Islamic Voice
Shaban/Ramadan 1422
November 2001
Volume 15-11 No:179

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CHILDRENS CORNER


Ramadan Quiz
Fasting in Ramadan
Ramadan a Season of Du'a
Right Choices
The Arab and the Cunning Thief
Butterfly's Struggle
Do You Know: Rich / Poor Divide
Nature's Globe or Lollipop in Stone!
Intention of Fast
Twins' School
Don't Believe it! : Fibs And Facts About Animals
Ramadan Mubarak
WORD JUMBLE - November 2001
Internet Timer
Garlic

Ramadan Quiz

1. Who are amongst the people that must fast in the blessed month of Ramadan, and those that are not obliged to fast in this month?

Those who must fast: All mature and sane Muslims, male and female. Those who are exempted: The sick, the travelers, those too old to fast, women in child birth, women with periods, pregnant women whose heath is endangered, breast feeding women whose health is endangered.

2. What is said about performing supererogatory acts in the blessed month of Ramadan in comparison to obligatory acts performed at any other time than Ramadan?

A supererogatory ( Nafil) act in Ramadan merits the same reward as an obligatory act in any other month.

3. What facts about the month of Ramadan have been related by hadith in regards to what takes place related to heaven and hell?

The gates of heaven are opened and the gates of hell are shut.

4. This ayah from the Qur’an is in reference to what night in this blessed month of Ramadan, “.......which is better than a thousand months”.

Lailatul Qadr (The Night of Power)
Surah al-Qadr, surah number 97

5. What did Sayyidina ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab Rady Allahu ‘Anhu say about the tarawih salah? How many rak’ah did he set the salah to be?

He said what a good bid’a (innovation) it is. 20 raka’ah.

6. What is one of the sunnahs when a Muslim, for a valid reason cannot keep fast?

Not to eat in the presence of a fasting person. Repay it by fasting the number of days missed after Ramadan or Give kaffara equal to the amount of one Sadaqa tul Fitr in charity to the poor for each day missed.

7. What connection does the Qur’an and the blessed month of Ramadan have that makes the month very important and sacred?

The Qur’an was revealed in Ramadan.

8. It is said that the odour of a fasting Muslim is more fragrant to Allah Sub’hanahu wa Ta’ala than what?

Musk

9. How is the month of Ramadan a significant part of the five pillars of Islam?

It is the fourth pillar of Islam Of the five pillars of Islam, the declaration of Shahadah, salah and Fasting can be done by all Muslims while Zakah can be given and Haj performed only by those with the means to do so. It teaches us to be more humble, pious, patient and charitable.

10. What are some of the lessons taught through Ramadan in regards to food and how we should eat and drink during Ramadan?

Be moderate in eating food, never lavish.
Never waste food.
Be grateful to Allah for providing you food and drink.
Make sure your neighbour is not going hungry.

11. Hadrat Jibril ‘Alayhissalam used to bring revelation to the beloved Nabi Sallallahu ‘alaihi wa Sallam but in the month of Ramadan, he visited him for another specific purpose. What was that?

To recite to him the Qur’an

12. What are the duas for keeping and breaking the everyday fast in Ramadan. Write their meanings as well.

Du’a for keeping the fast (made the night before)
Nawaytu sawma ghadin min shahri Ramadan

I intend to fast during the day in the month of Ramadan
Du’a for breaking the fast

Allahumma laka sumtu wa bika amantu wa ‘alayka tawakkaltu wa ‘alaa Rizqika aftartu

O Allah! I fasted for Your sake and I believe in You and I put my total trust in You and I break my fast with the food provided by You.

