A new book has been published locally that gives witness through poetry to the power of meditation. Ramadan Meditations is a personal journal and collection of reflective poems written in the quest for spiritual enlightenment. Written by a prominent African American who has contributed greatly to the Nashville, TSU, and global communities, Dr. Al-Hadji Amiri YaSin Al-Hadid has organized a few dozen of his poems produced during the month of Ramadan as a practicing Muslim over several decades.
“Meditation frees the mind and relaxes the body!” says Dr. Al-Hadid. “Open your mind and find liberty and wholeness of the mind, body, spirit and soul.”
Ramadan is a month of fasting and reflection that is observed worldwide by followers of Islam. The month of Ramadan is based on a lunar calendar and therefore occurs for different dates each year. During the month, observers engage in reading, studying, and abstinence from sunup to sundown, in celebration of their faith and maintenance of a spiritual discipline that rebukes evil and worldly / “lower” temptations.
“These poems can be read at any time by anyone,” says Al-Hadid. I encourage you to read the book with an open mind. Whether you follow Christian, Jewish, Islamic, any or even no faith tradition, you will find yourself identifying with the questions raised and the observations made.
“For those who are not Muslim, receive the knowledge or choose to share in the Muslim experience of Ramadan while meditating on the poems that are sure to connect with your life’s journey,” says Al-Hadid. “Or, simply enjoy the stories of life from a poetic perspective.”
Al-Hadid’s poetry flows like water…continuous and free, moving in directions unknown, unless guided. Allow this poetic author to guide you to interesting places. You will move from one mood into the next, with purpose, while remaining in an open and fluid mind-set of reaching a goal of relaxation that will liberate your mind, spirit and soul.
Dr. Al-Hadid is the founder and first chairperson of the Africana Studies Department, Tennessee State University. He is the founder and CEO of the Great Debate Honor Society, Inc. and Great Debate Academy, Inc. A proud HBCU alumnus, the Alabama State University graduate earned his Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara. The previously published author has served in leadership capacities too numerous to list here.
Copies of Ramadan Meditations are available now at Alkebu-Lan Images, Inc. bookstore at 2721 Jefferson Street in Nashville. This year Ramadan began on April 12 and ends on Wednesday, May 12. The book makes an excellent gift. I especially enjoyed the History of Walls, The Moon Also Rises, Watermelon, Solar Energy, and his two poems written for Mother’s Day, 1986 and 2019.