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Introduction

O you who believe, fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those that were before you so that you may he God fearing. (Holy Qur’an, 2:183)

«Fast to be healthy»
Prophet Muhammad (s)

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Praise be to Allah, the Lord of all worlds, and blessings and peace be upon Prophet Muhammad (s), his infallible progeny and the righteous among his companions.

The Almighty never promulgates any law unless there is a great purpose behind it in serving the interests of mankind, guiding them along the sublime path of piety and towards the lofty heights of perfection.

He, the Exalted sent messengers and prophets as blessings to the humankind, to take them out of the labyrinths of uncertainty and aimlessness, guide them to the right path, and inspire in them a virtuous life, which ultimately will be of benefit in the world to come. Allah did not forbid man­ kind from anything except what might bring certain harm; and He did not enjoin anything except that which is of benefit both in this present world and the hereafter.

As part of His unbounded grace, The All-wise has enjoined the month of fasting as an obligation on all those who profess to be Muslims. Hence, fasting Ramadhan could very well be described as Allah's banquet. It is among the wonderful aspects of Islam which build the human character and personality, and help mould social life.

A Muslim while fasting experiences the aesthetic pleasure of Allah's proximity and the JOY of divine blessings. The feeling thus instils the will in the believers to lead a life of content, filled with Allah's remembrance and ever responsive to His command.

A Muslim who fasts experiences feelings of great spirituality and a profound sense of exaltation. He is sure of himself and is confident of moving towards perfection, because he consciously musters all his senses to direct his powerful will to serve and please his Creator.

Fasting is not confined to one's inner self alone but also has its social effects in influencing the community as an integrated whole. A fasting community enjoys all the comforts and pleasures resulting from obedience to the Almighty. The society consequently consolidates itself directing its energies towards constructive public welfare.

The members of such a society feel a sense of responsibility towards each other, characterized by mutual cooperation and kindness. It is a society almost free of crime, jealousy and hatred. Such society asserts its supremacy over the mundane world of matter and feels proud of its adherence to spiritual values.

Fasting, therefore, is a duty of many-fold benefits. One of its significant effects is that it strengthens in the individual and society the will to resist temptation and defy the forces of evil, injustice and deviation. A believer's soul, having tasted the pleasures of fasting, will never submit to other than Allah, and will never entertain the idea of worshipping other than Him.

Al- Balagh Foundation in presenting this booklet on fasting seeks to perform its duty of inviting people to Allah and proclaiming His eternal message. It hopes the booklet will be of benefit to our dear readers whose enthusiasm has been a source of inspiration for us.

We humbly implore Allah, the Most Exalted to guide the Ummah along the blessed path of Islam, and to accept the selfless deeds of fasting Muslims. He is the Most Excellent Patron, the Most Excellent Helper.

Al-Balagh Foundation