What Is Eid? All You Need To Know About The Muslim Holiday

We broke-down what our holiday Eid is all about.

What Is Eid? All You Need To Know About The Muslim Holiday

We broke-down what our holiday Eid is all about.

By

Maliha Rahman
Photo - Getty

 

Whether you are Muslim or not, the celebration of Eid-al-Fitr is acknowledged around the world by many of all faiths. Eid is a time for blessings and joys throughout the Muslim community, but because it is a day of charity, it is a day to distribute one’s wealth. In short, it is a time of celebrations worldwide for all Muslims. Let’s elaborate:

What is Eid-al-Fitr? 

Eid-al-Fitr is a direct translation of “Festival of the Breaking of the Fast.” Eid-al-Fitr is actually a three day long celebration after the end of Ramadan everyday from dawn to dusk. Determining Eid-al-Fitr all comes down to a moon sighting, just like Ramadan: if the crescent moon isn’t seen, Ramadan will go on for another day. If it is seen, Eid Mubarak!

How does the day begin? 

Celebrations begin at a specific Eid prayer, in mosques, surrounded by your families and friends that you typically see during the month of Ramadan. After prayers, everyone congratulates each other for the ending of this blessed month. Usually, next is the visiting of graves for your loved ones after the conclusion of Eid prayers, to clean the gravesites and dawn the graves with fresh flowers. 

How do Muslims celebrate? 

Muslims wear their newest clothes or their finest clothes. Muslims decorate their homes with Eid decorations, lanterns, and twinkling lights. Everyone makes special foods for when their families and friends are invited over to come celebrate alongside. Muslims visit their relatives’ homes, as a way to celebrate with their loved one.

Hands are covered in henna patterns, from the nights before that were served as preparation for this three-day long period. Gifts are given to children and those in need, which are commonly known as Eidi.

I don’t know what’s better than those post-Eid naps and jumping from house to house with iced coffee in your hands. 

EIDI! 

What is Eidi? Eid is still a day of charity. Eidi is referred to as the money and gifts given to the children of the family by elders: could be relatives, parents, siblings, anyone at all. Eidi gifts are given as another way of celebrating this joyous day. Children will definitely refer to their Eidi as their favorite part of the day! 

How is this year different? 

This year, sadly our mosques are closed because of coronavirus (COVID-19). Our Eid prayers this year will have to be done from the comfort of our homes for many. With the health regulations put in place, jumping from house to house will not be allowed. Visiting our families will have to be done at a later time and we will have to be ending this month long of fasting at home. 

Nonetheless, many will still be dressed in our new clothes, we will be making all the yummy foods, and we will still be finding small ways to celebrate! 

Muslims across the world celebrate in different ways, but one thing is clear – Eid is a time for celebration! Have a blessed Eid from our @muslim family to you and yours!

READ MORE:  Ramadan 101: All You Need To Know About The Holy Month

A How-To Guide On Performing Eid Prayer

For most of us, this will be the first time we're performing Eid prayer with our families. Here is a guide to help.

A How-To Guide On Performing Eid Prayer

For most of us, this will be the first time we’re performing Eid prayer with our families. Here is a guide to help.

By

Najaha Nauf
Art - New Internationalist

 

After a month of quarantined fasting, Eid-al-Fitr is upon us! Eid-al-Fitr falls on the first of Shawwal (the tenth month of the Islamic Lunar Calendar) and is characterized by the sighting of the crescent.

A staple of Eid-al-Fitr is the Eid prayers which is considered Sunnah Muakkada – highly recommended Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammed (PBUH), one which he always did. While it is normally performed at mosques or on open-ground in congregation, this period of social distancing puts a halt to such activities. 

Fortunately, most Fatwa centers have encouraged praying at home in congregation or alone, and we’ve got you covered on the basic rulings of how to perform the Eid prayer. 

TLDR? : it’s generally like a 2 Raka prayer, like Fajr or sunnah prayers before and after prayers, with addition of Takbiraat in the Qiyaam before recitation of Al-Fathiha in each rakat. 

  1. The Niyah (Intention) 

The Niyah, or Intention, of the Eid prayer is to fulfill two Rakas of Sunnah prayers in order to please Allah and as a sign of devotion and gratitude on the  glorious day of Eid. 

  1. The first Takbir (praise)

Takbir is the proclamation of “Allahu Akbar” which means “Allah is the greatest.” The prayer begins with a single Takbir as all other prayers do. The one praying must raise both hands up to their ears, palms facing forward during the proclamation and fold both hands over one another below their chest area (right hand over left hand) once they’re done with the proclamation.  

  1. Repeat steps 2 until Takbir has been said seven times.

  2. Recitation of the Quran. 

In the seventh Takbir, Surah Al-Fathiha (the opening of the Quran) is recited. After which, any surah or number of verses from a surah may be recited. 

  1. Ruku’ (Bowing)

This is when the one praying bends forward such that their spine and body form a right angle and their hands are placed on their knees, with their gaze firmly placed on the Qibla (direction of the Kabah). In this position, they must recite “Subhana Rabbi al-Adheem” three times, which means “How free from imperfections is my Lord, the Grand”

  1. I’thidhal (Straightening from bowing)

They must then stand straight, hands by their sides and recite “Sami Allahu liman hamida, Rabbana Walak al-hamd” which means, “Allah hears those who send praises to him. Our lord, and all praises are for you.”

  1. Sajda (Prostration) 

The one praying then proclaims “Allahu Akbar” before falling in prostration in front of them, with their palms pressed to the ground and their nose and forehead touching it. In sujood (prostration), they must recite the duaa “Subhana Rabi Al- A’laa” three times, which means “My Lord is free from imperfections, The Most High.”

  1. Jalsa (Sitting on the prayer rug between prostrations)

Once they’ve risen from the prostration, the one praying sits on their heels and recites “Rabbi’ghfirli”  three times, which means “My Lord, forgive me.”

  1. Second Sajda

Another prostration is then performed with the same proclamation as the first Sajda as seen in step 8. This concludes the first Rakaat of the Eid prayer. 

  1. The Second Rakaat

Repeat steps 2  such that there are five recitations of Takbir.

  1. Recitation of the Quran. 

In the fifth Takbir, Surah Al-Fathiha (the opening of the Quran) is recited. After which, any surah or number of verses from a surah may be recited. 

  1. Repeat steps 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10. 

Here, the second sajda does NOT mean the conclusion of the Raka

  1. Tashshahud (Sitting on the prayer rug after the final prostration)

After rising from the final prostration, the one praying sits on the prayer rug and says “Attahyathu Lillahi Wassalawathu Waththayyibathu, Assalamu Alayka Ayyuha Nabiyu Warahmathullahi Wabarakathuhu, Assalamu Alayna Wa Ala Ibaadhillahi Saliheen, Ashshadu An La Illaha Illallahu Wa Ashshadu Anna Muhammadan Abdhuhu Wa Rasooluhu.” Which means “All compliments, prayers and goodness are for Allah. May the peace, mercy and blessings of Allah be upon you, Oh Prophet. Peace be upon us and upon the righteous slaves of Allah. I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad is his servant and messenger.” Then salutations are given to Prophet Muhammed and the Prophet Abraham in what is known as durood. This is then followed by a duaa of the individuals choosing.

This duaa is then followed by Taslim (greetings) which is where the one praying bids salaam to their right and then to their left by saying “Assalamu Alaykum Warahmathullahi Wabarakathuhu” which means, “May the peace, mercy and the blessings of Allah be upon you” in order to conclude the prayer. 

The Eid prayer is known to be a comprehensive start to the blessed day. Common supplications made throughout the day in order to celebrate include recitation of the Takbir, invocations of the six Kalimas and a lot of Salaams. It is the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to spread Salaams and spread the news of Eid through declarations of “Eid Mubarak!” It’s a day of joy and blessings, a day to celebrate the remembrance of Allah. 

May this Eid-al-Fitr be a joyous one for you and your family and may Allah accept all the fasts and supplications made during the month of Ramadan! Stay safe and home this Eid and always stay blessed! 

Confessions Of A ‘Ramadan Muslim’

For Muslims, the Holy Month of Ramadan is a period for self-growth. However, it comes with shame for some.

Confessions Of A ‘Ramadan Muslim’

For Muslims, the Holy Month of Ramadan is a period for self-growth. However, it comes with shame for some.

By

Amirah Ahmed
Art - Ameer Al-Khatahtbeh

 

I have a confession to make. I am a Ramadan Muslim. 

 

Ramadan Muslim [ ram-uh-dahn · muhs-lim]  noun

 1.   A Muslim who doesn’t regularly practice their faith, except for when Ramadan arrives.

 

Yep, I said it! I am indeed one of those notorious believers that my fellow more “pious” Muslims love to criticize and complain about. 

Faith never really came easily for me. Or I guess I should say, the rituals and lifestyle that come with being Muslim never came easily for me. 

I’ve always had a strong connection and love for the Almighty, but growing up in a household where daily prayers and visits to the mosque were sporadically enforced left me in a conflicted state of mind when it came to my faith. 

