Saum

Along with salat, another important form of worship is fasting. It is obligatory for each Muslim, apart from some exemptions, to fast in the month of Ramadhan. During the hours of fasting, food and drink and conjugal relations between husband and wife are forbidden. It is enjoined that during fasting one should pay attention to remembrance of God and study the Holy Quran in abundance. One should try to curtail one’s worldly pastimes as much as possible during Ramadhan, and to be particularly inclined towards charity and alms giving.

Human life is dependent on food and drink and the continuation of the human race depends on the marital relationship. While fasting one refrains from them both, as if bearing witness to God that for His pleasure man gives up the factors (temporarily) upon which his very existence depends. The various other benefits of fasting are that man gets to exercise sacrificing physical comfort and to endure hunger and thirst. Fasting creates a sense of equality between the rich and the poor. By developing an appreciation of hunger and thirst, it makes the well-off think of the needs of the poor and impresses a feeling of compassion in their hearts. It makes them appreciate, through the practicality of it, the state a human being endures when hungry and thirsty. Ramadhan is a most effective and excellent means of spiritual development for mankind.

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