MashaAllah, the glorious month of Ramadan is almost here! To welcome the month, there are a few things we can do to prepare the household for the month-long period of fasting.
You can begin by tidying, straightening and clearing up the household, after all this is a most scared month and it should be warm, clean and inviting. A place where you can reap the spiritual benefits of this blessed month.
Easy Eid Cleaning
Forget spring cleaning. You need to get Ramadan cleaning!
The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said that, ‘Purification is half of faith.’ Not only does this refer to personal hygiene but also to our household, being clean and neat is a foundation of Islam. Ramadan is a good time to resolve all the clutter and get the household in shape for the approach of the celebration of Eid-ul-Fitr.
It’s advisable to start cleaning prior to Ramadan, it will keep you from struggling with major cleaning and fasting at the same time. Take on the big jobs like washing the curtains, tablecloth, sheets etc you intend to use on Eid day. Air out pieces of furniture, mattresses or armchairs that will be harder to move around once the fast begins.
Ask any Muslimah what is the hardest part of the fasting month and she will tell you it is knowing what to cook! The kids like one thing – your husband another. So, before the headache of deciding what to cook during Ramadan presents itself, sit down with everyone and work out a menu which you can rotate each week.
Have some rules like less fry foods and junk food to break the fast with. Try and keep it healthy, nutritional and light. Once you come to an agreement, you can go grocery shopping before hand, ensuring you have the ingredients you need in the household and not at the supermarket. Ensure all of those in the household who intend to fast wake up and partake in suhoor.
A Hadith states, “Eat Suhoor, for there are blessings in it.” So wake them up even if it’s just to have dates and water which is a Sunnah.
Coffee Table Reading
Instead of having everyday magazines and the TV guide laying on the coffee table in the living room replace them with Islamic literature. Select a variety of Islamic literature for all ages of the family. Ensure there are books that the kids can read too. There are a variety of picture books that relate to Islam that are fun to read and are also educational. Nowadays, you can even enhance their learning by watching Islamic DVDs or listening to CDs with Qur’anic recitation, dua’s or even nasheeds.
Proclaim! (or read!) in the name of thy Lord and Cherisher, who created man, out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood: ~ al-Qu’ran.
Hide those Faces
Most of us enjoy looking at those memorable moments of our loved ones. The special framed photos that are put on display about the house. The children’s school photo’s, wedding days, graduations, but as mentioned in the Sunnah, any animate creature that posses a soul should not be decorating the house.
“Angels do not enter a house in which there are image.” ~ al-Hadith. So remove the kids school photos or wedding pictures you may have adorning the household and replace the empty space with abstract art or even something Islamic and confine your personal photos to an album.
Light the Way
Getting up at pre-dawn is no easy task especially for an entire month. During Ramadan, it can be hard on your eyes when you wake in the pre-dawn darkness for suhoor and in the late night to perform prayers and to read the Qu’ran.
To make it easier on your eyes, buy plug-in night lights that allow just enough light to see where you are going but doesn’t play havoc with your sight. For those quieter times when you simply want to read in silence, ensure you have a lamp with a low wattage bulb to create a soft light to enhance the reading experience.
During this scared month once your home radiates and illuminates the peace and blessing of Ramadan, it will make it easier for you to focus on the remembrance of Allah.
“O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, so that you may attain Taqwa.” ~ Al Qu’ran
The preparation of the household will create an inviting and comfortable environment, one that allows you to benefit from the merits and blessings and create a bond with Allah (SAW) through mercy, forgiveness and refuge from the hell-fire. So, ensure your home illuminates a humble abode where Islam can be enhanced during the blessed month of Ramadan by the entire family.
First published: May 2016