What Is Ramadan?
Ramadan is known to many as one of the most important holidays in Islam. It falls on the ninth month of the Islamic Calendar and lasts through the entire month. It’s a holiday of deep religious and cultural significance throughout the Muslim world.
Ramadan has an important religious character. It’s an opportunity for muslims to practice sawm (fasting) which is one of the Five Pillars of Islam. Ramadan celebrates the prophet Muhammad’s first revelation. Observing Ramadan requires that Muslims be mindful of their faith and participate in specific rituals of fasting, prayer, and charity.
Of all the Ramadan rituals, the ritual of fasting is the most recognized. Observers of Ramadan are asked to fast between sunrise and sunset. Fasting allows Muslims to focus on sacrifice, discipline, and cleansing during the daylight hours. At sunset, when the fast is broken, many communities come together to feast and share each other’s company. Dates are commonly eaten during these feasts, as they are of great religious significance, but also plentiful in the Middle East.
As a majority-Muslim country, Ramadan is widely celebrated in Palestine. Throughout the nation, families and communities gather to break their fasts, pray, and provide acts of charity and service. Charitable giving is a fundamental part of Islam in the form of zakat. Zakat is one of the Five Pillars and asks that all Muslims with means donate some of their income or wealth to the poor. Charitable giving increases during Ramadan as the minds of the faithful are focused on religious service.
During the month of Ramadan and beyond, the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund is reliant on zakat and other forms of charitable giving. Through our generous donors, we’re able to fund various humanitarian programs that aid Palestinian children and their families. Although PCRF is not a religious organization, the majority of children who we provide free humanitarian care to are Muslims. There are many ways to get involved. Learn how you can help PCRF today.