Astronomical calculations, though can be helpful, but not valid to decide the start of Ramadan or any month of the Islamic Calendar.
Hilal, the crescent, is normally a day or extra after the astronomical new moon.
Muslims believe the Prophet Mohammed was given a series of revelations in the ninth month of the year from God, marking the beginning of the Koran.
It's thought to have occurred on an odd-numbered night time over the past 10 days of Ramadan - the 21, 23, 25, 27 or 29th.
This annual observance is considered one of many 5 Pillars of Islam.
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The common greetings during the month is "Ramadan Mubarak" and "Ramadan Kareem", wishing the recipient a "blessed" and generous Ramadan. Ramadan is derived from Arabic root "ramida" or "ar-ramad", which means scorching heat or dryness. Others who are also permitted to sit out of the fasting are the elderly, people travelling, pregnant and breastfeeding women, diabetic patients as well as females menstruating.
Google has also announced the roll out of their interactive calligraphy application called Qalam to help create 3D Ramadan messages and an augmented reality tool, the Qibla Finder, which helps Muslims locate where Mecca is before prayer.
While Ramadan is an important period of reflection for Muslims, it's also become an important period of sharing their faith, to foster better relations with Oklahomans of other religious backgrounds - predominantly, their Christian neighbors. "Much like the rest of the Muslim world, even in Saudi Arabia, it is a month of pondering, of thinking, of fasting, and understanding what God's will is". The term "seasonal Muslim" is sometimes used within the community to negatively refer to those who only actively practice their faith during Ramadan. It's a time of communion with yourself, a time to reflect on the way you nourish your mind, body, and the environment around you.
"Typically, people will break their fast at sunset, they'll have a little meal and then go to the mosque for evening prayer". Couples must abstain from sexual intercourse during the day, and Muslims should not engage in road rage, cursing, fighting or gossiping.
The act of fasting is alleged to cleanse the soul by releasing it from worldly actions, along with the abolition of previous sins. Things like raw fruit, particularly dates and even fruit juices, are flawless for this. The prayer consists of a sermon followed by the short congregational prayer.