13. List the days other than in Ramadan when Muslims fast.

a) Six days in Shawwal after ‘Eid ul Fitr.
The 9th of Dhul Hijjah : Yaum ul ‘Arafah
9th and 10th of Muharram. On the 10th of Muharram Nabi Musa ‘Alayhissalam was saved from the army of Fir’awn
d) 15th Sha’ban : Nisf Sha’ban
e) The 13th, 14th and 15th of each Muslim (lunar) month, called Ayyam ul Beed (The White Days)
f) On Mondays, as the beloved Prophet Sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was born on Monday
g) On Thursdays, which is also the sunnah of our beloved Prophet Sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam

14. List three important events in the history of our Nabi Sallallahu ‘alaihi wa Sallam that occured in the month of Ramadan?

The Qur’an was revealed
The Battle of Badr
The Victory (fat’h) of Makkah

15. In which year was fasting in Ramadan enjoined on the Muslims?

2 A.H. ; 623 C.E

16. It is said that the month of Ramadan is in three parts. List them and describe the special blessings of each part.

First 10 days: Brings Allah’s mercy
2nd 10 days : Brings Allah’s forgiveness
3rd 10 days : Brings emancipation from hell-fire

17. What is Sadaqa tul Fitr?

Charity given in Ramadan and before ‘Eid salah for each person in the family. The amount to be given per person is 2.45 kg of wheat or barley or the value of the barley in cash.

18. How is the month of Ramadan concluded and what is the significance of this day?

After Ramadan comes ‘Eid ul Fitr which is a day of rejoicing as Allah rewards Muslims for their fasting. There is salatul ‘Eid, takbeerat, visiting relatives, the sick and the graveyard to pray for the dead.

19. What are the names of the Islamic months before and after Ramadan.

Month before Ramadan : Sha’ban

Month after Ramadan : Shawwal

20. Zhikr is one of the best things you can do. What is zhikr?

Rememberance of Allah

21. Generally, at what age does fasting in Ramadan become compulsary?

When someone attains puberty, at the age of 13 or 14

22. If you recite one juz everyday, how many times can you complete the recitation of the Holy Qur’an in the month of Ramadan?

Once

23. In which month of the Islamic Calendar does Ramadan fall and what is it based on?

Ramadan falls in the ninth month of the Islamic Calendar. The Islamic calendar, like the solar calendar has twelve months. The Islamic calendar is based on the moon (Lunar), while the solar calendar is based on the sun (Solar).

The solar calendar months are made of 30 or 31 days except for February. The Lunar calendar months are made of 29 or 30 days. Ramadan is sometimes 29 days and sometimes 30 days. Ramadan is a very important month for the Muslims.

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Fasting in Ramadan

* Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic Calendar. The Islamic calendar ,like the solar calendar has twelve months. The Islamic calendar is based on the moon (Lunar),while the solar calendar is based on the sun (Solar). The solar calendar months are made of 30 or 31 days except for February. The Lunar calendar months are made of 29 or 30 days. Ramadan is sometimes 29 days and sometimes 30 days. Ramadan is a very important months for the Muslims.

* Ramadan is also the month during which the Qur’an was given (revealed) to the Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh).{Quran 2: 285} Ramadan has one of the most blessed night of the whole year, the night of power or night of destiny, called in Arabic Lailat Al-Qadr.

* Fasting begins at Dawn and ends at sunset. Dawn is the time of the day which is about one hour before sun rise and is the beginning of the first light in the dark sky of the night.

* If you are too young, you may not fast in Ramadan. You have to wait until you are old enough to fast without hurting yourself. You can ask your parents for a permission to fast part of the day for practice, until you are old enough to fast the whole day like the grown ups.

* People who are sick or traveling a long distance that will make them very tired, may break fasting. They will have to fast the same number of days later after Ramadan.

* Believers who are too old to fast will pay charity to a poor person for every day they cannot fast. God therefore will bless them and will help the poor in their living.

* Fasting has many benefits to the believers. Like all the religious practices in Islam (Submission),fasting will make the believer stronger as a believer, closer to God, more blessed and happier to be with God and to obey Him.

* Fasting teaches the believer self control because the fasting controls his or her desire or need to drink or eat during the fasting period. People who learn self control can resist wrong doing or temptation to follow their friends or peers just to avoid embarrassment or to be like everyone else.

