Are you getting ready for Ramadan? As we all know Ramadan isn’t just a month to abstain from food and drink, though it is one of the conditions of fasting it is also a way for us to become more mindful of the actions that we commit on a daily basis. So, before Ramadan begins here are a few points to help in your preparations, let's start by purifying our intentions and look at ways we can please Allah.
“Oh, Allah bless us in Rajab and Sha’baan and allow us to reach Ramadan.” (Shu’abul Imaan)
- Clean your heart from all sorts of grudges, if you have wronged anyone then ask for their forgiveness.
- Become mindful of your behaviour and repent with a determination that you will not commit those sins again.
Prepare for Ramadan and understand the purpose of fasting.
- Learn the practices of our Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and the Sahabahs
- Listen to lectures to understand the virtues of fasting
- Read books that will help you become an Ideal Muslim/Muslimah and strengthen your relationship with Allah
In short, learn as much as possible about Ramadan so that you can do your best when you finally reach the blessed month.
Get acquainted with Quran
The revelation of Quran was completed in the blessed month of Ramadan.
Muslims all around the world try to finish reading the whole Quran in this month. If you are not habitual at reading Quran or your speed of reciting is on the slow side, then finishing the whole Quran in one month will seem daunting, not only difficult but impossible for you. Set yourself realistic goals.
- Make a habit of reading at least two pages of Quran a day every day
- Listen along with a Qari such as Mahmoud Khaleel Al-Husary - slow recitation
- Attend Tarawih prayer and listen to the Imam complete the Quran
Become regular in your Salah
Ramadan shouldn’t be the only time of the year when you perform all your five daily prayers.
The obligatory prayers should be offered at their specified time during the whole year round.
- Take benefit from technology by installing a Prayer App that will help you stay mindful of your prayers.
- Make sure your study, work or daily activities fits around your prayer schedule
- Go to bed early with the intention to wake up for Fajr
- Set your alarm and make Dua that Allah helps you to wake up
Build a habit of giving charity
Giving charity washes away your sins and is an act that we can develop not just during Ramadan but also for the rest of the year.
- Giving charity will help us attain peace of mind. What you give will help someone in need and in turn, a source of ease during your difficulties.
- When you're giving charity, have the understanding that the money you own is not your property but only a means for surviving in this Dunya, this will help lessen your attachment to money. Think of your money being invested in property for you for the hereafter. Remember, we cannot take our possessions with us when we die.
- When making dua, ask Allah to put the Dunya in your hands and never in your heart.
- When you give, have the satisfaction knowing that Allah will put blessings (barakah) in your money, meaning, whatever money you have will always be enough to fulfil your needs.
Feed the needy
Allah says in the Quran: the righteous are those they give food in spite of love for it to the needy, the orphan, and the captive (saying) "We feed you only for the countenance of Allah. We wish not from you reward or gratitude (76:8-9)
The long hours of fasting in Ramadan teaches us about the hardships of poverty.
We can empathise the constant pangs of hunger that the needy have to go through on a daily basis. We understand how lack of water in our routine can make us become slow and lazy and then at the time of dusk we feel grateful that we still have access to food and water while many do not.
- Hence, we should make it a goal to feed one poor person each day or at least every week.
- Make preparations to help break a needy person’s fast during Ramadan.
- There are several organizations where you can volunteer to distribute food to the fasting Muslims and even make donations. Sisters4Islam is a charity that I belong to, we ensure your Donations reach the needy. Please check our Facebook page to view all the work the charity has achieved over the years, in helping the needy and vulnerable.
We support orphans and poor communities to have a meal at iftar
Last year, in June 2017, I was blessed with the opportunity to perform Umrah during Ramadan.
Performing Umrah is one of the best ways to increase your spirituality. Travelling to the House of Allah and spending your time there will give you a true sense of purpose in this world. One of the biggest lessons that you learn during Umrah is that we do not need so much stuff in order to be happy and live peacefully. The worldly and materialistic pleasures of this world distract the heart. During Umrah, you are able to focus your ibadah with only the love of Allah in your heart and the goal of attaining Jannah in the Hereafter.
If you are able to plan and perform "Umrah in the blessed month of Ramadan, know that the reward is equivalent to performing Hajj as if you had performed it with the Prophet" (pbuh). (Abu Dawood)