According to Muslims, Ramadan is the most important month in the year. In this month, God forgives all sins of whoever fast it because of faith and seeking his reward from Allah. Fasting in Ramadan is one of the Five Pillars of Islam, so one’s faith cannot be complete without fulfilling it.
The month of Ramadan [is that] in which was revealed the Qur’an, a guidance for the people and clear proofs of guidance and criterion. So whoever sights [the new moon of] the month, let him fast it; and whoever is ill or on a journey – then an equal number of other days. Allah intends for you ease and does not intend for you hardship and [wants] for you to complete the period and to glorify Allah for that [to] which He has guided you; and perhaps you will be grateful.” (Quran.com/2/185)
What Muslims should do in Ramadan?
From dawn to sunset, every Muslim obligated to fast, except children until they hit puberty, and people who are unable to fast due to illness, traveling, age or pregnancy. Fasting in Islam differs from fasting in Christianity, even though they are sharing the same term. In the Islamic fasting, you are not allowed to drink, eat, or entering anything into the body cavity in any way. Even sexual relations are prohibited during the fast. Not only this, but also to avoid every Haram action; such as envy, gossip, violence, lust…etc, and to follow the teachings of Islam.
What is the purpose?
In Quran Allah mentioned Ramadan only once in the above mentioned verse. He declared that the purpose of fasting is to achieve “Taqwa”. So what is Taqwa?
According to ibn Kathir interpretation, the root meaning of taqwa is “to avoid what one dislikes”. In Islam it is the fear of Allah; being careful, and inspires a person to be on guard against wrong action. Thus, the enthusiasm to do the deeds which please Allah will increase. However, Allah has prohibited some acts which are beloved to man during the fasting hours, like eating and drinking. These desires which are usually permissible, If they can be controlled in this month, then desires which are not permissible can be controlled throughout the remaining eleven months.
Ramadan and Quran
Quran was revealed in Ramadan, specifically in the night of Qadr as a guidance for mankind and included the criteria between right and wrong. Allah says in chapter 97: “Indeed, We sent the Qur’an down during the Night of Decree.” This night is better than a thousand months as Surah continues. In linking Quran with Ramadan, a clear message and a hidden order that in this month particularly Muslims have to get closer to the Quran more than any month.
The purpose of fasting and the purpose of Ramadan are different. The purpose of fasting is to develop taqwa. The purpose of Ramadan is to get closer to the Quran. The spirit of Ramadan is lost if you come out of it not knowing a little more Quran than you did before. The spirit is lost if you don’t come out of Ramadan more in love with the Quran than you were before.”
Nouman Ali Khan – famous Muslim scholar
Ramadan serves as a tool for Muslims to practice for increasing their patience and self-control. It makes them grateful for what they do have and aware of those who are living in hunger and poverty on a daily basis. So during Ramadan, Muslims are expected to worship Allah more through acts of worship such as Qur’an recitation, prayer, and attendance of the nightly prayers at the mosque. To Muslims, Ramadan is a joyous month of spiritual growth ends with a festival called Eid al-Fitr.