Ramadan Kareem

Ramadan is the holiest month in Islam. Depending on the cycle of the moon, Ramadan lasts approximately 30 days. For this period of time, devout Muslims go without food, water, sex, and smoking from the morning prayer, which is usually around 4:15 a.m., until the breaking of the fast prayer around 5:15 p.m. Ramadan is one of the five pillars of Islam and a way for Muslims to put themselves in the shoes of the less fortunate in the same way Mohammed did.
For most, even non-Muslims, this means a month of idleness—a month where very little happens. Most restaurants, stores, and businesses run Ramadan-friendly hours, which means they are closed during fasting hours and open in the evening. As a result it is most practical for one to fast, even the non-Muslims. Eating, drinking, and smoking in the streets is forbidden during fasting hours, so in order to eat one must visit a “western” hotel/restaurant or prepare breakfast and lunch at home.
This photograph was taken in downtown Amman of shopkeeper Ayed Abdul Hamid testing festive Ramadan lights before selling them. It reminded me of Christmas when our family would untangle the tree lights and plug them in to see if any of the bulbs were blown. These crescent moons are in the windows of houses throughout the city. In our Christian neighborhood you can tell which houses are Muslim by the lights in their windows.

Posted October 27th, 2005 in Uncategorized.

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