RAMADAN


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RAMADAN 

Rules & Regulations

Fasting in the month of Ramadan is compulsory on every Muslim 
adult. The Arabic word sawm is used for fasting. The word sawm 
(plural siyam) literally means 'to refrain', but as an Islamic term, 
it means refraining 
from food, drinks and sexual activity from dawn to sunset. 


Allah says in the Quran, in Surah Al-Baqarah (2-183):

'O you who believe, siyam is prescribed on 
you as it was prescribed to those before you 
so that you may become self-restrained.'

The importance of Siyam in Ramadan is   
clearly expressed in several sayings of 
the Prophet(S.A.W.). It is reported by 
Abu Hurairah that the Prophet said:

'He who fasts during Ramadan with  faith  and  
seeks his  reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven;  
he  who  prays during the night in Ramadan with faith and 
seeks  his  reward from Allah will have his past sins forgiven; 
and he who passes Lailat al- Qadr in prayer with 
faith and seeks his  reward from Allah will have his 
past sins forgiven
.'
(Bukhari and Muslim)

Fasting in Ramadan is practiced by Muslims all over the world. 
The most  significant  aspect  of Siyam is the development of 
Allah-consciousness (Taqwa) in the heart and the  soul of a fasting 
Muslim. One must abstain from  immoral  behavior  and attitude as 
well. Refraining from food and such is essential during fast but it is 
not sufficient. 


The Prophet of Allah is reported to have said:

'If one does not abandon falsehood in words and deeds, 
Allah has no need for his abandoning of his food and drink.'

(Al-Bukhari)

WHO IS EXEMPT FROM SAWM?
Fasting is mandatory on every Muslim who is sane, 
adult, able and resident. The following exemptions apply:
1-the insane;

2-children who are not adolescent yet;
3-the elderly and chronically ill for whom fasting is 
unreasonably strenuous; 
Such persons are required to feed at least 
one poor person every day in Ramadan for 
which he or she has missed fasting.

4-pregnant women and  nursing  may  
postpone the fasting at a later time;

5-the ill and the travellers can also defer their fasting.

Allah says in the Qur'an, Surah Al-Baqara:

    'But if anyone is ill, or on a journey, 
    the prescribed period should be made up by days later. 
    Allah intends every facility for you; 
    He does not want to put you to difficulties.'

  1. 6-Women during the period of menstruation 
    or of postchildbirth confinement.   
    Fasting  during  these  periods  is forbidden and 
    should be made up later, a day for a day.

    DURATION OF SAWM:
    Fasting starts everyday in Ramadan at the break of dawn, 
    which is also  the  start  of the Salatul Fajr time. 
    Fasting ends at sunset or with the call of Salatul 
    Maghrib.

    VALIDITY OF FASTING:
    The validity of fasting depends on the following:

    1-Abstaining from food, liquids and sexual activity from dawn 
    to sunset.
    2-The intention to fast must be made every day before dawn. 
    The intention(niyyah) may be made during night before going 
    to sleep or it can also be made at the time of Suhoor before 
    dawn. Suhoor is eating before fasting. It should be as close 
    to Fajr time as possible. 

    Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) says:

    'Partake Suhoor, for there is blessing in Suhoor.'
    (Bukhari, Muslim)

    It is desirable to break the fast as 
    soon as possible after sunset. 
    Breaking the fast with  dates or water is a tradition of the Prophet. 

    Following is one of the Du'a for breaking fast:

    Allahumma laka sumtu  wa 'ala  ridhqika aftartu
    (O Allah! For You did I fast and with 
    Your bounties did I break the fast.)

    The things which invalidate fast are of two kinds. The first one 
    requires Qada (only making up missed days), the other one not 
    only requires Qada but also Kaffarah(a penalty).

    The following are the things that require Qada only:
    1-Eating or drinking intentionally. 
    This includes non-nourishing items taken by mouth.

    2-Deliberately causing oneself to throw up.

    3-The beginning of menstruation or post-childbirth bleeding 
    even in the last moment before sunset.

    4-Ejaculation for reasons other than sexual intercourse.

    5-Intending to break the fast before sunset even if one 
    changes   his  mind,  since   intention   is   one  of  the 
    pre-requisites of the validity of fasting.

    6-Eating, drinking or having intercourse  after  dawn on 
    the mistaken assumption that it is not dawn yet. 
    Similarly, engaging in these acts before  Maghrib on the 
    mistaken assumption that it is already sunset.

    Things that not only require Qada but also Kaffarah are the following:
    Sexual intercourse during fasting(dawn to dusk). 
    The penalty is to fast an additional period of 60 continuous days. 
    If one is not able to do so then he must feed sixty 
    poor people-one average meal each.

    Before the days of the Prophet Muhammad(S.A.W.), 
    slavery was a common practice in the Arab world. 
    Islam eliminated slavery from the society in a very 
    short period of time. A useful approach was to 
    allow people free a slave as a charity or as a 
    penalty for a sin. Thus during the time of the 
    Prophet(S.A.W.), setting a slave free was 
    the penalty one must pay as a kaffarah, 
    if he or she had a slave.

    What does not break the fast:

    1-If anyone forgets that he is fasting and eats or drinks, 
    he should complete his fast, for it is only Allah who has 
    fed him and given him drink.(A Hadith from Muslim).

    2-Unintentional vomiting.

    3-Swallowing  things  which  are  not  possible  to avoid, 
    such as one's saliva, street dust, smoke, etc.

    4-Brushing the teeth.

    5-Injection or intra-venous which is  solely  medical  and 
    not nutritional.

    Breaking of fast under exceptional conditions:
    Muslims are permitted to break the ordained fast of Ramadan 
    when there is danger to their health. In this situation a Muslim 
    should make up his fast later at any other time of the year.

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