Ramadan

Why Should I Fast?

Every year, for one complete lunar month-the ninth month in the Islamic calendar, you as an adult Muslim are required to fast. From dawn to sunset in the month of Ramadan, you are required to refrain from all food and drink and sexual relations with your spouse.

If you are sick or on a journey you are allowed not to fast but you must make up for it by fasting the same number of days missed during Ramadan.

Why should I fast?

The main purpose of fasting is described in the Quran as "so that you may attain Taqwa or God-consciousness." Fasting is thus yet another instrument for bringing us closer to our natural state, our state of Fitrah and for cleansing this state from the dross of any disobedience and corruption.

Ramadan: Rules & Regulations

Fasting in the month of Ramadan is compulsory on every Muslim adult. The Arabic word sawm is used for fasting.

The word sawm (plural siyam) literally means 'to refrain', but as an Islamic term, it means refraining from food, drinks and sexual activity from dawn to sunset.

Allah says in the Quran, in Surah Al-Baqarah (2-183):

'O you who believe, siyam is prescribed on you as it was prescribed to those before you so that you may become self-restrained.'

The importance of Siyam in Ramadan is clearly expressed in several sayings of the Prophet(S.A.W.). It is reported by Abu Hurairah that the Prophet said:

Benefitting from the Quran

The only way we can truly benefit from the Qur'an is to build a strong connection and relationship with it. So, how can we do this? My friend shared the following with me and it's worth reading.

1 - Every time we go to recite the Qur'an or touch the Qur'an, we should renew our intention, that we are about to take the step to speak to Allah ﷻ. Know the value of this Book of Allah. We have so many copies of the Qur'an around the world, in abundance, that we lose value for the Qur'an. Know that if this Qur'an was revealed on a mountain, it would crumble, perish, be destroyed. This is the true value of His Book.

The Great Blessings of the Holy Month of Ramadan

Author: 
Unknown

The month of Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. Ramadhan is one of the greatest blessings of Allah (SWT) upon the Ummah of his beloved Prophet (saw). In the Quran it is stated 'Ramadan is the month in which was sent down the Qur'an as a guide to mankind, also Clear Signs for guidance and judgment between right and wrong." (Suratul Baqara, 2:185).

This is especially an important month for muslims across the world; in an era in which we are constantly struggling with the idea of up keeping the Remembrance of Allah, due to complications of modern day life.

RaMaDan FeVeR!

Author: 
Unknown

The heat is on! Once a year a dramatic change occurs in the Muslim community. Once a year Icky baby and the Sams becomes Iqbal and Sameera.

Off come the baggy jeans, the Nike 180's and the Raiders cap. On come the yellow Shalwar Kameez (clothes most Pakistanis wear), the brylcreamed hairstyle which glues on that terribly uncool Towpee(cap) and in comes the miswak in the top pocket, making you look like something like "Karachi cops".

It's during this HOLY month of Ramadan that we ditch the daytime raves and the frequent visit to the library (and we don't mean for the reference section) and begin to act it out. Icky baby becomes temporarily religious.

What Ramadan isn't about

Boy eating

Boy eating
Boy eating
Author: 
Unknown

Yes, its that time of year again when we taste the wonderful variety of our family's home cooking. Never in such a short space of time do we encounter such scrumptious meals.

Every evening there will be a knock at the door and the aunty (or a liberated uncle) from next door will oblige with a sample of his or her delicacies and vice versa. Yes you've guessed it- its Ramadhan!

There is feverish activity during this month that is truly unsurpassable. Young children will eagerly get up for Sheri (the morning breakfast) bright eyed and excited for they have been allowed to fast. There will be competitions amongst the youngsters as to who can keep the most fasts, as they never seem to tire.

Ramadhan Regime: Salah

Muslims praying in Mosque

Muslims praying in Mosque
Muslims praying in Mosque

Hello there reader and Ramadhan Mubarak!

A few weeks ago, I gave a talk to approximately 100 people at the institute where I study. I spoke about the importance and reward of salah and the consquences for not performing salah. Often this is a topic we think we know so much about and it can get a bit yawn-worthy because we've heard it all before. 

I wanted to give my audience something to take back with them and something which they could adopt and put into practice. I gave them some tips on how to overcome laziness towards salah, how we can prepare ourselves for salah and how we can enhance our concentration in salah. I thought it would be worth sharing with you too. 

Taking Advantage of Ramadan

From an email which I thought I'd share on here; A few ways in which you can take advantage of this month, especially the last 10 days;

1) Reserve a Private Meeting with Allah - Set a time before or after suhoor to be alone with Allah (swt).  Use this time to connect to Him by praying, making du`a’, or reading Qur’an. There is no other time like it. The Prophet ﷺ said: “When the last one-third of the night remains, our Lord, the Glorious One, descends towards the lower heaven and proclaims: ‘Is there anyone supplicating to Me, so that I grant his supplication? Is there anyone begging of Me for anything so that I grant him his wish? Is there anyone who seeks My forgiveness, so that I forgive him?’” [Bukhari and Muslim].

Moroccan Lamb Kebabs

Skewered Kebab

Skewered Kebab
Skewered Kebab
Author: 
Saadia Iqbal

Accompany your spicy grilled lamb kebabs with pitta for a mouthwatering sensation. Serve with fresh green vegetables tzatziki sauce.

Prep Time: 20 Minutes

Cooking Time: 10 Minutes

Ready In: 30 Minutes

Servings: 6

INGREDIENTS:

2 pounds ground lamb

1 cup raisins

5 ounces goat cheese

1/3 cup mayonnaise

1 red onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

3/4 tablespoon ground cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

Salt

Ground pepper

METHOD:

1. Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat and lightly oil the grate.

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