The Least You Should Know About Ramadan

June 01, 2017

By: AMSA’s Diversity Task Force

Here at AMSA, we not only celebrate diversity but we also value the richness it brings to us personally, spiritually, and as physicians-in-training. So, whenever our brothers and sisters at team FAMSA are taking their walks of personal enlightenment, we want to know about it, encourage it, and educate (enrich) others! We’re here to walk you through the least you should know about Ramadan:

1. What is Ramadan?
Ramadan is the most sacred month of the year for Muslims and is the Muslim fasting month – a period of reflection, worship, and devotion to God. This year Ramadan began on Saturday, May 27 and will end on June 24 or 25

2. What is a typical day like during Ramadan?
Practicing Muslims typically wake before dawn and eat the first meal of the day ( Suhoor) , then perform the morning prayer. During the day, all other activities aside from fasting are continued as normal. Before the evening prayer, one more meal is eaten ( Iftar) before performing the evening prayer.

3. Is the Ramadan fast from food only?
No, the typical 15-hour daily fast is from both food and drink (including water).

4. How may I show respect to my friends practicing Ramadan?
Simply saying “Happy Ramadan!” is not offensive, but to go one step further, two other phrases may be added to your diversity toolbox: “Ramadan kareem” and “Ramadan Mubarak” which means “have a generous Ramadan” and “have a blessed Ramadan”, respectively.

5. What else might one notice their Muslim friends doing?
Salah, or prayer, is a pillar of Islam and practicing Muslims pray five times per day.


Want to know more? For more “quick reads” about Ramadan, please visit the following:

Ramadan 2017: 9 questions about the Muslim holy month you were too embarrassed to ask

Ramadan guide: A glossary of terms