Sawm is the fourth pillar of Islam and is an important act of ibadah. The word “Ramadan” comes from the Arabic root word for “parched thirst” and “sun-baked ground.” It is expressive of the hunger and thirst felt by those who spend the month in fasting. As opposed to other holidays, when people often indulge, Ramadan is by nature a time of sacrifice.
The month of Ramadan is sacred because the first revelation of the Qur’an is said to have occurred during this month. By tradition the month starts with the sighting of the new moon by at least two Muslims. For the entire month, Muslims must fast from daybreak to sunset by refraining from eating, drinking, and sexual intercourse. It is an apparent sign of devotion as it shows obedience, submission and servitude to God, the Exalted.
By fasting, a Muslim expresses his submission to Allah’s command, his response to His will, and control over his own desires and wishes at the God’s command. In the holy month of Ramadan, a Muslim’s abstaining from food, drink, sexual intercourse, during the prescribed hours is the very manifestation of devotion to the Creator’s will. This self-deprivation represents a state of self-control and of overcoming pleasure, desire, and enjoyment, for the blissful love of God. It is a triumph of pure love over one’s pleasures for the eternal ones promised by God, the Almighty.
This response to the Divine commandments represents and incarnates true devotion and is a brilliant display of spirit, intellect and decisive willpower. This purification allows them to prove their devotion to Allah by demonstrating they will honor the fast whether they are alone or with others, because it is His wish that they do so. Through fasting the Muslims are able to share in their unity with each other and their community, and display their gratitude to God for being given the words of the Qur’an.
Through increased devotion, Muslims feel closer to their Creator, and recognize that everything we have in this life is a blessing from Him. Traditions (Hadith) succinctly explain this fact: “A fasting person is in a state of worship, even when (asleep) in bed, except when he backbites about another Muslim.”… Every breath you take is (has the reward of) Tasbih (praise to Allah) and your sleep is worship…”
In a moving speech, the Prophet of Allah described the believing soul that fasts for love of Allah out of truthfulness and sincerity, and out of
devotion for him then the whole day becomes an alter of worship, and each and every activity of the fasting body, provided it abstains from loathsome acts, is nothing but worship embodied.
This is why Muslims become focused in Ramadan and carry out lots of Ibadah to gain reward and please Allah as we need him in our lives as he is that powerful and the guide The Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) described the sleep of a fasting Muslim, even the very breathing, as acts of worship, because they emanate from a body regarded as being in a state of continual worship through abstaining from tasting delicious and lawful things, solely out of obedience and devotion to the Creator. He Himself extols fasting and attributes as a special blessing for mankind as is clear from a ‘Hadith-e-Qudsi’: The Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) said: “God, the Exalted says: ‘Fasting is (exclusively) for me and I will reward it.”
Ali ibn Musa al-Rida (A.S.), the Eighth Imam quoted his ancestor the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) on the chain of authority of his noble forefathers: “O people, anybody who in this month (Ramadan) cultivates good manners, will walk over the ‘Sira’ (Paradise’s bridge) on the Day when feet will tend to slip….” The practices of Islamic fasting are designed to divert human mind towards righteousness through a process of self-denials. Fasting constitutes a process of self-purification, self-righteousness, and spiritual development of one self. Sawm also shows devotion to god through various other acts. An additional prayer is added in Ramadan called taraweeh.it is a Sunnah prayer and efforts are made to recite as much of the Quran as possible. This prayer is generally offered in congregation and those who cannot make it to the congregation pray it at home.
This additional prayer prayed each day for 30 days shows love for god and how much we appreciate the guidance he sent through the Qur’an and how much we need god in our lives to show us the “straight path”. The night of power is also a way to show devotion to god as it was the night the Quran was revealed and so Muslims recite as much Quran as possible and perform other acts of Ibadah. This show devotion to god as many Muslims stay awake during the night so it shows our love for god as it says that the ummah will worship god and listen to him as he does to us. We will thank him and show devotion to him.
The fasting person is training himself to remember that Allah (SWT) is always watching, so he gives up the things that he desires even though he is able to take them, because he knows that Allah (SWT) can see him. This shows devotion to god as it tells us that even though an individual would want to eat or do bad deeds as they can because it is in our control we do not as god has told us not to do it. This shows that the ummah will listen to god as we believe he provides and does everything we ask for us so we can do this for him.
Another way muslins show devotion to god is through dua which is personal prayer to god. Many Muslims carry out this personal prayer in Ramadan after all the 5 prayers or in the morning before the fajr prayer when Muslims perform a Sunnah prayer called tahajud. This shows devotion to god as it show that Muslims are willing to wake up or stay awake just to please Allah and worship him as he fulfils our prayers so we must ask more and praise him during this. ‘Sawm is more about uniting the Muslim community than about showing devotion to Allah.’ Discuss? (10) Sawm is about showing devotion to Allah as In the holy month of Ramadan, a Muslim’s abstaining from food, drink, sexual intercourse, during the prescribed hours is the very devotion Muslim’s have to the Creator’s will.
This self-deprivation represents a state of self-control and of overcoming pleasure, desire, and enjoyment, for the blissful love of God. It is a triumph of pure love over one’s pleasures for the eternal ones promised by God, the Almighty. This response to the commands of Allah represents and incarnates true devotion and is a brilliant display of spirit, intellect and decisive willpower. This purification allows them to prove their devotion to Allah by demonstrating they will honour the fast whether they are alone or with others, because it is His wish that they do so. .
Through increased devotion, Muslims feel closer to their Creator, and recognize that everything we have in this life is a blessing from Him. Also Muslims celebrate the gift of Quran purely for the sake of Allah and to thank him for sending a guide to the Muslim’s. Ramadan is month were everyone recharges their spiritual batteries on for the sake of Allah and to have him be pleased with us and to forgive any previous sins.
Sawm also is intended to strengthen the worldwide Ummah not merely in shared experience and practical provision but in contributing to the concept of spiritual unity and cohesive communal solidarity which is the hallmark of Islam. Through fasting the Muslims are able to share in their unity with each other and their community, and display their gratitude to God for being given the words of the Qur’an as they all as a community pray taraweeh and pray parts of the Quran collectively so all the young and all join in and realise the importance of the Muslim Ummah.
In addition to this Muslim’s give their zakat or sadqa in the month of Ramadan as they also want those Muslim’s who cannot afford it to have the best Ramadan possible and it helps them also identify the poor and realise that as they are also Muslim’s it is our duty to help them. Mosque receivers is a way the Muslim community comes together as women and children in the home can listen top talks and speeches in the home so they don’t miss out on any information about Islam and can also hear the prayers at home so they become part of the community swell.
Muslims give food to one another so it shoes that we are all there for each other and we are am Muslim Ummah so muslin’s should give in this blessed month to friends, relatives to share the bond of Islam. However sawm is about showing devotion to god and worshiping him through fasting or praying but to do this Muslim’s come together as an Ummah to help one another and get more reward of carrying out the worship together. However each individual Muslim for doing good acts will get rewards for him but the reason it is done together is because the Ummah is important in Islam to keep it going.