* Fasting gives the believers a chance to feel what a hungry needy person feels when he or she does not have any food to eat.

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Ramadan a Season of Du'a

The nights of Ramadan are a time for worshipping Allah, for praying to Allah and seeking His forgiveness. Allah knows that human beings are likely to sin, and need of an opportunity to repent and reform themselves. Hence the month of Ramadan, a season of Du’a and Istighfar whereby Muslims can relieve themselves of the burden of sins.

One of the etiquette’s of Du’a is to ask for others, to remember those who are in need. It is a selfless act, displaying humanity and consideration for others. Allah loves a person who first asks for others, then prays for himself.

Many people all over the world suffer indescribable miseries. Tyranny and oppression are rampant in many countries. There is little we can do to alleviate the sufferings. However we can at least pray sincerely for them, hoping that Allah will relieve them as He has power over all things. We also pray that Allah may give us the will and the ability to help others in whatever way we can.

Humility is an essential part of the etiquette of Du’a. An acknowledgment of one’s sins and shortcomings is most becoming to a supplicant.

The God of Islam is a loving, gracious God who treats the human being Better than he deserves. The root of the relationship between Allah and man is the love of the Creator for His creatures. It is on man to search his heart for a reciprocal response.

The most popular du’a in the month of Ramadan is Laa Ilaha Ill’Allah Nastagfirullah Nas’aluka’l Jannata wa na’uzubika minannaar

Allahumma Innaka ‘Afuwwun Tuhibbu’l ‘afwa Fa’fu annaa Yaa Karim al ‘Afwa

None is to be worshipped but Allah. We beg forgiveness of Allah. We seek paradise from You (O Allah) And protection from hell-fire. O Allah! You are the Most Forgiving You love forgiveness. So forgive us, O the Most Generous in forgiving.

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Right Choices

11Right Choices.jpg

By Naveeda Sharieff

Here is an interesting story . This is what should keep us going day after day inspite of the odds.

Masood is the kind of guy you love to hate. He is always in a good mood and always has something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, “If I were any better, I would be twins!”

He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Masood was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation. Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Masood and asked him, “I don’t get it! You can’t be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?” Masood replied, “Each morning I wake up and say to myself, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or ... you can choose to be in a bad mood. I choose to be in a good mood. Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or...I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it.

Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or... I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life.

“Yeah, right, it’s not that easy,” I protested “Yes, it is,” Masood said. “Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood.

The bottom line: It’s your choice how you live your life.”

I reflected on what Masood said. Soon thereafter, I left the Tower Industry to start my own business. We lost touch, but I often thought about him when made a choice about life instead of reacting to it.

Several years later, I heard that Masood was involved in a serious accident, falling some 60 feet from a communications tower. After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Masood was released from the hospital with rods placed in his back.

I saw Masood about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied. “If I were any better, I’d be twins. Wanna see my scars?” I declined to see his wounds, but I did ask him what had gone through his mind as the accident took place. “The first thing that went through my mind was the well-being of my soon to be born daughter, “

Masood replied. “Then, as I lay on the ground, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live or... I could choose to die. I chose to live.”

“Weren’t you scared? Did you lose consciousness?” I asked. Masood continued, “...the paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the OT and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read “he’s a dead man. I knew I needed to take action.”

“What did you do?” I asked. “Well, there was a big burly nurse shouting questions at me,” said Masood. “She asked if I was allergic to anything. “Yes, I replied.” The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled, “Gravity.” Over their laughter, I told them, “I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, not dead.”

Masood lived, thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully.

Attitude, after all, is everything. “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” After all, today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.

You have two choices now: 1. Delete this. 2. Forward it to the people you care about. You know the choice I made.

