The benefits of fasting during Ramadan

The Islamic holy month of Ramadan began a few weeks ago, and will end on the 13th of October with the feast of Eid al-Fitr (literally Festival of Breaking Fast). The ninth month of the Islamic calendar, Ramadan is a time for spiritual reflection, almsgiving, and fasting from sunrise to sunset. I had the opportunity several years ago to celebrate Ramadan when I was in Morocco, and I still like to fast on the first and last days of the month even now.

I think fasting is instructive and worthwhile for a number of reasons. First of all, you’re able to share the same experience as more than one billion Muslims worldwide. This opens up a small window into an entirely different world (at least for me), and establishes a little more understanding between people of disparate backgrounds. Fasting also provides the rare opportunity to feel real hunger. Like many other people, I often “graze” throughout the day, and I constantly find myself eating out of boredom rather than actual hunger. Fasting, then, is a chance to develop a little self-discipline, and to remember that many others in the world don’t have pantries stuffed with Pringles and Double Stuff Oreos. Finally, learning about– and participating in– rituals and holidays celebrated by the rest of the world makes for richer, more meaningful travel experiences. And after fasting for Ramadan at home, who wouldn’t be excited about going to Egypt or Morocco or Turkey, and experiencing it for real?

If you think you can go without food and water one day this Ramadan (you can!), give it a shot. At sunset, crank up your favorite Sami Yusuf album, and treat yourself to a nice meal. You might feel better for it.

Posted by | Comments (8)  | September 29, 2007
Category: Notes from the collective travel mind

8 Responses to “The benefits of fasting during Ramadan”

  1. Tauheedah Ziyad Says:

    I love the Month of Ramadan. It helps me to remember Allah and all of the prophets. It allows me to think of Allah at all times. However, every year Ramadan gets greater for me. I strive hard and ask Allah to get me through each day. I am so blessed to have Islam in my life.

  2. rembo Says:

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  3. sadia shah Says:

    we fast in da month of ramadan 4 ALLAH!ND 4 OUR PROPHET

  4. as Says:

    yup, shah….we fast for THEM….

  5. Arisha Says:

    ramadan is the best month of all. it helps me 2 remember and think about Allah all the time so he showers His blessings on me qnd if u r a true Muslim 2 den i wud say 4 sure dat He will shoer His blessings on u guys too. i just wish this month never gets over

  6. Ramadan Fasting Says:

    Based on the outcome of a research study, there was a significant effect of Ramadan fasting contributed good effects, specifically in lowering the respondent’s weight, blood sugar level and blood pressure as the days of the fasting advances. On the other hand, there was no significant change of fasting on the pulse rate of the respondents with regards to the psychosomatic health. The fasting however yields a negative effect on physical, emotional, and cognitive functions of the respondents as the days of fasting progress.

  7. Sarina Says:

    Hi I’m 30 and a converted Muslim I’ve been given the gift of Islam 2 years now and I’m thankful every day fasting not only allows me to feel real hunger but to feel what some people feel everyday in their lives it makes me thankful for what I have and brings me closer to Allah 🙂 I love fasting but it is hard but with all hard work Allah rewards Salam to all fellow Muslims 🙂