it.

Respect is all it comes down to and your post is abundant of it, so thank you :-)
Abufares said…
Lujayn & Dubai Jazz
I'll leave you two alone since there's this kind of chemistry between you when you argue. Besides, it's good for my blog...
No serioulsy Lujayn, you know what, fasting for me is about sharing an individual achievement. I'm not a traditional person per say but I do not resist unobtrusive traditions. Since fasting is such an individual task, yet the Ramadan experience brings the family together. It's kind of hard to explain because I myself have mixed feelings about it. Let me put this way, I love the time I spent around the table with Om Fares and the kids. I also find it sobering that I change my lifestyle for 1 month every year. And, to make it even sweeter this time, so far, I have lost a total of 4 kg which is certainly getting me closer to the George Clooney type of man. And finally, it's with each successive Ramadan that I feel the passage of time and the process of my own aging. More so than new years and birthdays.
Abufares said…
What can I say, except sp true. The fact that we are born with a religion doesn't make sense at all to me. Still we perpetuate this self-fulfilling huge aspect of our lives by teaching our own children to stay true to it.
A classic Catch 22 situation.
Paige said…
I was not born into Islam. There is an interesting post on my blog about how I rebelled against Christianity from an early age, and how I came to be where I am now in terms of my belief system. I find that people generally ruin religion. It isn't religion itself that is the problem. It is the people who try to interpret, bend, and exaggerate and change it to fit their will. I admire, among other rebels, Bahaullah, because he had the guts to stand up to the deeply imbedded and corrupt mullahs in the land of Ahmedinejad. He suffered for it, and he is called a heretic by those whose power he threatened. Call him what you will...messenger of sorts, pageboy, rebel, crazy, whatever...What he said makes sense. The religions are like puzzle pieces. You can't really complete the puzzle without all of them, and they're all sort of shaped the same way. I have studied everything from Buddhism to Islam to Zoroastrianism to Hinduism and Sikhism. They all have a common message:

1. Don't kill each other.
2. Don't steal stuff.
3. Behave with dignity and be chaste. (I guess Britney and Paris didn't learn this one.) That means no drunken, naked (or scantily clad) people doing naughty things.
4. Understand that there is a greater power than you and that it is not a giant golden Ipod...or a religion.
5. Don't be a glutton and appreciate what you have.

When everyone on the planet finally understands that, then religion will have met its objective. Other than that, you are an individual and you HAVE to do it your way!
Paige said…
Oh...By the way,would it be appropriate to break one's fast with a handful of candy corn and a diet Dr. Pepper? LOL

Could explain why I got sick that day...
Paige said…
Ohhh...and I'm talking about original Hinduism,not the corrupted version of today. At one time,it behaved like a monotheistic religion. Followers were supposed to understand that God's glory may be seen in all things. It didn't mean to worship those things! See what I mean about people corrupting religion? OK. I'll shut up now.
Abufares said…
Your attitude toward religion is very original and valid. I agree with you that one should not even consider being religious until he or she gets an idea about what all the others have to offer. The conculsion is simple enough, all of them share the basic ingredients of honesty, integrity, humility and good will.
Your reminded me of Dr. Pepper, it's been over 20 years since I had my last sip. Now on this long Ramadan afternoon, I wish I could have a cold one at Iftar (Breaking Fast).
Thank you Paige for your insightful comments.
Paige said…
Thanks for your wonderfully written blog! I always enjoy your posts and those of your visitors. At Iftar, at my house, I get the experience of being the only one breaking fast. I think that candy corn is one of the funniest things I have broken fast on. However, some of my stranger fast-breaking foods have been popcorn, toaster pastries, candy, and cereal. LOL There are four Muslims where I live (besides me), and they are all from Pakistan. I hate stereotypes, but they fit..They own the motel and the gas station, and two of them are named Mohammed. Ah...rural Oklahoma life. It's so odd.

Yes, I remember the days of the land of Pepsi. :) I looked up a map of Tripoli (Libya) the other day, and there was one road still labeled in English. You guessed it: Pepsi Cola Boulevard. I still drink Pepsi products, but my favorite isn't available here. I loved Lemon Miranda. We could get orange for a while, but never lemon. Someday, maybe we'll all get to break fast together. That would be fun! I'll bring the Dr. Pepper and the candy corn. ;0) And, heretical soul that I am, we can fast either in March before Naw Ruz, or during Ramadan. It's a test of my willpower and my dedication at any time of year. :0)
Abufares said…
I would love to share breaking the fast(Iftar) with you one of these days. You reminded me of the Lemon and orange flavored Miranda. I loved both, although as you said, the lemon flavored was always harder to find.

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