What the month of Ramadan has to offer to non-Muslims

What the month of Ramadan has to offer to non-Muslims
Updated 21 August 2012

What the month of Ramadan has to offer to non-Muslims

What the month of Ramadan has to offer to non-Muslims

Ramadan is the month of the Qur’an, is admired even by non-Muslims and every year it becomes the talk of non-Muslim media.
Last Thursday, Esam Mudeer, a Saudi journalist, writer and a dawa preacher gave a lecture at the International Medical center (IMC), organized by the World Muslim Congress, on the Importance of Ramadan in non-Muslim media and explained what non-Muslims get out of it.
He explained to non-Muslim attendees, that there are five basic pillars of Islam and Ramadan is the fourth pillar, without which faith in Islam is incomplete.
“Ramadan is the month of fasting and only Muslims practice it as it is part of their life and religion, although non-Muslims don’t practice it, they admire it, as every year the non-Muslim media write a number of articles and stories on Ramadan, with a positive approach,” explained
Mudeer.
He further explained what Ramadan offers non-Muslims, by defining how their media take on this holy month.
He said if we take any Western newspaper they give the definition of Ramadan in such words “Ramadan is the season of fasting worldwide, where they abstain from food, drink and other pleasures during the daytime hours, it is the time of extreme discipline for the individual, when they spend much time in prayers, seek to be patient and surrender to God.”
“I have been observing and monitoring what goes on about Islam in Western media, for the past 20 years. I found that every year they have more positive coverage about Ramadan,” he said.
Mudeer quoted from the blog ‘Belief and Beyond’, where a blogger posted on Aug. 1, 2012 under the title “My meeting with York Muslims in Ramadan” he wrote, “Ramadan is central to the Islamic faith and involves special prayers and charity. But it is the daily fast that gets the most attention. Muslims are not supposed to eat or drink anything from about 4:30 a.m. until about 8:30 p.m. daily. The fast is a form of self-denial designed to help Muslims feel a deeper bond with their faith.”
Another newspaper,“The Globe and Mail” wrote on Aug. 5, 2012, “How Canadian Muslims cope with work, hot days and fasting during Ramadan, most Canadians would cringe at the idea of doing hard, physical work in the blistering summer heat.
So imagine doing it without being able to quench your thirst as you begin to sweat bullets, or without being able to grab a quick bite in order to refuel. For nearly a month now, hundreds of thousands of Muslim Canadians across the country have been observing Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar."
On Aug. 3, Time magazine published, “The Muslims world observes Ramadan” as well as several pictures about Ramadan.
Another newspaper, the “Herald Net” used the headline “The Most Important Month” and they published on Aug. 8, “Local Muslims seek a closer connection to God during Ramadan..."
On a US government website they published, “A man gives homeless a voice for Ramadan.” State News.com published, “Muslim students give back a homeless shelter.”
Even health magazines published how fasting boosts metabolism. More new discoveries and research has been done about Ramadan. One of the health magazines said that scientist are uncovering evidence that short periods of fasting, if properly controlled, could achieve a number of health benefits and potentially help overweight individuals.
Mudeer gave several examples from other different Western media as well as Facebook and Twitter and others. In the Washington Post, he said, photos were published about Ramadan.
Mudeer also explained how this Ramadan got more stories because of the Olympics.
He said Sam Borden wrote in The New York Times, “With nearly three million Muslims living in Britain, the observance of Ramadan here is not generally a notable occurrence. But the Olympics have made this far from an ordinary summer in England which has led to a variety of issues for the estimated 3,000 Muslim athletes and officials at the Games,” he wrote.
Even many non-Muslims join Muslims in fasting, as this year Jakarta news published, “Many non-Muslims fast this year to maintain humility and self–control.” In Australia they published, “More non-Muslims fast this year.”
Fasting is also observed by Catholic Christians. During their fast they just avoid sweets and a few other foods items, but they can drink water and eat other things. In another newspaper in Europe a news item was published, of a Methodist minister who observes Ramadan in solidarity with
Muslims.
“I have no doubt that Muslims and Christians worship the same God,” Magruder, a senior associate pastor of First United Methodist Church of Rowlett, said. We have some of the same core foundations.
Mudeer also explained that Muslims fast this month to honor the Qur’an. In the Bible it's written that Jesus Christ began his public ministry with fasting. ( And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry). Matthew 4;2 (ESV).
“Jesus became hungry. He observed fast like Muslims do. As one Asian Christian pastor puts it “Jesus’ ministry was birthed out of fasting and praying. The first 40 days of his ministry was spent in the wilderness, without food, without water. He fasted, he prayed, and he had to fight temptation. So fasting and praying are important pre-requisites to receive revelation.”
Mudeer explained that in old Jewish testament it is written that Prophet Moses fasted as he received the revelation of the covenant between God and children of Israel.
And the Lord said to Moses, write these words, for in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel; So he (Moses) was there with the Lord for 40 days and 40 nights.
He neither ate bread nor drank water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.