The month of Ramadan has just begun for over a billion Muslims around the world; thirty days of fasting from sunrise to sunset. While it may sound harsh to some, as Muslims there is so much beauty in Ramadan and what it represents. When Muslims fast (in our case for almost 18 hours) it invigorates your other senses in many ways.
The holy month of Ramadan is upon us. This is a time when Muslims all around the world abstain from all food, drink and sexual pleasure during daylight hours. It is also a time when Muslims remember those less fortunate around the world by giving a portion of their wealth to charitable causes. Every Ramadan, here at Islamic Relief Canada, we pick a global issue that we campaign and fundraise on, and this month we're calling for more action towards ending the global refugee crisis.
While Egypt was considered a role model for civilization once upon a time, its inability to put a stop against barbaric acts of FGM is painful. The human rights violations where infants, toddlers, children, teenagers, and women, are having their vaginas sliced, because the notion of a woman experiencing sexual pleasure is distasteful, are not dwindling.
The one aspect I constantly struggle with every Ramadan is my clothing choice. I feel that if I am fasting, I should dress closer in accordance with the Muslim dress code. But is my ultimate goal that one day I will leave Ramadan dressing more conservatively for the rest of the year? I am not sure, but maybe.
Six years ago, I could not imagine the day my son would go into grade 1, let along imagine my son asking me if he can fast. Last week, he said to me: "I want to fast with you and dad. Please, please, please!" I was silent at first, not knowing how to tell him that there is no way I am letting him fast 17 hours.
Traditionally, Muslims are not allowed to eat throughout the day while they fast during the holy month of Ramadan. Although individuals with illnesses are usually exempt from fasting, I try my best to do what I can. It's an interesting struggle to keep the balance between fulfilling my religious responsibilities and keeping my health in check. The criticism is endless, but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do! My doctors have advised me against fasting numerous times, but I think it should be a personal choice.
Ramadan is scheduled to commence later this week and I am not looking forward to it. The Islamic calendar is lunar based, so Ramadan shifts by approximately 10 days every year. Fasting during the winter months is easy with dawn being so late and sunset being so early. Fasting during the summer months is brutal -- dawn is currently at 3:45 a.m. and sunset is at 9 p.m.
During the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, Sameer Sarmast leaves the house each day with his wallet, his keys and... dates."I'll carry a little sandwich...