Idul Fitri, and the Aftermath
Idul Fitri is the day celebrated by Muslim people to mark the end of the Ramadhan fasting season, to symbolize our victory over our humane drives, and, accordingly, to open a new leaf of life, as we are born anew. We forgive each other for the mistakes of past, and hope the cleansing of the body and mind, that supposedly took place during Ramadhan, would make us out into better people.
I have to say, the fasting season for me, this month, was depressingly meaningless. Most people think that during the fasting month, you should get more religious insight, or do much more contemplation on yourself… well, that can happen if you’re not trying to hold up your job all month, and for that matter, trying to hold up your life.
Too many days went by only waiting for logging off time, too many weeks yearning for the weekends to come, and thus I forgot to look for the meaning and wisdom that supposedly Ramadhan would give me. On the other hand, if I say that the season went by uneventful, and not gaining any new insight on anything, that would be a lie.
Here are the insights gathered:
A person once very close to me said, and often said, I might add, that I tend to be very ungrateful for what I have. I think I have to change that. I think I have to be grateful that I can go online with this laptop through a CSD connection on my handphone, connected by Bluetooth, because not many people can use their phone for bluetooth, not to mention browsing (or blogging!) with the laptop connected wirelessly to it. I think I have to be grateful that I am sitting at my parent’s house, both in relative good health and spirits, in an air-conditioned room in a city that some people swear has more than one sun. I think I have to be grateful that I have clothes on my back, food to eat, a roof over my head (at more places than one, I might add), and money to spend for unnecessary stuff like hair gel or um, gadgets. Touche. I think I have to be grateful I have family, although most of them I only meet a few times a year. I think I have to be grateful that I have friends, good friends, and even enemies (God forbid, but well, we all have our share), even if I tend to be a pain in the ass at most times and a nuisance at others. I think I have to be grateful for this nation I live in, because, despite it being always precariously on the edge at times, it’s… still here, with hope of a better future. Most importantly, I have to be grateful that I, myself, am in relatively good health physically (mentally? I’m not so sure… haha), have a brain that people tell me is smart (well… sometimes), and have a good job and position at the office. Also, last but not least, I don’t know why, but I’m grateful that I have the capacity to love all those who are important, or maybe even not that important, to me, never mind the fact that sometimes it’s misunderstood or taken for granted.
Another thing about occasions like this, you tend to contemplate (yeah… only 2 days to contemplate, when you’re supposed to use the whole month for it) what and who is the most important to you, to whom to you feel the most gratitude, to whom do you feel the most love, to whom do you feel the most affection, and all that mushy stuff. At the times where everybody tends to send mass SMSs to each other with a general greeting, I spent the most of the first day of Idul Fitri writing up personal messages to those who are important, and replying personal messages to those who did send me and SMS greeting, personal or not. I felt that I had enough of those SMS blast greetings, because they tend to be very impersonal; and the recipient would treat them as such anyway. I spent time making long, personalized messages to those who are really important to me, because even though the recipient may not realize it, I felt that the extra effort I put into it marked my sincerity.
The one thing that I did feel missing this Idul Fitri, was that there was usually someone special I called, to ask for forgiveness, among other things… this time… it just feels different.
And of course, the regret, the guilt, sometimes tend to wash over you. But it wasn’t particularly anomalous, because I tend to feel guilty about everything every time… so, Idul Fitri, breaking from tradition, had become a reminder that I’m not responsible for the world, I’m not responsible for everyone I love (although I do my darnest to be), I’m just responsible for my own actions (or inactions). This Idul Fitri has more become a reminder of; stop worrying, start living!
I wish it were that simple.
Sometimes, holidays can get kind of lonely. Good thing books by dead guys can keep my mind busy, to keep it from thinking so much in that area.
So, just to sum up the activities of Idul Fitri: first day we gathered with my Dad’s family, the second day, with my Mom’s family. That should be enough information. Oh yeah, it involved a lot of eating, and the occasional relative asking what grade I was in. Yeah, still happens.
I just wish…