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Community Voices: Ramadan


As part of our regular "Community Voices" series, we asked Mona Sari, an AUSD parent and practicing Muslim, to write about the meaning and practices of Ramadan. She writes:

Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic calendar. The Islamic Calendar follows the lunar cycle, which means it follows the pattern of the moon, not the sun, and it’s 11 days shorter than the Gregorian calendar. That means Ramadan comes 11 days earlier every year.

Ramadan is 30 days long. During Ramadan we decorate our homes with lanterns and lights. 

Ramadan has a special significance in Islam because during this month, we believe that the first verses of the Quran, the Islam holy book, were revealed to the Prophet Mohammed. This occurred during the last ten days of Ramadan, on one of the odd-numbered nights. This night is called the Night of Power. It is considered the holiest night of the year in Islam.

Fasting during Ramadan is one of the five pillars in Islam. We fast from sunrise to sunset. We have no food or water until sunset. Children, pregnant women, sick people, and elders do not have to fast. 

During this period Muslims are encouraged to give to charity, help others, be thankful for what we have, show kindness, patience, and self-discipline, and pray, and read the Quran.  This period helps us develop training and control against bad deeds. 

Muslims believe Ramadan is the month of mercy and forgiveness. Also, Ramadan is the time for daily reflection on community and strength and our bond with loved ones. 

The end of Ramadan is celebration with three days festival called Eid al fter.