To those who celebrated Eid al-Fitr this past weekend, Eid Mubarak! On Tuesday and Wednesday last week, Upper School Students Zainab K. ’25 and Raneem A. ’26 gave an assembly speech about the significance of Ramadan and Eid. You can read their speech below.
Zainab: Hi everyone, I’m Zainab
Raneem: I’m Raneem, and today, we’re going to be talking about Ramadan
Zainab: To start off, Ramadan is a religious and spiritual month observed by Muslims. It’s the ninth month of the Islamic Calendar, which follows the lunar calendar.
Raneem: This means that during the month of Ramadan, muslims fast from sunrise to sunset for either 29 or 30 days. (depending on the lunar calendar). Muslims will start their fast by waking up before dawn to have a light meal called suhoor. They will then not eat or drink anything until sunset, which they will open their fast with a meal called iftar.
Zainab: Suhoor is the meal before sunrise, currently Around 4-5 A.M., but the time changes throughout the year because the sun rises at different times. Suhoor provides energy throughout the day for those who are fasting. After their meal and a short prayer, they will officially begin fasting. Iftar is the meal at sunset, (Around 8 P.M, which again changes. Typically a fast is broken with food (dates and water) and a prayer.
Raneem: There are a couple reasons Muslims fast during Ramadan. Firstly, to practice self-discipline and restraint.
Zainab: Also, fasting brings forth empathy for those who are less fortunate and food deprived, and reminds us that everyone is human, thus encouraging actions of generosity and charity.
Raneem: Ramadan also brings about many health benefits. For example, fasting can help lower blood pressure, reduce inflammation, and improve overall heart health. However, it might be a little hard on us students, who have to juggle homework, sleep schedules, sports, extracurriculars, and also being spiritually active.
Zainab: An important part of Ramadan is the last ten days, during odd nights, called Laylatul Qadr. During these ten nights, it is said that the Qur’an was revealed. Out of these ten nights, one night is said to be of the most spiritual and award receiving.
Raneem: The night of Laylatul Qadar is worth more than a thousand nights, so many muslims worship all ten nights, hoping that one of the nights turns out to be the same night that the Qur’an mentions.
Zainab: Although fasting is essential to muslims, some people that don’t have to fast are: people with health issues, those traveling, menstruating women, pregnant or nursing women, the elderly, and children.
Raneem: Some phrases you could say to your muslim friends during Ramadan are: Ramadan Kareem, Ramadan Mubarak, or just Happy Ramadan!
Zainab: Sadly, Ramadan is coming to an end on either Friday or Saturday (Again depending on the Lunar calendar), with a celebration called Eid al-Fitr.
Raneem: Eid al-Fitr is a holiday that commemorates the end of fasting, and is typically 3-days long.
Zainab: During Eid, families get dressed up and go to the Mosque to pray, followed by breakfast parties and parties that go on all throughout the day. And my personal favorite part is that children get money, called Eidiyah. Eid is widely celebrated, as it’s one of the two muslim holidays in the year. In fact, last eid was the same day as the Met Gala, and a joke that went around was that our eid clothes topped the met gala outfits.
Raneem: Ramadan and Eid both are important holidays to us, and celebrating them is a pleasure to us and muslims around the world. Does anyone have any questions?
Zainab: If anyone has any more questions feel free to find me or Raneem and ask us! Thank you!
February 23, 2022
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