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Muwahhed
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PostSubject: Ramadan in Many Countries   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:32 am

Ramadan in Spain



In Spain an Agreement of Cooperation between the Spanish State and the
Islamic Commission of Spain was established in 1992 and approved as Law
26/1992. The law affirms in article 12.1 that: "Members of the Islamic
Communities belonging to the Islamic Commission of Spain who desire,
will be able to request the interruption of their work on Friday of
each week, from 1 P.M. to 4.20 P.M., as well as finishing work one hour
before sunset, during the month of Ramadan".



The celebration of Ramadan acquires a special importance in all
Spanish cities like Madrid, Barcelona and Catalonia where numerous
Muslim communities reside. Muslims get together to break their fast and
they organize social meetings in the mosques. Amin Villoch, a Spanish
Muslim, illustrates this: "The first day of Ramadan more than 9,000
Muslims gather at the mosques in Madrid to celebrate the breaking of
the fast. Ramadan is an important factor in reuniting the community.
The Islamic Center of Madrid always prepares many activities during
this month for them."



After the Maghrib prayers, the mosque becomes a place of festivity.
Everyone eats harrisa (an oriental sweet) and dates; Ramadan treats
which no Muslim house lacks. "Women spend all day preparing typical
food to offer to their relatives and friends whom they meet at the
mosque," explains Amira Masaad. "The first day of Ramadan is a special
day. Although, it's difficult being far away from my family, the mosque
organizes events and activities to bring the Muslim community in Spain
together."



Other activities that Spanish mosques organize during Ramadan
include Arabic classes, Islamic culture classes and Qur'an and Hadith
discussions.
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PostSubject: Re: Ramadan in Many Countries   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:33 am

Ramadan in Nicaragua & Dominican Republic

In Nicaragua, approximately 300 Palestinian, Jordanian, Iraqi, Libyan
and Nigerian citizens, as well as Nicaraguans; all faithful Muslims,
celebrate the month of the Ramadan. In 1999, Muslims established a
mosque in Cuidad Jardin. Ahmed Hajjami, a Muslim who has resided in
Nicaragua for 6 years, assured us that approximately 300 faithful
Muslims, celebrate Ramadan in Nicaragua.

"We begin at half past five in the morning. There isn't any difference in complying with Ramadan in Nicaragua or any other part of the world," he said.

Nevertheless, he emphasized that given the characteristics of Nicaragua, it is more difficult to carry out Ramadan's obligations.
"One of the main obstacles is the time to pray, on some occasions we
only pray in the morning and at night, it is almost impossible to pray
the other three times," he explained. For Muslims in Nicaragua, the
renewal of faith during this period is the main celebration. Ramadan is
not a month of penitence by fasting, but of festivals with banquets,
gifts and new clothes .


Ramadan in China

For Muslims in China, Ramadan is traditionally a period of fraternity, solidarity and Islamic charity.

Li Xan is a Chinese student who studies engineering at the Universidad Del Desarrollo in Chile. He has been living with his father in Chile for 3 years now. However, he remembers how his family used to celebrate Ramadan in China. "During Ramadan, my father would get up at 4 o'clock in the morning, and an hour later he'd arrive at the Mosque of Niujie, in the center of Beijing, just in time for the dawn prayer."

For Muslims in China, Ramadan is traditionally a period of fraternity, solidarity and Islamic charity.

"Every day in Ramadan, we attended all the five prayers at the mosque. My father's friends understood our commitment, and when he was occupied with a lot of work they would help him to do it so that he could be punctual for prayers," Li explained.

Li is among more than 20 million Chinese Muslims that live by Ramadan's obligations, continuing strictly the Islamic doctrines, praying five times a day in mosques and abstaining from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk.

According to the Islamic Association of China, Chinese Muslims have convenient access to prayer services as there are more than 34,000 mosques throughout the country.

"Since the foundation of the Peoples Republic of China in 1949, the rights and religious liberty of the Muslims have been protected by the constitution and the law," he states.

The Niujie Mosque, built in 996, and that of Dongsi, 500 years old, are the two most famous mosques in the capital. The Niujie Mosque is an important center for Islamic Studies and operates a Qur'an school.
During the last five decades years, the government has assigned special
funds for the repair of these buildings because of their historical
importance.

Beijing has over 900 Muslim restaurants and food stores. Some supermarkets sell food especially for followers of Islam. "Thanks to the social stability and the fast economic growth of the country, Chinese Muslims enjoy a peaceful Ramadan. Many Muslims share traditional food with their neighbors, and distribute gifts to poorer Muslims," noted Hang Xian a 61-year-old Chinese Muslim trader.

