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Muslims head towards close of Ramadan

Home stretch: the late stages of Ramadan present an opportunity to intensify worship for many Muslims (Image by Pixabay)

This week saw Muslims worldwide witness the beginning of the last ten days of the Holy Month of Ramadan. These last ten days are very significant as we are on the home stretch of intense worship and purification of the souls. We are praying that Allah had accepted our worship, prayers and fast.

Many prominent occurrences take place during this time. One of the most significant is Laylatul Qadr, known also as the Night of Power.

It is believed that during one of the last nights of Ramadan, the Holy Koran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) by the Angel Jibrael. On this night, the Prophet (pbuh) received the first revelation surah al ‘Alaq, which means “the clot”, where Allah informs us we were made from a clot of blood.

The following verses were revealed: “Recite in the name of your Lord who created. Created man from a clinging substance. Recite, and your Lord is the most generous. Who taught by the pen. Taught man that which he knew not.” (Koran, 1:29)

To me, this is so profound. It informs mankind of so much, and confirms we did not evolve from other forms of life.

Some think the Night of Power is on an odd night of Ramadan, perhaps the 27th. This is not known for sure as it was never revealed, hence to ensure one does not miss the night of power where countless mercies and blessings are to be obtained, many Muslims stay in the Masjid every night of Ramadan performing extra prayers and devotion.

This is known as I'tikaf and was first performed by Prophet Muhammad. Muslims are encouraged to follow this Sunnah (behaviour) of our beloved Prophet.

We are also encouraged to carry out extra deeds of charity and show kindness towards others. These last ten days and nights are an opportunity to hype up our worship by reading Koran, especially attempting to complete the reading of our Holy Book.

Our days are advised to be engaged in fasting and the reading of the Koran. We are advised as well, to feed the poor, help our family, friends and neighbours. By performing these acts, it puts us on track of following the perfect example of Prophet Muhammad. We eagerly embrace the nights in prayer and the remembrance of Allah. We seek fervently His forgiveness.

At the end of Ramadan we will be celebrating our Eid. There are two Eids in Islam, Eid al fitr and Eid al Adha. Eid is meant to be a time of joy and blessing for the entire Muslim community and a time for distributing one’s wealth.

The Eid after Ramadan is known as Eid Al Fitr (the feast of breaking the fast).

Muslims are also encouraged — and in fact, we are duty bound — to give Zakat (a charity, only given before the start of the two Eids).

Zakat is given to the less fortunate in the community. Zakat ensures that everyone can enjoy a celebration of feasting and gift giving. It is incumbent on every able-bodied Muslim in every household to give Zakat.

Charity to the poor is one of the pillars of Islam. The Koran says:

“Believe in Allah and his messenger, and give charity out of the (substance) that Allah has made you heirs of. For those of you who believe and give charity – for them is a great reward.” (Koran, 57:7)

Most Muslims are sad to see Ramadan leaving us, though it is a period of intense discipline which many of us are not accustomed to, however during this time, we realise it is needed and so good for us in gaining balance and direction.

During these last few days of Ramadan, let us fervently seek forgiveness and relief from the hellfire.

“Our Lord! We have wronged ourselves. If You do not forgive us and have mercy on us, we will certainly be lost.”

A very beneficial du'a to recite during the night of Laylatul Qadr is to ask Allah for good in this life and the next: “Our Lord! Grant us good in this world and good in the life to come and keep us safe from the punishment of the Hellfire.”

I pray that Ramadan leaves us better than it found us and that our fasting and devotion during this Holy and Blessed Ramadan be accepted. Ameen.

Bermuda we invite you to our Eid celebration on Wednesday, April 10. The Eid prayers start at 9am, with celebrations and food all day. We look forward to seeing you. Ask a Muslim for information on the other venues for the Eid celebrations. Come and celebrate the mercy of God with us.

Let us remember to pray for those here at home and abroad who may not be as fortunate as us.

We pray for peace, ceasefire and love.

As salaam alaikum and Ramadan Mubarak!

Linda Walia Ming is a member of the Bermuda Hijab Dawah Team, a group of Muslim women who reside in Bermuda and have a goal of educating the community about the religion of Islam

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Published April 06, 2024 at 7:58 am (Updated April 06, 2024 at 7:22 am)

Muslims head towards close of Ramadan

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