Quran recitation will lead to paradise

The Significance of Ramadan

Ramadan is the holiest month of the year in Islamic culture. For Muslims, it’s a time for spiritual reflection and growth, to help those in need, and to spend time with loved ones. It’s also a time when Muslims around the world fast during daylight hours for the whole month of Ramadan. Ramadan is the month in which the Qur’an, the holy book of Islam, was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) through the angel Jibreel (Gabriel) in A.D. 610. The timing of revelation is given special significance and is known as Laylatul Qadr or the Night of Power. Allah says:

‏يَٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا۟ كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ ٱلصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ

“Believers, God commanded fasting for you just as he commanded it for those who came before you so that you might be mindful of God.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:183)

Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar, which is based on the lunar cycle or phases of the moon. Fasting is also seen as a way to learn patience and break bad habits. During the holy month, Muslims wake up early to eat a pre-dawn meal called suhoor, and they break their fast with a meal referred to as iftar. It is common for mosques to host large iftars, especially for the poor and needy. Nightly prayers called Tarawih are also held in mosques after iftar. Allah says:

الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَلَمْ يَلْبِسُوا إِيمَانَهُم بِظُلْمٍ أُولَـٰئِكَ لَهُمُ الْأَمْنُ وَهُم مُّهْتَدُونَ

“Those who believe and did not tarnish their faith with wrong-doing for them there is security, and it is they who have been guided in the right way.” (Surah Al-Anaam – 6:82)

Ramadan is extremely beneficial to our spirit and character. It makes us stronger and less reactive, improving our self-control and helping us feel empathy towards those who are forced to go without food because of poverty. Prophet Muhammad considered self-reflection so crucial that he said that one hour of contemplation is better than 70 years of worship. Fasting teaches us to be patient and less reactive, which is extremely important in Islam. Allah says:

إِنَّ فِي خَلْقِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْ‌ضِ وَاخْتِلَافِ اللَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ‌ لَآيَاتٍ لِّأُولِي الْأَلْبَابِ

“Behold! in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are indeed Signs for men of understanding.” (Surah Al Imran 3:190)

Ramadan is a special time for reflection, self-improvement, kindness and spirituality – and fasting is one of the key pillars of the Holy Month, with those observing Ramadan fasting from dawn to dusk. The wisdom of Islam, when consistently applied to our lives, makes us remarkably strong individuals, and strength is precisely what we need in these times of crisis, fear, loss, and uncertainty. It is our duty as human beings to make good use of our time, especially at this moment.

The following Islamic teachings can help us know the significance of Ramadan:

  1. Ramadan helps to attain Taqwa which pleases Allah
  2. Ramadan could be a time to cut down on fats
  3. Ramadan help promote chastity and humility
  4. Ramadan provides rigorous discipline in life
  5. Ramadan provides a more healthy lifestyle
  6. Ramadan provides goodwill toward others
  7. Ramadan provides community gatherings
  8. Ramadan helps a Muslim attain Taqwa
  9. Ramadan improves your blood levels
  10. Ramadan offers a Muslim protection
  11. Ramadan experiences hunger and thirst
  12. Ramadan Is by nature a time of sacrifice
  13. Ramadan develop learning healthy habits
  14. Ramadan practices blood sugar goes down
  15. Ramadan is a very special time for Muslims
  16. Ramadan contribute to the overall wellbeing
  17. Ramadan strengthen the bonds of brotherhood 
  18. Ramadan fights his urges for all things immoral
  19. Ramadan contribute to one’s patience, tolerance
  20. Ramadan practice self-discipline and self-restraint

In the month of Ramadan, the gates of hell are closed and the devil is chained. The doors of heaven are open. There is a door in Paradise called Al-Rayyan which is only meant for those believers who observed fasting during Ramadan. Ramadan abstaining from food, drink, smoking, and sexual relations from sunrise to sunset perfectly complements self-reflection as it helps us to focus inwardly and does wonders for our physical wellbeing. Allah says:

الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَتَطْمَئِنُّ قُلُوبُهُم بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ أَلَا بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ تَطْمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ

“Those who believed and find satisfaction their hearts in the remembrance (of) Allah. No doubt, in the remembrance of Allah find satisfaction the hearts.” (Surah Ar-Ra`d 13:28)

Ramadan, besides being a deeply religious month, where people pray more than usual and attend religious study circles, is usually a festive time too, one full of happy reunions with loved ones. To break the fast, which lasts from dawn until dusk, Muslims gather and eat iftar together as a community, whether it be with family, friends, or fellow believers in an Islamic centre or mosque.

