From all of us at Bklyner: Ramadan kareem to those who celebrate!
Ramadan is the most sacred month of the year for Muslims. According to religious tradition, it was during this month that God revealed the first verses of the Quran to the prophet Mohammed, on a night known as Laylat al-Qadr—”the Night of Power.”
Every day during the month of Ramadan, Muslims fast from dawn to sunset. Fasting during Ramadan is one of the five pillars of Islam, and is meant to be an act of worship, an opportunity to connect with God, and a reminder to be compassionate to those in need.
The dates of the holiday change every year, both because Islam makes use of a lunar calendar and because of differing opinions on how to identify the new moon whose presence signals the start of the holiday. This year, the holiday in the US and most other places begins the evening of April 12th and will last for 30 days. The Eid al-Fitr celebration marks the end of the month.
Like with everything else, the COVID-19 pandemic means Ramadan observance will look a bit different than normal. Leading Muslim organizations have published guidance on how to celebrate the holiday safely, including recommendation about social distancing in mosques.
They’re also letting congregants know that getting the vaccine is not a violation of the Ramadan fast.
To learn more about how New York’s Muslim communities are celebrating the holiday this year, you can read this RNS story written by Bklyner alum Zainab Iqbal.
The pre-sunrise to sunset fast can last anywhere from 10 to 21 hours, depending on where in the world you’re observing the holiday. Check out this Al-Jazeera story to see which countries have the longest and shortest fast times.
And if you’re out and about in Brooklyn and looking to get into the holiday spirit, you can stop by Bay Ridge, where for the first time ”Happy Ramadan” lighting has been strung along 5th Avenue.
We hope you have a safe, meaningful and happy holiday.