What is Ramadan

Ramadan fast

What is Ramadan?

Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, a time of spiritual reflection, self-improvement, and heightened devotion for Muslims all around the world. It is a sacred month in which the Holy Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). As stated in the Quran, “The month of Ramadan is that in which the Quran was revealed, a guidance for mankind and clear proofs of the guidance and the criterion.” (2:185)


During this blessed period, healthy adult Muslims are required to abstain from eating, drinking, and sexual relations from dawn until sunset. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever does not give up false statements and evil deeds and foolish behavior, Allah is not in need of his leaving his food and drink.” (Bukhari)


How Ramadan Helps Muslims Attain Eternal Success

  1. Taqwa (Consciousness of God): Fasting during Ramadan helps develop a heightened awareness of God’s presence and a sense of complete submission to Allah. By resisting physical desires, Muslims learn to prioritize their spiritual needs, as mentioned in the Quran: “O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may attain taqwa (God-consciousness).” (2:183)
  2.  Repentance and Forgiveness: Ramadan encourages seeking forgiveness from Allah and repenting for past mistakes, purifying the soul and leading to spiritual cleansing. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever fasts during Ramadan with faith and seeking reward from Allah, will have his past sins forgiven.” (Bukhari, Muslim)
  3. Patience and Perseverance: Fasting cultivates patience and resilience, essential qualities for leading a life of faith and overcoming challenges. Allah says in the Quran, “And be patient. Surely, Allah is with those who are patient.” (8:46)
  4.  Charity and Compassion: Muslims are encouraged to donate wealth to those in need, fostering empathy, generosity, and social responsibility. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever gives food for a fasting person to break his fast, he will receive the same reward as the fasting person, without diminishing the reward of the fasting person in any respect.” (Tirmidhi)
  5.  Spiritual Renewal: Engaging in additional worship allows Muslims to deepen their faith and establish a stronger connection with their Creator. Allah says in the Quran, “And when My servants ask you concerning Me, then surely I am very near; I answer the prayer of the supplicant when he calls upon Me.” (2:186)

Things to Keep in Mind as Ramadan Approaches

  • Intention (Niyyah): Renew the intention to fast with sincerity, seeking the pleasure of Allah.
  •  Physical Preparation: Gradually adjust eating and sleeping habits before Ramadan.
  •  Spiritual Preparation: Seek forgiveness, reflect on actions, and resolve to avoid sins.
  •  Planning and Organization: Plan and organize time effectively for work, family, and other responsibilities.
  •  Community Support: Seek support from families, friends, and local Muslim communities. 

Things to Do During Ramadan

1. Fasting: Abstain from eating, drinking, and sexual relations from dawn until sunset.
2. Systematic plan to finish reciting the whole Quran: Many mosques organize special gatherings (Tarawih prayers) where the entire Quran is recited over the course of the month.
3. Increased Worship: Perform extra voluntary prayers (Nawafil), make supplications (du’a), and engage in remembrance of Allah (dhikr). The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever stands (in prayer) during the nights of Ramadan with faith and seeking reward, his previous sins will be forgiven.” (Bukhari, Muslim)

4. Charitable Acts: Donate wealth (Zakat) to those in need and participate in charitable initiatives. The Quran states, “And whatever good you send forth for yourselves, you will certainly find it with Allah, for Allah is All-Seer of what you do.” (2:110)

5. Self-Reflection and Repentance: Engage in self-evaluation, seek forgiveness, and resolve to improve relationships with Allah and others. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever does not abandon false speech and acting upon it, then Allah has no need for him to leave his food and drink.” (Bukhari)

6. Breaking the Fast (Iftar): Gather with family and community to break the fast, share meals, and foster unity.

Creative Ideas to Do During Ramadan:

1. Host an Iftar gathering and invite friends, neighbors, or community members who may not have a place to break their fast.
2. Volunteer at a local food bank or shelter, providing meals or assistance to those in need.
3. Organize a Quran study circle or join one, where you can learn and discuss the teachings of the Quran with others.
4. Create a charity jar or box at home, and encourage family members to contribute spare change or a portion of their allowance for those less fortunate.
5. Start a daily gratitude journal, reflecting on the blessings in your life and expressing thankfulness to Allah.
6. Organize a community Iftar potluck, where everyone contributes a dish, and enjoy the diverse flavors while strengthening community bonds.
7. Engage in acts of kindness, such as helping elderly neighbors with chores, volunteering to clean your local mosque, or assisting those in need.

Ramadan is a transformative journey for spiritual growth and attaining eternal success. By embracing its teachings, practices, and creative ideas, Muslims can cultivate virtues, strengthen their connection with the Divine, and ultimately, draw closer to the path of righteousness. As the Quran reminds us, “And whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger, and fears Allah, and keeps his duty to Him, they are the successful ones.” (24:52)