Can you believe it’s already that time of the year again? The sacred month of fasting, giving, and connecting is soon upon us. Here’s how to prepare for Ramadan to get the best of this month.
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It’s when Muslims from all around the world come together to observe a fast from dawn to dusk. Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam, which are the core principles of our religion. Ramadan is significant because it is the month in which the Quran was first revealed to Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).
Ramadan is not a month of just fasting. The physical fast is a symbol of the inner fast. It’s a month to reflect on yourself, to connect with the Almighty and to surrender yourself and every selfish desire you may have. It’s a time to detach from the world to focus on what’s truly important.
1. Prepare yourself both mentally and physically:
I start by reducing the amount of television I watch and music I listen to. By doing so I get myself out of the habits I have created for myself in the past 11 months. After all it takes time to break any habit. Next, I prepare my home. I start off by washing all the prayer rugs in my house (musalas). After washing and drying them I apply itar (attar) to all of them. It gives the prayer rugs a great scent, that praying on the rugs becomes an act you look forward to. Having that beautiful scent everywhere in my home gives me the Ramadan feels. Lastly, I start to talk to the kids about Ramadan. I try to include them in the process as much as I can. They really enjoy decorating the house for Ramadan. Kids (especially those living in America) love seeing Christmas lights and holiday decorations. I want mine to be just as excited for Ramadan. Unfortunately, I am not crafty at all, so I just buy some things online and we make some as well. Honestly, anything you can do together with them is good enough.
2. Get all your shopping done:
This way I’m not spending the blessed month of Ramadan shopping for Eid clothes for the kids or buying groceries for my house. I usually buy a big box of dates and some other must-haves for suhoor and iftaar time. After all, no one should go to the grocery store while they are fasting!
3. Start preparing yourself and your mind to be in the state of worship:
I start by reading more Quran and reflecting on myself and the words of the Quran. Sometimes we read it but don’t really apply it to ourselves and our lives. That’s why reading the Quran with the English translation is one of my goals this year, InshaAllah!
It has been said, that the companions of the Prophet (PBUH) use to plan for Ramadan six months in advance. We happily do this for weddings and vacations but not when it comes to the purification of our souls. If we really want to make the most of Ramadan we should start now!
Hope you liked my tips on how to prepare for Ramadan. Would love to hear from you!