Nov 122003
 
Authors: Ben Bleckley

Muslims throughout the world will spend the daylight hours of

this month fasting.

Oct. 27 was the first day of Ramadan, the ninth month of the

Islamic calendar. Muslims throughout the world refrain from food,

drink, smoking and sexual relations from dawn to dusk until Nov.

25.

The month is one of celebration, but also of reflection and

awareness of God’s grace.

“The purpose of fasting is to make people aware that God is the

provider,” said Mohammed Saddiqui, director of the Fort Collins

Islamic Center.

Fasting, or sawm, during this month is one of the five pillars

of Islam, the expectations of every Muslim. Each night, Muslims

break the fast with a meal following dusk.

“The whole month is dedicated to fasting and worshiping and

trying to be more generous, more charitable, more pious,” Saddiqui

said.

Fasting is not expected of those who are sick or traveling –

these individuals are allowed to fast at another time during that

year.

“Who is ill or on a journey shall fast a similar number of days

later on. Allah desire your well-being, not your discomfort,”

states the Qur’an.

Historically, the month of Ramadan is when God first began

revealing the Qur’an, Islam’s holy book, to Muhammad.

“In the month of Ramadan the Qur’an was revealed, a book of

guidance with proofs of guidance distinguishing right from wrong.

Therefore, whoever is present in that month, let him fast,” states

the second Sura of the Qur’an.

The Islamic community has numerous events planned over

Ramadan.

“Every night we have some extra special prayers after breaking

the fast,” Saddiqui said. “On Fridays we have a community breaking

of the fast, everybody brings something, some food.”

The last 10 days of the month, some Muslims will stay in a

mosque in seclusion. There is also a final breaking of the fast on

the last day of Ramadan, Saddiqui said.

Few students seem to know much about Ramadan. In an unscientific

poll conducted by The Collegian Wednesday, only 27.8 percent of

students knew Ramadan was taking place. Less than 40 percent of

students knew Muslims were fasting this month.

Some student organizations are planning events over Ramadan as

well.

The Muslim Student Association has already held an event related

to Ramadan.

“We basically had a dinner representing food from 23 different

Islamic countries,” said Alicia Chatila, secretary of the Muslim

Student Association and a junior management major. “We had over 250

people attend.”

The Palestinian Student Association will bring food to

International Night this Saturday, said Abir Atma, a volunteer with

PSA and a community member.

Amas said she is still reminded of trouble in the Middle East

during Ramadan.

“It is a holiday month, but there is not room for celebration

for the Palestinians who are under the occupation,” Amas said.

“Some of them can not even go to their mosque because of the

situation they are in.”

 

 

 

 

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