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The Arab and the Cunning Thief

11Arab and the Theif.jpg

By A. I. Makki

This is the story of an Arab farmer from Palestine, who used to watch over his farm armed with a gun, to chase wild animals and intruders away. It so happened that one day while the farmer was doing his night rounds on his farm, he came across a thief who was trying to steal his chicken. He threatened the thief with his gun and wanted to tie him up and hand him over to the police, when the thief begged the farmer: “Take all that I have for the wrong that I have done to you,” said the thief, giving the Arab farmer some money that he had with him, “but please don’t harm me or hand me over to the police. I have a few other friends to look after and they will all starve without me.”

11farm.jpgThe Palestinian farmer decided against taking the man’s money and took pity on the thief and decided to let him go with a warning. He made him promise that he would earn his money hereafter by hard work and would never ever steal from the Palestinians who had graciously allowed them to stay on their land. As the farmer was about to leave, the thief begged, “Take pity on me! How can I return home, having spent so much time on the road, with nothing to show for my effort? I’ll be the laughing stock for failing to get even a single chicken for their dinner. I will be disgraced. At least, if I could prove that I put up a great struggle before surrendering my possessions, then the disgrace would be easier to bear. Please, do me a favour and shoot two bullets into the top of my hat so that I can tell them that I have escaped from being shot by a hair’s breadth. The Palestinian was in no mood to oblige but on seeing the thief in tears, accepted to do what he wanted and fired two bullets into his hat.

“While you’re at it,” pleaded the thief again; “maybe you could put another two holes into my bag.” And he held out his bag, which he had brought along with him to stuff the chicken in.

Again the farmer consented, and fired two more rounds into his bag. He was about to go when, in a voice, which was hardly a whisper, the thief timidly said, “I know that this may seem silly, but perhaps you could shoot a few bullets into my overcoat so that the story will be more convincing.”

The farmer did as he was asked until all his bullets were gone. The thief was waiting for this moment. When he saw that the farmer had used all his bullets, he immediately overpowered the Palestinian and made away with all his chicken and his other valuables.

This is how the Arabs of Palestine were robbed of their belongings and land in the past. These methods with a few minor changes are being employed to deprive the Palestinians of a state on the land they once owned.

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Butterfly's Struggle

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A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared in it. He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through the little hole. Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could and could go no farther. Then the man decided to help the butterfly.

He took a pair of scissors and snipped the remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily. Something was strange. The butterfly had a swollen body and shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the butterfly because he expected that the wings would enlarge and the body would contract any moment. The wings would then support the body in flight. Neither happened. In fact, the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and deformed wings. It was never able to fly.

The man in his kindness and haste did not understand the process. The butterfly needed some struggle to come out of the small opening of the cocoon. This was the God‘s way of forcing fluid from the body of the butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it became free. Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If God allowed us to go through all our life without any obstacles, that would cripple us. We would not be as strong as what we could have been. Not only that, we could never fly.

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Do You Know

Rich / Poor Divide

We live in the third world countries. The third world means countries which are in developing stage and have low incomes. Their rate of literacy is also low and majority of people are unskilled. They mainly survive on agriculture. Even if they have industry, that is dependent on Developed countries to sell their products. When a person has to struggle hard to get his daily bread, milk, medicine, education and fuel to cook and light up homes etc, he cannot think of electricity, telephone and computer which need a lot of money. Since power, phone and computer are essential for getting connected with each other, the third world people have very low ‘connectivity’. Here you can see how the third world compares with the developed world.

* In the US, 56 per cent people are online. That means they have access to the Internet and they can be reached by e-mail. But in South America, only 2 to 3 per cent people are connected by the e-mail

* Africa has 740 million people. But only 14 million people have telephones. This is less than the number of telephones in the cities of New York and Tokyo.

* Of the each 100 people in the world, at least 33 have never made a phone call

* In Japan 11 persons among each 100 own a computer while in India two persons among 1000 own a computer.

* In rich countries (the US, the UK, France, Germany, Japan etc.) there are 40 times more computers than in India, Pakistan or Bangladesh, 150 as many times more mobile phones 1000 times as many Internet subscribers.

