“Ramadan Unplugged”: Baraka

Ramadan posts by Baraka (Rickshaw Diarieswww.rickshawdiaries.wordpress.com)

Taking the N-Judah train through San Francisco on Monday morning, every coffee shop we rumbled past had lines out the door; people waiting groggily for a cup of our second biggest import to jump-start their day.

It’s freeing not to think about sustenance. Don’t get me wrong – I love food: as soon as one meal finishes I start thinking about the next; and if I step out the door for even a brief errand I bring along a snack, just in case I get hungry.

But, I like this feeling of being unplugged. I don’t need a latte to function. I feel a little removed and remote from my body, mind and soul coming into sharper focus.

Even during the early morning and late evening hours that we can eat, the focus is on using wholesome food to strengthen myself for days and nights of increased meditation. Suhoor is straightforward: a whole wheat bagel lightly schmeared with cream cheese, fresh watermelon and water. Iftar is similarly simple: a cup of hot milk with dates and honey to break the fast, followed by a bowl of homemade bean soup after Maghrib.

And, then, on the fifth day of fasting, I am struck with a realization: He so clearly is all that I need to survive, the One I am utterly dependent upon. Take away all else, and still the Giver of sustenance and mercy remains.

All the space inside that I used to fill up to the brim with food, is now finally God’s to move into.


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