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Fasting During Ramadan

School girls in Afghanistan

Muslim adults and older children are supposed to fast from food and drink during the daylight hours of Ramadan. After sunset, they get together with family and friends to eat a meal called “iftar.”

Many Muslims take Ramadan seriously. They observe the fast, read the entire Quran, give extra money to charity, and try to avoid saying harsh words. Other Muslims participate in only part of the activities. “Eating during the day is common during Ramadan,” said a visitor to a Muslim country. However, Muslims who eat during the fasting time do so in private so they won’t offend others.

“I never did the whole Ramadan fast as a child,” said Yucel, an American Christian who grew up as a Muslim in Turkey. “After I started working, then I started to fast during Ramadan. My mom always did; my dad did it a few days off and on. You just couldn’t eat in public.”

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