Ramadan Kareem Kuwait

4:10 PM

It's official, tomorrow is the first day of Ramadan.
What is the essence of Ramadan?
According to the students interviewed by Student Talk Magazine, Ramadan is a time of fasting in order to give thanks to what Allah gave them and to relate to the poor. I was not convinced that it was the sole reason of Ramadan though. That is why when I read from my Centrepoint Privilege Times - August to October issue - the significance of Ramadan, I want to immediately post it here thinking that in some ways I get to help educate/inform non-muslims on the essence of this event.

(Click for bigger image or right click and save to read)

Ramadan is a very special time for Muslims, one of the five pillars serving the purpose of a renewal of their faith. Ramadan is the 9th month of the Muslim calendar. Lasting for the entire month, Muslims fast during the daylight hours and in the evening eat small meals and visit with friends and family. It is a time of worship and contemplation. A time to strengthen family and community ties. Ramadan is a month of self-regulation and self training, with the hope that this training will last beyond the end of Ramadan. Moreover, the type of food taken during Ramadan does not have any selective criteria of crash diets such as those which are protein only or fruit only diets. Everything that is permissible is taken in moderate quantities.

*The following are a few observances (especially for non-muslim expats) during Ramadan:

  • Non-Muslims are expected to respect the Muslim Ramadan practices by not eating, drinking, or smoking in front of Muslims or in any public place in Kuwait during daylight hours.
  • All eating establishments will not open until sunset; many stay open into the early morning ours.
  • Business hours will be adjusted in consideration of Ramadan and the work hours are typically reduced. If you need to conduct any business during Ramadan, it would be wise to call in advance to verify the adjusted business hours. In the work environment, you may fint it more difficult to schedule meetings, workshops, or seminars. Normally they reduce 2 hours in your daily working hours (e.g. 7 to 3 becomes 8.30 to 2.30)
  • While it is acceptable for non-Muslims to eat and drink during the daytime, it is best to do so in the privacy of your own room, and avoid offending people by eating and drinking -- or smoking -- in front of them. In the office, assign a Ramadan free zone where anyone who doesn't observe it can go and eat and drink in the privacy of that room.

I wish all Muslim around the world, Ramadan Kareem.

*Excerpts from my company bulletin.

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