The holy month of Ramadan is the first celebration on the Islamic calendar.
It marks a four-week period of fasting for Muslims around the world.
However, it doesn’t fall on the same dates every year.
Here’s how the dates of Ramadan are calculated and the origins of the holiday.
When is Easter 2022? Dates of Easter Sunday, Good Friday and slow this year – an…
When is Ramadan 2022?
Ramadan in the UK will begin on Saturday April 2nd in 2022, coming to close on Sunday May 1st.
Ramadan dates 2022
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and lasts between 29 and 30 days, based on the lunar calendar.
Muslims holidays shift slightly every year due to their observance of the lunar calendar, as opposed to the commonly-used Gregorian calendar, meaning celebrations fall around 11 days earlier each year.
The timing of holidays and celebrations depends on the sighting of the moon’s crescent, following a new moon.
Since the visibility of the moon is dependent on a number of factors (including clear skies), the exact date of celebrations in the Muslim calendar can not always be predicted with certainty.
Origins of Ramadan as a Muslim holiday
Muslims are required to spend a period of 30 days abstaining from food and drink, including water, during daylight hours, as a means of celebrating and reflecting on their faith.
It is one of the five pillars of Islam – the fundamental rules that all Muslims follow – along with the Shahadah (declaration of faith), Salat (prayer), Zakat (charity) and the Hajj pilgrimage.
During Ramadan, there is an increased offering of the Salat, with Muslims giving thanks to Allah, while the fasting ritual allows them to understand the suffering of others.
Those observing the fast are encouraged to read the Quran and the holy text is recited at the Tarawih, special nightly prayers that are held throughout the month.
All Muslims who have reached puberty are expected to fast during Ramadan, although there are some exceptions, including women who are menstruating or pregnant, and those suffering from illness.
The strict rules mean food and drink, including water, are not allowed during daylight hours for the entire month, while smoking, sex and masturbation are also prohibited.
The fast begins just before dawn, when a light meal called ‘suhoor’ is permitted to be consumed. At sunset, a prayer known as ‘Adhan’ signifies the end of the fast, when worshipers traditionally eat dates with juice, milk or water.
To break the fast fully at the end of the month, families usually come together to enjoy the meal of Iftar.
Once fasting is over, it’s traditional to celebrate Eid al-Fitr.
This celebration is marked with lights, decorations and gifts, with worshipers often dressing up and decorating their homes.