People often inquire about the underlying benefits of fasting. Is fasting all about learning how to live without water and food for a day? Is it about giving charity? Or is it about giving thanks to Allah (swt) for providing you with good health and a good life? Well, in short, the answer is to do with all of the above. Fasting is first and foremost a command from Allah (swt), and comes with immeasurable blessings and rewards; all of whom are geared towards a person a better human being. Fasting teaches patience, restraint, and time management.
A Look at the Fasting Routine
For those who know what fasting entails, it’s evident that proper time management is crucial for a successful fast. Muslims start their fast before the Fajr Prayer. They wake up in the early morning for an early breakfast and prayer and then continue their state of fast until sunset, when Maghrib prayers are due. Any delay in adhering to these timings and the fast is compromised. Even though intentions go a long way in any practice in Islam, there are certain guidelines that must be adhered to. A few minutes grace period is allowed to start and conclude fast but other than that, the timings are fairly strict. Then there are Taraweeh prayers which start after Isha prayer. So from the early hours of the day until late at night, there is a specific progression of events, all of which should be done in their appropriate time. It’s a routine that is adhered to for the whole month.
People Living In Western Countries
For people who live in western countries, the significance of time management is paramount because they have to adjust their fast along with a busy work life. In Muslim countries, Muslims traditionally open their fast at home. Due to today’s busy and hectic lifestyle, many now do so at work or in classes. In other words, they fast while doing their day to day duties. For Muslims devoted to fasting, they go the extra mile in ensuring all time specific requirements of a fast are met.
The Holy Qur’an is a book of guidance and each of its verses holds significant wisdom and instruction. Fasting is yet another instruction that is given for the benefit of Muslims. Fasting teaches us discipline in life and also gives us the understanding that good time-keeping is an important skill to master if one is to succeed in all walks of life.
As Ramadan is here, Muslims should use every moment of this month of blessings. It is a month of blessings and forgiveness and also an excellent opportunity to better yourself in all walks of life. Let us pledge to fast the whole month of Ramadan and read the Qur’an daily. Let us pledge to improve and perfect our time management skills so that we can contribute better to society and humanity as Muslims. Let us also remember those who are not so fortunate to spend Ramadan with their loved ones, in our thoughts and prayers. Remember the people of Syria who have been displaced from their homes; the citizens of the Gaza Strip who live in fear and uncertainty. We pray that they have a peaceful Ramadan and urge people to donate to Syria and provide any form of assistance and aid for Syria, Gaza and all other places that we can reach out to this Ramadan.