Iftar Meals Around the World – Pictorial View
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Publié le 28 avril 2022, par Samir | 9 h 34 min
Temps de lecture : 8 minutes
Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, is one of the most sacred months for Muslims worldwide. Allah Subhanahu wa’ ta’ala assigned this Holy month to His followers, so they practiced fasting, worshipping, and reflecting. This month has another significance as the Holy Quran was revealed to the Holy Prophet, Muhammad (peace be upon him) during the last nights of Ramadan, called Night of Decree.
Ramadan, the month of rewards
As we approach the final days of Ramadan, let’s have a look at the beautiful and diverse Iftar meals around the world. This article will walk you through heartwarming traditions and pictures from Iftar meals in different parts of the world. Muslims worldwide joyously decorate their tables with delicious food items and be grateful to their Lord for His countless bounties and blessings. It is a beautiful soulful month of self-reflection, meditation, and worship, wherein Muslims get a chance to distance themselves from all sins and seek Allah SWT’s forgiveness and mercy.
By observing fast from dawn till dusk and avoiding eating, drinking, or sinning, Allah sends us the message to practice self-discipline and restraint. No other month brings us closer to our Lord than the month of Ramadan, as it is the best time to pause, sit back and reassess our priorities in life. It also reminds us that Allah prefers our good deeds, noble intentions, and charitable actions more than anything else.
When Is Ramadan?
According to the Islamic lunar calendar, Ramadan falls on different dates according to the lunar cycle. This year, in 2022, Ramadan began on April 3 as the emergence of a new crescent moon announced the official arrival of the month of Ramadan. It lasts for 29 or 30 days, and the first of Shawwal (the tenth lunar month) marks the end of Ramadan and the commencement of Eid-al-Fitr.
Iftar, or fitoor, is the meal Muslims eat as the day ends during Ramadan to call off their day-long fast. Their fast starts at dawn and Suhoor (Sehri) meal is eaten before Fajr prayers (pre-dawn) to mark the beginning of a fast. Iftar meals are served at sunset as the sky turns dark, and Muslims gather inside their homes, in community halls or mosques, recite prayers and break their fast.
These Ramadan activities are not only soulful and heartwarming but give an immense sense of unity, compassion, and kindness. No matter which part of the world they belong to, Muslims try their best to seek Allah SWT’s bounties during this month, feed the needy, and arrange charity activities within their communities. It is a beautiful concept designed by Allah, The Exalted, to give a universal message of righteousness, brotherhood, equity, and unity. Now it’s upon the Muslims to spend this month as purposefully as possible and earn Allah’s rewards.
What is Iftar Meal during Ramadan?
Ramadan is a time Allah (SWT) showers us with his infinite mercy and blessings, and many of us will be working hard to draw closer to Him to seek forgiveness and maximize our rewards.
One of the best ways to increase our Iman and multiply our reward in the blessed month is by providing iftar to someone less fortunate. It is a thoughtful deed that the Prophet (saw) practiced and encouraged his ummah to perform.
Throughout Ramadan, Allah Opens the gates of Heaven and Closes the doors of Hell. HIS beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
« When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of the heaven are opened, and the gates of Hell are closed, and the devils are chained. »
[Sahih Bukhari 1899]
Significance of Iftar Meal
It is narrated from the Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him), « Whoever feeds a person breaking his fast will earn the same reward as him, without anything being lessened from the fasting person’s reward. » [Tirmidhi]
The above hadith is an excellent example of Allah’s generosity and mercy. Indeed, He is the most generous and kind and always rewards his creatures more than the good deed itself. Feeding a fasting person and sharing a meal with him during Iftar means the person would get an equal reward, while the person who arranges the meal receives twice as much reward for his fast. Subhan’Allah.
We can teach our kids the concept of sharing and involve them in Iftar preparations. They would learn the significance of fasting, making, and sharing Iftar even if they are not fasting. Making children busy in small acts like putting food and water on the table helps them learn about our religious practices and Islamic values. As they grow up, they will be well-versed in the importance of sharing and donating to the needy during Ramadan and throughout the year.
