What is Ramadan?
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and Muslims around the world observe Ramadan as a month of fasting (sawm), prayer, reflection and community.
It is considered one of the holiest months for Muslims, marked by fasting, and is considered one of the five pillars of Islam.
These are the five principles that Muslims believe are mandatory acts commanded by God: the other pillars are faith, prayer, charity and the pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca.
Muslims believe some of the first verses of the Quran, Islam’s holy book, were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad during Ramadan.
Therefore, special emphasis is placed on reciting the Qur ‘an at this time.
Muslims are also encouraged to be charitable, strengthen their relationship with God, and show kindness and patience.
Some devotees also perform additional nighttime prayers, called Taraweeh, which are only performed during Ramadan.
When is Ramadan this year?
The date of Ramadan varies from year to year due to the cycle of the moon.
In 2023, Ramadan will begin on the evening of Wednesday, March 22 and end on the evening of Friday, April 21.
If you want to wish someone good luck, you can say “Ramadan Mubarak,” which means “blessed Ramadan,” or “Ramadan Kareem,” which translates to “Generous Ramadan.”
The Rules of Ramadan
During Ramadan, Muslims are required to fast every day. They should avoid eating, drinking, smoking and sexual activities, as well as unfriendly or impure thoughts and words and immoral behavior.
Ramadan is a time to practice self-discipline and self-reflection. Fasting is seen as a way to cleanse the soul and generate compassion for those in the world who are hungry and less fortunate. Muslims go to work and school and go about their daily activities during Ramadan; However, some people also spend this time reading the entire Quran, performing special prayers, and going to the mosque more frequently.
All young Muslims in good health are asked to fast. The sick, elderly, travelers, pregnant and lactating are exempt, although they should make up for missed fast days or help feed the poor at some point in the future.
During Ramadan, the first meal of each day before dawn is called “suhoor.” The daily fast is broken with a meal called Iftar. Dates are traditionally eaten to break the fast. Iftar is usually an elaborate feast celebrated with family and friends. The types of food vary from culture to culture.
Can Muslims skip fasting under certain circumstances? If so, will they make up for missed days?
All those who are physically limited (for example, because of illness or old age) are exempt from the obligation to fast; The same applies to anyone who is traveling. Those who are able to do so will make up the missed days at a later time. People may make up all the missed days in the month after Ramadan, the month of Shawwal. Those who cannot fast at all should, if they have the financial means, provide meals to those in need as an alternative course of action.
What’s the point of a 29 – or 30-day fast?
By fasting for long periods of time, Muslims aim to develop certain attitudes and values that they can develop throughout the year. Ramadan is often compared to a spiritual boot camp.
In addition to experiencing feelings of hunger and thirst, devotees often have to deal with fatigue from late night prayers and pre-dawn meals. This is especially true for the last 10 nights of the month. In addition to being believed to be the time when the Quran was first revealed, this is also believed to be the time when divine rewards multiplied. Many Muslims perform extra prayers during this time.
Do Muslims celebrate the end of Ramadan?
The end of Ramadan marks the beginning of one of the two Islamic holidays, Eid al-Fitr, the “festival of breaking the fast.” On this day, many Muslims attend religious services, visit relatives and friends, and exchange gifts.