Fasting, Work Ethic, and Shame Culture

Fasting, Work Ethic, and Shame Culture

Prof. Dr. Imam Subchi, M.A.

Professor of Anthropology of Religion and Vice Rector 2 of UIN Syarif Hidayatullah Jakarta

Ramadan 1445H is an important marker for Muslims around the world, they celebrate according to their respective cultures. "Fasting is not just about refraining from eating and drinking, but also refraining from saying lagwu (useless words/actions) and rofats. If someone mocks you or is nosy to you, tell him, "I am fasting, I am fasting". (HR. Ibn Majah and Hakim). 

So, according to the Prophet SAW, in his sabdanya, the essence of fasting is not just restraining eating and drinking. However, fasting must also be able to refrain from other things beyond restraining hunger and thirst which the Prophet termed in the hadith above as Laghwu and Rofats.

In addition, fasting also trains patience, regularity, discipline in carrying out tasks, and professionals. When someone fasts, it should have an impact on the seriousness in carrying out their obligations as employees, both public and private. Professionalism is the root of employee life that always needs to be improved.

The first week of Ramadan is often a critical moment for professionalism. Fasting during the day and praying tarawih at night are often used as a reference point to reposition one's busy life. Of course, the problem is when these rituals become an excuse for professionalism lapses. This is a practice that is not commendable. 

Ramadan is a month of improvement. The level of faith and piety certainly finds its momentum to be improved and developed. However, on the other hand, it is also necessary to upgrade professionalism, especially to provide services in the administrative, academic and other professional fields, such as digitization and security. These two areas must go hand in hand.

Consistency and Discipline  

During Ramadan, the atmosphere in the office environment may be a little different. This holy month brings its own blessings to the entire Muslim community that runs it in the office environment and others, because the atmosphere is more restrained from food and drink, but before breaking the fast, some break the fast in the office, maybe most others in the home or family environment, and this makes the atmosphere more festive.

Professionalism in the field of work services requires awareness of responsibilities and obligations. Employees must continue to provide excellent service despite fasting. This includes the ability to maintain efficiency in administrative handling, provide quick responses to questions and requests, and prioritize the needs of the people being served.

In addition, honesty and integrity are also key elements in maintaining professionalism. In managing various documents and administrative processes, for example, employees must demonstrate high integrity. This includes maintaining the confidentiality of personal information of students and lecturers, as well as avoiding practices that lead to mal-authorization and duties that can have an impact on damage to administrative systems in all fields. 

In the academic environment, for example, professionalism also plays an equally important role. Lecturers and academic staff on campus must be able to maintain the quality of the tri dharma, education, teaching, research and service despite fasting. 

They need to organize lecture and consultation schedules carefully and encourage students to improve their focus and academic work. In addition, they are also expected to continue to provide constructive and useful feedback to students, without neglecting the quality of teaching.

Professionalism in the academic field is also reflected in the commitment to continuously improve skills and knowledge. Lecturers and academic personnel on campus are expected to keep abreast of developments in science and technology, so that they can make a meaningful contribution to the development of science and education.

In addition to administrative and academic services, professionalism is also important in other professions in the campus environment, such as cleaning employees, security, and others. 

This article was published in Media Indonesia, ( on 15/03/2024 11.43 WIB)