For years, Ramadan has always been about getting together with family members, sharing iftars, and praying taraweeh at mosque.
This spirit of a unified ummah is the fuel that gives Nova Scotian Muslims the power to go through the whole year.
This year, however, Muslims experienced a different Ramadan at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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As a result, one Nova Scotian has created a virtual support group to discuss topics on what it means to be a Muslim living here in the 21st century.
“Ramadan in the past has been filled with going to family members’ houses and hanging out with friends, to be able to sit together and talk about how we’re feeling and how our days are going,” Aisha Abawajy, founder of the Progressive Muslim Support group, told Global News.
“[The holy month] is so much about community, so during this global pandemic we have to re-imagine what Ramadan looks like and how we can still be together while typically having to stay apart.”
The group will meet via VideoChat on a weekly basis every Friday after evening prayer to discuss topics like gender, sexuality, equity, racism, and Islamic economic systems.
“For next week, the theme is peace, and we talked a bit about how various verses in the Qur’an mean so many different things for different people at different times,” Abawajy said.
In the same context, many Canadians have gone online to share Ramadan.
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama`at Canada , for example, has launched a national campaign, inviting Canadians to experience Ramadan online.
Along with online prayer, the group plans to host a national virtual iftar to allow Canadian Muslims to exchange food.
Many Muslim scholars have been also working on finding solutions for Muslims during Ramadan.
Earlier this month, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and an Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Canada, said that a virtual Jumu`ah and Taraweeh prayer could be performed as mosques remain shut.
The renowned scholar referred to instants in the Islamic history where the interpretation of texts varied according to time and place.