Since it is almost Ramadan, my mom said that it’d be a good idea to write a few articles about Ramadan! Also, I’ll be fasting this year, as in previous years I have fasted but only on the weekends, so I thought it was time I should start.
The month of Ramadan is considered the holiest month in Islam. It’s important to be kind, generous and not break your fast during this month. It is estimated to start on the 2nd of April this year and end on the 2nd of May.
Young children, people on their periods, people travelling and elderly people are not expected to fast. Also, a lot of people are not aware of this but Muslims can eat breakfast before dawn (suhoor) and they break their fast after dusk (iftar.)
Since I live in a Muslim-majority country, school starts later and ends earlier, and people fasting do not have to participate in school sports. Of course, this differs from country to country. The saying ‘Ramadan Kareem/Mubarak’ is also common, it means ‘Have a generous Ramadan/Happy Ramadan.’
Ramadan is also an important month because it is the month when Prophet Muhammad PBUH, received the first revelation that now make up the Holy Qur’an.
There is also a tradition, called the ‘Ramadan cannon firing tradition’, the cannon is fired to remind Muslims that it’s time for Iftar.
Countries all over the world celebrate Ramadan differently. For example, Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population in the world. In Indonesia, people clean their relatives graves and give food to the poor, and they break their fast using meat.
In Turkey, people enjoy lots of coffee and sweets during Ramadan. Children kiss their parents’ hands and in return receive blessings.
In Kuwait, Ramadan is known as Qarqian’an where children wear traditional clothes and sing songs, they also are taught about this Holy Month and fasting.
In the United Arab Emirates, people celebrate Haq-Al-Laila, it is to celebrated the month before Ramadan, and some people have mentioned that it is similar to how the Western world celebrates ‘Halloween.’
In Egypt, people light ‘fanous’ also known as brightly coloured lamps. They are usually made of glass or metal and have become a universal symbol of Ramadan for Muslims.
In Morocco, a Nafar wakes people up for suhoor by singing prayers around the neighborhood. Very empathetic or well-liked members of the community are usually chosen for this.
In Iraq, they play a game called Mheibes, there are usually around 40-250~ players at a time. It is a game of light-hearted deceit that has been passed down from generation to generation.
If we’ve missed your country, feel free to tell us how they celebrate it there in the comments !
Anyways, some people like to keep a Ramadan Journal, like my mom 🙂
They’re really useful to plan meals for Suhoor and Iftar, and for other things like important dua’as to recite during Ramadan.
Here are some links if you’re interested !
This is a journal for younger kids. It’s main aim is to teach children about Ramadan.
Mainly bullet journals to mark important things and to keep track of multiple things.
Depending on where you are in the world, fasting lasts different amounts of time. In some countries, according to Bing, daylight can last up to 22 hours, making fasting even more difficult. Ramadan tends to be around 29 to 30 days long and right after it is Eid Al Fitr, which is expected to fall on the 2nd of May. Depending on when Eid is, a (around) 5-day weekend will follow.
Ramadan: A review on fasting
Sawm (or fasting)
Sawm, as it is known by Muslims (or fasting) is one of the five pillars of Islam, the foundation of the religion, it is the 4th pillar, to be exact. Many different Islamic scholars say different things about the age in which someone should start fasting but most sources say 10-16. If you feel you are ready to fast, then it’s your choice. Fasting usually lasts 29 to 30 days.
Muslims are not allowed to drink, smoke or eat during this month, they are only allowed to eat the suhoor meal (before sunrise) and the iftar meal (after sunset.) The fasting is usually broken during iftar with dates or water. Iftar is usually eaten with family or friends. Iftar deals are very common in Muslim countries and non-Muslim people participate, too.
Anyways, we hope you enjoyed this article and the overview/review at the end! Ramadan Kareem/Mubarak!
(cover image: by David Rodrigo on Unsplash, Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi)