Ramadan begins this year on March 23 and continues until April 20. Ramadan is the ninth month in the lunar calendar and begins with the appearance of the crescent moon. This date is determined by astronomical calculations by some Muslim countries and organizations, while others rely on seeing the crescent moon of Ramadan in the sky with the naked eye on the Wednesday before. The fasting person abstains from eating, drinking, sexual intercourse and smoking from sunrise to sunset.
The purpose of fasting is not to suffer from hunger and thirst, but to draw closer to God and to recognize the daily waste of the individual and to give alms to those who need it. It means not only abstaining from food and drink, but also not offending others, not arguing with anyone, and avoiding lustful thoughts. It is important that fasting also helps to develop good behavior during this month.
Fasting is a must for a healthy person. Children, pregnant women, nursing mothers, menstruating women, travelers and elderly people do not need to fast. There are two meals: “Suhoor” before sunrise and “Iftar” after sunset. According to the calendar of the Islamisches Kultur-und Begegnungszentrum in Tübingen, the Suhur times are between 4:00 and 4:30 a.m. and the Iftar times between 6:45 and 8:30 p.m. The difference here is due to the daily change in sunrise and sunset times.
Eine Illustration zu Ramadan. Foto: tünews INTERNATIONAL / Oula Mahfouz.
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