As Ramadan only comes around once a year, it’s natural that we might be feeling a bit rusty on the Do’s and Don’ts, the terminology used, and generally how to get the best out of this blessed month. Have no worries! We have compiled the ultimate Ramadan survival guide to help you get the most from the holiest month in the Islamic calendar.
Here are common terms you’re going to hear during this month:
Sawm - Fast.
Iftar - Opening of the fast immediately after sunset. Iftar takes place at Maghrib time.
Sadaqah - Voluntary charity.
Zakat - Obligatory charity.
Kaffarah - The compensation that you should pay in the form of money or observing the fast for 60 consecutive days if you deliberately miss or break a fast in the month of Ramadan without a valid reason.
Fidya - When someone is unable to fast due to ill health, old age or pregnancy, they should make a payment for someone else to be fed in substitution.
I’tikaf - When you spend the last ten days of Ramadan (either wholly or partly) in a mosque, devoting yourself exclusively to acts of worship.
Laylatul-Qadr - This is The Night of Power. It is concealed in one of the odd nights in the last ten days of Ramadan, The Quran describes this night as ‘better than a thousand months’ (Al-Qadr 97:3).
Eid Al-Fitr - This is the festival marking the end of Ramadan.
Taraweeh - Night prayers during Ramadan. Classified as part of qiyaam al-layl. The Qiyamul layl during Ramadan is called Taraaweeh because the Salaf used to rest (istaraahu) after every two or four rak’ahs, because they made their prayers long in order to make the most of this season of great reward.
Qiyamul-layl - Spending the night, or part of it, even if it is only one hour, in prayer, reading Qur’aan, remembering Allah (dhikr) and other acts of worship. It is not stipulated that it should take up most of the night.
Do’s and Don’ts
- Fast if healthy and of sound mind
- Plan ahead
- Make sure you keep hydrated
- Keep motivated
- Keep fit
- Get plenty of rest
- Break bad habits
- Eat in moderation
- Waste time
- Eat too much
- Neglect worship
- Make Ramadan all about food
Tips for different types of people during Ramadan
For a lot of people, Ramadan might seem intimidating as they feel they have to put their lives on standby in order to commit to this month. This doesn’t have to be the case. Below are a few suggestions on how to implement your hobbies into your worship.
This is for all the readers out there who spend a lot of their time with their head buried in a good book. Why not read something beneficial this Ramadan? It may not be your average fiction, but how about delving into the lives of the prophets? There are great lessons and captivating plots in their real life history with twist and turns that will put any thriller to shame, and what makes them better than the average book is that they are true stories. This way you can be spending your time enjoying your hobby whilst also broadening your knowledge of Islam.
The Social Butterfly
For the one who is always active, the one who can never stay at home for too long without getting withdrawal from a lack of fresh air. Don’t let Ramadan deter you in keeping active. How about trying out volunteering? There are always a lot of people to meet and plenty of work to be done. This should pacify your cravings for the outdoors while racking up the rewards of Ramadan.
This is a tricky one. How does a procrastinator stop procrastinating? Well you’re just going to have to dive in to the deep end with this one. Delaying things has become a skill of professional level to the everyday procrastinator. We all know one, and some of us have to guiltily admit to probably being one. This Ramadan don’t delay your worship. How about handling some responsibility during Ramadan? Now we don’t mean being the admin of your WhatsApp group chat, but maybe try something a little more substantial. Why don’t you organise weekly gatherings where your friends or family can share reminders and tips they have learnt? Having leadership over these gatherings will ensure your participation and your time being spent efficiently during this blessed month.
Keeping Your Energy Up
The first step to keeping your energy up would be to Pre Plan ahead of this month.
Once you have set your goals and what you hope to achieve you will have a rough idea on how much energy you would need to fulfil your plans.