What is Ramadan?
Ramadan is a part of the 5 Pillars of Islam and it is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, observed by Muslims worldwide as a time of fasting, prayer, reflection and community. During Ramadan, Muslims all over the world fast from dawn until sunset with no water or food, for the purpose of remembering those less fortunate (e.g. the poor and those in desolate conditions) and it is a time for Muslims to be grateful to God for all his blessings. Ramadan is a time for Muslims to improve their spirituality and connection to God, and historically it is a time where God contacted the Prophet Muhammed with the Quran, the Muslim holy book.
When is Ramadan this year?
This year Ramadan officially began on Friday 24th April and will last a month. Each year, Ramadan starts with the sighting of the new moon, marking the start of the ninth month of the Islamic calendar
What is a typical day like during Ramadan?
During Ramadan, Muslims pray 5 times a day and additionally try and read the whole Quran during the month and increase their prayers. Before fasting, we have a pre-dawn meal (Suhur) whereby we eat and prepare for the day. This means eating lots of high-protein foods such as eggs, porridge and yogurt and drinking as much water as possible right up till dawn. After the meal, Muslims pray the early morning prayer and sleep, getting ready for the day ahead. Usually, we would have to attend school and work as usual, but this year I just enjoy a lie in and wake up later than usual ;). At sunset, Muslims eat their first meal of the day called Iftar, and usually eat with friends and family or at the mosque.
What happens now?
Normally, many Muslims go the mosque to break their fasts, but due to Covid-19 and the worldwide lockdown, many will be unable to do so and therefore are advise to video call friends and family members and stay in touch via technology and break their fasts at home.
What happens at the end of the month?
At the end of the month of Ramadan, Muslims celebrate with the “Muslim version” of Christmas, called Eid, where essentially, we have a huge party with food, laughter and fun. During this time, we will give presents to others and many will attend a special Eid prayer which usually takes place in a mosque/park because of the amount of people who attend! Many people view Ramadan and Eid as a universal time and friends of mine have joined in with Ramadan so why not ask your friends if you’re interested? I’m always here if you’re willing to try it out 😊
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