At Metaphysics Knowledge, we try to discuss all the topics that have religious significance for different cultures, religions and traditions. Today we are doing to discuss the significance of Ramadan. We hope that this will help you to understand the concept of the festival and appreciate it better.
What is Ramadan?
Ramadan is a significant concept in the Islamic religion. Fasting has a great significance in the Islamic religion. Fast means to abstain. The Allah who is the Supreme Power in Islam considers fasting to be the best practice that a Muslim can do to please him. During the time of Ramadan the Muslims across the world fast. By fasting we mean that the Muslims will not eat anything from the time the sun raises to the time the sun sets. This was the month when the Holy Quran was revealed to Prophet Mohammad.
The Holy Quran
The Holy Quran which is the religious book of the Muslims state that a person should fast as it gives him a shield. This shield protects the person from any sin and evil. Fasting helps people to control their desires and to stay away from becoming selfish.
This is exactly why the Muslims fast for one whole month every year. This month is called the Ramadan. It prescribes fasting for one and all. A true Muslim will follow the custom of the Ramadan with full dedication. They will also ensure that they are not tempted to any food during this time. Small children and those who are very sick can be kept away from practicing the Ramadan.
This month is considered to be very auspicious by the Muslims. Any Muslim who has reached puberty must fast during Ramadan. Some people who are very sick and cannot fast during the Ramadan postpone the fast and do it a little later.
It is worth noting at this stage that fasting is considered good in many other religions and anyone familiar with the Hindu traditions would know that fasting is given an important place and this again signifies the underlying unity in diversity of different religions. Of course we recently carried an article on the difference between being religious and/or spiritual, and found that except from the outward differences, their basic essence is the same.
We will now explain some terms that are associated with the Ramadan.
Sahur: The Sahur means the pre dawn meal. It is taken just half an hour before the dawn. It is taken just before the Fajr prayer.
Iftar: The Iftar means the breakfast. This is the meal tha is taken soon after the sun set to break the whole day’s fast. This must be taken only when the sun disappears completely.
Do’s & Dont’s
The Muslims are instructed not only to fast but also to keep in mind the following during this holy month:
- Abstain from false talks and deeds.
- Not to quarrel with anyone
- Not to have disputes
- Not to indulge in arguments
- Not to use any bad words or say anything that is forbidden
- One should be moral and ethical during this time
- If a person is fasting they should never tell about it. They should not express how difficult fasting is for them. If they do so the sin will be huge.
- All Muslims must read the Quran at least once during the month of Ramadan.
- They should do the fast with a smile and high spirits. This is very essential.
- If the person gets irritated as he or she is fasting then it will not give them any good results.
There are some things that are considered so inauspicious that they can make the fast invalid. These are mentioned here under:
- Drinking and smoking during the Ramadan is strictly prohibited.
- One is not suppose to eat anything that is not nourishing
- Deliberately causing oneself to vomit is a big sin.
- The beginning of menstrual bleeding and post child birth bleeding even in the last moment of sunset.
- Ejaculation or any sexual exercise during the holy month of Ramadan is prohibited.
The month is dedicated to Allah and all the Muslims pay their tribute to the Supreme Power. We know that in today’s world it might not be possible to follow all the points that we have mentioned. However, people still follow the traditional terms of the Ramadan. It is a common practice for all the Muslims. The intention is to ensure that they stay away from all the worldly desires and only concentrate on God.
The month of Ramadan comes every year. The exact date may change every year. In 2013 the auspicious month of Ramadan started on 9th July 2013 and will continue till 8th August 2013. You can download the complete timetable of the Ramadan from online websites. This will help you to understand when you should break your fast.
The Muslims generally cook great delicacies that they have in the evenings once the sun sets. It is a family boding time. The families wait for this time of the year. Before the sun comes up in the morning they wake up. Take shower and finish having food. When the day light is on they will never take even a bite of food.
This month purifies the souls of the Muslims and helps them to live a better life. We hope that in this article we were able to explain the Significance of Ramadan well. Following these simple steps will ensure that you follow this Muslim tradition well. If you are not a Muslim you can understand the religious sentiments of the other Muslims that you know.