Ashura is a holiday celebrated annually in Turkey. It signifies many events for Muslims, amongst the most significant being the day Noah’s Ark set on dry land. The month long festivities center on promoting friendship, good relations between neighbors and universal peace and understanding. In Turkey, a traditional dish is prepared during this month known as Noah’s pudding. It is meant to symbolize the celebratory meal Noah made when he came off the Ark. It is a sign of peace, of community, of peace, and of a bright future.
We like to think that human beings are like the various ingredients in Noah’s pudding. Weather Muslim, Christian, Jewish or Atheist we are all human and we all possess the potential to come together as friends and build a sweet Society just like those various ingredients which come together to make Noah’s pudding.
As we are serving a bowl of Noah’s pudding we share a dream of a ship.
On the ship people of the globe live in harmony with one another. As a cup of Noah’s pudding, each nation embraces the other.
On this ship world citizens come together based on common values and global spirituality.
On this ship everyone will be able to keep and retain their own identity, culture, faith, heritage, richness and taste. There will be respect for each of these cultures and faiths.
On this ship no one will exclude or insult others’ believe or leaders. No one will impose their own beliefs, values, lifestyles or views on to others.
On this ship there is dialogue and understanding among people of different faiths. Instead of bias and hatred there is empathy and tolerance. Instead of armaments and guns, there are roses. Instead of education for war there is education for peace.
This is our ship! This is Noah’s Ark! This is our hope!
With hope, faith and love we will be able to transform the jangling discords of humanity in the into a beautiful
Global Symphony of being together-all of us United experiencing the art of living together in harmony on Noah’s Ark like a cup of Noah pudding
So if you are interested for Noah’s Pudding, please do let us know and let’s share our Noah’s pudding with you!
The Prophet Noah called his people to the religion of God for nine hundred and fifty years. When his people insisted on unbelief and persisted in their wrongdoings, God ordered him to build an ark. After completing the construction of the ship, Noah embarked in it, upon God’s command, of each kind two, male and female, and his family—except those against whom the Word (of punishment) had already gone forth,—and the believers. (11:40).
A QUICK JOURNEY TO THE BEGINNING It was thousands of years ago, a thousand years after Adam. A community again was at the threshold of a catastrophe. This community abandoned worshiping one God; they had become a community of pagans. Adultery spread, those with power were oppressing the ones without power, and there was no justice. The level humanity was no better than hyenas in the wildness. The Great Creator, because of His All Compassion to them all and to all humanity, sent Noah. Therefore, literature has called this community Noah’s Community (or Noah’s People). Noah called them to one God, made sure that justice was founded and maintained, eliminated all evils in the society, as did Moses, David, Salih, Solomon, Jesus, Muhammad (p.b.u.them all) and the ones whose names we do not know, but believe in.
THE JOURNEY OF BELIEVERS Noah asked his people for 950 years to leave paganism, called them to the true way, the truth, believing in one God. But people teased him and called him crazy. Later his wife joined the pagans in their betrayal. Noah suffered with his people for 800 years. He was very sincere in his faith to the Lord. One day God sent the Angel Gabriel to order Noah to build a ship. Inspired by God, Noah built the ship. God ordered him to take two of every creature, the believers, and his family, except his wife, in the vessel. Noah again told people about the flood, and warned them against it. But their response remained same. The believers and animals boarded the ship and supplies were loaded. Then, God said to the sky “O sky! Let your water pour down”. He said to earth “O earth, hold your water”. The water started rising. As all nonbelievers were drowning with their all vices, a long and hard journey was awaiting Noah and the believers, a long, tumultuous journey. Days had passed, and food was scarce. They were facing starvation. No food by itself was enough to make a good meal. Noah gathered all the foods and, mixing them, obtained a delicious meal. Believers survived through famine. The very next day, flood receded. Today we call the meal Noah prepared “Noah’s Pudding”. It is also called as “Ashura”. Since that day, Muslims cook it in every year on the month of Muharram according to the Islamic calendar in remembrance of what Noah and his people went through, mixing all the dry beans and wheat they can find, making this pudding and sharing it with their neighbors.
‘Ashura’ is a day of great historical significance. On this day:
- Allah accepted the repentance of Adam (pbuh) after his exile from Paradise
- Allah saved Noah (pbuh) and his companions in the ark
- Allah extinguished the fire in which Abraham (pbuh) was thrown by Nimrod
- Allah spoke directly to Moses (pbuh) and gave him the Commandments.
- On this same 10th of Muharram, Job (pbuh) was restored to health (from leprosy) Joseph (pbuh) was reunited with his father Jacob (pbuh)
- Yunus (pbuh) was taken out from the belly of the fish;
- The sea was divided as the nation of Israel was delivered from captivity and Pharaoh’s army was destroyed.
- ‘Ashura’ is also the day when David (pbuh) was forgiven; the kingdom of Solomon (pbuh) was restored
- Jesus (pbuh) was raised to Heavens
- the Holy Prophet’s (pbuh) sins were forgiven; and Hussein (r.a) (the Prophet’s, pbuh, grandson) achieved the honor of Martyrdom.
PROPHET MUHAMMED ( P.B.U.H ) HAS SAID:
- Worship Allah as much as you can on ‘Ashura.
- Whoever fasts on this day is like one who fasts all his life.
- Whoever clothes a naked person Allah will release him from a painful punishment. He who visits a sick person, Allah will grant him a reward that will not be decreased.
- Whoever places his hand on an orphan’s head, or feeds a hungry person or gives water to a thirsty man, Allah will feed him a feast from Paradise and will quench his thirst with Salsabil (a wine that does not intoxicate).
- Whoever provides generously for his family on this day, Allah will be generous to him throughout this year.
- And whoever applies Kuhl to his eyes will never suffer from eye-sore again, inSha’Allah. O’ Allah! Bless us to perform good deeds and gain their reward on ‘Ashura. Make the new year one of unity, cooperation and success for Believers in this city and around the world. Ameen
The making of ashure is a common practice among Muslim and Christian people in the Middle East. In Turkey, it is customary to prepare ashure at a certain time of the year.
Christian communities throughout the Middle East prepare a similar sweet wheat dish, called hedik, amah or qamhiyyi. Ashure prepared at home is shared with the neighbors. Generally people who prepare ashure send a cup to each of the neighbors in their building. As tradition goes the residents of forty houses to your east, west, north and south are considered neighbors. One has responsibility of maintaining good relations with their neighbors regardless of what their religion or beliefs may be. It is also a custom to prepare ashure in large cauldrons and distribute it to the poor.
THE RECIPE Recipe for Noah’s Pudding (makes 30 servings)
- 1 cup wheat
- 1 cup white beans
- 1 cup garbanzo beans
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup almonds
- 3/4 cup peanuts
- 12 dried apricots
- 5 1/2 cups sugar water (enough to cover) topping: walnuts, cinnamon
- Soak wheat, white beans, garbanzo beans and almonds in water overnight.
- Boil the above ingredients, remove the outer shell or skin.
- Soak the raisins in boiling water until they soften.
- Put all the ingredients above (steps 1-3) in a large pot and boil. Add peanuts and almonds (peeled and cut in half) at this point.
- Chop the apricot into small pieces, add to mixture along with sugar.
- Boil for 10-15 minutes.
- Enjoy your pudding!*These are the ingredients we chose. Feel free to experiment with other grain, fruits and nuts. Pomegranate, sesame seeds and orange peel are recommended