What Is Ramadan?
Dear Friends & Neighbors,
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During the 25 years when I’ve taught math at various universities and colleges in Illinois and Florida, considering the fact that there are about 3.5 million Muslims in the U.S., it is no wonder that I’ve come across many Muslim students who observed Ramadan. Ramadan 2019 in United States began on the evening of Sunday, May 5, 2019, and ends on the evening of Tuesday, June 4, 2019.
Ramadan is a holy month for Muslims. As a non-muslim one may not be aware of the things to watch out for and be careful of during this month. Here is a short guide of the do’s and don’ts of Ramadan to help you or us as a non-muslim, in the video “Ramadan Guide for Non-Muslims“, below:
Let’s take a look at an excerpt from wikipedia on Ramadan, in italics, below:
Ramadan,( Ramazan, Ramzan, Ramadhan, or Ramathan) is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting (sawm) fasting, prayer, reflection and community. A commemoration of the first revelation of the Quran to Muhammad, the annual observance of Ramadan is regarded as one of the Five Pillars of Islam and lasts twenty-nine to thirty days, from one visual sighting of the crescent moon to the next.
The word Ramadan derives from the Arabic root ramiḍa or ar-ramaḍ (“scorching heat” or “dryness”). Fasting is fard (obligatory) for adult Muslims, except those who are ill, travelling, elderly, pregnant, breastfeeding, diabetic, chronically ill, or menstruating. Although fatwas have been issued declaring that Muslims who live in regions with a midnight sun or polar night should follow the timetable of Mecca, the more commonly accepted opinion is that they should instead follow the timetable of the closest country to them in which night can be distinguished from day.
While fasting from dawn until sunset, believers refrain from food, drink, smoking, sexual relations, and sinful behavior that may negate the reward of fasting, striving to purify themselves and increase their taqwa (good deeds and God-consciousness). The predawn meal is referred to as suhoor, while the nightly feasts to break the fast is called iftar. Spiritual rewards (thawab) for fasting are believed to be multiplied during the month of Ramadan, when believers devote themselves to salat (prayer), recitation of the Quran and the performance of charitable deeds.
The holy month of Ramadan is the 9th month in the Islamic year – a time for self-restraint and purification for Muslims, in the video “What is Ramadan“, below:
There are nearly 3.5 million Muslims in America, and none celebrate Ramadan in the exact same way — here’s an intimate look at life during the holy month for four Muslim Americans, in the video “What Is Ramadan Really Like for Muslim Americans?/Now This“, below:
The Muslim holy month of Ramadan is sometimes seen as a month of suffering. But it’s actually a month of celebration and community. And that’s exactly what Yara Elmjouie learned when he fasted for his first Ramadan, in the video “Why My First Ramadan Was Pretty Lit, AJ+” below:
Young Muslims across Australia are fasting between sunrise and sunset during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. To find out more, we visited the Baltagie family at sunset when they broke their fast, in the video “Ramadan Begins-Behind the News“, below:
Gathered, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
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