Although I fully understood the concept of worshipping one God and embraced the stories of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), I couldn’t grasp why it was necessary or important for me to convey my worship through five routine prayers or memorization of the Quran. I made my way through elementary and middle school only practicing my faith regularly during the month of Ramadan, because that’s what I saw from the people around me. 

 

 

It was in the last semester of my eighth grade year that my relationship with my faith began to change. I went to a national convention for Muslims held by one of the largest Muslim American organizations in the U.S. with my grandmother. It was new territory for me. I attended lectures and discussions exclusively focused towards the youth, and how to be Muslim in America. I’ve never been surrounded by so many people that looked like me and believed like I did, and I never met other youth that were actually practicing Muslims. While my experience didn’t suddenly transform my worship habits, it did begin my ever-evolving journey with Islam.

Four months after that convention, I started wearing hijab. It was a welcome shock for most of my family, none of whom ever expected me to take the leap in my faith since I hadn’t been particularly religious up to that point. The only person in my immediate family that wore one was my grandmother, so while the change was unexpected, my family was proud. There was only one issue: I was still a Ramadan Muslim.

It’s the overwhelming presumption that women that wear the traditional headscarf are steadfast beacons of faith, would never miss a prayer, and have their imaan on point 24/7. I guess that’s what I was hoping I’d become when I decided to wear the hijab, but boy was I mistaken. 

The choice had only amplified the ongoing struggle with my faith as I now felt like I was a representative of Islam. Entering high school, I was determined to represent as best as I could, but I was disappointed when I repetitively fell short. I never mastered making my prayers on time, and often didn’t pray at all. It was a rare occurrence for me to pick up the Quran or take the time to talk to Allah (swt). I felt like I was committing spiritual fraud. How could I claim to represent my faith when I didn’t even know what the most basic surahs in the Quran meant? The only times I acknowledged the blessings in my life were when the month of Ramadan came around and fasting forced me into remembrance. 

It’s been a long and tumultuous journey to get to where I am now. While I still cannot confidently say that I make every prayer on time or that I know much more Quran than I did when I began this adventure, my relationship with my Creator has exponentially grown stronger and I now turn to Him when I’m facing trouble as well as when I recognize blessings in my life. 

I’ve come to the conclusion that the number of times you prostrate and recite specific sayings in a day does not determine your closeness to God or your relationship with your faith. It’s not wrong of you to take advantage of the holy month of Ramadan to try to better yourself, and if that’s a contrast from your usual habits, there’s nothing wrong with that because you’re doing your best to get closer to Allah (swt). 

Even if you fall under the label of “Ramadan Muslim” always know that nobody but Allah knows your struggle, so keep doing your best to grow your imaan and don’t pay the naysayers any attention

Here Are Prayers For When You’re Feeling Low On Faith

Spiritual journeys are not linear. For some, Ramadan can make them feel low in faith.

Here Are Prayers For When You’re Feeling Low On Faith

Spiritual journeys are not linear. For some, Ramadan can make them feel low in faith.

By

Amirah Ahmed
Art - Ameer Al-Khatahtbeh

Feeling spiritually low can be difficult to overcome. Sometimes life gets busy, a thousand responsibilities are pulling your attention every which way, and it can seem like your faith is being put on the back burner. This can be tough to handle, but referring back to the wide plethora of duaas available in the Quran and the Hadith can help you when navigating faith. 

 

Here are 4 duaas especially valuable for when you’re feeling low on faith.

 

 

فَاسْتَقِمْ كَمَا أُمِرْتَ وَمَن تَابَ مَعَكَ وَلَا تَطْغَوْا إِنَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ         .1

“So remain on a right course as you have been commanded, [you] and those who have turned back with you [to Allah ], and do not transgress. Indeed, He is Seeing of what you do.” (11:112) Surah Hud

 

This verse from Surah Hud reminds us that God sees our best efforts. When it becomes hard to maintain a strong relationship with your faith, this duaa can provide guidance for those that are struggling. Even when our spiritual path is not completely clear, it’s reassuring that Islam and its guidance and teachings will always welcome us back with open arms.

 

 

يَا مُقَلِّبَ الْقُلُوبِ ثَبِّتْ قَلْبِي عَلَى دِينِكَ           .2

“Oh turner of hearts, keep my heart firm upon Your religion.” Saying from Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

 

According to a companion of Prophet Muhammad (SAW), he used to say this duaa abundantly. It’s a simple phrase that can be used to keep you focused on maintaining and boosting faith during those particularly trying instants. When things are perhaps not going as planned, and you need a little spiritual reinforcement, this duaa is perfect to turn to. 

 

 

 إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا       .3

“Indeed, with hardship there will be ease.” (94:6) Ash-Sharh 

 

This verse from Surah Ash-Sharh is very well-known as it resonates with many Muslims. It’s a powerful testament from the Quran that guarantees that whatever struggle we’re going through will not last forever. Even when your deen is not at its strongest, this duaa is a reminder that this moment of uncertainty will eventually pass with ease. 

 

 

 اللّهُمَّ قَنِّعْنِيْ بِمَا رَزَقْتَنِيْ ، وَبَارِكْ لِيْ فِيْهِ ، وَاخْلُفْ عَلَى كُلِّ غَائِبَةٍ بِخَيْرٍ   .4

“O Allah, make me content with what you have provided me, send blessings for me therein, and replace for me every absent thing with something better.” 

Bukhari

 

Faith can become tricky to maintain when it seems like everything in your life is going wrong. It isn’t uncommon to have a bad week, month, or even year and find yourself discontent and questioning your spiritual beliefs. When you aren’t content with a situation, this dua can provide guidance for finding peace through hard times and realizing that all good things will come with time and patience.

 

Aside from personal circumstances, several factors can affect our levels of faith. With the advancement of technological availability, we all have access to everything that is happening in the world, both good and bad – which can take a heavy toll on our mental health and spirituality. 

A constant flow of negative news can make us feel overwhelmed and helpless which can contribute to feeling low in faith. It’s important to stay informed and educated on current events, but even more important to prioritize your mental and spiritual well-being. 

If that means taking a break from your phone, social media, or even just news outlets for a while, that’s okay! Take some time to check in with yourself and read some of these duaas to help you realign with your faith.

Here’s How COVID-19 Affects Muslims During Ramadan

With Ramadan colliding with the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of changes have been made in how Muslims practice the Holy Month.

Here’s How COVID-19 Affects Muslims During Ramadan

With Ramadan colliding with the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of changes have been made in how Muslims practice the Holy Month.

By

Maliha Rahman
Art - Ameer Al-Khatahtbeh

 

COVID-19 has invited a rollercoaster of emotions into each and every home, somehow everyone has become affected by this – whether it be in little ways or big ways. Someone we know, whether they be in our homes, our friends, our acquaintances – are affected by this. Knowing this, where do Muslims fall amongst the many affected? 

Firstly, fighting COVID-19 is tough, but one way to have prevention to this would be our own cleanliness. Personal hygiene matters, now more than ever! Health experts have been repeatedly saying washing our hands for at least 20 seconds will help prevent the virus. However, Islamically we have been taught personal hygiene for centuries. Keep washing your hands!

Being affected however, has become daunting on Muslims, alongside everyone else. One of our biggest blessings of performing Umrah, has been taken away from us and our biggest blessing Allah (SWT) has graced us with, the performance of Hajj has been taken away from us because of the closure of the Kaabah. Saudi Arabia suspended entry of any pilgrims coming to perform Hajj and Umrah, as early as February 27th.

With the closure of every local mosque, the blessing of going to the masjid for daily prayer has been taken away from us. The blessings of Jummah (Friday Prayers) in congregation, have been taken away from us. Yes, we can still get the blessings of congregation by praying at home, but it isn’t the same as hearing the Imam’s beautiful voice and praying amongst those you know and don’t know.

With the arrival of Ramadan, the blessings of praying Taraweeh every night has been taken away from us, abruptly. Ramadan is a time for us to take full advantage of the spiritual benefits, but it has a sense of excitement every year. The community iftars are taken away and if this continues, Laylatul Qadr, which is known as the most powerful night, may not feel the same to us. Spending all night at our local masjid, praying to Allah (SWT) will continue to be stripped away. If this continues, our most joyous occasion of Eid, will be taken away from us because we cannot partake in the performance of Eid namaz in congregation, alongside everyone who participated in the month of Ramadan.

With COVID-19, comes opportunity – opportunity for Muslims to bring the teachings of Islam into their homes because of the closure of masjids. With the blessings of going to the mosques being taken away, we need to find ways – small or big to bring Islam into our lives, now more than ever. Yes COVID-19 has impacted and affected Muslims and the rest of the world in various ways, we have to look at the blessings and opportunities it has brought us also. 

Prophet Muhammad has advised us with: “If you hear of an outbreak of plague in a land, do not enter it; if the plague outbreaks out in a place while you are in it, do not leave that place.” 

Here Is How To Make The Most Out Of Ramadan

For some of us, we already understand the run-down on how to manage the Holy Month. For others, it can be somewhat difficult.

Here Is How To Make The Most Out Of Ramadan

For some of us, we already understand the run-down on how to manage the Holy Month. For others, it can be somewhat difficult.

By

Maliha Rahman

 

Ramadan is here and the countdown has officially begun. Thinking about the early morning suhoor, family iftars, and bonding with our faith excites Muslims across the globe. 

My mission for every year is to make sure my Ramadan is better than my last. Seeing the growth from each Ramadan year-by-year shows how significantly closer I am to Allah (swt) – even saying it, gives me the chills. Every year, we should compile a list of goals for Ramadan because it can help keep you grounded and center your objectives. Here is how to make the most out of your Ramadan: 

Work on Time Management

This may sound cliche, but we all know everyone has been through those moments where you sit back and say what you want the upcoming Ramadan to be like, but little by little, your end-goal starts drifting away.

The first step is always making plans that you know you will have the time for, or that you will make time for. Small goals, big goals, anything! Writing an itinerary of your daily life can help keep your priorities for the day in check. Making lists is psychologically proven to keep you organized and more grounded!

Building a Stronger Deen 

Find a way to incorporate prayer in your everyday life leading up to Ramadan. For instance, reading an extra prayer, everyday, ultimately gets you more into a routine of reading five times a day. 

Try to make more duas! Duas, otherwise known as prayers, are our safe haven in times of need, but we should find a way to make that our means of communication between us and Allah (swt) happen on a daily basis. 

Start becoming accustomed to using a tasbih (prayer beads), throughout Ramadan before and after your prayer, so the repetition becomes muscle memory for you.

Taking Time out Daily to Read the Qur’an

Read the Qur’an, every single day! Create the goal of finishing an entire Qur’an, during the month – the reaping of the benefits become endless!

Being busy during the Holy Month, it is one of the biggest challenges, but be consistent! By being consistent, you are more likely drawn to reading a little, every single day – plan and organize how you want to do this.

By implementing the Qur’an more on a daily basis, rid yourself of distractions! We occasionally find ourselves filling our free time up with watching TV, listening to music, going on social media, etc. – use this time for reading the Qur’an!

Give Charity, in Some Way, Every Single Day

Ramadan is a month of giving – offering a hand with housework, donating to your local mosque, giving zakat after prayer, are all means of giving charity.

One of my personal targets, every Ramadan, is always volunteering at any local drive that gives packaged meals to the less fortunate, and with this pandemic, a lot of mosques are resorting to donating food to the less fortunate in a safe way. 

Real Purification of Intentions

Last, but not least – go into this month with pure intentions. Real intentions are what is valued the most during this month which is why we should not think of this month as an obligation – it is, instead, an opportunity.

Opening your heart during this Holy Month  is what will make the most out of any Ramadan you are blessed to take partake in. 

Giving your all to Allah (swt) and the people surrounding you is what will allow you to achieve the benefits of a blessed month. 

Our hearts should be engulfed every single Ramadan because of the opportunity we are given, to be closer to our Lord. Every year that we participate in this blessed month, we are greeted with another chance and we should take this opportunity and make the most of it.

For Young Muslim Converts, Ramadan Can Be Very Lonely

"There is always a fear of judgement."

For Young Muslim Converts, Ramadan Can Be Very Lonely

“There is always a fear of judgement.”

By

Srihari Nageswaran Ravi
Photo - Rawan757

 

Ramadan is just as much a period of spiritual growth as it is cultural significance. Muslims across the Ummah engage with their faith through fasting, abstinence from sin, Qu’ran recitation, and other practices while the scents of sambusas, pakoras, and other regional Muslim dishes linger long after the last iftaar meal. 

However, this month-long timeframe of individual introspection and communal care tends to be performed in solitude by Muslim converts, who often lack the community at home to sustain their well-being until Eid ul-Fitr. I conversed with Anna and Nabigal-Nayagam, Sinhalese and Tamil Muslim converts, respectively, in an effort to examine how the Ummah as a whole can make sure that converts aren’t left out during Ramadan.

For Anna, this year will mark her first Ramadan since converting to Islam in July of 2019. “I wish I could celebrate [iftaar] with friends or family, or celebrate [Eid] in a larger community.” she recollects. 

Convert Muslims arguably experience as much Islamophobia from the outside world as they do from the home, and because of this, my first tip in making sure that converts aren’t left out for Ramadan is simply lending a hand. 

From bringing converts home so that they can enjoy a traditional iftaar meal to inviting converts to masjid services so that they can connect more with their local Muslim community, there are numerous easy ways to ensure that the converts in your life know that they’re not alone. 

“I think new converts like myself have a lot of questions and confusion about Ramadan when observing it for the first time,” Anna stated. “The lack of feeling like we belong to any one community – Muslim or non-Muslim – makes it hard. There is always the fear of judgment from born Muslims, although most are very welcoming.”

Nabi mentioned that he’s “not a huge mosque-goer, because [he’s trans],” which he mentions is surely self-explanatory. What he believes to be a significant disadvantage during his conversion process, however, is essentially the shaming of converts during Ramadan for not being Muslim enough. 

“Converts are often expected to dive headfirst into fasting with no prior experience, while born Muslims were often eased into it from childhood. Many of us also don’t have a sense of community and support from born Muslims, and we frequently are ostracized from the very tight-knit circles we find at the masjid,” Nabi stated.

 


Nabi became interested in Islam about six years ago, although he didn’t formally convert until 2017 due to physical violence and threats of disownment from family members. “When I was still living with my parents, I couldn’t fast for Ramadan, as this would easily out me as Muslim, which was something my family was already strongly suspecting and vigilant about,” Nabi recalls. “The inability to fast made me feel like I was not a good Muslim, that God wouldn’t love me, and that I was not ready for Islam.” 

Anna shared similar remarks: being ethnically Sinhalese, very few of her cultural traditions don’t intersect with Buddhism. She feels guilty celebrating Sinhalese holidays in that their Buddhist iconography entails shirk in Islam, yet her Muslim identity has also come under attack from family: her father threw away books she was gifted from a masjid, forbade her from seeing some Muslim friends, and “considers converting to Islam [the] equivalent [of] joining ISIS.” 

Because of this, it’s important to refrain from shaming converts during Ramadan for lack of tradition, religiosity, or even not being able to fast. Although fasting (sawm) is one of the central tenets of Islam and every Muslim is expected to fast, convert Muslims aren’t afforded the privilege of not having to choose between practicing one’s religion and preserving one’s safety. 

“If you are an imam at a masjid, please reach out and offer whatever resources you feel are fit for a convert who may be going through Islamophobic abuse at home,” stated Nabi.. “If you can’t do that, then don’t shame [converts] for not being able to fast.” 

As it relates to convert experiences during Ramadan, however, the experiences of Black and brown Muslim converts are often overlooked. 

“I’ve noticed a lot of white converts get more attention, extra help, and catering-to compared to Muslims of color, who are either not read as converts (brown converts), or are often completely unwelcome ([Black] converts).” 

Anti-black racism is ubiquitous in Muslim spaces and especially predominantly-non-Black Muslim spaces, so when reaching out to converts altogether, be sure to prioritize inclusion. While the experiences of white converts do matter, Black and brown converts often experience the brunt of Islamophobia from both family and society-at-large. Developing community with them during Ramadan is essential in ensuring that converts aren’t left out. 

Finally, in reflecting on the importance of Ramadan to himself as a Shi’a Muslim convert, Nabi mentioned the futility of striving to be “Muslim enough” in the first place. 

“The most important thing about Ramadan to me is that it is a tool for the soul to become acquainted with God,” Nabi stated. “When I am fasting and abstaining from food and drink, I am denying my body a very prominent source of worldly bond and pleasure. This detachment gives me the mindset to forego the temporal, illusory nature of this world and focus on the Permanence of Allah.” 

Ramadan 101: All You Need To Know About The Holy Month

Here's all you need to know about the Holy Month of Ramadan, with visuals!

Ramadan 101: All You Need To Know About The Holy Month

Here’s all you need to know about the Holy Month of Ramadan, with visuals!

By

Maliha Rahman
Art - Michelle Fan

 

Whether you’re Muslim or non-Muslim, there are many ways someone can participate in Ramadan festivities – by gaining knowledge through a fellow Muslim friend during this month, or simply trying to find more ways to participate during Ramadan as a way to gain even more rewards. 

What is ‘Ramadan’?

Ramadan is a time to gather and observe the ninth month of an Islmaic calendar year by abstaining from indulgence and praying to become closer to God. The month of Ramadan is a sacred month because it marks when Allah (SWT) gave the first chapters of the Qur’an to Prophet Muhammad. Let’s dive right into the conceptual of Ramadan.

 

Art - Michelle Fan


What is ‘suhoor’? 


