Friday, September 12, 2008

Ramadan 12: Balance

About now, if you have been fasting all these days, you're going to be risking constipation. You aren't drinking as much. You might be eating a lot of rice at iftar dinners. My guess is that you are noticing how you are what you eat. If you are eating too many carbohydrates you will be regretting it the next day when you fill too full; too bloated.

It is all in the balancing. We need to find balance within our lives and our selves. Too much of anything is a bad thing. It's kind of hip to joke about how terribly you've been eating, but it's dumb. To say that you've survived the day on a Milk Dud and a bag of Doritos doesn't make you a hero. Likewise, to pig out at the buffet is bad too. We need to find the balance and be moderate in our diet.

Within our moderate diet, we need to be careful with the food groups. Truly, very few people eat enough fruits and vegetables. If you are feeling constipated, then eat more fruit in the morning at suhour, eat more vegetable at iftar and drink more after eating, while cutting down on your breads, rice and pastas.
What to do if you are absolutely stuck? Try warm water in a squeeze bottle externally, not internally. Yes, you could try a laxative BUT not something taken orally during the fast.

Feeling that balance inside our bodies helps us to feel that balance in our minds. Mi amiga is so health conscious. When I came back from Florida, I asked her how I could feel more stabilized, rather than the on-edge nervousness. She told me to stay away from processed foods; just to work the perimeter of the grocery store and avoid all the boxed and canned goods. She also advised not to eat things high in fat, salt, or sugar. Caffeine was also a no-no. I did take her advise and it did help. I felt that I regained more control within a day of changing my diet back to what I knew was healthier.

When we feel our bodies and our minds in tune, then our spirit wants to soar. Prayer times are such a wonderful way to find balance. It starts with making wudu, which cleans us from all the dirtiness around us. It then begs us to be quiet, whereas we've been busy and talkative. Then we have to focus, instead of being multi-taskers (talking on the phone, while paying bills on-line and changing the baby's diaper on the desk). Lastly, prayer asks us to be thankful to The Power Larger than Ourselves, rather than looking for the praise from others for what we've done. When we humble ourselves in a clean, quiet, focused way to pray to Allah, then we find that unchangeable core; which never leans too much to one way or the other.

This Ramadan don't sit on either end of the see saw.

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