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  • Writer's pictureAbdur Rahman Alamgir


Updated: Mar 18, 2022

Ramadan is a blessed month of the Islamic calendar. It is the 9th month of the lunar year. It comes after the month of Sha’ban and is followed by the month of Shawwal. Allah Almighty has given precedence to it over the rest of the months of the year because it is the month in which the verses of the Quran were revealed. This is the month of forgiveness, expiation for sins, and emancipation from Hell. This is the month of fasting, reciting the Holy Quran, and also charity and alms. Ramadhan is the month in which the doors of Paradise are opened, the doors of Hell are locked, our supplications are answered, degrees are raised and Satans are chained up. The reward of our worship and good deeds in this holy month is multiplied many times as compared to the other months. Most importantly, one of its nights is better than thousands of months. Allah has obligated fasting throughout the month and therefore, Prophet Muhammad PBUH defined five pillars of Islam in the scheduled ranking starting with Kalma, Namaz (Salat), Roza (fasting), Zakat, and Hajj. The performance of hajj is not obligatory in Islam until a person is pecuniary strong. Many Hadiths imply the significance of worship in this month.

whoever fasts keeping faith and in the hope of reward, Allah will forgive his previous sin”
"And whoever spends nights of Ramadan praying in faith and anticipation, Allah will forgive his minor sins."
(ibid: 37).

Spiritual and Physical Benefits of “Fasting”

Fasting has many benefits like refinement and purification of the soul from bad morals, accustoming to decent morals such as patience, tolerance, generosity, and benefaction. A fasting person must not utter any unfair word carelessly which might hurt anyone. If he hears someone saying any bad words about him, he will only respond by saying “I am fasting”. Fasting means not only abstaining from eating and drinking for some time but also abstaining from all the things which are forbidden in Islam as the Prophet (PBUH) said:

“Whoever does not give up false speech and evil deeds, Allah is not in the need of his leaving food and drink.”

Ramadhan teaches the fasting person that he is the servant of Allah and is very weak in the eyes of Allah. It reminds him of the needs of his poor brothers and hungry people. It enhances the human feeling of the need as the fasting person feels immense hunger and thirst. Not only that, but it also reminds him of the great blessings of Allah upon him and brings him closer to Allah and his creations. It develops the social responsibility of the individual and the society by helping the needy, visiting orphanages, taking part in charitable and voluntary work. It teaches us compassion, altruism, and cooperation. It spreads the fragrance of love, mercy, and tolerance in the society while the congregational prayers and charitable deeds create a pleasant atmosphere all around. Furthermore, it urges self-abstinence in this world and increases its desire and appetite for the good hereafter.

Medical Benefits of the Ramadhan

Ramadhan is a period of solitude, self-review, and a break from the anxieties of life which bring many medical benefits besides religious and social benefits. One of the physical benefits of fasting is that it helps to lose weight. If the fasting person throughout Ramadan is accustomed to being having less than the usual amount of food, it will help him lose more weight even after Ramadan. Fasting from eating and drinking relaxes the stomach, intestines, pancreas, liver, and gallbladder and helps to solve digestive problems. It gives the liver room to empty out to purify the blood from harmful and toxic substances. It promotes cardiovascular health and reduces blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels in the blood. It improves the functional index of lymphocytes, increases the number of white blood cells, and strengthens the immune system. Fasting helps us get rid of smoking and tobacco addiction too.

Who is obliged to fast?

Fasting in the whole month of Ramadhan is an obligatory duty for every adult Muslim, both men and women. Allah said:

“O those who believe, fasting is obligated for you, as it was obligated for those before you, so that you may become pious.”

Fasting is not obligatory for children before puberty. However, it is allowed to the ones who are capable of it and want to fast and if they do so, their fasting will be counted as superfluous. The travellers don't need to fast but he has the choice to fast. If he chooses not to fast, then he must compensate for that after Ramadan (Ramzan). Those, who break their fast due to suffering from any temporary but severe illness, will have to accomplish it while those, who are unable to fast due to permanent illness or being elderly are exempt. Fasting is also not required for menstruating women and women postpartum and they have to make up after Ramzan.

Ethics followed in Ramadan

1. Suhoor

Suhoor is also known as Sehri is the pre-dawn meal that is eaten before the prayer of Fajr and is considered to be the beginning of the fast. It gives the power of continuity to fast.

2. Iftaar

Muslims break their fast at sunset with dates or water followed by any meal of faster’s wish.

3. Iftaar invitation to the fasting persons

It is desirable to give the invitation of Iftaar to those who are fasting because it is a source of affection and intimacy among the Muslims and a great opportunity to achieve the reward of feeding the food. The Prophet PBUH mentioned:

“Whoever provides the food for a fasting person to break his fast with, then for him is the same reward as his (the fasting person’s), without anything being diminished from the reward of the fasting person.”
(Sunan at-Tirmizi: 807, Sahih/Al-Albani)

4. I’tikaaf

It means to devote oneself to the worship of Allah in a specific place in the last ten days of Ramadan.

