Our Muslim brothers and sisters all over the world just started celebrating their most important religious event this week which is known as Ramadan. As their most significant period in the year, the observance of the religious event happens every ninth month of the Islamic calendar. The whole Ramadhan period which is about 29 to 30 days, is celebrated through various spiritual practices including prayer and fasting. During the brink of dawn until sunset, Muslims abstain from eating or drinking as quoted from the Holy Qur’an which states a commandment saying, “O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you, as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may attend God-consciousness.” (2:183)
Ramadan is also the Islamic spiritual period for repentance and abstinence from the worldly pleasures. Muslims who are committed to the faith also are given the opportunity to communicate with the Almighty God through prayer, self-reformation, spiritual cleansing, supplication, charity, good deeds, kindness, and compassion. The event serves as an enlightenment to strengthen the connection between God Almighty and man. Muslims during this time pray more earnestly than their usual prayer routine to ask forgiveness, protection from evil elements, and future guidance.
Ramadan in Mindanao
One of the most important Mindanao events is the Ramadan. The Moro Tribes in Mindanao describe the celebration as a period which strengthens their ties and sense of belonging to one community. Every tribe comes in harmony to uphold peace by sharing something in common, which is Islam. Aside from the fact that it strengthens their link to the Almighty God, celebrating Ramadan in Mindanao can also make any Muslim feel genuinely accepted. This creates unity both among locals and pilgrims, in which at a call for prayer, everybody drops everything, and leave everything behind, including their most important business matters, just to join everybody in prayer.
The Festival Ramadan
The festival that comes after Ramadan is known in Arabic as “Eid ul-Fitr” which translates in English as the Feast of Fast-Breaking. The festival is one of the most anticipated events by Muslims and is celebrated for three days.
The main essence of the event is about improving the spiritual aspect of a person and connection with God. This celebration is also a form of thanksgiving to the Almighty for providing them the willpower, endurance, and strength during the fasting period of the holy month.
The three-day celebration brings happiness and joy after a successful fulfillment of the holy commandment. This is also a time for exchanging of gifts while family and friends unite to pray as a congregation.