What I learned from Holy Month
How do I sum up my first Ramadan? Well, it’s been a pretty humbling month. And I’ve spoken and interacted with people that I would never have done otherwise.
If I hadn’t been asked to write this column I suspect I wouldn’t have set foot in a mosque, not because I didn’t want to but because I’m a terrible one for putting things off.
However, in the past month. I’ve been to two different mosques -Jumeirah Mosque and the Al Farooq Omar Bin Al Khattab Mosque.
It’s been easy for me to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life in Dubai, with little or no time to spend on absorbing the culture and history of this incredible country.
But spending time in these unique buildings was special. I’ve always found there’s something soothing about being in a place of worship. And I also learned plenty too.
During the tour of Jumeirah Mosque, I found out that all hotel rooms here have arrows on the ceiling pointing to Mecca.
I can’t tell you how pleased I was when I stayed in a hotel in Dubai last week and looked at the ceiling to see an arrow… pointing to Mecca.
I also learned a little, and I mean very little, self discipline by fasting during Ramadan. Now it was only two days, nothing compared to what Muslims go through but, again, I wouldn’t have done it if I hadn’t been asked to write about my first Ramadan.
Another highlight was being invited to iftar at the home of an Egyptian family.
I suppose that in itself is part of the message of Ramadan. Opening yourself up to the experiences of others and sharing things you wouldn’t have otherwise.
I know my Ramadan experience only skimmed the surface of the Holy Month, but I have to say that I feel that I’m a better person for it.
MY FIRST RAMADAN Patrick Ryan on how he will embrace the Holy Month