THE UK's three million Muslims will be celebrating the holy month of Ramadan from TODAY (Thursday, April 23).
Here's everything you need to know.
What is Ramadan?
Ramadan marks the month when the Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad by Allah (SWT).
Ramadan will see Muslims around the world fasting during daylight hours for 30 days.
All Muslims who have reached puberty are expected to fast during Ramadan, although there are some exceptions, including women who are menstruating or pregnant, and those suffering from illness.
The rules mean food and drink, including water, are not allowed during daylight hours for the entire month. Smoking and sex are also banned.
The month is traditionally viewed as an opportunity for devotion, reflection and celebration of the mercy and love of Allah (SWT), while the fasting ritual aids reflection on the suffering of others.
Those observing the fast are encouraged to read the Quran and the holy text is recited at the Tarawih, special nightly prayers that would normally be held at mosques throughout the month but can't this year due to coronavirus.
Coronavirus lockdown has hit all religions hard, with services and places of worship being shut down and moved online.
When does Ramadan 2020 start?
Ramadan 2020 is due to start today, April 23, in the evening.
The Islamic calendar is based around the lunar cycle, the Holy month of Ramadan rotates by approximately ten days each year.
The month is confirmed with the sighting of the new moon.
Ramadan timetable – when to eat Suhoor and Iftar/Magrib
Suhoor is the first meal of the day, a quick snack before fasting begins.
Starting at 4.10am on day one. Suhoor then happens roughly two minutes earlier every day.
Iftar/Magrib is when Muslims break fasting with a light meal and some water before having a proper dinner.
This happens at sunset and will get later as the month progresses.
Fasting will last between 9 hours and 27 minutes, and 10 hours and 13 minutes come Eid.
You can find a more detailed timetable for your area here.
When will Ramadan 2020 end?
Ramadan in the UK is predicted to end at 9pm exactly on May 22.
Muslims celebrate with a massive 24-hour party involving family and friends called the feast of Eid al-Fitr.
This celebration is marked with lights, decorations and gifts, with worshippers often dressing up and decorating their homes.
Sadly, if lockdown is still in place by then, these parties will have to be familial events, or will need to take place online through video chats.
The MCB is offering guidance on how to organise virtual iftars online with loved ones and members of the community via video chat.
Source: Read Full Article