* Half of the websites in the world are in English which are understood by only 10 per cent population of the world. But Japan has its own Internet in Japanese language.

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Nature's Globe or Lollipop in Stone!

Natures Lollipop

This boulder resting on a sandstone pedestal near Lusk in Wyoming state of the USA surprises the visitors and nature lovers. This looks like a giant lollipop or a globe held in the air by a sandstone pedestal.

Actually, this natural lollipop came to be formed by erosion of sandstone around its base and which eventually formed the pedestal. The boulder is a coming together of calcite-cemented sandstone that endured while surrounding sandstone eroded. It protected the sandstone below it, forming a pedestal.

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Intention of Fast

To sincerely fast for the sake of Allah. The intention need not be uttered. It is in reality an act of the heart which does not involve the tongue. It is a bid‘ah [innovation] to do so. The fact that one knows he is fasting the next day is “intention”.

The fact of taking Suhoor is “intention. About sincerity in acts of worship Allah said in the Qur’an: “And they were ordained nothing else than to worship Allah, keeping religion pure for Him” [al-Bayyinah]

Also the Messenger of Allah (e) said : Actions are judged according to the intention behind them, and for everyone is what he intended” [Bukhari and Muslim]

The intention must be made before fajr and during every night of Ramadan and is valid if made in any part of the night.

Hafsah reported that the Prophet (e) said: “Whoever does not determine to fast before fajr will have no fast” (that is it won’t be accepted) [an-Nasa’i, at-Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, and others, Sahih].

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Twins' School

11twins.jpg

The Virgin Mary School of Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh has 15 twins among its 750 students. Last year nine twins took admission in the school. At one time there were 22 twins.

The twins cause a lot of confusion. For example, twins Piyush and Prapesh study in 5th standard. Once Piyush was punished for the mistake Prapesh had committed. Similarly one is questioned for the homework given to the other. Kiran and Kunal of 7th standard and Tapan and Tarun of first standard are almost carbon copies of each other. According to a teacher, Santosh Sharma, twins love each other very much, be they brothers or brother-sister. They like to sit together. However their intelligence level is different.

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Don't Believe it!

Fibs And Facts About Animals

You can escape a lion by climbing a tree

There are few trees on the plains of Africa. But this does not mean that lions can’t climb trees. In fact, male lions like to climb trees. They climb to get away from the heat and flies on the ground or to chase their prey. So don’t plan to escape a lion by climbing a tree.

Cobra dances to a snake charmer’s music

The snake charmer plays a flute like instrument. The cobra rises up in the basket. The snake appears to sway and dance to the music. But snakes are nearly deaf. What’s going on here?

When frightened, a cobra lifts up the front part of its body. That’s why it coils up out of the basket. The snakes sees the snake charmer swaying from side to side. This might be an enemy. The cobra is on guard. It moves from side to side ready to strike at the moving figure. The swaying makes it look as though the cobra is dancing.

Empty crab shells come from dead crabs

Did you ever find an empty crab shell on a beach? Most people think these shells come from dead crabs. But that’s not the story at all. The shell is the crab’s skeleton. The skeleton is on the outside of the body. It is different from your skeleton. The bones of your skeleton are inside your body. The bones of your skeleton get longer and thicker as you grow bigger. But the crabs skeleton doesn’t change. It can’t stretch to make more room as the crab grows in size. So the crab wriggles out and grows a new bigger shell. The shells you find on the beach come from live crabs.

Compiled by Shafia Ahmed

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Ramadan Mubarak

Counting down the days to Eid
So I pray and fast and read
I go to the mosque and listen to Qur’an
All through the month of Ramadan

Ramadan’s a blessed month
We give thanks and offer praise
We share with others and give sadaqa
For 29 or 30 days

We wait for the crescent moon in the sky
To tell us when its time to fast
Then we wait again for the moon to come
To tell us which day is last

When the last day is here
All the children shout with glee
We dress up nice and go to the prayer
Then after we get our eidie

Oh the days of Ramadan!
How I wish they were not gone
I can’t wait for next year
To say that Ramadan is here!