Suhoor is the meal consumed before sunrise as the meal before the day of fasting begins. This meal is very important because those that fast need to make sure they have an intake of meals that will give them high energy, throughout the day. The day of fasting lasts from sunrise to sunset, which means participants need to ensure there is enough energy, especially if they are working, as well.


Art - Michelle Fan

 

 

How many times do we pray? 

 

In our daily lives as Muslims, we are asked to pray five times a day, whether it’s during Ramadan or not. The five prayers are named Fajr, Zuhur, Asr, Maghreb, and Isha. After suhoor takes place, it’s time to pray Fajr because Fajr also takes place prior to sunrise. The next prayer, Zuhr, takes place after noon. In the late afternoon, Asr takes place followed by Maghreb, which happens after sunset. Lastly, Isha prayer happens before going to sleep, as a way to remember God before heading into the night.

 

 

Art - Michelle Fan

 

 

What is ‘taraweeh’?

 

During Ramadan, there is a voluntary prayer offered which is called, Taraweeh. Taraweeh is led by the congregation as a way to listen to the recitation of the Qur’an and as a way to pray voluntarily. This process, in itself, is extremely spiritually beneficial and is one of the gifts we are given by Allah (SWT) during the month of Ramadan. **Please note, that not all Muslims sectors partake in Taraweeh.

 

Art - Michelle Fan

 

 

What is ‘iftar’? 

 

As mentioned before, Maghreb takes place when the sun sets, as does iftar. A Muslims’ fast opens up when the sunset has taken place and Maghreb time has begun as well. Typically, you open your fast with something small such as a date or dried fruit before going and praying Maghreb. After praying Maghreb, Muslims continue to eat their larger meals as a way to give their body the fuel needed after fasting, since sunrise. 

 

Art - Michelle Fan

 

 

Who can fast? 

 

Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam, which means we are all obligated to fast, but there are exemptions. People who are recognized as exempted from fasting include those who have health problems – being ill or having to take medications. Also, women who are nursing or pregnant – nursing and pregnancies, both, are times where your body needs continuous nourishment. Women who are menstruating are not allowed to fast, during this month, as well.

 

 

Art - Michelle Fan

 

 

Why do Muslims fast? 

 

 

The question is often asked – why do we fast? As Muslims, we’re granted this month by Allah (SWT) as a gift to become closer with Him. By praying and doing things like reading the Qur’an, we bring knowledge into our minds and remembrance into our hearts. Ramadan is a month of bringing our relationship closer to God and giving back, in small ways such as charity, donating to the local mosque, and many more – anything small counts.

 

Art - Michelle Fan

 

We hope that this article was informative. Feel free to share this with your friends and inshAllah you can make the most out of the Holy Month. Ramadan Kareem!

 

How To Host The Perfect Digital Iftar

Going into this month with a positive attitude is all that matters. Who says you can't have iftar with loved ones while under quarantine?

How To Host The Perfect Digital Iftar

Going into this month with a positive attitude is all that matters. Who says you can’t have iftar with loved ones while under quarantine?

By

Maliha Rahman

 

This year for Ramadan, going into this month with a positive attitude is all that matters. Ramadan is a time to take advantage of everything that will become spiritually beneficial for you, but also for indulging in iftars surrounded by friends and family. COVID-19 has resulted in social-distancing, which means we need to be 6 feet apart from everyone, at all times. But, that doesn’t mean we have to put a stop to friends joining in on iftars! 

Let’s dive right into how to make the most of this month’s iftars.

 

Invite everyone and any one, because you can

Hosting a virtual iftar can be done with as many people as you’d like, anywhere from a crowd of a few people to many people. We are all missing our friends and families during this quarantine but, seeing them virtually can still occur. Families can easily be projected onto a larger screen to see each other. Given so many platforms, we can find ways to interact, in numerous ways.

Zoom is a platform where you can video-share up to 100 people! I don’t know about you, but my cousins have been using that platform to their advantage, even Pre-Ramadan.

By using this platform, we can have the feeling of everyone’s presence when breaking open our fasts. Ramadan brings families closer and this year should be no less – even with the craziness going around – we should all partake in something that will have us near the people who matter most. 

 

Get that dusty Whatsapp family group chat running again

Having a groupchat with your family is also the move. Preparing for the different, yummy foods for iftar for the perfect finished product can go a long way. Taking pictures of everything and sending them to your family members and receiving pictures of their iftars as responses can make you feel as if you are there and also gives you ideas for preparing your iftars. 

 

Prep with the best

While prepping for your iftar, you can also videochat everyone while they prepare for their iftars as well. Connecting in ways like this makes it easier for everyone when they’re preparing, as the time ticks closer and closer towards breaking your fast. Cooking together and having your finished iftar set up, while being on video call, gives everyone a sense of feeling like they accomplished something, together. 

