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WINGSPAN

The student news site of Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas

WINGSPAN

Across campus, students observe Ramadan

Across+the+world+and+on+campus%2C+Muslims+are+observing+Ramadan%2C+abstaining+from+eating%2C+drinking%2C+and+immoral+behavior+for+30+days.+For+those+fasting%2C+the+fast+begins+with+Suhoor%2C+the+pre-fasting+meal+eaten+before+sunrise%2C+and+ends+with+Iftar%2C+the+meal+to+break+the+fast+at+sunset.
Rida Zaki
Across the world and on campus, Muslims are observing Ramadan, abstaining from eating, drinking, and immoral behavior for 30 days. For those fasting, the fast begins with Suhoor, the pre-fasting meal eaten before sunrise, and ends with Iftar, the meal to break the fast at sunset.

Approximately two billion people fast from sunrise to sunset every year, abstaining from eating, drinking, and immoral behavior for 30 days. It’s all part of Ramadan, which falls on the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, observed by Muslims worldwide to fast, pray, and reflect. 

Because Ramadan follows the Islamic calendar, it begins 10-12 days earlier each year, something that senior Rida Zaki appreciates this time. 

“Previously, we didn’t have spring break during [Ramadan], so I had an opportunity to get used to fasting before going to school,” Zaki said.

During the month, the Muslim community comes together for Ramadan, something that senior Abduraheem Sheikh looks forward to every year. 

We spend the most time together. We reflect the most. We practice different Islamic values the most,

— Senior Abdurraheem Sheikh

“Every year, it’s a month that I look forward to, and I know a bunch of my friends and the rest of the Muslim community look forward to it because it is, at least in my opinion, a time when people come together the most,” Sheikh said. “We spend the most time together. We reflect the most. We practice different Islamic values the most. And I think it’s just a very, very special month. [It’s a] heartwarming and genuine experience for everyone who witnesses it.”

Fasting during Ramadan is one of the Five Pillars of Islam, the core rituals of the Islamic faith. It is the most sacred month of the Islamic calendar, marking the first revelation of the Qur’an to the Prophet Muhammad. While fasting from food and water plays a big part in Ramadan, Sheikh emphasizes that Ramadan is more than fasting.

“I think one thing that is underappreciated for everyone, even Muslim people, in Ramadan is that it goes beyond fasting,” Sheikh said. “It’s not just a month where you, like, starve yourself. It’s a lot deeper than that. You become more mindful. You’re not just fasting from food. You’re fasting from lying. You’re fasting from idle talk. You’re fasting from wrong actions.”

According to junior Reeyana Rahman, Ramadan is a time of increased spiritual reflection, devotion, and closeness to God.

“To me, Ramadan is a month of spiritual reflection, self-improvement, and devotion to Allah,” Rahman said. “Fasting during Ramadan is an important act of worship that teaches self-discipline, empathy, and spiritual awareness. It is a time to strengthen family and community ties and to seek forgiveness for one’s sins.”

This year, Rahman has been trying to observe Ramadan more purposefully.

It is a time to strengthen family and community ties and to seek forgiveness for one’s sins,

— Junior Reeyana Rahman

“This Ramadan has been different than other Ramadan’s because this year I have been trying to better understand Islam and why we fast in the first place rather than just fasting with no purpose,” Rahman said.

Sheikh shares this sentiment and is trying to take advantage of his free time to reflect more.

“I think for me, because it’s senior year, I have a lot more free time, at least compared to last year or the year before,” Sheikh said. “So I’m able to spend that time with my family. I’m able to reflect more. I’m able to spend time doing things that I would want to do in the last few years that I wasn’t able to do because I had to study, or I had a test the next day, or just because I cared about school more.”

During the 30 days of the fast, Sheikh takes the time to build good habits.

“Even scientifically, people know that it takes 30 days to make a habit,” Sheikh said. “So, if you live your life how you would like to live it in these 30 days, it can be a lot more spiritual and a lot more reflective than just not eating.”

For those fasting, the fast begins with Suhoor, the pre-fasting meal eaten before sunrise, and ends with Iftar, the meal to break the fast at sunset. Many, such as Sheikh, will spend additional time with family and at the mosque.

“I’ll wake up for Suhoor around six, and then by 6:30 [a.m.], when the sun comes up, you’re not allowed to eat anymore,” Sheikh said. “Then the day starts: get ready for school, head to school, and get home at around five. And then, I break my fast around 7:30 or 7:45 [p.m.]. After that, I spend time with my family, and then I typically go to the mosque for night prayers.”

In addition to getting closer to God, Sheikh takes the time to get closer to others celebrating Ramadan.

Eid is a really special day that marks the end of Ramadan. For me and my family, we go to my grandparents’ house for brunch, go to the mosque, and open gifts together,

— Senior Rida Zaki

“I mean, there’s definitely a social aspect to it,” Sheikh said. “So I see my friends who I don’t spend much time with at the mosque doing prayers, or hanging out, or late nights, just grabbing food, hanging out, and talking because we are awake a lot more during the night this month.”

At the end of the month, the fast will end with Eid al-Fitr, which commemorates the end of Ramadan and acts as a time of joy and community. 

“Eid is a really special day that marks the end of Ramadan,” Zaki said. “For me and my family, we go to my grandparents’s house for brunch, go to the mosque, and open gifts together.”

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Rin Ryu, Editor-in-Chief
Rin Ryu is a senior entering her third year of Wingspan. Her favorite things include journaling, listening to music, and tigers. In the future, she hopes to pursue a career path in political science. Rin is excited to be one of the Editor-in-Chiefs and looks forward to what is to come this year! Contact Rin: Catherine.Ryu.353@k12.friscoisd.org

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