24 April to 23 May
Today is the first day of Islam’s holy month of Ramadan, one of the five pillars of Islam. Muslims across the world will be fasting for the entire month – fasting begins just before sunrise and ends at sunset just before 8.30pm.
During the month of Ramadan, Muslims make more prayers, such as Namaz and reciting the holy Quran. We break the fast at the end of the day, usually with family and relatives but also sometimes with a grand social gathering involving a variety of foods.
This year’s Ramadan will be quite different due to the current circumstances: Mosques will not be open for prayers and families, friends, and relatives will not be breaking their fasts together. However, mosques will be connected through the use of social networks such as Zoom, where people will be joining each other for prayers – family and friends will be utilising modern day technology in order to stay in contact. Therefore in this respect, the element of community and togetherness of Ramadan will still remain.
One of the best things about Ramadan is the way in which people reflect on the many blessings in life, such as food and safe shelter. As a result, many individuals donate to charities to help those less fortunate.
It’s also a month of discipline and patience. Many individuals discontinue negative or unhealthy habits and many others incorporate good deeds and habits into their daily lifestyle.
I’m very eager to be spending more time this Ramadan with family. The lockdown has allowed me to reflect on how truly valuable the presence of your most beloved family members is during such distressing times.
You are all in my prayers and I wish you the very best amidst this daunting pandemic. Please, pray for this crisis to come to an end, but also keep God and your fellow people in your heart.
Take care and stay safe – Abdul Amin