Here are some of the positive impacts fasting can have on your health and well-being:

  • Fasting gives the digestive system a positive U-turn
  • Fasting aim to lose some weight for many people  
  • Fasting boosts your mood and mental clarity
  • Fasting can lead to low blood glucose levels
  • Fasting burns away any harmful toxins
  • Fasting is great for spiritually cleansing
  • Fasting results in reduced blood cholesterol
  • Fasting reduces the risk of suffering from heart disease
  • Fasting uses your fat reserves  and cleans harmful toxins

During this month, making an intention and taking the time to reflect on every aspect of one’s life in order to see how it can be improved and re-centred on principles of wisdom is crucial. While fasting is observed by most Muslims, self-evaluation and introspection form an important practice of Prophet Muhammad and a spiritual element of Ramadan, which is often forgotten. For Muslims, it is a time for piety and spirituality; an opportunity to get closer to God.

Allah Almighty says in the Holy Quran:

  • “Allah loves the patient.” (Quran 3:146)
  • “If you give thanks, I will give you more.” (Quran 14:7)
  • “Allah is with those who restrain themselves.” (Quran 16: 128)
  • “…And it is better for you that ye fast if ye only knew.” (Quran 2:184)
  • “Indeed, We sent the Qur’an down during the Night of Decree.” (Quran, 97:1)
  • “The most honoured by Allah amongst you are those best in taqwaa.” (Quran 49:13)
  • “And whatever ye spend in charity or devotion, be sure Allah knows it all. But the wrong-doers have no helpers.” (Surah Al-Baqara, 270)

During Ramadan, Muslims aim to grow spiritually and become closer to Allah and their loved ones. They do this by fasting and abstaining from pleasures like smoking, drinking and sexual intercourse between sunrise and sunset each day. Ramadan is also a time for unity and spiritual reflection and Muslims spend time praying, reciting the Quran and doing good deeds. They donate to charity, spend time with loved ones, and avoid lying, gossiping and fighting.

Here are some rewards, benefits and virtues of the Quran and its recitation:

  • Quran was revealed into the heart of the Prophet (PBUH)
  • Quran is the last scripture revealed by Almighty Allah
  • Quran teaches forgive those who did wrong to you
  • Quran was revealed in the month of Ramadhan
  • Quran is a piece of knowledge and lessons
  • Quran recitation can be made attractive
  • Quran recitation will lead to paradise
  • Quran focuses divine light on every object 
  • Quran contains all creed, deeds, and ethics
  • Quran is the book of guidance for a Muslim life
  • Quran is the most widely read book in the world
  • Quran subject matter is vast and comprehensive
  • Quran told us about His attributes, names, and deeds
  • Quranic context, knowledge, carries a great significance
  • Quran informs man of his responsibilities toward himself

وَنُنَزِّلُ مِنَ الْقُرْآنِ مَا هُوَ شِفَاءٌ وَرَحْمَةٌ لِّلْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَلَا يَزِيدُ الظَّالِمِينَ إِلَّا خَسَارًا

“And We reveal from the Quran that it (is) healing and a mercy for the believers, but not it increases the wrongdoers except (in) loss.” (Surah Al-Isra` 17:82 )

Fasting is important during Ramadan as it allows Muslim to devote themselves to their faith, get closer to Allah and learn patience and compassion. It’s about nourishing your soul, rather than only focusing on your physical body. It’s also one of the Five Pillars of Islam which are the foundation of how Muslims live their lives (the others are faith, prayer, charity and pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca). Allah says:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُلُوا مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لِلَّهِ إِن كُنتُمْ إِيَّاهُ تَعْبُدُونَ

“O you who believe, eat from the wholesome things which We have provided for you and be grateful to Allah if it is Him that you worship.” (Surah al-Baqarah 2:172)

Fasting is usually done by all Muslims except those who are sick, pregnant, lactating, menstruating, elderly or travelling. If you miss fasting days you can make up for them throughout the year. The fasting is done between sunrise and sunset.  After the sun fully sets, the fast is typically broken with water and dates, followed by prayers and a meal called iftar. May Allah Almighty accept our good deeds, worships, fasts and Quran recitation which we had done in the holy month of fasting! Ameen.