We all know that Ramadan is celebrated all around the world, as the holy month in Muslim religion. Every one of us has that one friend who follows this ritual extremely well, for his love and belief in God. Or you might just encounter someone like your child’s teacher, a co-worker, or that barista maker at the canteen or your favorite coffee shop, celebrating their way through the sacred period.
But, what we don’t know is why or how Ramadan we celebrate Ramadan exactly!
Don’t worry, we have got you covered on this matter. Here is a list of 6 questions that perfectly answer all your basic queries about Ramadan.
1. What is Ramadan actually about?
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Ramadan is known to be a sacred month as per The Prophet, who repeatedly said, “When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of heaven are opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the devils are chained.” On the first day of Ramadan, Allah revealed the first verse of the holy book Quran to The Prophet, on The Night of Power, or as they call it Layat-al-qadr.
Muslims hold fasts from dawn to dusk, for their spiritual discipline and to spend more time with their family for joy and fun. At the end of the Ramadan, a three-day celebration is held known as Eid al-Fitr, which brings everyone together, exchanging gifts and things to eat, and have a great time together.
2. How does the fasting during Ramadan works?
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Ramadan fasting is said to be one of the five pillars of the religion Islam, where every Muslim is required to take part, unless he/she is ill, menstruating, old or a young child, pregnant or still nursing.
The practice of fasting basically serves both social and spiritual purposes. It is done to show you what is actually feels like to be hungry and poor and to remind you of your dependence on God for the human frailty and sustenance.
During the fasting, you are to curb your negative thoughts and emotions, no gossiping, swearing or even complaining. Also, smoking, drinking, or even getting engaged in sexual activities makes the fast invalid, and you need to compensate it with the following days ahead later.
3. What does a typical Ramadan day really feel like?
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If you are a Muslim then you must be knowing the answer to this question well. But for the others’ general information, Muslims are not supposed to be avoiding school or work, but at many places, they are allowed to reduce their working hours.
But before everything, they should consume a lot of high-protein content and sufficient water right before dawn. And performing the morning prayer marks the beginning of your fasting, after cleaning yourself properly first.
4. Do you actually lose weight during the holy month of Ramadan?
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Let me clear this for you in simple words, NO! instead, Ramadan is known as a notorious month for gaining weight. This is simply because of eating early morning and let evening meals, which wreaks havoc on your metabolic system.
So, if you are planning to go and Try fasting this way, then I suggest you drop the idea immediately.
5. Why does the Ramadan calendar change every year?
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Muslims follow their lunar calendar, which is based on the phases of the moon, that makes their 12 months to add up to 354 days, 11 days shorter than the Gregorian calendar that everyone follows. Which is why Ramadan dates keep moving 11 days behind every year.
Did you know that in the countries falling above the Arctic Circle, where the sun actually never sets during summers, the Muslims living there can fast along with the Mecca or the closest country.
6. How can I be respectful towards my Muslim friend during Ramadan?
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There are many ways you can make your Muslim friend’s Ramadan happy and generous, like while eating at your workplace, you can step aside instead of having your meal in front of them. And remember NOT to offer them any bite of your food or anything eatable or drinkable.
If you are planning to host a dinner party, try to schedule it for after the sunset so that your Muslim friend can join in too and enjoy the delicious delicacies to savor their taste buds.
There is no right or wrong way of greeting Ramadan to your Muslim friend, but if you feel like they can mind you saying, ‘Happy Ramadan’, then you can also greet them with ‘Ramadan Kareem’ or ‘Ramadan Mubarak’.
So, now that you know all things about Ramadan, you can celebrate this occasion cheerfully, along with your other Muslim friends too.