Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic year (which is lunar) and marks the anniversary of more than one significant event. It was during Ramadan that the Koran was first revealed to the Prophet Muhammad.
History of Ramadan – According to legend, he was sitting alone in the wilderness when suddenly the angel Gabriel came to him with a golden tablet in his hands. The angel told Muhammad to read what was written on the tablet. What was on this golden tablet is said to be the essence of the Koran, just as the Tablets of the Law that Moses received on Mt. Sinai were the basis of the bible’s Old Testament.
As the fundamental aspect of Ramadan is fasting, it is believed the name ‘Ramadan’ may signify the burning desire for drinking water and food. It may also refer to the belief that fasting with a pure intention and with religious blessings burns away the earlier sins.
According to the Muslim faith, observing the fast with absolute faith and unpolluted intentions will confer remittance of all his sins. It is believed that fasting midst the holy spirit of Ramadan is thirty times more potent than fasting any other time of the year.
The holy month of Ramadan commemorates two of the most significant events in the history of the Islamic religion. One of them is the belief that on this sacred month the first verses of the holy Quran was revealed to the Prophet Mohammad.
Around 610AD, Prophet Mohammad used to roam around the desert near Mecca, which is now situated in Saudi Arabia. He spent his time contemplating about faith in God and society.
One night from the night sky a divine voice called to him. It was the voice of Jibril or angel Gabriel. He told Mohammad that he has been chosen to receive the word of almighty Allah. Angel Gabriel handed over a golden tablet to Mohammad and asked him to read from it.
It is believed that on the golden tablet the essence of Quran was inscribed. And within a few days, Mohammad found himself reciting the verses that would be later transcribed as Quran, the holiest book of Islam.
Another event is said to be the Battle of Badr – which is the first battle between Mecca and Medina residents. The people of Mecca were idol worshippers and the people of Medina were Muslims, in which the Muslims had a glorious victory.
This battle gets special mention in the holy Quran and all existing information of that battle comes from the traditional Islamic versions, recorded in Hadiths and biographies of Muhammad.
These religious and historical anecdotes pertaining to the origin of the holy month of Ramadan are significant to understand the true meaning of the observances. Ramadan is not just about fasting and praying along with your family and friends. These are the first steps in striving to sanctify the soul and enhancing the Imaan, which is the fundamental objective. Disregarding the mundane desires and concerns, contemplating on the inner self and fostering a greater devotion to Allah is the essential purpose of Ramadan.
Ramadan is a time for increased religious devoutness and self-judgment. It is the time to go through rigorous self-discipline and seek religious blessings. The spirit of Ramadan inspires the believer to have complete faith in Allah and to seek celestial blessings and mercy to protect himself from the Hellfire. This is the month to rekindle allegiance and renew the relationship with the Creator.