Tue, 12 Mar 2024 Religion

2024 Ramadan begins today 

  Tue, 12 Mar 2024
2024 Ramadan begins today

Muslims across the world have commenced this year's fast in the holy month of Ramadan after the crescent of the moon was sighted in Saudi Arabia, Mecca, yesterday.

The Holy month, which is the ninth month on the Islamic lunar calendar, commences and ends at the sighting of the new moon, and it Is the period, where Muslims are to forgo food and drink, abstain from sex during the day and all social vices.

It is the month in which fasting is obligatory for every Muslim except those whose age, health conditions and other challenges will not permit them to fast from dawn to sunset as espoused in the teachings of the Holy Quran, Chapter 2 verse 183, which states “O you who believe, Siyam (fasting) is prescribed onto you as it was prescribed for those before you so that you may have piety (fear of Allah).”

The 29 or 30-day fast, is also one of the five pillars of Islam and serves as a means of drawing closer to Allah and nurturing self-control, gratitude and compassion for the less fortunate.

Muslims welcome the month as an opportunity for self-reflection, and spiritual improvement, and to grow in moral excellence.

It is also a highly social time as Muslims invite each other to break their fast together and meet for prayers at the mosque.

“For Muslims, it is a time to train themselves both physically and spiritually by avoiding any negative acts such as gossiping, backbiting, lying, or arguing. It is also an opportunity for self-reflection, spiritual improvement and also to grow in moral excellence,” an Imam said.

After the 29 to 30 days fast, the Festival of Eid Al-Fitr, or the Festival of Fast-breaking, is celebrated to mark the end of Ramadan.