The Holy Month of Ramadan
By Suffiullah

Meaning of Ramadan: Ramadan is the ninth month of Hijri (Islamic) calendar. It is considered the most blessed and holiest month. Prayers, fasting, self-accountability and charity have special association with Ramadan.

Definition of Ramadan: Muslims believe that during Ramadan, the revelation of the Qur’an to the Prophet Muhammad began. The entire month is spent fasting from sunrise to sunset.

Types of Ramadan: Four kinds of fasting such as:
1. Compulsory Fasting (Faroj)
2. Optional Fasting (Shunot )
3. Additional Fasting (Nafal)
4. Prohibited Fasting (Haram)

Some days Prohibited of Fasting: Five days of yearly we can not keeping fasting as following:
1. Day of Eid ul-Fitr
2. Day of Eid ul-Ajha
3. Day of 11th Hajj
4. Day of 12th Hajj
5. Day of 14th Hajj

From Quran: Allah says: “O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you, as it was prescribed for those before you, so that you may guard against evil.” [Sûrah al-Baqarah: 183]

From Hadith: “He who fasts during Ramadan with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven; he who prays during the night in Ramadan with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven; and he who passes Lailat al-Qadr in prayer with faith and seeking his reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven.” (Al-Bukhari & Muslim)

Intention (Niyat): “Nawaitu-Un-Assuma Gadam Min Shahri Ramadanal Mubarak, Fardullaka Ya Allah Fatakabbal Minni Innaka Antas Samiul Alim.” (I intend to fast today in the month of Ramadan which is obligatory, O Allah, please accept from me as you are the All Hearing and All Knowing.)

Supplication (Braking Fast): “Allahumma Laka Sumtu Wa Tawakkaltu, Wa’alaa Rizkika Aftartu.” (O Allah, for you I have fasted and with your provision I have broken my fasting.)

Practices for during Ramadan:
1. Tarawih (Teravih): During this month, extra optional prayers of eight to twenty raka’ah, called tarawih, are prayed each night in the mosque. For those praying at the mosque throughout the month of Ramadan, the whole Quran in many mosque is recited during this month. 2.Suhoor (Sahur): Most practicing Muslims, especially children and the elderly, have a light meal or snack before dawn. This light meal is called Suhoor or Sohoor or Sehri.
3. Keep Fasting: Eating, drinking, sexual intercourse and smoking are not allowed between sunrise (fajr) and sunset (maghrib).
4. Laylat-Qadr: The exact date of Laylat al-Qadr (the Night of Power) is unknown, but it is known to have occurred in one of the last ten nights of Ramadan, usually thought to be on one of the odd-numbered dates are 21st, 23rd, 25th, 27th and 29th.
5. Eid ul-Fitr: The Islamic holiday of Eid ul-Fitr marks the end of the fasting period of Ramadan and the beginning of the following month. Eid ul-Fitr means the Festival of Breaking the Fasts. On the day of the Eid, congregational prayers are held in mosques or Islamic community centers. It is two rakaahs only. Following the prayers, people congratulate each other and eat sweets at a mosque or community center.

Time of Ramadan:The Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar, and months begin when the first crescent of a new moon is sighted. Since the Islamic lunar calendar year is 11 to 12 days shorter than the solar year. It should be 29 days or 30 days for keeping fasting month of Ramadan depend on moon or calculation method.

Main four things Prohibited during the Ramadan:
1. We can not eating from sunrise (Fajr) to sunset (Magrib).
2. We can not drinking from sunrise (Fajr) to sunset (Magrib).
3. We can not sexual intercourse from sunrise (Fajr) to sunset (Magrib).
4. We can not smoking from sunrise (Fajr) to sunset (Magrib).

Historical Significant:
• On 02 Ramadan, Torah was bestowed on Prophet Moses.
• On 10 Ramadan, Khadija, Wife of Prophet Muhammad died.
• On 12 Ramadan, Bible was bestowed on Prophet Jesus.
• On 15 Ramadan, Hassan ibn Ali son of Imam Ali was born and Sayyid Muhammad Alawi Al Maliki died.
• On 17 Ramadan, Battle of Badr was won by the Muslims.
• On 18 Ramadan, Psalms was bestowed on Prophet David.
• On 19 Ramadan, Imam Ali was injured by sword.
• On 21 Ramadan, Imam Ali died.
• On 23 Ramadan, Qur’an was bestowed on Prophet Muhammad.

1. Battle of Badr: 17th Ramadan 2 AH- Was the first battle fought by Muslims after their migration to Medina against the Meccans. The battle ended in a victory for the 313 Muslims participating in the war over whelming around 1000 Meccans.

2. Assasination of Ali: 21st Ramadan 40th AH: The fourth and last caliph of the Muslims, passed away in this month. His death marked the end of Caliphate in Islam.

Special activates month of Ramadan in USA:

Ideas for Ramadan at your workplace
1. Begin informing people about it as soon as possible
2. Post it up
3. Get an article printed in your local newspaper and circulate copies
4. Negotiate your lunch hour with the boss
5. Talk to the office cafeteria people about your Iftar needs
6. Create a “Ramadan corner” at your desk
7. Have a small Iftar gathering at your desk
8. Distribute written material on Ramadan
9. Get a Ramadan greeting from your boss
10. Put an article about Ramadan in the office newsletter

For presenting Ramadan to your child’s class
1: Start early
2: Get permission from your child’s teacher
3: Select the right period in which to do the presentation
4: Be polite but firm
5: Ask the teacher what areas to cover and how long it should be
6: Read, prepare, read, prepare
7: Talk to your son or daughter about the presentation
8: A few days before the presentation
9: Write presentation points on note cards
10: Practice your presentation in front of your son/daughter
11: Dress for success
12: Be early
13: Make Dua…
14: Speak calmly and clearly
15: When answering questions
16: Thank Allah…
17: Send a thank you note to the teacher and class…

Ramadan ideas for your campus
1. Make sure to inform the mess hall about your food times
2. Have your MSA organize “Ramadan awareness week”
3. Write an opinion column in your campus newspaper
4. Every weekend or Friday evening, hold an open Iftar and invite non-Muslims to it
5. Have an Iftar gathering in your dorm room
6. Have the library put up a display about Ramadan and Islam
7. Talk about Ramadan in your classes
8. Do a commentary on campus radio about Ramadan

On sharing Ramadan with your neighbors
1. Begin with Dua
2. Put up a Ramadan banner on your door
3. Send neighbors Iftar snacks
4. Give kids Ramadan Mubarak balloons and candy
5. Publish Ramadan information in your neighborhood newsletter
6. Have a neighborhood Iftar gathering
7. At the gathering:
7. Get your kids on it
8. Talk about what Ramadan means to you

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Donovan Crow
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