Ramzan, the Muslim holy month of fasting, is over. Muslims across the globe will be celebrating Eid Ul Fitr in coming days. The festival marks an end to the month of Ramzan wherein Muslims abstain from food, water and other desires from dawn to dusk.
Generally, the month of Ramzan is associated with scrumptious meals, flavoured sherbets and sweets. But these delicacies are not all that the holy month is about.
If one has to understand the value and meaning of Eid, it's imperative to understand the philosophy of Ramzan.
The fasting is a quest to get closer to God and receive His blessings. Its essence doesn't lie in giving up food and water but in the efforts of a human being to cultivate patience and tolerance in his body and soul.
Not only is food and water prohibited, a Muslim also cannot have a sexual intercourse while fasting; neither can he abuse, mock, threaten, fight or hurt someone. Violation of any of these tenants invalidates the fast.
Ramzan automatically turns a human being to introspection mode, with each person vying to get rid of his/her sins and seek mercy.
Fasting is a sort of disciplinary mechanism. Every year, it allows a Muslim, a period of time to reflect on his actions and deeds.
In this month of blessing, the focus is on a human being to restrain, as much as possible, from evil and strive towards humility and righteousness. The impact is visible on the ground also. It's for this reason that Muslims indulge themselves in more prayers and other charitable activities.
According to the Quran, the value of a single deed in front of the Almighty is multiplied by 70 during this month. So if a person helps a blind man cross the road in the month of Ramzan, the Almighty will reward him as if he has helped 70 blind men to cross the road.
This month also makes it mandatory for a Muslim to pay a part of his charity to the poor and destitute. One of the reasons why the charity is advised to be paid in the later days of the month is to ensure that a less-privileged person is able to celebrate Eid contently.
Ramzan maybe an individual-centric exercise, but it also involves care and concern for others.
After fasting for a month, the festival of Eid is actually a celebration of the culmination of the Islamic month of Ramzan and the beginning of the new month, Shawal. It's a sort of thanksgiving.
While Eid Ul Fitr is one of the two main festivals for Muslims, it's the Eid Ul Azha also known as Bakri Eid which is when the major celebrations happen.
Still, the idea of Ramzan is not for a month. Ramzan is seen as the ideal model for the 12 months of the year. It's said that Muslims should conduct themselves throughout the year as if they are in Ramzan.
As much as Eid is a blessing from the Almighty, the festival also provides a chance for people to share moments of happiness and love between fellow human beings. What's better to share than love?
Eid Mubarak, everyone!
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