Ramadan 2018 to begin on Thursday, moon sighted in India

Ramadan

Ramadan began on the evening of Tuesday, May 15 and central to observing this holy month is Sawm - fasting during daylight hours.

"As we begin this Holy and blessed month of Ramadan, we wish the Muslim community of our beloved nation of Trinidad and Tobago, Ramadan Kareem (blessings)".

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar urged for Muslims to practice spiritual reflection as the season of Ramadan begins. Ramadan is a staple of the Muslim faith, though various people in various sects in various parts of the world all observe it differently.

"Ramadan Kareem" translates into "Have a generous Ramadan".

The UAE's moon sighting commitee has announced that Thursday, May 17 will be the first day of Ramadan.

Although Ramadan is always on the same day of the Islamic calendar, the date on the Gregorian calendar varies from year to year, since the Gregorian calendar is a solar calendar and the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar.

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Getty Ramadan 2018: What is Ramadan?

Back in March, Ibrahim Al Jarwan of the Sharjah Centre for Space and Astronomy said we could expect the fasting period to last 13 hours and 25 minutes at the beginning of the Holy Month. Travellers, sick persons and women having their monthly periods are permitted to skip fasting, provided they fast later for a period equivalent to the number of obligatory days that they missed. For instance, similar shares of Muslim men and women (77% vs. 82%) say they fast, and there is little difference between Muslims who were born in the U.S. and immigrants (79% vs. 80%).

Fasting is meant to bring the faithful closer to God and remind them of those less fortunate. Muslims around the world are making special arrangements for Iftar - the meal to break the fast, so that poor Muslims don't suffer.

The U.S. has a growing Muslim population, estimated to total 3.45 million at the moment, but surveys have shown that many still don't believe the religion is accepted in the American mainstream.

The final 10 nights of Ramadan include intense prayer and are followed by a three-day holiday called Eid al-Fitr. Official decision by Central Moon Sighting Committee Pakistan, Religious Affairs Ministry Bangaldesh and Central Moon Sighting Committee New Delhi is expected soon after Salate Maghrib Wednesday evening.

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