The blessed month of Ramadan is marked by fasting as well performing additional acts of worship (individually or collectively) and attending social and religious gatherings with families and friends. Due to covid-19 pandemic, we must continue to observe social distancing measures, outlined in the public health guidelines, whilst still enjoying the spiritual and communal spirit of Ramadan.
“For indeed, with hardship [will be] ease.” (Qur’an 94:5)
- The objective of fasting is to achieve God-consciousness through self-improvement (at both an individual and community level) and empathy towards fellow human beings.
- The inability to perform certain traditional acts of worship must not prevent us from re-connecting with Allah.
- A person suspected of Covid-19 (moderate-severe symptoms) or with severe underlying health conditions can postpone their fasts, and make up later.
- Frontline healthcare workers can postpone the fast, and make up later, if they feel they are putting their own or their patients’ health at risk. This is a personal decision based on one’s health and duty of care to their patients.
- The desire to perform prayers with a congregation comes second to saving lives. We must perform daily prayers at home, in a congregation with family members (if possible). Instead of Friday prayer, Ẓuhr prayer must be performed at home in the usual manner.
- Tarāwīḥ prayer can be performed in congregation with members of the immediate households. If the lockdown continues, the ‘Eid prayer shall also be suspended across the country.
- When giving charity, Sadaqat ul Fitr, Zakat, we should prioritize people in our neighbourhood who are vulnerable, donate to food banks, volunteer to help the elderly, key workers and those in self-isolation.
- Organise virtual iftars to share the Ramadan experience with family and friends and people from across the country or even across the world.
- Imams and mosques must continue to provide religious and spiritual guidance and pastoral care through online service.
- Continue to support Imams and mosques during this Ramadan, as we would have done had there not been lockdown.
- Engage in additional acts of worship, have nutritious and healthy meals.
- Remain environmentally conscious when preparing food, shopping and using energy.