Ramadan is a holy month for all Muslims during which they Fast. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is the month of fasting during which Muslims refrain from eating and drinking from Sunrise till sunset. It begins with the sighting of the moon and ends with the sighting of moon for the next month.
Ramadan is an important month for all Muslims. It is considered a gift from Allah (s.w.t) to all msulims. This month is meant to teach Muslims patience, tolerance and modesty. Ramadan is a month for spiritual teaching during which all Muslims pray and fast for Allah. The significance of the month of Ramadan for Muslims is great because during this month Muslims pray for guidance to follow the right path, refrain from sins, devils temptations, any evil thoughts or deeds and to purify themselves by praying , doing good deeds and restraining themselves against any evil thoughts or actions.
Ramadan holds great significance in a Muslims life. It is during this month that the holy Quran was revealed to the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). During this month, Muslims praying, fasting and abstaining from evil deeds and thoughts are rewarded 70 times more than the usual prayers.
The Month of Ramadan brings all Muslims together. People come together to pray, fast and at sunset break their fast together regardless of their level in society. All worldly things are put aside and Muslims do a lot of charity during Ramadan. It is also during Ramadan that Muslims give charity in the form of Zakat to people in need.
Fasting is the most important aspect of Ramadan. Muslims all over the world get up before sunrise to do Sehri, a meal that signifies the starting of their fast. After sehri , Muslims start their fast by praying Fajr, the first prayer of the day. They continue to refrain from eating and drinking till sunset when they perform the forth prayer of the day, Maghrib. In Ramadan, muslims break their fast by eating date and drinking water at a meal called Iftar.
The purpose of Ramadan is to keep Muslims away from worldly thoughts and activities and direct them more towards worshipping, learning the difference between right and wrong and also to learn tolerance to stay away from all evil thoughts and deeds, to develop patience. It helps to gain self discipline, self control, sacrifice and empathize with those who are less fortunate by doing charity in the form of Zakat and showing generosity.
All Muslims who are healthy, and have no illness and disabilities are required to fast during Ramadan. Elderly, people with serious illness or disability are exempted from fasting, though they are required to feed poor in place of missed fasting. Pregnant women, nursing women, people travelling far and also exempted given the same condition that they feed the poor or make up for their fasts after the month of Ramadan has also ended. Children are not required to fast. People are required to fast once they become Islamic adults. According to a well known hadith, people who observe Ramadan properly have their sins forgiven. The gates of hell are closed during the holy month of Ramadan and satan is locked up. Reciting the Quran is also an important part of Ramadan along with praying and fasting.
The End of Ramadan is marked by celebration in the form of Eid, after the new moon has been sighted. There is a special celebration on Eid ul Fitr, which marks the ending of Ramadan and is also known as festival of breaking fasts. People wear new clothes and offer special Eid Prayers in the morning to mark the ending of the holy month of Ramadan. As part of the celeberation people exchange gifts with their friends and family.
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