Lessons from Ramadan
Ramadan is fast approaching. With less than a month before this Ramadan, I thought I would talk about some of the financial lessons we can learn from Ramadan both from a practical perspective and from a financial perspective.
Living within or below your means
One of the things we partake in during Ramadan is fasting. From sunrise to sunset we go without both food and water. One of the lessons in this is that we as human beings can survive and even thrive on a lot less. If you reflect on this principle it is clear that we do not necessarily need that brand new car, we do not necessarily need all new furniture, we do not necessarily need to buy a house. It is permissible to do all those things but we should remind ourselves that we do not need all that stuff to be happy. Tell me of a time where you are happier than Ramadan during the year. I can not think of one. It is almost like the things that really make us happy (time with family, friends, God, and the community are what we really need).
Patience & Delayed Gratification
Instant gratification is all too common in this day and age. Instant likes on social media, delivery of the items we want right now. Unlimited options for TV and movies. Even when it comes to money we can buy that thing we can not afford with a credit card, we can buy a house on a mortgage and we can buy a car with a loan. Ramadan reignites the wonderful feeling of delayed gratification. Why? Because we go the whole day without food and water. Tell me a more exciting after a day of fasting than biting into a date and having that first sip of water rush down into your stomach.
Rewarding Yourself when the time is right
When Ramadan comes to a close we celebrate with Eid- Al- Fitr. During this time it is haram to fast. We are encouraged to eat, enjoy, celebrate and give each other gifts. Further, we are encouraged to buy a brand new outfit for eid. To wear our best clothes and to enjoy ourselves. After working hard during Ramadan to achieve our spiritual goals we are encouraged to enjoy and be happy.
All these lessons found in Ramadan can help us in our financial lives as well. Living within or below our means is a great financial habit. Buying things when you can afford them feels better than going into debt to get something you want now. Rewarding yourself when you have achieved a goal and when the time is right. All these lessons can be learned in Ramadan. May Allah bless your ramadan!