In pictures: Muslims observe Ramadan around the globe

In pictures: Muslims observe Ramadan around the globe - Arts and Culture - News

The Commencement of the Holy Month of Ramadan: A Time for Reflection, Devotion, and Fasting

The auspicious month of Ramadan began on Monday, March 11, signifying the start of the 1445th year in the Islamic calendar. This revered month holds great significance in the lives of Muslims worldwide and is celebrated with deep devotion, spiritual contemplation, and self-discipline.

The origins of Ramadan date back to the seventh century when the Prophet Mohammed, the founder of Islam, embarked on a spiritual retreat in the cave of Hira, located north of Mecca. This period was marked by intense reflection and contemplation, leading to the first revelations from God as conveyed through the angel Gabriel.

Muslims honor this holy month by practicing three essential tenets: prayer, fasting, and giving to charity. These practices not only purify the soul but also strengthen their bond with God and foster a sense of compassion towards the less fortunate within their communities.

During Ramadan, Muslims abstain from eating, drinking, and engaging in sexual acts between sunrise and sunset. The fast is broken each day with the evening meal called ‘Iftar,’ which is often shared with family and friends, deepening connections and promoting unity within communities.

Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar, and it is believed that the first verse of the Quran was revealed during its last 10 nights. This singular night of worship is considered to be “better than a thousand months.” Muslims believe that on this day, the angel Gabriel began delivering divine revelations from God to Prophet Mohammed.

The Quran, the holy book of Islam, describes this night as a night of immense blessings and unparalleled devotion: “This is the Night of Decree (the 15th night of Ramadan). In it is decreed every matter for mankind. All that is left is for you to exalt Allah’s praises during the night, and seek forgiveness from Him.”

Thus, Ramadan represents not just a time for spiritual growth and renewal but also an opportunity to strengthen one’s faith, nurture positive relationships, show kindness, and extend generosity towards others. As the world’s Muslim population eagerly anticipates these 30 days filled with faith, reflection, and communal bonding, they look forward to experiencing the transformative power of this holy month.