Classification of Fast observers On the Basis of Their Food Consumption
- :Mirza Javad Tabrizi
From the point of view of eating and drinking the fast observers differ as follows:
The fast observers whose eating and drinking is provided through forbidden means are like the ones, who carry the burden of things belonging to others upon their shoulders. The things ultimately reach to their owner and the exhaustion and fatigue remain with these people. The reward of fast of such fast observers is given to the real owners of those eatables or drinks which were illegally consumed by these fast observers, and for them nothing remains except tyranny, wrath, and usurpation of people's wealth. Or they are like those who undertake pilgrimage to Mecca riding upon an usurped animal, in which case the reward of the Hajj pilgrimage reaches to the owner of that animal and exhaustion and fatigue remain for the usurper.
The fast observers whose eating and drinking consist of doubtful material, (i.e. there being lawful (halal) or unlawful (haram) is not confirmed), could be further classified into two groups:
The first group consists of those fast observers whereby the consumption of such eating and drinking items apparently is lawful (halal) for them.
The second group consists of those whose consumption of such eating and drinking items apparently is not lawful (haram). These people, with slight variation, are similar to those fast observers whose eating and drinking is provided by unlawful (haram) means.
The fast observers whose eating and drinking consist of lawful (halal) means, but are excessive in their consumption in quality as well as in quantity. That is they fill their tablecloth with colourful delicious dishes at dawn (saheri) and at the time of fast breaking (iftar), and in their consumption of these foods indulge in over-eating. Their story resembles that of a low ambitious miserly person who in the presence of his beloved amuses himself with something else, while his beloved desires that his lover should pay attention only towards him, and should enjoy his companionship. Such low ambitious miserly ones do not possess the decency and worthiness to be invited for the union with their beloved, they deserve only to be amused in their petty amusements. Because, these are the slaves of their stomachs and not the bondsman of Allah (the Glorious, the Exalted). It would be more appropriate to consider them as worshippers of belly instead of calling them as Allah's worshippers.
The fast observers, who in their qualitative and quantitative consumption of eatables go further deeper as compared to the previous group, reaching to the level of extravagance. Their situation is similar to those fast observers whose eating and drinking consist of unlawful (haram) means because, lavishness and extravagance is forbidden and is tantamount to a sin. Therefore, it would be more appropriate to consider them as disobedient and sinners, instead of knowing them as obedient bondsman of Allah (the Glorious, the Exalted).
5. The fast observers whose eating and drinking as well as their level of consumption consist of lawful (halal) and is permissible; are not indulged in any sort of waste and extravagance; neither they fill their tablecloth with colourful delicious dishes nor they practice over-eating and belly-filling; limit themselves to consume only a single food and abstain themselves from eating with the intention of enjoyment; Allah (the Glorious, the Exalted), will reward them with best of His bounties; with His infinite generosity will bless them, and no one knows or could imagine what sort of special rewards have been accumulated for them by Him.
 Halal: things which are allowable by religious law.
 Haram: categorically forbidden by religious law [Tr].
Adapted from: "Spiritual Journey of the Mystics (Suluk-i Arifan)" by: "Mirza Javad Aqa Maleki Tabrizi"
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