TEHRAN (Press Shia) – In separate congratulatory messages to heads of Muslim states on the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani hoped for prevailing peace and calm across the globe.
In the messages, released on Monday, Rouhani said, “Once again, the pleasant breeze of being a sincere servant to the Almighty has started blowing. Ramadan is the month of freedom of the soul, the month of love and mysticism and renewing allegiance (with God).”
The president expressed hope that referring to the holy Quran and strengthening Islamic fraternity would contribute to world peace and calm.
Rouhani also wished felicity and glory for all Muslims.
Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, marks the most special of all occasions for Muslims. It is a celebration of the descent of the Word of God, the Quran, from Heaven to the earth.
Fasting during Ramadan is one of the pillars of Islam. Abstaining from food and drink, and from other bodily pleasures, is a crucial element of the observation. To partake in the blessings of Ramadan, able-bodied women and men, also girls and boys who have reached the age of religious observance, are required to fast for the duration of this month.
At the end of each fasting day, Muslims break their day-long fast with an “Iftar” meal.
Ramadan is more than abstinence from food and drink during the hours of daylight. It is a time for contemplation, devotion and remembrance of God, especially through the reading or recitation of the Quran.
Tending to the welfare of the less fortunate members of the community, giving to the poor -especially at the end of the month- is also important.
Intensive self-reflection and increased God-consciousness during the month of Ramadan is meant to subdue and suppress familiar misdeeds, such as backbiting, holding grudges and telling lies.