In the holy month of fasting, prayers, and self-reflection, the Muslim community in Halton, Ontario, welcomed Ramadan with special family gatherings and mosque iftars.
“We open the door for everyone for iftar and to have some conversation about Islam,” Subhan Bumi, chair of the board of Istiqlal Islamic Centre of Toronto (IICT), told Inside Halton.
“Hopefully, this will give more understanding about Islam.”
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IICT is one of several mosques that open doors during Ramadan to welcome all faiths over hearty iftar meals.
Families also come together to enjoy iftar meal after long hours of fasting from dawn to dusk.
“We have guests over for (iftar) dinner and send the food to our neighbors and friends and relatives,” said Maliha Khan, a Muslim resident.
“So lots of cooking in the evening time.”
Getting Closer to Allah
While Iftar feasts are part of the celebration, Ramadan is mainly about getting closer to Allah by praying and reciting the holy Qur’an.
“It’s not about the food. It’s not about getting all the material things in your lives, but to strive to be a better person,” the Milton resident said.
“Be more thoughtful toward people and their needs — more about others and less about yourself.”
Ramadan is the holiest month in the Islamic calendar.
In Ramadan, adult Muslims, save the sick and those traveling, abstain from food, drink, smoking and sex between dawn and sunset.
Muslims dedicate their time during the holy month to become closer to Allah through prayer, self-restraint, and good deeds.