This year, millions of Muslims celebrate Ramadan from the first of September until the end of the month. Sheryl Siddiqui of the Islamic Society of Tulsa explained the sacred event.
1. Ramadan is a holy month when the Quran, the last of the sacred scriptures (after the revelations to Abraham, Moses, David and Jesus), was revealed to Muhammad between 610-632 A.D.
2. In Ramadan, Muslims focus on growing closer to God and learning self-discipline.
3. God tells us that fasting helps Muslims remain God-conscious — that the righteous peoples before them also were ordained to fast.
4. A fasting Muslim will not eat or drink anything from one hour before sunrise until after sunset, nor should they argue, swear, smoke or indulge in intercourse. That's the self-discipline part.
5. Muslims also grow closer to God and strengthen their faith by reading, meditating and memorizing scripture. Muslims try to follow Prophet Muhammad's tradition of reading/reciting the complete Quran in this month.
6. Many Muslims attend the mosque all 30 nights of the month to join the special Ramadan prayer called Taraweeh, during which the Quran is recited from cover to cover, then started again.
7. Another way Muslims grow closer to God is through works of charity — more good deeds, more donations, more selfless acts. Feeding of the hungry here and abroad is the most common act. (MORE)