Ramadan is the ninth month in the Muslim calendar and is considered especially holy for several reasons. Koran, the holy book, was first revealed to prophet Muhammed during the last ten days of this month.
According to the Koran, the gates of heaven are open, the gates of hell are closed, and the devils are chained up in hell during Ramadan. Since the devils are locked away, it’s easier to do good in this month, thus, dedicated Muslims are expected to donate to a charity or offer their time to help the poor, for example. Every year, the UK holds campaigns to promote safe ways of donating to charities in order to avoid scams and fake charities during Ramadan.
Most people know Ramadan best for the tradition of fasting. Fasting during Ramadan is one of the Five Pillars, or fundamental duties, of Islam. It is common to fast during the daylight hours, although there is sometimes confusion around the beginning and the end of each daily fast. For this year’s Ramadan, you can find an accurate time table for each UK city, here.
In addition to confusion around specific fasting times, there’s also some debate around the start and end date of holy month. Ramadan begins when a new moon first appears. Islam has its origins in the Saudi Arabia region, and some Muslims believe that sighting the new moon from there should mark the beginning of Ramadan everywhere in the world. Others believe that the new moon can be sighted from individual countries. This is why, it’s difficult to pick a side and say whether Ramadan begins today or tomorrow.
In the media, a lot has been written about fasting in relation to diets and lifestyle in the recent years. However, we should remember that Ramadan is not only about not-eating. Ramadan is a time for spiritual reflection and prayer. It’s a time when one must strive to improve oneself through self-discipline. As guided by the Koran: ‘Purity of thought and action is paramount’. For most, Ramadan is about spending time with family and friends and carrying out good deeds and charitable giving.
On this Holy month of Ramadan, may you be blessed with good health, prosperity, and may Blessings always shine upon you!
To read more about Ramadan, see:
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