Samantha Sanchez Negm

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WORD JUMBLE - November 2001

Fill the answers in the rectangular frame on the basis of clues. Now pick up the circled letters to form the name of the monument.


Clue: Second Surah of the Quran

Clue: The name of Makkah as described in the Quran

Clue: Large and strong type of grass that is used in making ladder in India

Clue: A small state which became a part of India in 1971

Clue: The month of fasting.

11quiz.jpg
 
                         

Write the correct words and the name of the monument on a separate sheet of paper and send it along with the coupon printed below. Write you name, full address, age and school where you study. Entries without address will not be considered. The first winner will be given Rs. 200. Six others will receive a childrens novel. Last Date to send the entries is Dec 10, 2001.

Results

September 2001 Contest Results

First Prize: SADEKA M.VORA, Gujrath Rs. 200

The Jury has found Six other all correct entries as the winners by drawing of lots. Childrens Novel each has been awarded to the following

1. Zohra Fathima, Bangalore
2. Md. Wasim Abrar, Orissa
3. Kiswar Sultana, Chennai
4. Asifa, Bangalore
5. Uzma Mariyam, Tamil Nadu
6. Samiya M. Thai, Gujrath

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Internet Timer

Internet Timer is an application that makes it a lot easier for you to keep track of the cost for your dial-up connection to the Internet. It can store information for up to 16 users and automatically detect the Internet connection and start/stop the Timer. It is a very flexible and configurable utility. This will enable the internet user to control the duration of his browsing and hence the charges. This can also be configured for multi-user mode so that the same timer could be used by different persons on different names with passwords allotted to each of them. By this, say, the use of Internet by different persons in the family using the same computer for browsing could be timed and determined. This also is useful in business houses to keep a watch on the usage of internet by their employees. By appropriately entering the internet charges in the preference option, the telephone charges for the internet usage also could be built into this. This interesting program can be downloaded from the website http://m1.161.telia.com/~u16104813/timer/index.html A detailed help is available in readme file which is downloaded along with the program.

S. Syed Azimuddeen, akhthar69@hotmail.com

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Garlic

Garlic is something no cook worth his or her saucepan should ignore.

The ancient Egyptians believed the herb to be effective against an impressive list of 22 ingredients, and fed slaves with it to increase stamina and strength. In old Greece and Rome, dog bites, asthma, leprosy and bladder infections could be cured with garlic, while the middle agers thought it capable of preventing the plague. Louis Pasteur showed that it could kill bacteria, and during World War II, it was used as an antiseptic for wounds. The everyday diet should include between one and ten cloves of garlic, according to the experts, preferably in fresh form. But too much can cause flatulence, irritation of the gastric tract and, of course, bad breath.

Garlic has proven virtues. It can lower cholesterol, prevent the formation of blood clots, reduce blood pressure, prevent cancer and protect against bacterial and fungal infections.

What is done with garlic affects what it does. If the clove is cut or crushed, enzyme action within the plant cells creates a new compound called allicin; this is known to kill 23 types of bacteria, including salmonella and staphylococcus. If the clove is heated, a compound that can prevent arteries from clogging and reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels is formed, which could be helpful in preventing heart attacks and strokes.

Garlic may be able to prevent cancer by stimulating the immune system to eliminate toxins and combat carcinogens, and because of this may work well in the fight against AIDS. It is also thought to be useful in curing fungal and yeast infections.

A favourite form of garlic is the chutney- garlic ground down coarsely with olive oil and a few roasted red chillies, then bottled and left in the sun for a few hours. Eat it with hot buttered toast, fresh phulkas or new-baked bread and heaven seems to burst in your mouth. But brush your teeth before telling anyone about it!

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