Ramadan is a month of spiritual reflection and heightened devotion for Muslims all around the globe. The current circumstances may not allow the coming together of communities, however, we can still try and make Ramadan as fulfilling as we know it to be.
As the pandemic is spreading, we should stay in the safety of our homes. This also means that we will not be able to attend communal prayers, like Taraweeh, at the masjid and nor will we be able to host iftar gatherings. While that may sound disheartening, there’s no reason to believe that we cannot delve into all the good things that Ramadan has to offer while being quarantined at home. After all, it will be what we make out of it! This blog suggests ways in which you can observe this holy month with the same spirits.
Set up a prayer area
One of the key aspects of the holy month of Ramadan is prayers. In this month, we generally make an effort to make way to the masjid with our family members and neighbours. We meet our acquaintances and gather with them and our close ones at the masjid for long hours during Taraweeh. This is a bonding opportunity as we grow closer both as a community and as spiritual individuals. Indeed, praying communally is one of the many joys of Ramadan and that doesn’t have to be lost! We can set up prayer areas at home. While the living space is ideal for this purpose, any spacious area of the house will do. Praying together with the people you’re at home with will not only boost unity in the household, but it will also help us to feel more connected. Just set aside the furniture, like the centre table and such, to the side and place a carpet if your floors aren’t carpeted already. Anchor the prayer mats on the carpet. You may also put your religious books and misbahah on a table in the area and there you have an ideal prayer space!
An engaging ambience
Since we’re staying home nowadays, it’s important to create an atmosphere that makes us feel good. This calls for us to take out our Turkish lanterns, lightly scented candles or potpourri. To create a feel-good vibe at home, we can set the ambience as such to make us feel more calm and composed. Warm lighting and accessories as those mentioned before along with small indoor plants aid in making our home more welcoming and pleasant. As this is the time to try and be our best selves and to spread peace and harmony, we have to do so after ensuring that our environment gives off peaceful vibes, too.
To prepare for a long day of abstaining from food, we should eat protein and fibre rich food for suhoor. For iftar, it is essential to eat healthy food after long hours of fasting. Consuming fried, salty or too sugary food is discouraged, as it is likely to impact our bodily fitness. A healthy alternative to fried foods is oven baking the same items. Now, more than ever, healthy homemade meals are recommended to keep our health in the best shape. Another noteworthy point would be not to overeat and instead drink plenty of hydrating fluids. To sum up, we must focus on having a balanced diet.
As for the Iftar preparations, all the members of the household can collectively prepare for Iftar. One can volunteer to prepare the beverages, another can be in charge of the cooking/baking and another for the setup. Switch up the roles every few days! This will be an effective way to also prevent the Iftar-prep rush prior to the Adhan. You’ll see that not only does this sort of teamwork create harmony in the household but by the end of Ramadan, you’ll even be missing engaging in such activities.
Ramadan encourages family and community gatherings; however, that may not be the case this time. Even if we’re unable to host iftar gatherings at home or enjoy breaking the fast at the masjid or with our relatives, we can try for it to not put a damper on our spirits. In today’s fast-paced world, we can host virtual Iftar gatherings once in a while when we’re really missing having Iftar with our loved ones. Sure, it may not be as gratifying as in-person gatherings, but it’ll surely make for unique memories when things return to normal.
With most of us in quarantine at home, we’re can’t adequately engage in physical activities. This may cause fatigue and even more so when we’re fasting till dusk. To prevent this, allocate a small amount of your time to get some light exercises a few hours after iftar or even after fajr. These exercises do not have to be physically demanding. Just a lightweight routine will do to make sure your body remains energized and fit.
Giving back to the community
The month of Ramadan calls for us to be engaged in community service and give back to society. While we may not be able to go out, buy food, clothing or supplies and donate them, technological advancements allow us to send money to various non-profit organizations with the tap of a finger sitting in the comfort of our homes. There are many apps that allow us to make donations anonymously. There’s no need to be dismayed. We can give zakah to the extent we used to and even more from the safety of our homes.
Such difficult times entail unique solutions. As we hope and pray for better and more prosperous days, we should also try and focus on how we can conserve the joy that Ramadan is known to bring. We hope this blog helps you in making this Ramadan as rewarding as you’d hope for it to be. Ramadan Kareem!
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