‘The month of Ramadan is that in which the Qur’an was sent down as a guidance for mankind with clear proofs of guidance and discrimination. Therefore, whosoever of you is present at home in this month, let him fast therein. But whoso is sick or is on a journey, shall fast the same number of other days. Allah desires to give you facility and He desires not hardship for you, and that you may complete the number, and that you may exalt Allah for His having guided you and that you may be grateful.’ (2:186)
The month of Ramadan comes many times in the life time of a Muslim. A practising Muslim knows that the revelation of the Holy Qur’an commenced in this month. A committed Muslim who has some knowledge knows that during the life of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) each year during Ramadan Hazrat Jibrail used to revise the hitherto revealed Qur’an with him once with the exception of the last year of the life of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) when the Qur’an had been revealed in its entirety and he had received the glad tiding of ‘…This day I have perfected your religion for you and completed My favour upon you and have chosen for you Islam as religion…’ (5:4). According to tradition related by Hazrat ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) in the Ramadan of this last year Jibrail revised the Holy Qur’an twice.
The Holy Qur’an has a special affinity with the month of Ramadan. Each year Ramadan draws our attention that indeed it was revealed during this month. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih said that he would give a discourse on the first part of the aforementioned verse and not the latter part.
Each year the month of Ramadan reminds us that the Holy Qur’an is a teaching of guidance and it discriminates between truth and falsehood with illuminating signs. It reminds us about the great importance of the excellence of fasting and how fasting should be observed. Ramadan also reminds us that the teaching of the Holy Qur’an is complete and comprehensive. Indeed, this reminding is only beneficial when we understand its spirit and essence. Otherwise, Ramadan comes every year and it will continue to do so and will continue to remind about matters and we will simply be happy to listen to its significance. Its benefit is truly realised when we incorporate its significance in our practices. When, as soon as we hear ‘The month of Ramadan is that in which the Qur’an was sent down…’ we pick up our Qur’an to read. The objective of this reminding will be fulfilled when we will try to understand the meanings of the Holy Qur’an so that the words ‘…guidance for mankind…’ are truly clear to us.
The reminding of the affinity between Ramadan and the Holy Qur’an will be clear to us when we will try and make special effort in this month to look for the commandments of the Qur’an. Ramadan reminds us, draws our attention to look for the commandments within the Qur’an and then put them in practice and make them a part of life. In light of the teaching of the Holy Qur’an Ramadan reminds us to engage in remembrance of God in an enhanced manner and this obligation is fulfilled by worship of God, by offering Salat in an adorned manner, on time and to seek the pleasure of God as well as by fervently offering optional Prayers and by engaging in remembrance of God. These obligations draw us closer to God and make Him close to us so that the distance between man and God is removed.
Ramadan reminds to hold on firmly to the rope one end of which is in the hand of God and He has dangled the other end on earth for those who seek His nearness. One who grasps it will find God.