So, I am sure the majority of you reading this have heard that the devils are not around during the holy month of Ramadan. This is not completely accurate as I found out today, they are chained up and that is not the same as saying they re not present.
That is not the main point of this post but a little knowledge never hurt anyone, eh? The point is this; we often attribute, if not blame, our sins and mistakes on the influence of Shaytaan (Satan). Often in my Dua’a I tell God to forgive me because I am weak and Shaytan is much more intelligent than me. This is not a very good excuse for wrongdoing of course, but it is not devoid of truth, I am indeed weak by creation and he is far superior to me in terms of cleverness and manipulation.
My observation is now this; if he is really chained up and thus unable to influence me like he would be able to outside of Ramadan, who is responsible for my wrongdoings in Ramadan? Is it really me? Because I don’t know about anyone else, despite it being the holy month and my efforts increasing, I still slip. My biggest weakness in fact is my short fuse. I snap easily and though I am not confrontational, nothing good ever comes out of snapping really.
I am trying to think of an example that I am ok to share. Ok, without going into too much detail, I had a bit of a ‘situation’ with a sales assistant today. I was trying to return a pair of shoes that I bought and only wore for 2 days. They were fine when I bought them, but somehow some of the shoe ‘skin’ on the back of one shoe had come off leaving it looking scratched and well worn. It is my fault I suppose, but I really didn’t think the damage was consistent with a few hours wear.
I tried to reason with her to exchange them (I didn’t even want a refund) knowing that most likely she wouldn’t, but a friend of mine in a similar situation did actually succeed in getting a replacement after 3 months of usage! So I thought; worth a shot. I even rang in advance to explain the situation so as to not waste a journey to the store.
I got a very cold vibe from the very start of the exchange. She denied speaking to me on the phone, I calmly explained perhaps it was one of her other colleagues that answered me which she also denied. Now, I know I called the right store because they include the branch name in the greeting when they answer. Neither here nor there now. She was not friendly and spoke to me like I was stupid.
The whole thing got massively blown out of proportion and before it escalated I found my self saying in a very calm voice ‘they are no good to me anyway, you guys keep them’ before proceeding out of the store sans shoes. I’ve never reacted like that to anything in my life. I am known as the least confrontational person to the point of being a coward. But she made my blood boil with her patronising tone so my brain just kept saying; exit, now, exit.
For the next few minutes I felt like I had done the right thing exiting the situation, I even felt like I made a point leaving the shoes there. Fast forward a couple of hours, I kept thinking were those actions really me? I (you can say childishly, but I would like you more if you didn’t) left the, only slightly damaged, shoes there whereas millions of people around the world are barefoot (cue guilt). I left the store without the shoes AND the money I paid for them and I worried about the possibility she found me rude for walking out.
I have no idea. Someone else would have perhaps handled it better than I. All I know is; I was only trying to protect myself from emotionally exploding at that point. It is no secret the financial situation is no good these days and this is basically the only reason I tried to exchange the ruddy shoes in the first place.
Oh well, water under the bridge now. But it did give me some food for thought about my actions and who I blame for them.