Handy Ramadan 2018 Guide 3rd May, 2018
With Ramadan 2018 just around the corner, it is now time to prepare ourselves for this long-awaited month which is known to be filled with blessing and reward.
When is Ramadan?
Ramadan is expected to begin on or around 16th May 2018 and will last until 14th June 2018.
Eid-ul-Fitr is expected to fall on or around 15th June 2018.
Please note, all dates are subject to the sighting of the moon – please consult your local Mosque nearer the time.
What is Ramadan?
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. The Islamic calendar operates on a lunar cycle, meaning that the beginning of a month is determined by the full moon. Therefore, the calendar rotates approximately 11 days each year – meaning Ramadan will not occur at the same time every year.
Ramadan is known to be one of the holiest and most blessed months known to Muslims worldwide; it is the month when the Holy Qur’an was first revealed to the Prophet Muhammed (PBUH) as guidance for all mankind. This happened in the final ten nights of the Holy month, more commonly known as Laylatul-Qadr (The Night of Power).
Laylatul Qadr, also known as the Night of Power, falls within the last ten nights of the month of Ramadan. The Night of Power is known as the night in which the first words of the Holy Qur’an were revealed to the Holy Prophet Muhammed (PBUH) as guidance for all mankind. This night holds much significance for Muslims as it is a night in which destiny for the coming year is decreed for them. A night of repentance for sins; it is a night to be spent in full worship as the rewards for any worship carried out on this night are equal to that of a thousand months.
What Does Ramadan Entail?
During this month, Muslims observe fasting during daylight hours. Fasting is one of the obligatory Five Pillars of Islam and is not just about abstaining from food and drink; fasting is also about cleansing the mind and purifying the soul. This means that Muslims should refrain from any sinful acts, swearing, backbiting, hurting others, bad intentions, sexual thoughts or actions and so on during the fasting day. This, in fact, is a way of disciplining oneself to be the way we are meant to be and act how we are meant to act – a reminder to stay humble as we are all the same in the eyes of Allah SWT.
Fasting is a way of purifying one’s mind, body and soul. It aims to free oneself of any impurities and bad thoughts and exercises discipline, humility and sacrifice. It is also a reminder of those less fortunate than us who often have no choice but to fast every single day without access to any nourishment.
Fasting doesn’t just involve the mouth - it includes fasting of the ears (not listening to any evil), the eyes (not seeing anything sinful), the body (not committing any sinful acts) and the mind (not thinking any sinful or impure thoughts).
There are certain exceptions to those who have to fast during this month, such as those who are ill, pregnant, or underage. Once a child has reached the baligh age (puberty) they are required to fast.
Those who are unable to fast due to circumstantial factors such as illness are required to pay a forfeit by way of fidyah and those who intentionally break a fast are required to pay by way of kaffarah.
Those who cannot fast due to menstruation or pregnancy can repay their fasts back as soon as they are in a position to do so, even if this is after the month of Ramadan. However, any missed fasts cannot be observed on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr, which is a religious festival that occurs after the final day of this month, to conclude the month of Ramadan.
A Typical Day in Ramadan
In the Morning (Pre-Dawn)
- Wake up for suhoor (breakfast)
- Recite niyyah (intention) to fast
- Fasting begins
- Perform Fajr salaah (prayers)
During the Day
- Go about normal day-to-day routine
- Perform Zohr/Asr salaah (prayers)
In the Evening (Sunset)
- Sit down to a meal with family/friends/loved ones
- Recite Dua (prayers)
- Open fast together with dates and milk/water
- Perform Maghrib salaah (prayers)
- Commence eating suhoor (dinner)
- Perform Isha salaah (prayers)
- Visit Mosque for Taraweeh
- Recite the Holy Qur’an
- Perform any optional additional acts of worship (Dua/Namaaz)
Charity in Ramadan
During this month, many Muslims choose to donate money or volunteer their time for charity in order to share their wealth and encourage a well-balanced society. Another benefit of this is that generosity is highly rewarded in Islam – particularly during the Holy month of Ramadan.
Not only this, but many Muslims opt to give their annual zakat during this month too, which is a percentage of a Muslim's profitable annual wealth. To determine how much zakat you owe this year, use our handy zakat calculator.
Additionally, a small contribution is to be donated on behalf of every Muslim prior to Eid salaah which is performed on the morning of Eid-ul-Fitr. This donation is known as fitrana or zakat-ul-Fitr and is given to those in need to enable them to celebrate the festival of Eid as comfortably as those who are donating it.
To submit your Ramadan 2018 donations towards a good cause with Islamic Help, click here.
Eid-ul-Fitr is an important festival in the Islamic calendar which signifies the completion of the month of Ramadan. On this day, Muslims enjoy a breakfast with their family followed by a visit to their local Mosque. Fitrana is contributed prior to the commencing of Eid salaah, which is a prayer performed in congregation with others.
Following this, the day is filled with adorning one's best clothes, praying, wishing each other ‘Eid Mubarak’ (have a blessed Eid), visiting family, visiting the poor and elderly, giving to charity, eating and giving gifts to loved ones.
Eid-ul-Fitr is expected to fall on or around 15th June this year, subject to the sighting of the moon.