October 2005: Page 1, 2, 3, 4

Submitters Perspective

Page 2


Cont’d from page 1

The practices essentially constitute the nourishment required for the growth and development of our souls to make it to Heaven. They are for our own good. God is in no need of any of our prayers and worship.

Besides nourishing our soul, the real self, fasting also has numerous, scientifically proven benefits for our physical health and the mental well-being of our body. The time, length and nature of the fast all contribute to its overall positive effect. Fasting gives our digestive system a rest and improves our physical health. In his book “Fasting and Eating for Health,” (ISBN 031218719X) Joel Fuhrman, M.D. notes that “The fast does not merely detoxify; it also breaks down superfluous tissue—fat, abnormal cells, atheromatous plaque, and tumors—and releases diseased tissues and their cellular products into the circulation for elimination. Toxic or unwanted materials circulate in our bloodstream and lymphatic tissues, and are deposited in and released from our fat stores and other tissues. An important element of fasting detoxification is mobilizing the toxins from their storage areas.”

Ramadan Varies Every Year

A lunar month is approximately 29.5 days, which is the time it takes for the moon to orbit the earth. Because a lunar month is, on the average, one day shorter than a solar month, a lunar year is 10-12 days shorter than a solar year. Therefore, the Month of Ramadan comes 10-12 days earlier each year. This way we get to fast when the days are very warm and long in summer as well as when they are cool and short in winter. This beautiful design by God is also a test for us to see if we will fast regardless of the length or temperature of the days of Ramadan.

Is Moon Sighting Necessary?

God gave us scientific knowledge to determine exactly when a lunar month will begin and end. Therefore there is no need to sight the crescent of the moon to start fasting, like some traditional Muslims do. Any observatory or astronomy center should have that information for your area. Some almanacs, magazines or newspapers also report the times for the phases of the moon. To determine when one should start fasting, compare the time the new lunar month begins with the time of sunset, the beginning of a day in the Islamic calendar.

What is an Islamic Day?

The Islamic day is the same as the Hebrew day. It begins at sunset and ends at the next sunset. In this system, the night comes before the day. Therefore, in some traditional Islamic countries, when they talk about, for instance, Friday night, they are actually referring to Thursday night because that night actually belongs to Friday according to their definition of a day.

Ramadan This Year

The new moon times to be used for determining the beginning and ending of Ramadan are given below for UT (Universal time) or GMT (Greenwich Mean Time).

10:28 a.m. on October 3
1:24 a.m. on November 2

The actual time for each time zone is relative to GMT. For example, Tucson is seven hours behind GMT. Thus when, for example, it is 10 p.m. according to GMT, it is 3 p.m. in Tucson. Based on the above information, God willing, the first day of Ramadan for Tucson (and for most parts of the world) is October 4, the last day is November 2. More information on Ramadan can be found at www.masjidtucson.org.

Cont’d on page 4

Ramadan 2005

God willing

October 4 - November 2

The Night of Destiny starts at the sunset of October 29, 2005. For further details, see the Ramadan page at http://www.masjidtucson.org/submission/practices/ramadan/index.html.