Welcome Ramadhan [Archives:1999/49/Last Page]
Only a few days are left until Ramadhan which is considered to be one of the most important months for all Muslims. This holy month teaches Muslims a lot of invaluable lessons. The importance of this month is stressed by the Holy Qura’an which made it clear that this month has lots of virtues that should be observed by Muslims to receive the mercy of God. This month is also important for Muslims to test their faith and sincere abidance by Islam’s teaching. For example, by abstaining from eating and drinking all day, they learn how to be patient and how to control themselves. Moreover, fasting helps revive the spirit of mercy, charity and altruism among people by making them feel for the poor who may spend days and nights with nothing to eat.
Earlier generations tended to abide by all the good values and customs of Ramadhan than the present generation. Ramadhan was also a month of work and productivity. As an illustration in point we find that the first conquest (Bader) ever won by the Prophet Mohammed (Peace and prayers be upon him) and Muslims was during Ramadhan. There were many others which took place in Ramadhan. Unfortunately, many Muslims misunderstand this fact and consider Ramadhan to be a month for sleep and food. Moreover, all good values have come to disappear from the face of earth for many people. who have become concerned with how to enrich their meals with so many different kinds of cuisine. Instead of being a month of asceticism, it has become a month of extravagance and careless expenditure.
During Ramadhan there are some good, benevolent people who organize and hold banquets for the poor and needy people who are living in abject poverty. These banquets are organized throughout the month which gives a very nice picture of the solidarity among the haves and the have-nots.
Another feature of Ramadhan is that in Ramadhan we distribute alms (Zakat). According to the instructions of the Holy Qura’an, the well-to-do have to give specific portions of their money that will be distributed to the deserving poor. This money, if distributed properly, will relieve some of the pain of many miserable people in our society.
On another level, medical researches and studies have shown what benefits fasters get during this month. For example, fasting is considered to be the best way to help smokers abandon smoking. There are a lot of other advantages that doctors have spoken about on many different occasions.
During the last ten days of Ramadhan, Muslims intensify their prayer-hours in mosques for they believe that during these ten days, there is a day (Leilat Al-Qadr,) in which God bestows His unlimited mercy on worshippers. Therefore, many of them try their best not to miss such a holy day.
The month ends with the coming of Eid Al-Fitre (Lesser Bairam) during which Muslims celebrate their togetherness with their families, relatives and friends. I hope that we will treat it as it deserves to be treated.
Yasser Mohammed Ahmad