Ramadan, its importance and benefit

Mohammed Saqib Kalsekar, Young Contributor
Thursday, May 2, 2019

Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic calendar and is the most virtuous. It is firstly characterized by Sawm (fasting) which is one of the five pillars of Islam, hence it is given higher importance. As we know, the Islamic calendar is completely based on the moon and this month also begins and ends with the visual sightings of the crescent moon. During the day refrainment from food, water, bad deeds, etc. Fasting in Ramadan was made compulsory during the Sha’ban of the second year after the migration of Muslims from Mecca to Medina.

In this month spiritual rewards (thawab) are said to be multiplied for good deeds such as Sawm, offering Salat, recitation of the Qur’an, charity, etc. Even though Sawm (fasting) is one of the pillars of Islam and is mandatory, there are exceptions.

The old people, those who are in travel, those who are immature, pregnant, menstruating, ill or diabetic are excused.

But if a person, without any excuse skips a fast or breaks it after starting it, has committed a major sin.
The Duration of Fasting and actions during it.

The Fast starts with the Suhoor, which is at dawn, a starting pre-fast meal. The whole day can be spent doing work, offering Salat, reciting Qur’an and helping others or performing other good deeds. During the month of Ramadan the doors of paradise are open and the doors of hell are closed and the devils are chained. Hence, a Muslim without the disturbing influence of Satan can perform good deeds and bad deeds are quite likely to negate the reward of fasting. After the whole day is spent in a pious way at the time of Maghrib after the Azan the fast is complete and broken with a post-fast meal called Iftar. 20-30 minutes before the Azan duas (supplications) which have a very high effect.

The Benefits of fasting

1)Abdullah ibn Amr reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said:
Fasting and Qur’an will intercede on the behalf of Allah’s servant
Fasting will say: O my Lord! I prevented him from food and desires during the day, so accept my intercession for him.
And the Qur’an will say: I prevent him from sleeping by night, so accept my intercession for him.
2)Uthman bin Abi Al Aas reported that Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) said:
“Fasting is a protection from hellfire”
Overall fasting is a path to Jannah but only if it is done with the intention of pleasing Allah and collecting the reward and not of showing off.
So this much information, though is not enough as there is always more to know, will help you collecting some extra Thawab which would have slipped out.

Tarawih

Tarawih, though not fard or Sunnah, is an important source of Thawab. It is 8 or 20 rakahs and is seen as the preponed Tahajjud.

It ends with the 3 vitr but in the last ten days the vitr is read after the Qiyam.

Now that all about fasting is over I would like to share some of my experiences.

Always when Ramadan is on the coming I have a feeling of excitement as there is an opportunity of collecting extra points and another layer of toughness and adjusting forms over me.

During normal days staying hungry or thirsty for even 6-7 hours is hard but during Ramadan it becomes easy, except for the last few minutes. I still remember when I was 6 years old I had kept my first fast. It was a great feeling and I started keeping fasts (Sawm) every day for 2 weeks. I used to wake up at 3 (which was the hardest part for me as I am bad at getting up early) and have the Suhoor, then offer Fajr and sleep again for waking up at 7. Then I used to spend the rest of the day doing I don’t remember what and after breaking the fast, praying and having dinner I would offer Tarawih. I don’t know what happened to me after that but that seemed to be the end of my fasting that year. Next year onwards I started studying about Ramadan and Sawm and fasted the whole month. Each day my stamina and capacity to stay without food or water increased.

This has always had an impact on me. I have always been filled with joy and, from my perspective, a new challenge every time.

Mohammed Saqib Kalsekar
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