Friday, March 21, 2008

Woh Nabioon Main Rehmat Laqab Paney Wala

It is 12 Rabi ul Awal today, the birthday of the Holy prophet Hazrat Mohammad (S.A.W) .
Ever since leaving school, the only way I get to know about it being the 12th of Rabi ul Awal is through the national holiday declared on the day by the government or by looking at the road side buildings that are beautifully decorated with light especially for the occasion (though in times of severe power shortage I have serious doubts if that will happen tonight).

A horrible thought just crossed my mind. What if I lived in a non Muslim state where none of these things happened, would that mean that Eid e Milad un Nabi would come and go without my even being aware of it ???????

I most certainly hope not.

Back in my school days, Eid e Milad un Nabi used to be celebrated with fervor. There would be naat recitations and stories from prophet’s life recounted, but the best part would be the arrangements, which were totally different from arrangements for any other school function.
Firstly there would be chandinis (white sheets) covering the floor, with a few randomly placed Gow takias (round cushions) for leaning against (those came in real handy if the function took a little longer than anticipated to come to an end). Then there would be agar battis (essence sticks) placed in the centre. (There were so many creative things we would come up with in placing the agarbattis, like sticking the ends of sticks in bowls full of white flour to make it look like a bouquet. The only thing missing would be the blossoming flowers on the tips).
When the function commenced we would patrol the sides sprinkling rose water on the respected guests (who were mostly mothers of the students) sitting on the chandini covered floors. There would be self competitions to see how far we could fling the rose water from our hand held sprinklers so that it reached even the most centrally seated visitors.
And oh boy did we fling those droplets far and wide. Our swings would have put any grand slam tennis champion to shame.
But that is all in the past now, at least for me. Kids celebrated their function in school yesterday, a day earlier, so that they could enjoy the public holiday declared today.
Everything is the same as it is every year.
Then why the sudden nostalgia after all this time?
Actually it is not nostalgia; it is more of a remorse, triggered by a phone call my ten year old daughter got this morning. One of her friends invited her to a Mehfil e Milad celebration being held at her place.
It made me think.......
We celebrate so many events; Anniversaries, Birthdays, Get togethers e.t.c. why not Eid e Milad un Nabi?
Just because school is over, does not mean Eid Milad un Nabi celebrations have to be over with it.
I think for at least one day in a year we should not hesitate to show our love and appreciation for the man who has made our lives so meaningful.