Wherever you are, Ramadan is undoubtedly a most special month.
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PostSubject: Re: Ramadan in Many Countries   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:39 am

Ramadan in Malaysia

Malaysia is one of the greatest Muslim countries. The Malaysian Muslims receive the month of Ramadan with great joy and unequalled happiness.
They change their style of living during this honorable month. Reciting the Ever-Glorious Qur'an, remembering Allah and staying at mosques are their main concern. On the few last days of Sha`ban, Muslims of Malaysia prepare themselves for receiving Ramadan. They prepare mosques for prayer and buy their necessities of food. On the 29th night of Sha`ban, the Ministry of Religious Affairs tries to sight the new moon. When the sighting is established, the ministry declares it via mass media. Muslims exchange congratulations due to the advent of Ramadan.
On this great occasion, the local authorities sprinkle streets with water, clean yards and public squares and hang electric lamps in the main streets.

As for the way of receiving Ramadan in the countryside, Muslims there celebrate the occasion through gathering at mosques and congratulating one another. Also, they exchange meals of breaking the fast.

The rich and well-to-do traders normally establish feasts for providing meals of the breaking of the fast at mosques and in the streets.

Truly, the Malaysian community is distinguished with special kinds of meals.

Mostly, all family members attend prayer in the mosque regularly. Schools for teaching the Qur'an are widespread all over the country. The government encourages these schools which intensify their courses during this month. They teach Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) , Tafsir (Exegesis of the Qur'an), the Islamic Creed, the Arabic language besides the Ever-Glorious Qur'an. The Malaysians conclude the month of Ramadan with completing reciting the Honorable Qur'an in mosques, schools, TV, Radio, etc. Then, they make other celebrations for receiving the blessed `Eid Al-Fitr.

Ramadan in India

Indian people prepare themselves for Ramadan on the last day of Sha`aban, when the fatwa committee there go for sighting the crescent of Ramadn after Sunset Prayer. On announcing the following day to be the first day of Ramadan, people begin to phone their relatives and
friends, congratulating one another for the blessed month. Then they go
for Taraweeh Prayer, and some people show more keenness on Taraweeh
Prayer than on the prescribed Prayers and observe it steadfastly,
especially at the beginning of the month and also when the month ends.
The number of people who perform Taraweeh Prayer redoubles in the 27th night of Ramadan, being considered the Night of Power. Also their number increase in the night when the Imam is about to complete the Qur'an. One of the habits of the Indians in Ramadan is also retreating in mosques for worship during the last ten days of Ramadan.

There are some special dishes prepared in Ramadan in India, such as "Ghangui" a kind of soup, made of floor, rice and slices of meat. It's very useful in breaking one's fasting with as it quenches thirst and produces energy. This soup is served in every mosque. Also there is "Harir" a kind of drink to be taken at Iftar. The Indians also like to eat different fruits in Ramadan.

At the end of Ramadan, people begin to prepare themselves for the `Eid El-Fitr; it is actually the greatest feast for Muslims in the India. Early in the morning of `Eid, men take shower and wear white clothes, then they go for `Eid Prayer after they eat some sweets. At home, women go on preparing special sweets for the feast, which they call `Eid Kah. Then they present it to their husbands after returning from the mosque. All people wear colorful and elegant dresses and receive visitors. They also exchange `Eid cards.

Ramadan in Japan

Muslims of Japan share their brothers all over the Muslim world the happiness of receiving Ramadan.

Muslims in Japan prepare themselves for receiving Ramadan long time before its coming. A permanent committee called "the Committee of Ramadan and the two Feasts" has been formed in the Islamic center for discussing preparation for Ramadan. The committee starts its work with sighting the new moon. Mostly, it is too overcast to be seen. In such case, we follow Malaysia, the nearest Islamic country to us. Then, when it's confirmed that the new moon has been sighted, the center declares that to the public. The center takes on its shoulder answering questions of Japanese Muslims concerning the new moon, times of Prayers, Fasting, etc.

On this occasion, they always publish a calendar showing times of prayers and the approximate times for refraining from eating and drinking at dawn and breaking fast at sunset during Ramadan. The center distributes this calendar to mosques, and various Islamic gatherings and meetings all over Japan. Another calendars are distributed to restaurants that sell Halal (lawful) food. Obviously, the center as well as all the other Islamic gatherings makes the necessary preparations for receiving this blessed month properly. Working for Islam is activated during this month which is the best of months and one of the distinctive features of the Muslim Ummah.

Ramadan in Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan is one of the hottest spots in the world with the temperature reaching more than 40 C (104 F) in summer. Even when it falls in summer, Ramadan is still one of the most beloved seasons in
the country.

After the Communist Revolution, a fierce attack was waged against religion.

Mosques were closed, prayer was banned, and Muslims could no longer fast or make Hajj due to the strict reign of the Communist authorities.

