Friday, October 23, 2009

Day 5: Water and Electricity

Welcome to day 5 of No Impact Week, Fri Oct 23rd! The fifth day is all out about the most common and ubiquitous resources available to us, that we almost never stop and think about, water & electricity.

Please use the information below in addition to the No Impact Project's Manual (alongside the DC Green Muslims No Impact Manual).

Remember each day builds upon the previous one, so keep up what you have been doing today and previous days and add to it with what you do tomorrow as well.

General Tips
  • Water Conservation:
    • Wudu is an act of purification and we can be conscious of how much water is being used, in hopes of preventing unnecessary loss of water.
    • Shorter showers, turning the faucet off when washing the dishes and brushing teeth.
  • Electricity Conservation:
    • Turn off the lights when exiting a room.
    • Unplug appliances.
    • Wear a jacket instead of turning up the heat.

Islamic Inspiration:

“And it is God who created the human being out of water.”

Water is a symbol of life. In Islam, it is also seen as an important sign of God as it is mentioned over 60 times in the Qu’ran. We are told “from water God brought everything to life.” (21:30)

“Your God is One God, there is no deity other than Him, the most Gracious, the Most Merciful. Truly in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the succession of the night and the days, and in the ships that speed through the sea with what is useful to humanity, and in the waters which
God sends down from the sky, giving life thereby to the earth after its death, and…in all of this, there are ayat for those the people who use their intelligence.”(2:163‐164)

Water is typically described as being “sent down” from the sky, comparable to how God’s scripture and mercy came from above. Some scholars have referred to water as a metaphor for a broader meaning based on mercy and knowledge being distributed widely to mankind.

God sends down water from the sky, and [once‐dry] valleys are running high, Each according to its capacity. (13:17)

God asks Muslims to pay attention the signs around us as proof of God’s bounty and mercy and as a way to become closer to Him. Once we start contemplating the natural signs all around us, we can begin to recognize the symbiotic relationship that exists between man and nature.
And when Moses asked for water for his people, We said: ‘Strike with your staff the rock.’ And there gushed forth from it twelve springs, and everyone knew his drinking place. (2:60)

The advice that Moses’ community is given in that verse is the very ethical notion of eco‐spiritual trusteeship that we also need to heed today:

“So eat and drink of God’s sustenance, and do no evil or mischief on Earth.”

In a subsequent verse of the Qur’an, we are told that the rock that the prophets strike is not just a physical rock, but rather the rock‐like hardness of our own hearts:

‘‘Then even after that, your hearts grew hard so that they were like rocks, or even harder, for indeed there are rocks from which rivers gush forth, and there are rocks which split asunder so that water flows from them, and others which sink because of the awe they have towards God. And God is not unmindful of what you do.’’(2:74)


Dont forget to relate your experiences and thoughts and comment on the appropriate days blog post at our blog, dcgreenmuslims.blogspot.com, for a chance to win organic soaps from Mosaic Soaps (http://mosaic.azam.org/)

5 comments:

Nouf said...

Just did wudu and tried to use the least amount of water as possible. Its terrible that this isnt taught to us at a younger age when we first start learning about wudu and its significance. Speaking for myself at least, wudu can sometimes waste a whole sinkful of water or more. It would be interesting to plug the sink and see how much water one actually uses compared to how much one needs.

Sarah said...

I had to interview two water industry leaders for work and IT'S SCARY how little political will there is to do research on water availability, supply and quality and take a stand on more efficient use of water, not only by the consumer but by industry.

It is a grime future if we continue to use water the same way...Water is the next oil but the real scary thing is, the amount of water needed dwarfs our oil needs.

Another Sarah said...

I've been working on being water-conscious for a long time, and it has become a part of my lifestyle. I've discovered a new way of being more water-conscious that I wanted to share - some of you may have heard of charity:water. It's a fantastic organization that helps build wells where people don't have access to clean drinking water. Donating to them and/or praying for their continued success is another great way of being water-conscious, because remembering how fortunate we are to have clean and plentiful water makes us realize how precious it is and therefore encourages us to try harder to conserve it, while giving it to those who need it.

sarsoorti said...

Today I tried to be more conscience of my electrical use because that is one aspect of "being green" that I KNOW I need to work on. I made sure to turn off the lights when they weren't in use, I took the stairs as much as possible and I brushed my teeth in the dark.

My biggest goal of the day was to try not to use the elevator at work. The problem with that is that when going up, the stairwell is locked, so that plan backfired. Instead, I was determined to not ever push the button for the elevator myself and waited to "pool" with someone to get to the floor I needed. I did some awkward waiting around the lobby until a large group came and I was able to share my ride with them. I think the doorman at my office thinks I'm a weirdo...but it was worth it.

In other news, I was able to get a coworker who never knew we had a stairwell, to walk down the stairs with me. Success!

Sami said...

Its related in the authentic tradition of the Prophet Mohammad [Pbuh] that he used to use one madd for wudu and one saa' for showers.

One madd is equivalent to one handful of water and a saa' is equivalent to 3-5 handfuls. This means that he probably used to reuse the water that fell from his limbs [sort of like plugging the sink like Nouf mentioned].

Sala Allahu 'alayhee wa salam!