I was going to write a blog about how Eid here is one day later than everywhere else in the world, and how some of our leaders –ahem ahem- are complete morons. But then I remember that my momma told me that if I couldn’t say anything nice, I shouldn’t say anything at all.
:::glares silently in the direction of the Moonsighting Committee:::
Then I was going to write a blog about how Eid has become depressingly commercialized, glitzified, and saturated with dancing, dancing, and more dancing. Every channel here airs special Eid shows, all of which consist of giggling movie stars and swinging singers (who in spite of being dressed, appear to be naked), and guess what, they’re all dancing. Bloody hell. Where’s the Taqwa? Where’s the nur and barkat of Eid? Where, if any, is our Islam? And last but not least, where is Aniraz’s slingshot?
I never thought I’d be one of those angry fundu types. I knew I was a FUNdu, I just didn’t know I could be so angry, but when I see an actress in a skin-tight, paper-thin, shoulderless, backless dress bounce on screen, jiggle to the music and then wish me a blessed Eid, I want to hurt something. Lots of something and plenty of someone, whichever someone is in charge of taking all of the religiousness out of our religious holidays. This would be the same someone who has pop stars singing hamd, naat, and nasheed before Iftar, and then the same obscene and haram songs right after the Maghrib azhan has been called.
This same someone tones the TV programming down a notch out of ‘respect for Ramadan,’ and then once Ramadan is over, pulls out all of the moral stops for the Eid shows. That’s not respect for Ramadan. And that’s certainly not any respect for Islam or Allah, halfway obeying for only as long as a holy month lasts, and then more than making up for it on the holy days. You get the idea that PTV is repenting for its moral behavior.
Aside from the Eid shows, there are also the special Eid commercials- brainwashing ditties about this holiday being about new shoes, about face lotion, about clothes, about a new cell phone, about gold jewelry, and about shopping until your pockets are empty and your credit card is maxed out. (MCB Bank says, celebrate this Eid with a new car, with only 10% interest!)
You hear the words ‘Eid Manaein’ followed by ‘*product name* kay sath.’ Celebrate Eid with *your product name here.* Never once do you hear, Celebrate Eid with gratitude for the favors your Lord has given you freely, or Celebrate Eid with a commitment to improve your Deen, or by adopting an orphan, or planting a tree, or even giving a bent nickel to your local charity. Eid is now about excessive consumption- of food, of goods, of clothes, and of course, entertainment. It’s about having fun and letting your hair down from all the self-denial of Ramadan.
Of course, there’s a huge mistake right there, that people think of Ramadan as one month of self-denial simply for the sake of asceticism. They’ve missed the point. Ramadan is about retraining, reminding, reviving the religion and discipline that we may have let slide during the last year, and it’s not supposed to last only for a month. It’s supposed to START in the month and last all the way until the next one.
Don’t let my negativity ruin your Eid. Just don’t turn on PTV, I beg you. In the mean time, Eid Mubarak. I wish you all, every single one of you, a most happy, joyous, blessed Eid, illuminated by the light of ‘Ilm, secure in the fold of Deen and content with the will of Allah. I pray that you are found in good health and ever-increasing Iman, I pray that Allah saves us all from the darkness around us and does not let us die except as Muslims in a state of Iman. Ameen.
Now where’s that slingshot…