Ramadan is here!

In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

After all the preparation and anticipation, despite not seeing the moon myself tonight, Ramadan 2013/1434 has arrived. It’s an amazing experience we are blessed with each year and I am so grateful for this opportunity again this year. The Ramadan preparation, the sighting of the moon and the welcoming of this Blessed month brings with it a sense of unity and belonging for Muslims all over the world.

As a Muslim living in the West, Ramadan brings the community together and really fosters the idea of a united Ummah or Nation. From the first night, the Mosque’s are packed, you meet people you don’t usually get to meet, everyone’s excited, lots of hugging, at times the occasional kiss from the Arab brothers – very manly and nothing queer! It is truly a festive atmosphere, sometimes you just have to take the time to appreciate it.

Despite the annual moon-sighting controversy and some differences in the approach and attitude of different ethnic groups, the concept of unity and the sense of togetherness still prevails. Once everyone is fasting, we forget the petty differences and the shared goals bring us closer again on the basis of our sheer love and respect for this great month.

I know I didn’t fully benefit from Ramadan last year which makes this year even more special to me. I am grateful that I have another opportunity and InshaAllah (God willing) I will have my redemption. The last 12 months have taught me many lessons and allowed me to appreciate my faith in a new light. After reflecting on Ramadan’s passed, I feel I have neglected a key aspect of this month and I plan to change that this year.

We get carried away with the fasting during the day and sometime forget that Ramadan is not simply the month of fasting. Ramadan is in fact the month of the Quran and without prioritising and emphasising this, the fasting becomes ritualistic and the month passes by like some sort of diet regime. This Ramadan, my intention is to fully and completely fulfil the rights of the Quran and I pray that by doing so I am able to maximise the blessings of this blessed month and come out the other end a better Muslim InshaAllah.

To my fellow Muslim brothers and sisters, I wish you a Blessed Ramadan… May the Almighty shower His mercy upon you, accept your efforts and pardon your shortcomings.

Blessed Ramadan!

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Ramadhan Reminders: Keep Healthy, Keep Hydrated…

In the Name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

As much as fasting is not about the mere abstinence of food & water, it’s important to plan your day and prepare for the fast to avoid a melt down. Fasting is an act of worship and if you’re doing it right, Allah will make it easy for you… but this doesn’t mean you don’t need to make any effort. Between all the soft drinks and fried stuff, many of us neglect on keeping well hydrated. This year I’ll be keeping a water bottle with me from sunset to sunrise Insha Allah. Hydration is very important and can influence the way your body acts and reacts throughout the day. Your food intake through the night can greatly influence the way you feel through the day so be mindful of that. If you’re looking for tips on keeping healthy this Ramadhan, check out 5 tips for a healthier Ramadhan!

Kudos to the Gold Coast Musjid for providing bottled water for everyone at Taraweeh!

Blessed Ramadhan!

 

Ramadhan Reminders: Its not about the food…

In the Name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.

Stay focused in Ramadhan. Don’t obsess about food and don’t let your Ramadhan revolve around the dinner/iftaar table. There are lessons to be learnt and sacrifices to be made, getting through each day just to make it to the dinner table defeats the purpose of the fast so keep that in mind and make the best of this auspicious month.

…and remember… “The deeds most loved by Allah are those done regularly, even if they are small.”