5. Lailatul Qadr

It means the Night of Decree or Measures. Worships in this night are equal to be worshipping thousand nights. Any odd night of the last ten days in Ramadhan could be the “Lailatul Qadr”. That’s why the Muslims remain awake the whole night in the last five odd nights of Ramzan and they perform prayers, remembrance of Allah, reciting the Quran and supplications especially “Allahumma innaka afuwwun tuhibbu al afwa fa’fu anni.” it means “O Allah, indeed You are Pardoning, You love to pardon, so pardon me. Because this is the best Dua to make on the Night of Decree.”

6. Recitation of the Holy Quran and Taraweeh.

Allah Almighty sent down the Qur’an in the month of Ramadan for the guidance of people. The Almighty said:

“The month of Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was sent down as guidance for mankind with clear proofs of guidance and the criterion by which to distinguish right from wrong. Therefore, whoever of you is present in that month, let him fast the whole month, but he who is ill or on a journey shall fast a similar number of days later on.”

That is why the Muslim is keen to read it to follow what is mentioned in it and to recite it every night of Ramadhan. Prophet Muhammad PBUH prescribed his followers in the month of Ramzan the night prayer, which is called Taraweeh and Qiyaamul Lail (Tahajjud), and set a lot of reward for it.

7. Sadaqatul Fitr

It’s an obligatory charity that must be given in Ramadan before Eid prayer. It is necessary to distribute 2.5 kgs of food items among the poor. It’s equal to be paid by male, female, old and young even by a newborn child. The Messenger of Allah PBUH prescribed the charity (alms) related to the breaking of the fast as a purification of the fasting person from what may happen to him from speech and slips of the tongue and unacceptable sayings, in addition to that it contains food for the poor and needy. If anyone pays it before the prayer of Eid, it will be accepted as a specific charity named “Sadaqatul Fitr”. If anyone pays it after the prayer, that will be a charity like other charities (not a Sadaqatul Fitr). (Sunan Abu Dawood:1603, Hasan/Al-Albani)

Ramadan- The Month of Struggle

The difficulty of fasting does not make a person weak but it energizes him with the power to conquer the battleground of evils in daily life just as a person controls his desire to eat and to drink during fasting. In Ramzan (Ramadhan), the first battle is fought between a person and himself. If he is defeated, he will not be able to achieve victory over others. If he overcomes himself, his victory over others will be more effortless. At that time, he gets a limitless determination, a will to breaks all barriers, the strength to achieve the impossible, an act of courage to dispel all obsessions, a boldness that challenges all obstacles, and an ambition to reap the victory.

Person going for namaz to mosque during ramadhan

Actually, the month of Ramzan is a month to fight against desires and overcoming them. Fasting means not only refraining from eating and drinking; instead, it means that all physical faculties should refrain from disobeying Allah. In recent times, our brothers and sisters are parting away with the traditions of Islam. They should strive to overcome this by presenting true Islam, likewise, our forefathers did in the wars of falsehood, and they succeeded in them.

It is disappointing to see, the Muslims of our era spend this auspicious month in laziness and indolence. They spend days sitting idle while they devote their nights to eating, drinking, and nonsense activities. However, the exciting thing about Ramadan is that during this period numerous battles were fought and brought victory over the whims of the mind and soul and against the enemy.

Here is a brief description of the battles that were glorious in Islamic history fought in the month of Ramadan.

Among the critical battles, the Battle of Badr took place on the 17th of Ramadhan after two years of migration of Muhammad PBUH to Medina, i.e. 13 March 624AD. The number of Muslims in this battle was only 313 against one thousand soldiers.

It took place on 20 Ramadan 8AH/ 11 December 629AD. This conquest was held with no war.

Prophet Muhammad PBUH went out on an expedition against Rome, the most powerful government of the world at that time, in Rajab 9AH/October 630, and it extended to Ramadhan.

Salahuddin Ayyubi defeated the Crusaders on 26th Ramadan and liberated Jerusalem after it had been under their control for 90 years.

These are some momentary glances that the Islamic warriors achieved in the state of fasting. The act of our forefathers shows that there is no difference between fasting and struggling.

In the end, this brief conversation brings us to a clear and unambiguous message that the month of Ramadan is an opportunity to fulfill genuine hopes and accomplish deeds, and it is not for rest, laziness, and lethargy. We can take advantage of this opportunity to achieve our goals by worshipping more than usual.

Written By-

Abdur Rahman Alamgir

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1 Comment

Mohammad Shahroz705
Mohammad Shahroz705
May 05, 2021

Mashaallah, well composed worth reading.

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