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How to Prepare for Ramadan: Physically, Spiritually and Mentally


Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic Calendar, and it’s formed upon the basis of the Fourth Pillar of Islam, Sawm. Sawm means “to fast”, and it teaches Muslims dedication and self-control. Naturally, fasting is both physically and mentally demanding and requires spiritual dedication. As a result, it’s of the utmost importance that Muslims prepare themselves ahead of Ramadan so that they’re able to make the most of the holy month.

When is Ramadan 2024?

The Islamic Calendar follows the lunar schedule, meaning it is shorter than the Gregorian Calendar. As a result, the time in which Ramadan falls will shift slightly each year, and we won’t know the exact dates until the month draws closer. Currently, it’s predicted that Ramadan 2024 will fall on the evening of Sunday, 10 March and end on Tuesday, 9 April; however, these dates are subject to change and will depend on the moon sighting.

What is the Spiritual Significance of Ramadan?

Ramadan is a month of spiritual cleansing and purification. Not only are Muslims required to fast during this time, but they must also increase their worship, good deeds, and acts of charity.

Fasting is a deeply spiritual experience, as it teaches us self-control and dedication. On top of this, being thirsty and hungry during the daylight hours heightens our awareness of how people experiencing poverty feel every day. The difference is that we’re able to take comfort in the fact that we’ll be able to enjoy a hearty, nourishing meal once the sun sets, whereas those in need don’t have that same luxury. From this, our empathy is heightened, encouraging us to engage more readily with good deeds.

What Can You Not Do During Ramadan?

In short, it’s not permitted to carry out any impure actions during the daylight hours of Ramadan. Although it’s widely believed that Muslims should only abstain from eating and drinking during the daytime, requirements during Ramadan go way beyond this. For instance, Muslims aren’t allowed to swear, lie, fight, argue, or engage in sexual activity during the daylight hours of Ramadan. Instead, this is a time to cleanse our minds and strengthen our bonds with Allah (SWT).

What Time Can You Eat During Ramadan?

The time at which Muslims can eat during Ramadan will depend on the time of year that it falls. For instance, the sun sets earlier and rises later in the winter than in the summer, meaning the daylight hours are shorter. This year, Ramadan will fall during March and April, meaning that the sun is likely to set anywhere from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and will likely rise around 6 a.m. It is between these hours that Muslims will be permitted to eat.

How to Celebrate Ramadan

The month of Ramadan isn’t necessarily a time of celebration as much as it is a month of religious observance. The celebration comes at the end of the month, and this is otherwise known as Eid al-Fitr. It’s during this time that celebrations take place, which typically include gift exchanges and gathering together to enjoy sweet dishes.

How to Prepare for Ramadan

As previously mentioned, Ramadan fasting is both physically and mentally taxing and requires a level of spiritual dedication. Therefore, it’s important that you don’t just jump in without any preparation. Detailed below are just some of the steps that you can take to prepare for Ramadan:

  • Fast once or twice a week – This will get your body used to going for extended periods of time without food or drink. You could fast on Mondays and Thursdays, as this is the Sunnah.
  • Make a dua list – This will provide you with ready access to duas that you can recite throughout the month.
  • Increase Qur’an recitation – This will get you into the habit of blocking out time for the purpose.
  • Read a translation of the Qur’an or learn Arabic to understand it – If you’re able to understand the Qur’an, it will become much easier to apply the teachings to your life during Ramadan.
  • Invest in a Ramadan planner – There are many Ramadan planners on the market that allow you to track prayers and fasting, make dua lists, and much more.
  • Learn about Ramadan – If you have an understanding of what the significance of Ramadan is, it makes it much easier to immerse yourself within it fully.
  • Get into the habit of giving charity – Charity is an integral feature of Ramadan, and it’s important to get into the habit of carrying out charitable acts. Charity doesn’t have to be monetary; it can be as simple as smiling at someone or lending a helping hand.

Prepare for Ramadan with Muslim Aid

At Muslim Aid, we have all manner of appeals for you to donate to and get into the giving spirit of Ramadan. Please give what you can to prepare yourself for Ramadan and make a difference in the life of someone in need.

We are a faith-based British international charity that provides help to people who are victims of natural disasters or conflict or suffering from poverty, hunger, disease, homelessness, injustice, deprivation or lack of skills and economic opportunities.

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