The virtual world has given us endless options as to how we can be connected during these difficult times, and it’s important to remember that it’s what you make of these difficult times that count! 

We can find ways through social media, video calls and group chats to make the most out of these days. Ramadan is a month that we as Muslims look forward to, every single year. Being in quarantine should not stop us from being connected with the people who matter the most to us. 

 

In times of uncertainty, we need to be able to have love surrounding us – even if it’s not physical, it’s always there. 

Ramadan is a time where we all benefit so much from having everyone surrounding us during this blessed month. Having everything become virtual, in such a short notice has made it difficult for everyone to adjust. But, having family and friends be a part of your life, virtually, will be a memory everyone can look back on and be grateful for.

This Scholar Made A Twitter Thread On Jinn And Muslims Are Shook

The simple thought of these amorphous beings roaming the earth alongside us is strange but incredibly thrilling.

This Scholar Made A Twitter Thread On Jinn And Muslims Are Shook

The simple thought of these amorphous beings roaming the earth alongside us is strange but incredibly thrilling.

By

Mohamed Alagteaa


Throughout the Quran, Hadith and history of Islam, there has not been many topics that captivated the minds like the subject of Jinn. The simple thought of these amorphous beings roaming the earth alongside us is strange but incredibly thrilling. 

Yet, we know so little about them.

That might be the reason why a respected academic scholar wrote a seemingly innocent and informative thread on Twitter about how these incredible creatures interact with humans. While it was in fact informative, it also stirred some pots and left many users in total shock, disarray, and craving for more. 

So, who and what are these entities that Allah named an entire Surah after?

Jinn are shapeless, shapeshifting and invisible beings, who are – according to the Quran and Hadith – made of smokeless fire. 

 “and the jinn We created earlier from scorching fire.” (27:15) Al-Hijr

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Angels were created from light, Jinns were created from a smokeless flame of fire, and ‘Adam was created from that which you have been told (i.e., sounding clay like the clay of pottery).” Muslim.

Surah Al-Jinn fully reviewed their various conditions, their position on the message of Islam, the diversity of their sects, in additon to the glorification of their believers to God, glory be to Him. There is hardly an era that went by without mentioning people viewing what appears to be Jinn and as well as Muslims; Christians, Jews, the Sabeans and others believed in their existence.

While they might be completely different beings than humans, they do share certain commonalities. 

Jinn eat, drink, sleep, procreate, and die. They think, contemplate and have the freedom of choice to be and do good or evil. They are part of Allah’s creation who are subject to commands and prohibitions, just like human beings. There are believers, disbelievers and scholars agree unanimously that they are accountable for their actions. 

The complete comprehension of our fellow inhabitants is mystifying and is utterly strenuous, because they are part of the world of the unseen, a world out of our reach. However, the opposite is not true for them.  

Scholar, writer and historian Ali Olomi took to his Twitter to share his knowledge and expertise on how the world of Jinn interferes with the parallel world – ours. 

Olomi, who is a historian of the Middle East and Islam and the host of Head On History podcast, decided to create a Twitter thread about the numerous types of interaction Jinn has with humankind. 

He categorized them as visitations, influence, possession, marriage, and abduction. The first type being the most common as Jinn can transform and take the shape of a human or an animal. The most aggressive is possession and abduction, which Olomi says can go as far as snatching children and infants.

Of course, marriage seems to be inconceivable, but since Jinn are like humans, in that they fulfil physical and psychological needs such as hunger, thirst and sleep, they also fall in love.

Marriages happen through means of possession, and it can also go the other way around.

Naturally, people passing time on Twitter, patiently waiting for Chrissy Teigen to roast her famous husband or clapback on a hater, stopped scrolling and were taken aback.

Asma thought highly of the thread, and while her 14-year-old son was fascinated as well, it seemed like he was a tiny bit spooked. A sentiment that another Twitter user, Kalia  shares, as she took some precautionary measures just to make sure no Jinn were visiting or planning anything else. 

Another Twitter user amusingly mentioned a category that is probably not researched in depth, a woke type of Jinn.

Besides the obvious fun and entertainment this contributed to the Twitter-sphere, genuine interest and allure was even more clear. We believe these almost magical, but actually real, beings only prevail on movie screens or the pages of a book. Yet, the stories around them forces us to take a step back and think, 

Can we actually connect with Jinn? Have we already done so? Did we, by chance, mingle with some? 

The possibilities are endless.