The month of Ramadan can be classified into three parts; the first part consists of ten days called the days of Mercy. In the first Ashra, devoted Muslims tend to see Allah’s mercy and forgiveness as much as possible. Worshipping, praying whole-heartedly to attain The Almighty’s favor, and indulging in activities that involve service to humanity are some of the traits highly admired by Allah. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
« It (Ramadan) is the month, whose beginning is mercy, its middle, forgiveness, and its end, release from the fire of hell. »
Iftar distribution is another thoughtful way to become a good creature in Allah’s courtyard and make our sins forgiven. When a Muslim spends his time and energy feeding his fellow Muslims, Allah Subhanahu wa’ ta’ala forgives our sins, and ultimately this act helps us protect from the hellfire.
Allah considers your good intention (niyah) before anything else; hence social services and feeding even one fasting person lets you earn high rewards and Allah’s mercy.
The Messenger of Allah (saw) said:
« The five daily prayers and from one Friday prayer to the next Friday prayer, and from one Ramadan to the next are an atonement for whatever (sins) come in between, so long as one avoids major sins. » [Sahih Muslim 233c]
Our religion Islam offers a complete and fundamental code of life for all humanity. It doesn’t burden a follower for doing activities that he can’t afford. Some Muslims can’t arrange big Iftar meals, distribute Iftar meals at local community halls, or feed the needy due to financial constraints. But Allah still bestows them with the due rewards of feeding Iftar to the poor.
This hadith by the beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) explains it; he said: (O people!) Save yourselves from the Fire even if it is with half a date, and if you cannot find that, then (save yourselves by saying) a good word’. [Muslim]
He (saw) always taught his companions to give to others, even if it was a glass of water.
In another Hadith about Ramadan, Hazrat Salman Farsi (R.A.) narrated from Prophet Muhammad (saw):
« … Whoever performs a fardh (obligation) shall be given the reward of seventy faraaidh (obligations) in any other time …. » [Sahih Ibn Khuzaymah, Hadith 1887]
Ramadan calls for the Muslim Ummah to observe pertinence and loyalty towards fellow community members. It is a month to devote ourselves fully to the betterment of those who do not have sufficient means to lead a comfortable life. Hence Allah teaches us to be compassionate, kind, and considerate toward the less privileged Muslim brothers and sisters. We are unfortunate enough to enjoy lavish Suhoor and Iftar meals, but a large majority around us can not even afford a two-day meal. And Allah expects us to feed them as good as we feed ourselves.
This Holy month gives us many foods for thought; how to engage in community service, what measures we should take to be a productive members of Islamic society, etc. And let’s not forget that Allah (SWT) rewards us immensely for the Huqooq ul Ibaad than Huqooq Allah. He (The Exalted) will forgive us for our mistakes regarding Huqooq Allah. However, Allah (SWT) emphasizes more Huqooq ul Ibaad and favors His humankind.
The Prophet (saw) said, ‘Ramadan is the month of my Ummah’ [Suyuti].
Let’s promise that we will follow our Prophet’s insightful teachings and earn Allah’s endless mercy and rewards by helping our deserving Muslim brothers and sisters. Let’s be a ray of hope in someone’s darkness this Ramadan.
Pictures: Iftar Meals around the World
Although Ramadan is a month in which we can practice self-discipline and restraint, it is also a good reminder that we are entirely blessed when enjoying Allah’s blessings and good food. The fact that we rejoice at our dinner tables every evening during Iftar is itself one of the greatest blessings of Allah (SWT). It is a time for practicing gratitude and submissiveness towards our Lord, The Magnificent.
Let’s look at different Iftar meals happening around the world throughout Ramadan. May Allah (SWT) showers his bounties and rewards this month and help us serve more for the well-being and service of our Muslim community at large. We wish and pray that Allah grants us enough piety, wisdom, and steadfastness to celebrate this Holy month in full zeal and religious harmony. May He help us become the best Muslims and follow the right path of unity, perseverance, and brotherhood.
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