1.5 Billion Muslims all over the world will start the long-month dawn-to-dusk fasting of Ramzan from the Thursday onwards as per the confirmation from the Saudi Arabia’s religious authorities.
The Royal Court’s statement published said, “The first day of the holy fasting month of Ramzan falls tomorrow (Thursday) corresponding to May 17, 2018”.
Ramzan was first celebrated by the Prophet Muhammad 1400 years ago by fasting and eating dates and consuming water followed by a sunset prayer and the ritual is still followed by the present generation.
The date set for the beginning and ending of the Ramzan is based on lunar calculations and physical sightings. Ramzan is considered as one of the five pillars of Islam. The other four are charity, profession of faith, obligation to pray five times a day and pilgrimage to Mecca.
In the Ramzan fast, food and even water is prohibited especially in the northern hemisphere. However, exceptions for the fast in the Ramzan is given to sick, pregnant women, elderly, nursing and people travelling.
People during Ramzan also believed in charity known as ‘Zakat’ where free meals are distributed among the poor and needy in the mosque. The celebration of Ramzan ends with three-day holiday called Eid al-Fitr.