The Genius of Awareness: Manufacturing Happiness
It is a blessing to be aware of our graces
As for me, we are currently approaching the end of the second half of the year, which coincides with the celebration of Eid al-Fitr after the conclusion of Ramadan with all its spiritual rituals. It feels as though the months leading up to Ramadan have passed by a long time ago, characterized by noise, excitement, natural occurrences, worldly affairs, and typical daily routines. Our fast-paced lives continue to move forward, with everyone occupied and pursuing their own goals and plans. Even if someone does not have a job or occupation, the pace of modern life can sometimes exceed its limits, leaving us feeling drained. Nevertheless, it's alright! It's time to celebrate now!
Often, we fail to recognize that our cultural and religious customs have a meaningful purpose that caters to a true human necessity. Although this need may differ depending on the individual and the era, its core lies in our shared humanity's pursuit of happiness. Celebrations function as mechanisms that force a person to experience happiness, even if it is not genuinely felt. In essence, it is enforced happiness.
Insist on Happiness
A few months ago, I went through a tough time that few people knew about, but the situation was really bad. I found it challenging to summon the motivation to perform basic everyday tasks such as eating, and even during my vacation, I was unable to dispel the feelings of sadness. Until I had to attend a work meeting regarding an exciting project I was involved in, I lacked the motivation to do anything or socialize with anyone. I had to show the fun, trendy, and wonderful side of my personality to the lady I was meeting. Because the meeting held significant importance, I approached it with a sense of gravity and opted to don a leopard-print silk shirt by Saint Laurent. To complete my outfit for the meeting, I matched the unbuttoned leopard print shirt and white blouse with a pair of high-waisted light blue jeans that exuded an 80s flair. I complemented the look with a short denim jacket, creating a perfect ensemble for the occasion. My self-esteem was boosted by my appearance, and I felt that I had successfully conveyed my personality through my first impression. This small accomplishment brought about a slight improvement in my morale. As the weather in London was pleasant with a gentle breeze, I opted to walk to the meeting.
On my way, I received a call from a friend who informed me of her presence in London and expressed enthusiasm at the prospect of seeing me. Because of our shared love for fashion, I sent her a photo of myself wearing a shirt with a leopard print. She found it amusing and decided to wear a leopard print skirt to match my outfit. We agreed to meet up at a trendy spot and enjoy our fashionable attire. Surprisingly, what started as a sad day turned into one of my most enjoyable experiences in recent years. Initially, I had to put on a happy face for professional reasons, but I found that I began to feel genuine joy and my sadness dissipated. This experience has taught me that even small, seemingly trivial things can bring us joy and we should appreciate them, no matter how superficial they may seem. Eid al-Fitr is our cultural way to be happy and this is my perspective.
Understanding Eid's Significance and Beauty Personally
Together, let's examine Eid al-Fitr and uncover its meaning. To begin with, let's focus on the term "Eid," which connotes repetition and provides us with a perpetual sense of hope that it will occur again. It's reassuring to know that we can count on having happy occasions to look forward to at least twice a year. Eid celebration typically happens in the family's residence, and it signifies the end of the holy month of Ramadan, regardless of how it was observed. Eid assures us of success and victory, and we are obligated to celebrate and give Zakat al-Fitr as a demonstration of our religious and cultural commitment. We hope that our fasting is accepted by Allah, and by donating and providing charity, even the poor can partake in the joy of Eid. We mark the occasion by participating in Eid prayer, donning new garments, using fragrances, delighting children, reuniting with family and friends, and relishing delectable dishes. It is prohibited to fast on this day, and we must greet everyone with a smile, visit relatives, reach out to individuals residing in other cities, and revel in the camaraderie of the community. Additionally, on this day, fasting is prohibited, and we should empathize with those who are unable to celebrate Eid due to their distance from their loved ones. All of these actions are righteous deeds. Music, dancing, laughing, hugging, and kissing, all of this positive energy will surely boost your morale and make you happy with great force. Be aware and enjoy all of it.
Being conscious of our goals and values is crucial, not just during Eid time but throughout our lives. It's remarkable how paying attention to small things can give them significance and have a positive impact on our well-being. When we recognize this, we appreciate the importance and beauty of Eid for ourselves. Our world is full of difficulties, sadness, losses, tragedies, challenges, and conflicts, and we spend most of our time throughout the year trying to deal with them. Therefore, Eid provides a much-needed respite for our minds and bodies to be happy, even if it's only for a few days so that we can emerge with renewed strength.
Happiness is a necessity in our lives
I aim to inspire, not advise or lecture readers on how to live. I achieve this by sharing my humble personal experiences and daily struggles.
In my article about Eid, I wanted to cover various topics like its historical and contemporary elements, festivities, ornaments, music, fashion, gatherings, and even TV shows. Although there are many interesting areas to explore, I realized that regardless of the aspect I choose to focus on, I need to highlight the ultimate goal of Eid, which is to bring happiness into our lives. It doesn't matter if we are ready for it, or if the timing seems inconvenient, as the essence of Eid is to celebrate joyfulness, and there's never a wrong time for that. This consciousness has made me enthusiastic, as I realized the blessing that I enjoy by being aware that I am doing something that I enjoy. No matter how busy I am, it is a blessing to be aware of our blessings.
Hopefully, we will all observe Eid together, (Insha’Allah) God willing.
Hopefully, we will be among those who are successful (Insha’Allah) God willing.