KUWAIT: Kuwaitis shop for fruits at a market during the holy month of Ramadan in downtown Kuwait City. During Ramadan, practicing Muslims do not eat, drink, smoke or have sex between sunrise and sunset. — By Yasser Al-Zayyat

KUWAIT: With the advent of the holy month of Ramadan, a Muslim person is usually confused weighing physical needs against the spiritual ones, which highlights the significance of family economics. Religiously speaking, this is a month of worship when a Muslim doubles efforts to come close to Allah, does more good deeds, pray for forgiveness, give alms and is kind and generous to all people. But nowadays many people are seduced into favoring their bodily needs and hurry to buy lots of foodstuffs and goods that are generally needless, thus turning the holy month into a month of extravagance.

In an attempt to correct this lavish lifestyle, KUNA interviewed Salah Al-Jimaz, an expert in family economics. He noted that shopping centers see hectic movement in this month with people buying lots of foodstuffs, clothes, home appliances and accessories that add to the financial burdens of shoppers. “People think they have free will to buy whatever they need, but in fact, they are controlled or influenced by promotion campaigns of companies that lure shoppers to their products and convince them that they must buy now immediately,” he said.

“Here I’d like to set forth five ways that could help people to spend rationally and control their needs: “First, do not buy food when you are hungry because you will be over-influenced by your instinct for food; “Second, write down your needs before going to a shopping center and avoid buying any unlisted product; “Third, avoid shopping at heavy rush hour when crowds of shoppers distract your attention and make you buy needless things; “Fourth, do not take along your kids; surely they will distract you and force you into buying lots of things; “And finally, classify the items you need to buy, such as rice, sugar, drinks and detergents, into categories and specify a certain time for buying them on a weekly or a monthly basis,” he said. Al-Jimaz added that the values of noble Islam are against extravagant spending that leads a person to borrowing and poverty. — KUNA