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Three Ways to Prepare for Ramadan
Ramadan is held during the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and is the most sacred period of the year for Muslims. It is a time when Muslims fast during daylight hours to focus energy on faith, empathise with those in need and concentrate on improving the self.
Given Ramadan’s spiritual significance and the lifestyle changes it involves, it is important to prepare for it in the best way possible. This will help to ensure that its purpose is fulfilled and that it leads to lasting positive change!
Here are three simple ways that you can prepare for the holy month of Ramadan.
Select a charity
Giving to charity is one of the five pillars of Islam. While it is a hugely positive deed all year round, during Ramadan, it takes on extra significance. For Muslims, the virtue of charity during Ramadan is equal to seventy times its virtue during other times of the year. And during Laylatul Qadr - the Night of Power - giving to charity is equivalent to having given to charity for 83 years!
From paying your Zakat to donating your Fitrana, charity is at the very heart of the holy month. Ramadan is a time for acting with selflessness, and every gesture, no matter how small, helps to build towards a better future for all.
With this in mind, taking some time to select a charity or cause you’d like to donate to is the perfect way to prepare. It will guide your thinking and help you assess which cause is most important to you and which you would like to be a part of during the most sacred time of the year.
Fasting is another of the five pillars of the Islamic faith. As with giving to charity, it is something that takes on greater significance during the holy month.
Abstaining from food and drink between the hours of sunrise and sunset creates more time for spiritual reflection and teaches self-discipline - something hugely important in terms of breaking bad habits and starting positive new ones. Given Ramadan's focus on improving the self, eating healthily and in moderation is the perfect way to prepare.
It will also help you to practically prepare for the act of fasting. Having less time to eat means that paying attention to the nutritious value of food is crucial. The food eaten before or after fasting needs to provide the necessary amount of energy for you to complete your daily tasks. By getting into the routine of healthy eating well in advance of Ramadan, ensuring that the right food is eaten during the holy month will be a much easier process.
Building closer relationships with friends and family is a fantastic way to prepare for Ramadan. While many people choose to spend more time in solitude to increase their spirituality, the holy month is also a time for reflecting one what’s important and devoting time to loved ones.
Amid the frenetic pace of daily life, it is sometimes easy to lose sight of how much our friends and family mean to us. Ramadan is a time for personal growth, but it is also a time for collective growth and togetherness among family and friends. Doing something as simple as decorating the house together or having a family day out can increase your connection with those around you.
All three ways to prepare are unified by the shared goal of leading a more positive life. Ramadan is a time for reflection, spiritual connection and growth, and ensuring that you are adequately prepared will help to make the month as rewarding as possible.
For more information on how you can help, visit our Ramadan Appeal page.
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