What is Ramadan?
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. A foundational pillar of practicing Islam is fasting during the month of Ramadan. This devotional act is observed by over a billion Muslims worldwide today. During this time, Muslims cannot drink (even water), eat, smoke, or be sexually intimate, between the hours of sunrise to sunset every day – out of devotion to God. Fasting has both physical and spiritual benefits, including purifying the soul, inspiring self-reflection, and increasing empathy and good works.
Why is Ramadan celebrated?
God says in the Qur’an,
“Ramadan is the month in which the Qur’an was revealed, as guidance for humanity…so whoever of you witnesses the month should fast it.” [2:185]
Muslims therefore celebrate Ramadan by ritually fasting for the entire month in gratitude to God for His final revelation. By restricting the body’s appetites during daylight hours, believers rejuvenate their spirituality, repair their religious conscience, and cultivate their devotion to God. This is the most significant objective of the fast: restoring the centrality of God in our lives.
Ramadan is a period of practicing extra awareness about all the things that could soil our spirituality and fuel the ego that feeds off our catering to its appetites throughout the year. Vices are always forbidden, but we work with even greater dedication to avoid them and excel in devotion, kindness, patience, and forgiveness in Ramadan. By treating Ramadan as the training grounds for the soul, intensely focusing on our day to day actions, practicing self awareness, and being good to others, we hope that these habits continue beyond the month. Such inner purity is the intended result of fasting.
How do you observe Ramadan?
Muslims observe Ramadan by abstaining from food, drink, smoking, and sexual intimacy—all out of devotion to their Creator. They are also called to practice self-restraint and respond to every situation with patience and kindness. The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ informed us,
“Whoever does not give up lying and acting dishonestly, then [know that] God has no need for this person to give up food and drink (i.e., fasting).” [Sahih al-Bukhari #1903]
In addition to fasting, Muslims also celebrate Ramadan by reciting and studying the Qur’an, performing acts of service, and giving to charity.
SCCC celebrates Ramadan and Iftar every year as a part of our community celebration. We would like to wish a Ramadan Mubarak to members of our community who observe this holy month! We hope these 30 days of fasting bring you joy and renewed faith.