Our country Nepal is the place where people celebrate different cultures, tradition and delightful occasions. Here in Nepal where Muslims also exist with their culture and festival. ‘Ramadan’ is the Islam’s holy month of fasting where Muslims around the world focus on prayer, fasting, giving to charity, and religious devotion. Fasting meant to allow worldwide Muslims to seek nearness and to look for forgiveness from Allah (God). Ramadan the month of obligatory daily fasting in Islam which is the ninth month in the Islamic lunar calendar. And also the month in which ‘Holy Quran’ was revealed. The annual fast of Ramadan is considered as one of the ‘Five pillars of Islam’, which are shahadah (declaration of faith toward Allah), salat (daily five times prayers), zakat (the charity), sawn (fasting), and hajj (pilgrimage to mecca).
Among five sawn meant fasting the blessed month of Ramadan. While this duration before sun rises’ all Muslims eat delicious food called sehri. And after sun start lighting Muslims all over abstain from food, drinking liquid and other physical needs as well as, Muslims refrain from other behavior such as swearing, lying, engaging in disagreements and backbiting etc., during the daylight hours/begin at dawn and end with sunset. At evening time Muslims usually break the fast by eating Dates (khajur), and variety of delicious food. ‘Dates’ a special kind of dry fruit that ‘Prophet Mohammad the last messenger of Allah‘ break his fast with khajur. Then especially in this month only, entire Muslims pray namaz called ‘Taraweeh’ at night Esha time. The entire ‘Holy Quran’ is recited in these prayers at mosques and homes. The month lasts 29 to 30 days based on visual sighting of the new moon.
This month doesn’t meant just stay whole day without eating and drinking, it’s all about month provide us an opportunity to get closer to ‘Allah’. It is time for spiritual, reflection, improvement and increase devoted and refocuses one’s self on the worship. Muslims are expected to put more effort into following as much as learning/ teaching of Islam. The act of fasting is said to redirect our heart away from worldly activities and its main purpose being cleanse the soul by freeing from harmful impurities and sin. Ramadan also teaches Muslims how to better practice, self-disciplines, self-control, sacrifices. Thus, encouraging action of compulsory charity called Zakat. Zakat (charity) is very important in Islam even more during Ramadan. It is obligatory as one of the pillars of Islam, a fix percentage of person’s saving is required to give the poor. Ramadan becomes compulsory for all Muslims to start fasting when they reach puberty as long as they are healthy and sane but there’s not compulsion for those suffering from illness, pregnant, menstruation, breastfeeding, travelling, diabetic.
Lastly, at the first day of next month called the month of Shawwal, worldwide Muslims celebrate the festival of breaking fast called ‘Eid al-fitr’ on that day. Muslims take bath wear new clothes, giving gifts to the children’s/youngers and greets with lots of love to each other by hugging themselves, went to masjid for Eid prayer and break the fasting month by feeding traditional sweet dishes called sewai.