Today marks the first day of Ramadan. The time of year where Muslims all over the world go without food and drink from sunrise to sunset for 30 days. There is a lot more than meets the eye aside from the food that is not often talked about so I thought I would share three things you may not know about Ramadan.
There is praying involved too.
When I hear people discuss Ramadan, they often talk about the food and the eating but it goes deeper than that. This month also calls for more focus on prayers. Many Muslims stay away from listening to music and indulging in television shows. Instead, our time goes towards focusing on reflecting on yourself and reaching out to god in your own way. Personally, I often pray a little more and read books which will help me grow spiritually.
The community spirit is high.
I have fond memories of growing up in my town during this month. We all come together, sharing food with each other. We all come together to eat, spending time together. One of my favorite things to do with my dad was rushing around in his car delivering food to friends and family. As Eid comes around the shops are open later than normal and the main road lights up. There is a community spirit which is ignited and I adore.
It is very personal.
There is no one way to take part in the month. Yes, there are certain things you do such as the fasting element but how much you engage spiritually is 100% personal and varies from person to person. There are cultural traditions which can often dictate the need to do certain activities but, something I have learned over the past couple of years is that Ramadan is extremely personal and can be different from house to house.
Overall Ramadan is a time for togetherness and gaining perspective on the message of Islam during a peaceful month.