What is the month of Ramadan – an explanation from the Eureka site, also photos of items from the National Library’s Islam and Middle East collection can be found here. Educational initiatives concerning the month of Ramadan are on our site Dialog Together from May 2019. You can find lesson plans on Brainpop for subscribers or through the Educational Ministry’s subscription. Here’s a lesson plan in Arabic form the Teachers’ Union web site. Find a Ramadan teaching guide on the Hagar Jewish-Arab Education for Equality organization web site.
The month of Ramadan – meanings, duties and customs from the Matach (Center for Educational Technology) site. About the lovely Ramadan values and customs, Davar May 7, 2019. Also interesting, the man behind the ‘Ramadan cannon’ signifying the end of the daily fast, Globes May 11, 2019.
Please also find an invitation from the Association for Joint Israeli Leadership to a Zoom fast on Thursday April 30, 2020 at 5:30pm: “we thought that it would be a good idea to learn a little about the meaning of the fast for both religions during Ramadan month”. Sign up here.
A few words about the month of Ramadan by Ein Bustan: Ramadan takes place during the ninth month of the Muslim year. It originates from the Arabic root ر م ض, , similar to the Hebrew word “רמץ”, meaning intense heat. It appears that Ramadan used to take place at the height of summer, at the time of the year when a year became a leap year. These days, Ramadan can happen during any season, its date moves back each year by approximately 10 days as measured by the sun-based Gregorian calendar.
According to the Qur’an, the holy Qur’an verses were revealed to Muhammad during Ramadan. Tradition has it that towards the end of Ramadan the angel Jibril appeared to Muhammad for the first time and revealed to him the Qur’an verses called Surah al Aleq.
Ramadan is a month of introspection, devotion and worship, humility and restraint, atoning for wrongdoing and showing kindness, as well as empathizing with the hunger and hardship felt by people less fortunate.
Before the Ramadan month, during the Islamic month of Shaʻban, there’s the ‘Night of Records’. A night of atonement and the erasing of interpersonal sins, as preparation for Ramadan.
What is unique about the month of Ramadan is having to fast daily from sunrise to sunset, at the end of each day there’s a celebratory meal called Iftar.
Ramadan fasting is required by every healthy adult Muslim who is physically and mentally capable. This requirement is the third practice of the five practices of Ramadan.
If you cannot fast, you must donate to charity.
On the last ten nights of Ramadan it’s customary for Muslims to stay in mosque until ‘Adhan’ at daybreak. The idea is to become more devout, purify the soul of sins and get blessed by God thanks to the efforts and the spiritual congregation in mosques on these nights.
The revelation of the angel Jibril to Muhammad is commemorated on one of the last nights of Ramadan, called Laylat al-Qadr. It is celebrated on an unevenly numbered day between the 21st day of Ramadan until its end. Laylat al-Qadr is said to be “better than one thousand months”. There are those who believe that this night will always have clear skies and pleasant weather. Others believe that during this night there is a temporary peace throughout the world. Another common belief is that this night is for making wishes, wishes that are bound to come true.
At the end of Ramadan there’s Eid al-Fitr (the festival of breaking the fast).