As the Muslim world celebrates once again the start of a new year, it is interesting to note how that new year will be celebrated. There will be no fireworks, no jumping into fountains in Trafalgar Square. There will be no parties, nor lavish spending on decorations. In fact, the occasion will go largely unnoticed.
It reminds me so much of how Islam turns the thinking of this world on its head. The message of Islam comes to give a new way of looking at things. God is placed at the centre of things, not men and women. Instead of hoarding money or using it to accrue interest from others, Islam teaches to give a percentage of one’s excess wealth away to the poor. Instead of rushing around, concerned with the affairs of the world, Islam tells us to pause five times a day and think of the world’s Creator. Instead of stuffing ourselves with good things, Islam tells us in Ramadan to deny our bodies and to do this for Allah’s sake.
How sad, that most of the world do not know this message. The only Islam they know is the one they see on television. It is customary in the West to make resolutions at New Year. I encourage all Muslims to make this resolution at the beginning of this new Hijri Year: to show the world the beauty and sweetness of Islam by the goodness of their lives.