What is Ramadan for Muslims ? If you ask yourself this question it is either you are a non-Muslim and hear a lot about it or a Muslim curious to compare his vision of his Ramadan with us. You do not know or vaguely know what it consists in. Good news we explain hereunder the main aspects of what Ramadan is all about and how if you are a Muslim to make the most of it. Let’s start !
Definition of the word “Ramadan”
- Ramadan is the name of the 9th month of the Islamic/lunar calendar. But not only.
- Ramadan starts when the moon appears so Muslims observe the moon if it shows up they fast the next day otherwise the day that follows. Similarly on the evening of the 29th day of fasting if the shows up the month of Ramadan ends and all the Muslims stop fasting and the day of Eid, that is to say the day of celebration, is proclaimed the next day otherwise the day of Eid will be on the following day no matter what. Thus the day of Eid is actually the first day of the following Islamic month called Shawwal.
- Ramadan means extreme heat in Arabic so it is believed to be a month when sins are burned thanks to the sincere devotions intensity of the believers. Through time the name of the month has become the name of one specific action : fasting. In Arabic the word “fasting” and the name of the 4th pillar of Islam is not Ramadan but “As-Sawm”.
What is Ramadan for and “how does it work” ?
Now that you have understood that it is a month in the muslim calendar that Muslims must be looking forward to, it means that it has special attributes and actions to do during it. It is simple :
- It is also a month of intense worship : 30 days of fasting, As-Sawm, night prayers, reading of the Noble Quran that’s why it is often called the month of the Quran, glorification of God and family gatherings to worship together or eat at the time of Iftar, the meal to break the fast.
- It is a month of charity, Sadaqah : definitely the time when people give the most as charity’s reward during Ramadan is far greater than during the rest of the year. As Muslims we believe that charities clean our soul from its sins, bad inclination and will save the believer in cha Allah. There are several forms of charity that allow extremely poor people to participate with just a smile or a prayer.
- Ramadan hides within itself a blessed night, the night of glory, of decree. It is known to be one night during the last 10 days or for some the 27th night of Ramadan, called Laylatul Qadri. Muslims must increase even more their devotions the last 10 days to “look and not miss” that night for complete forgiveness from Allah swta for their sins.
What Muslim homes look like during Ramadan ?
- It is a month of gatherings : before the pandemic the traditions were to gather.
- First of all you with your spouse and your kids at sunset even if some family members do not fast yet, to experience the joy of breaking the fast together.
- Gather for the night prayers to glorify our Lord swt. Gather with parents, grand-parents either to break the fast together or to worship together during a moment during the day. Men often go together to a local mosque in order to do the night prayers together and as it is late to come back in groups.
- Gather with brothers and sisters, cousins by inviting one another to an Iftar meal at sunset. Great moments of laughing and noise when many kids are around.
- Gather with sick people, lonely people. It is important to go to pay a visit to sick people at the time that is the most convenient for them, or isolated people who lack the presence of a family.
- Gather also to participate when possible to local originations that serve food to the poor.
- Gather again at the mosque or in seminars that offer special religious courses during Ramadan as it is the month when they get most the attention of the Muslims.
- It is a month of lights : the Muslims homes get animated at night starting by breaking the fast at sunset which gives to the worshippers a blessed joy as Allah swt rewards the effort made solely for Him swt.
You will find tones of ideas on the Internet to implement that ambiance in your home but let us give you, as a Muslim, 3 reasons to decorate your home and how to create a Ramadan atmosphere in your space without spending too much time on the how and what.
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