On Eid 2019, Filipino Muslims recall Ramadan teachings to attain peace
MANILA, Philippines – As the Islamic world marked the end of Ramadan with the feast of Eid’l Fitr, Filipino Muslims reflected on the value of the monthlong celebration in attaining lasting peace. (READ: IN PHOTOS: Filipino Muslims break fast at start of Eid'l Fitr)
On the morning of Wednesday, June 5, Islamic scholar Abdul Fattah Tanog reiterated the essence of Ramadan as he joined hundreds of Muslims who flocked to the Golden Mosque in Quiapo, Manila.
Ramadan is a monthlong period of fasting from sunrise to sunset, where Muslims devote time to seeking forgiveness, exercising self-control, and doing charity. (READ: FAST FACTS: What you should know about Eid'l Fitr, end of Ramadan)
“[The celebration encourages us] to be more spiritual and to be more attentive to the devotion, and [to] focus one's self to spiritual enhancement over worldly and material things, and if possible, to eliminate the bad traits or spiritual ailments especially arrogance and envy,” Tanog said in a mix of Filipino and English.
According to him, the lack of spirituality is the root cause of all conflicts – from marriage disputes to wars between nations. "Everyone is thinking that they are superior than the rest and that they have the desire to bring down others,” he said.
In an interview with Rappler, 16-year-old Jaffar Malic echoed Tanog, saying he’s hoping for an end to hatred.
“‘Yung hatred kasi ay reason kung bakit nagkakaroon ng civil wars. Kapag natanggal ‘yan, sure ako 101 percent na sure akong makaka-attain tayo ng world peace. Magiging united tayong lahat,” Malic said.(Hatred is the reason why civil wars exist. I can guarantee, 101 percent, that if this is eliminated, we can attain world peace. We will all be united.)
Tanog asked his fellow Muslims to pray for the displaced residents of Marawi City.
“We have to pray na kahit papaano ay makabalik sila sa kanilang mga tahanan. The rebuilding of the devastated city is so slow. [Sana] magawan ng paraan na makabalik nang mas mabilis sa mas lalong madaling panahon ‘yong mga [taga-Marawi]." (We have to pray that at the very least, they can go back home. The rebuilding of the devastated city is so slow. I hope that we can find a way to immediately bring the people back to Marawi.)
In 2017, more than a thousand troops and civilians died as the city of Marawi in Lanao del Sur was attacked by local terrorists known as the Maute Group. (READ: URBAN WARFARE MARAWI: 153 DAYS AND MORE)
Achmida Mamacotao, a Muslim who celebrated the feast in Marawi, talked about how Ramadan reminded them that patience and faith can help attain peace.
“I pray for all Filipinos to learn the art of being patient with each other despite our differences in belief. I pray for the future of our country and [I pray] for lasting peace in our city,” she said.
According to 2016 data from Conflict Alert, an online database covering 15 provinces in the Bangsamoro region, common crimes and shadow economies caused violence in the area, along with political conflict. – Rappler.com
Josiah Antonio is a Rappler intern. He is a 4th year student at the University of the Philippines Diliman taking BA Philippine Studies, major in Journalism and Malikhaing Pagsulat sa Filipino.