Now with the coming of leniency and the end of oppression, Muslims have regained their joy in their religion and seize the chance of the holy month to gather for iftar.

Each gathering starts with reciting the Qur'an and supplicating Allah to bless the host and his family. After they have finished eating, the guests and host rush to the mosque to perform `Isha Prayer and Taraweeh. What a great feeling to be free!

Ramadan in Tanzania

In Tanzania, the month of Ramadan has a special place in the minds of people as they prepare for Ramadan right from the middle of Sha`ban, as they bedeck the streets with decorations and electric lights, and also beautify the mosque and all the neighboring shops. Then they exchange visits and gifts between families.

As preparation for the month of Ramadan, most Muslims fast on Mondays and Thursdays in the month of Sha`ban until Ramadan comes when all of them will fast, starting from children of twelve years up to the old people. Those who do not pray are called atheists, pagans and
unbelievers. It is regarded as an enormity and punishable under the law for a Muslim to eat during the day in Ramadan and to be seen on the street eating. All the shops are always closed in the daytime. Even the cafeterias in the hotels are not to be opened except after the sunset prayer, and even a non-Muslim is ashamed of eating in the daytime during Ramadan.

Some of the foods used to break fast are dates, water sweetened with sugar, coffee, rice, fish and vegetables.

Ramadan in Turkey

With happiness, the Turkish people welcome Ramadan. In fact, this great people still proving steadfastness and love for this great religion that encompasses all aspects of life.

"Ramadan has come, light the minarets and feel joy." This is what occurs at the advent of Ramadan in Turkey from the Maghrib prayer till the early hours in the morning. The Chief of the Authority of Religious Affairs in Turkey says: "We have about 77 thousand mosques in Turkey, for we cannot live without mosques or minarets."

Taraweeh, reciting the Holy Qur'an and making Religious Book Fair in the Olo Jami`(Turkey' s Greatest Mosque) in Ankara and Sultan Ahmad Mosque in Istanbul are among the signs of welcoming the month.

After Traweeh is finished, candy is distributed to children who participated in prayer as a way of encouraging them to repeat the deed.

In ordinary days, the local radio and TV known as TRT1-TV broadcasts a religious program of a quarter of an hour. In Ramadan, two religious programs are broadcast before Iftar and Suhoor in addition to many TV serials in various times of the day as a way of celebrating the blessed month.
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PostSubject: Re: Ramadan in Many Countries   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:41 am

Ramadan in Sweden

Islam has spread all over the world, so that it became the second religion in Sweden and other countries in the Northern Pole.

As for the problem that face Muslims here, it is the issue of sighting the new moon of Ramadan; this causes a lot of problem and stirs arguments due to the lack of a center body on which all Muslims will rely for this important issue. Yes, there is an Islamic center here, but its services cannot cover all Muslims dispersed in different places, besides, the Swedish media renders no assistance. However, people mostly follow the crescent sighting in Makkah, to know the beginning of Ramadan and the day of `Eid.

There is a big difference between the way of celebrating Ramadan in all Scandinavian countries and in other European countries, because the number of Muslim minority in the former is somehow lower than the number of Muslims in the latter. Yet, despite the few number of Muslims here in Sweden, Ramadan forms a very special spiritual occasion, which all Muslims nail-bitingly wait for from year to year. No sooner had the Muslim scholars sighted the crescent of Ramadan than people begin to congratulate one another and set forth to perform Taraweeh Prayer at the nearest mosque, or say, some places hired by Muslims for prayer, for there are no mosques. In these places, Muslims hold sessions in which they remember Allah throughout Ramadan.

Ramadan in Thailand

Muslims in Thailand form one-third of the Thai people. Because of the huge manifestations of celebrating the month of Ramadan, aThai citizen feels as if the number of Muslims doubles everyday.

During Ramadan, a new mosque is inaugurated mostly in every city and in every village. All the year round, Muslims of each city collect money
for establishing the new mosque which is usually opened in the month of Ramadan. People here are keen on working by themselves in building these mosques. Memorizers of the Ever-Glorious Qur'an are happily carried on shoulders to be examples for the rest of Muslims and to encourage the youngsters to memorize the Glorious Qur'an as well.

In the first day of Ramadan, each Thai Muslim family even the poor families are keen on slaughtering in commemoration with the coming of this blessed month. Obviously, slaughtering in the first day of fasting is a Thai habit that has been witnessed and still a long time ago.

