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Fasting during Ramadan

June 21st, 2017 / View in own page?

My Name is Khafsa Ghulam and I am one of the Mentors on the Look Mentoring Project. I am 27 and am in full time work. I am also Muslim and have been asked to share my experiences of fasting during the month of Ramadan.

Khafsa, this month's blogger

Khafsa, this month’s blogger

So, what is Ramadan? Well, in short, it is a time when Muslims, who are able to fast do so, from sunrise till sunset for a whole month. The aim of fasting is to help us grow closer to God by engaging in acts of worship, such as praying, reading qur’an and work on refining our character.

 

This year, Ramadan is from the 27th May until the 25th June. I would say this year is not so bad so far. One of the challenges of fasting this time of year is juggling a full-time job and fasting the long hours. Every year I worry about how I will cope, but I always manage it.  Despite these challenges, I always find that the month helps me grow spiritually, I spend a lot more time praying and just the time alone with my thoughts really helps me to clear my head. Often, we become so busy doing day to day things that we don’t take time out to reflect on our own thoughts. Even if you are not religious, I would definitely recommend just taking 5 minutes out of your day, no technology, no TV, just sit and really think about what your struggles are, what you are grateful for. The impact is so refreshing and really lifts your spirits. On a daily basis, I pray, and I honestly believe that just simply disconnecting from what is going on around me is really refreshing.

 

I also love Ramadan as it is probably the only time that we all eat together as a family. Normally we all eat at different times, so it is really lovely to enjoy both Sehri (pre-dawn meal) and Iftr (breaking the fast) with family. However, for those people who live on their own, they either break the fast on their own or go to the mosque to be amongst people in the community.

 

I know a few blind people who live on their own, and who go to the mosque to break their fast. However, some have commented and said that they haven’t felt 100% comfortable in the environment as others haven’t interacted with them. Sometimes, people are awkward about helping them to get food, not because they have a problem with them per say, but purely because they don’t know how to help.

 

An additional challenge that blind people can face during Ramadan is a sleeping pattern that really makes their day challenging. For those of you who don’t know, some blind people can have a condition called Non-24 Hour Sleep Wake Disorder. This essentially means that due to them having no light perception, their body clock cannot be properly regulated. Getting day light is essential as it helps our body to regulate our body clock. So, the effect of an unsteady body clock together with a complete change in routine really can impact a person. In previous years, I have found it hard to establish and maintain a routine, but I seem to be getting on alright this year, so let’s see how it all goes.

 

Hope you enjoyed this and to anyone who is observing the month of Ramadan, just want to say HAPPY Ramadan.

 

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