Tonight I met with two students preparing to take the Graduate Records Exam, a test required for most Graduate programs. These two young men moved to the United States in November of 2010 from Libya. We briefly chatted about the changes in Libya that have taken place over the past year. They were prohibited from learning English prior to their arrival to the United States.
While I waited at the coffee shop, I ordered them each a cup of coffee. I was thoroughly embarrassed when they arrived and explained that they couldn't eat or drink until sunset because they are currently observing Ramadan.
I asked them a few questions about Ramadan, including the health implications. They told me that Ramadan is healthy for soul; when the rich feel hungry throughout Ramadan, they remember that there are many poor people suffering from hunger and starvation every day.
Their response humbled me and I sat there in silence for a minute as I reflected on the many Americans that might benefit from feeling, and truly considering, what it means to go to bed hungry.... including me.