What makes Muslims proud of Ramadhan

Time check is 2:13pm. It is a hot sunny afternoon in Kampala. I’m seated in a car with a Christian colleague driving around Kampala’s streets.

“I feel so hungry,” he tells me. “Where should we go for lunch?” He asked.

“Lunch?” I wondered “Ah! You have already had lunch from the Parliamentary canteen,” he responded.

Before I could respond, he remembered that I am observing the fasting of the month of Ramadhan.

“Sorry, sorry you are fasting,” he hastened to add.

For 14 days now, Muslims world over have been fasting – spending the time between dawn to sunset without food or drink in accordance with the command contained in Chapter 2 verse 183 of the Holy Qur’an.

Ramadhan is the ninth month of the Islamic calender and is the most holiest month of the year for Muslims.

It is in it that the first revelation of the Qur’an was sent down to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in 610 AD.

“The month of Ramadan is that in which was revealed the Quran; a guidance for mankind, and clear proofs of the guidance, and the criterion (of right and wrong). And whosoever of you is present, let him fast the month, and whosoever of you is sick or on a journey, a number of other days. Allah desires for you ease; He desires not hardship for you; and that you should complete the period, and that you should magnify Allah for having guided you, and that perhaps you may be thankful.” Qur’an 2:185.

In Chapter 97, Allah announces that He revealed the Qur’an during the most sacred night – The Night of Power (Laylatul Qadr) which falls in the last 10 days of Ramadhan.

The Prophet Muhammad is reported to have said, “When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of heaven are opened and the gates of hell are closed and the devils are chained.”

The month of Ramadhan is meant to be a time of spiritual discipline — of deep contemplation of one’s relationship with Allah, prolonged prayer sessions – especially at night, increased charity and generosity, and intense recitation of the Qur’an.

After 29 or 30 days of fasting comes the feast of Eid-al-Fitri, the feast of breaking the fast, which in some Muslim countries lasts for three days.