What is Ramadan?
Ramadan occurs during the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. During Ramadan, Muslims celebrate the revelation of the verses of the Qur'an to the Prophet Muhammad.
When is it celebrated?
Ramadan begins on the night when the first verses of the Qur'an were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, and this typically falls during the last 10 days of August.
Who celebrates Ramadan?
Muslims all over the world celebrate Ramadan, from the United States to the Middle East and even in China.
What traditions are followed during Ramadan?
The month of Ramadan is a time of spiritual reflection and prayer, as well fasting and doing good deeds. The fasting is intended to help Muslims achieve self-discipline and self-restraint, as well as generosity, according to the BBC, and takes place from dawn to sunset. Muslims also spend time with their families during Ramadan, and read the Qur'an. Many Muslims will read the entire Qur'an during Ramadan, and there are also special religious services to mark the holiday.
At the end of the month, there is a big celebration called "Eid-ul-Fitr" -- or the Festival of the Breaking of the Fast. During this celebration, Muslims dress in their best clothing and give gifts to children. They also spend time with family and friends. The Muslim tradition also calls for Muslims to give a set amount of money to charity during this time. That money is used to buy clothing and food for the poor.
What are some good resources to learn about Ramadan?
There are plenty of online resources about Ramadan, including: IslamiCity.com's Ramadan Information Center; the Britannica Online Encyclopedia and Boston.com's photo essay about Ramadan 2009.
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