Friday, February 15, 2008
Rose is Gold on Valentine's Day.
There are many ways of looking at the much celebrated and overrated Valentine's Day.
"It's a marketing strategy for greeting card companies."
"It's a Christian celebration. You're a muslim. You shouldn't celebrate it."
"Rose is like gold on Valentine's Day."
However, I choose to look at Valentine's Day in another way. To understand my point of view, consider this:
How often do you tell the ones you love how much you love them?
We go about our everyday life, busy with commitments, things we have to do and haven't done, planning things to do over the next few days, weeks and many other normal distractions dished out by life and daily living. Our minds are often not in the present, the here and now. Most often, we are thinking about the past or considering our future. And then we wonder how time flies by sonic speed. And most of us go about feeling lonely in a crowd and unloved by those near and dear to us.
A wise old man once told me that if the ones you love do not feel loved by you, then the love you feel for them in your heart is redundant. It means nothing to those we love because that love is not relayed to them.
We need to learn to express the love we feel for people we love. We need to learn to live in the here and now. We need to seize every opportunity to give and receive love whenever and wherever we can. Because love is important in our lives.
There was this one Iraqi professor in my faculty who, as a response to my saying that Islam is about loving Allah, had said that my way of thinking is very Christian like. This was my reply, "Before we begin any form of prayer, we recite 'Bismillahhir rahmaannir rahiim.' which means 'In the name of Allah the Most Loving and the Most Forgiving.' Allah is Love. We, as human beings, simply cannot flourish or sustain ourselves without love. Many clinical research has been done that has proven this fact. A newborn baby that is simply fed with milk but not nourished with loving care will simply wither away and die."
Funny how most people like to look for differences between themselves and others simply to satisfy their inner desire to be different and unique. We are all unique and special. But looking for differences in mankind is not healthy for society as a whole. It's a fertile ground for social bigotry.
Embracing the spirit of Valentine's Day is not harmful to muslims. In fact, I believe we can learn something from this. If we are indeed always too busy to give and show love to those we feel love for, then why not allow this one day in the whole of the calendar year to give you the opportunity to do just that? I don't see any harm in that at all. After all, Valentine's Day is NOT about roses, chocolates or even a romantic dinner. It is also NOT about whether you have a boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife to celebrate it with. Its about appreciating the love you feel for those you do and showing it in the most memorable way.
Bottom line: If you don't wanna celebrate Valentine's Day, then show your love to those you love everyday. That's the muslim way of living and loving.
Peace be upon us all...