Editor: This week America celebrates Thanksgiving. It is a holiday which awakens the spirit of thankfulness in all of us.
As a Muslim living in America, I have always enjoyed this holiday as it goes hand in hand with the teachings of Islam which also urge us to be thankful. First and foremost we are taught to be thankful to God for the blessings that He has bestowed upon us. God says in the Holy Quran, “If you are grateful, I will, surely, bestow more favors on you” (14:8). Not only are we exhorted to thank God but also to thank people around us. The Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) has said, “One who is not grateful to others is not grateful to God.”
However, Islam doesn’t set a day aside for giving thanks to God, in fact we are taught to praise and thank God several times every day. But the reminder to be thankful is always appreciated by us Muslims on the occasion of Thanksgiving.
According to Islam, there are three types of gratitude. First, being grateful in one’s heart. Second, expressing gratitude by verbal praise. Third, showing gratitude via one’s actions. Islam teaches that the best action to render thanks to God is by giving to the needy, which is why so many of us Muslims participate in numerous charity drives at the occasion of Thanksgiving as well as throughout the year. When we give from our wealth, we show gratitude for it.
At the end, I would like to wish all those who are reading this a very Happy Thanksgiving. Thanks for being such wonderful neighbors and friends.
Aamna Bhatt, Ashburn