Among the beautiful manifestations of this month is that people, here, used to have the meal of breaking the fast in groups; the matter which is considered to be a kind of good treatment and sincere love. The Thai Muslims incline towards having large amounts of fruits during this month. Interestingly enough, spending the month of Ramadan in their country is normally among the habits of the Thai Muslims. Thus, most travelers, overseas workers and even students who study abroad usually come back to spend the month of Ramadan with their families.
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PostSubject: Re: Ramadan in Many Countries   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:44 am

Ramadan in Austria

There is about 150,000 Muslims of different nationalities in Austria; among them are Arab, Turkish and others. Exactly the case in Muslim countries, Muslims celebrate Ramadan by observing Islamic rites, like performing Taraweeh Prayer at about fifty mosques in Vienna and other Austrian cities. Muslims there also go to the mosques regularly to listen to religious lectures on Islamic jurisprudence, exegesis of the Qur'an and other sciences.

However, mosques differ in their way of celebrating Ramadan. As regard the Islamic Center in Vienna, established and funded by Muslim countries, services go on in full swing, as sermons are delivered and lectures given by a group of reverent Muslim scholars from Al-Azhar and other places, Taraweeh Prayers are performed regularly. Moreover, the center provides a breakfast for Muslims throughout the month.

There are also other Islamic centers and mosques financed by the Turkish community in Austria. Such centers provide Muslim communities in Austria with Islamic books, and they also provide meats and chicken slaughtered on the Islamic way.

The Egyptian club in Austria also plays a great role in gathering the Austrian-based Egyptians together during Ramadam on breakfast banquets.
When Ramadan ends, all Muslim communities gather in the Islamic center to celebrate `Eid after performing `Eid Prayer. Such celebration is a special occasions for Muslims there to get together in the atmosphere of love and brotherliness.

Ramadan in Pakistan

With the coming of Ramadan, Pakistani citizens make `Umrah their first concern. Though straitened may be their circumstances, they never lose such a chance.
In Pakistan, Friday markets are everywhere to provide people with their basic needs at low prices. Pakistani women begin preparing Iftar at a very early time of the day in addition to some light drinks and meals.
After Taraweeh, supper is offered which is mostly a good spicy meal. During the last ten days, the case is different as men gather together to have Suhoor in nearby mosques. Before Suhoor time, they begin reciting and studying the Qur'an.
Days before `Eid Al-Fitr (Lesser Bairam) candy is distributed and markets are open around the hour so that people can get their needs for `Eid.
Before `Eid Prayer begins, Pakistani people wear new clothes and head to the public playground to perform `Eid Prayer. Kissing one another and exchanging congratulations the Pakistanis show their joy with the coming of the Lesser Bairam, `Eid Mubarak.
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PostSubject: Re: Ramadan in Many Countries   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:46 am

Ramadan in Cairo

By every dawn and every sunset, the Egyptian citizens hear the boom of an old canon, declaring the time for breaking the fast (Iftar) and the time for stopping eating (Imsaak).

The canon known as "Hajjah Fatimah" is an inheritance from the old day of Muhammad Ali Pasha or, according to some traditions, goes back to the days of an Ottoman governor called Khosh Qadam.

Though the canon itself has been changed and replaced with a new one, the name remained unchanged. Now the canon is placed on the plateau of Moqattam near to the Citadel. Four men are there to take care of the canon and use it to alarm people that it is time for Iftar or Imsaak.

Ramadan in Mauritania

At the beginning of Ramadan, Mauritanians especially the youth hasten to perform regular prayers at their appointed times in Mosques.
It is worth stressing here that Mauritanians start celebrating the month of Ramadan as soon as the month of Rajab draws to a close.
In Mauritania, it is no wonder to see the haves, especially the stingy, showing sympathy towards the have-nots during Ramadan. The sense of solidarity and backing the poor is widely spread.
During the nights of Ramadan, the `Isha and Taraweeh prayers are aired live from the Two Holy Shrines of Makkah and Al-Madinah. After prayer people usually set at ease to listen to religious lessons and heart
softeners from the reliable scholars and Imams in addition to reciting the Qur'an and listening to it.
After prayer, it is easier to see people visiting one another and drinking Green Tea, which is a common drink in Mauritania.
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PostSubject: Re: Ramadan in Many Countries   Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:48 am

Ramadan in Morocco

In Morocco as well as in other Muslim countries, Ramadan has a special taste. During weekends, Moroccans residing in big cities travel to the countryside to enjoy fresh air and practice joyful sports.
Civil servants are permitted to leave work as soon as they hear "Allahu Akbar," Allah is the Greatest. In addition, it is dominant to see people treating one another kindly and an atmosphere of compassion, forsaking the fake glory of this worldly life encompasses all.
In Morocco, the Night of Qadr, is characterized by a special occasion. The father accompanies his male children after breaking the fast to the Mosque in order to pray `Isha and Taraweeh in congregation. Female children, on the other hand remain in the house rejoicing with neighbors until the father comes back home. Upon the father's return, all rejoice and go sightseeing in the city's capital.



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