By Sarrah AbuLughod, VAIPL Board Member
The beginning of the month of Ramadan is in just a few days, and it is around this time of year that I try to sit down and reflect. Though this isn’t a mark of the new year on either the Gregorian or the Islamic lunar calendar, I do always feel as if Ramadan ends up being the time I really think about my resolutions for the year going forward. Maybe it is because I seem to have so much more time in the day because I’m not spending much energy planning, prepping, and eating meals. It’s amazing how much time fasting gives you back!
My Ramadan reflections often gravitate towards thoughts about waste. I think about my own mark on this planet and how I as an individual could be doing better. I also think about how we can be doing better as a community. I have been blessed this year with a move in what, I hope, is the right direction. Just before sitting down to write this, I was watering my small garden and thinking about how great it is to have neighbors that compost and who get shares of vegetables from CSAs. And I was thinking how much easier it is to sustain these habits when you have a community of supporters encouraging your actions. The same goes for fasting in Ramadan. It’s so much easier to do when you are looking forward to breaking your fast with friends and family each night, when you have a community of support that encourages you.
My resolution for the year going forward is to connect with more like-minded people who care deeply about the ramifications of waste to see what they are doing and how I can help them in those efforts. My hope for you this Ramadan is that you find your community of supporters and that together you find comfort and support to continue doing the great, yet tiring, work of building more sustainable lifestyles.