Ramadan: Let’s pray for Allah’s favour – Bawumia
Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has wished Muslims across the country well as they begin their month-long Ramadan fast today, Sunday, 3 April 2022.
Dr Bawumia’s wish in a Facebook post is that the “sacred period of devotion” will bring peace, unity and prosperity to the nation.
Ramadan is theninth monthof theIslamic calendarobserved by Muslims worldwide as a month offasting, prayer and reflection and community.
What you need to know about Ramadan
Ramadan is a month-long religious holiday for Muslims as a time of self-reflection and strengthening their relationship with Allah. Ramadan is dictated by the lunar cycle, beginning and ending with a crescent moon. The religious holiday involves fasting, praying and being around loved ones. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. It is during this month that Muslims fast.
When is Ramadan?
Ramadan is the Arabic name of the ninth-month of the Islamic calendar. The date of Ramadan in the Gregorian calendar moves forward about 11 days each year due to the different lengths of the Islamic and Gregorian years.
It is considered one of the holiest Islamic months. It’s also one of the Five (5) Pillars of Islam. These are five principles that Muslims believe are compulsory acts ordered by Allah. It is during the month of Ramadan that Muslims fast.
Muslims believe that some of the first verses of the Islamic holy book, the Qu’ran, were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad during the month of Ramadan. Extra emphasis is placed on reciting the Qu’ran at this time.
The Fast of Ramadan
The Fast of Ramadan lasts the entire month, which can be 29 or 30 days, depending on the sightings of the moon.
Ramadan is a time when Muslims concentrate on their faith and spend less time on the concerns of their everyday lives. It is a time of worship and contemplation. Fasting is considered to be an act of worship, which enables Muslims to feel closer to Allah and strengthens their spiritual health and self-discipline.
During the Fast of Ramadan, strict restraints are placed on the daily lives of Muslims. They are not allowed to eat or drink during the daylight hours. Smoking and sexual relations are also forbidden during fasting.
At the end of each day, the fast is broken with prayer and a meal called the iftar. In the evening following the iftar, it is customary for Muslims to go out visiting family and friends. The fast is resumed the next morning.
But, there are some exemptions to fasting for health reasons. For instance, pregnant, breastfeeding and menstruating women are exempted from the fast. The ill, children and the elderly are also not required to participate.