Ramadan is the month of fasting. That makes this month so special for Muslims. Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam. Though Muslims can fast in other months whenever they like, every adult Muslim must observe fasting consistently during Ramadan.
Islam does not impose on its believers something that is beyond its capacity. So, those who are ill or traveling are exempted from compulsory fasting during Ramadan, but with certain conditions. That’s the beauty of Islam.
Significance of Ramadan Other Than Fasting
Apart from being a month of fasting, Ramadan has another unique significance. This was the month when the Quran was revealed on the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, in the year 610 CE, as narrated in the 185th verse of Surah Al Baqarah.
Ramaḍân is the month in which the Quran was revealed as a guide for humanity with clear proofs of guidance and the decisive authority. So whoever is present this month, let them fast. But whoever is ill or on a journey, then ˹let them fast˺ an equal number of days ˹after Ramaḍân˺. Allah intends ease for you, not hardship, so that you may complete the prescribed period and proclaim the greatness of Allah for guiding you, and perhaps you will be grateful.
Though it took more than 23 years for the complete revelation of the Quran, it started in Ramadan, as narrated in this verse. Simultaneously, this verse also explains who is exempted from compulsory fasting this month.
Further, in Surah Al Qadr, it is described that the Quran was sent down in the Shab-e-Qadr (the night of Glory). This Surah comprises of five verses, as translated here:
Indeed, ˹it is˺ We ˹Who˺ sent this ˹Quran˺ down on the Night of Glory.
And what will make you realize what the Night of Glory is?
The Night of Glory is better than a thousand months.
That night the angels and the ˹holy˺ spirit descend, by the permission of their Lord, for every ˹decreed˺ matter.
It is all peace until the break of dawn.
It is established in Hadith number 2017, Book 32, of Sahih Al Bukhari, that this night of glory falls on the odd nights during the last 10 days of Ramadan.
Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “Search for the Night of Qadr in the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan.”
So, the month of Ramadan is a very special occasion for Muslims because:
- Allah showers His blessings on the believers as a reward for fasting this month.
- The Quran was revealed in the month of Ramadan.
- Laylatul Qadr (night of Glory) falls on the odd nights during the last ten days of this month.
When is Ramadan 2024?
The month of Ramadan falls at number 9 in the Islamic Calendar. Islamic date system in itself is a sort of blessing for mankind. The beauty of this date system is that it revolves around all weather. So, Ramadan keeps rotating between the hot and cold seasons.
After falling into the hottest part of the year for many years, this time, Ramadan is set to come in the pleasant month of March. Though the exact date cannot be predicted, we can expect that Ramadan will probably start on the 11th or 12th of March 2024 in this part of the world.
Islamic months start with new moon sightings, so the exact date is not fixed and can vary by 2 to 3 days. Ramadan in 2023 started on 23rd March and given the pattern of the new moon, we can expect an 8 to 10 days gap this year – which will be around 14, 15 March 2024, or somewhere around it
May Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَى allow us to celebrate the upcoming month of Ramadan in its true spirit.