This year the MSA began its partnership with Green Muslims, a national organization that provides support for organizations like ours in committing ourselves to the Islamic ideal of environmental stewardship. What follows is a set of tips provided by Green Muslims on how to go green this Ramadan. Try to apply these for the coming week and observe what a difference small steps can make.
For it is He who has brought into being
gardens-[both] the cultivated ones and those
growing wild -and the date-palm, and fields
bearing multiform produce, and the olive
tree, and the pomegranate: [all] resembling
one another and yet so different! Eat of their
fruit when it comes to fruition, and give
[unto the poor] their due on harvest day. And
do not waste [God's bounties]: verily, He
does not love the wasteful!”
Challenge Yourself: Don’t waste a single
morsel of food this week. Anything you
cannot eat, compost. Don’t allow any of
your leftovers go to waste. Consider inviting
friends over for a “leftar” where you eat only
leftovers for iftar.
Reflect: Being mindful of food waste helps
us to be more in tune with the focus of
Ramadan. Think of those less fortunate, and
how what you throw away, could be feeding
-As we enter the final week of this blessed month, we should pay special attention to this advice. College students in particular stand to benefit from the ability to stretch food.
“And you see the mountains and
think them solid but they are
fleeting like clouds – the creation of
God who has well completed the
creation of everything.
Challenge Yourself: If you don’t
already, make a commitment to
recycle. See how many things that
you throw away, could be re-used.
Just as the ayat says, the most solid
things are fleeting. Our most basic
energy sources are drying up and
we are left to consider how
wasteful we really are.
Reflect: Allah created us as the
caretakers of this Earth. What are
you personally doing to fulfill this
-Thankfully, Ann Arbor and the University have taken major steps towards making recycling easy. What can you do to make sure that recycling is easy at home?
“None of you truly believes until he
wishes for his brother what he
wishes for himself.”
Challenge Yourself: Start a new
tradition of planning your Eid
celebrations to include a service
project. Incorporate service,
volunteerism, and community
support in your annual tradition.
Reflect: Find ways to connect more
with the idea behind Zakat-ul-Fitr.
Servicing and supporting our
closest community in need should
be more than dropping a few
dollars in a box at the Eid prayer.
What are ways you connect with
-Especially during Ramadan, Muslims are supposed to act in ways that improve the lives of their brothers and sisters in humanity. Find a project you believe will have a positive impact, then do your best to make sure it becomes a success.
“…and Allah is the best of Planners”
Challenge Yourself: Bad planning and
disorganization often lead to multiple
trips, impulse buying, and wasted
energy. Make a to-do list. Plan your
week so that you can run all your
errands on the same day. Organize
your time and define your actual
needs before setting out for the day.
Reflect: Setting aside time to think
about your plans helps you reflect on
the actuality of what you do in any
given day. What are your patterns?
Are you happy with what is on your
-Islamic philosophies can guide us to a heightened mindfulness of our resources. Too often, though, we forget about time, one of the most precious resources we’ve been given.
“Do not turn your knowledge into
ignorance or your conviction into
doubt. When you gain knowledge,
act upon it and when you acquire
Challenge Yourself: Going forward,
try to continue the more
environmentally friendly habits
you have started this Ramadan.
Take the knowledge you have
gained and turn it into conviction.
Reflect on this past month during
these last few days and plan out a
path going forward. What habits
have had a true impact on you?
What changes have you made to
your spirit, your community, your
-Actions are hollow without the proper intentions behind them, and a good set of beliefs can help us align our intentions with where we want them to be. Spend some time reflecting and sort through the advice you’ve picked up lately. What gems are worth following, and what will lead you astray? When you’re satisfied with your results, internalize them and let them guide your intentions.
To get in touch with the MSA’s Green Muslims Initiative staff, email email@example.com.