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What is Ramadan? Quick guide to Islamic holy month

Ramadan is ninth month of the Islamic calendar when the Qur’an was revealed to the prophet Muhammad.

Every day during this month, Muslims around the world spend the daylight hours in a complete fast.

Ramadan is celebrated by Muslims worldwide marked by fasting, abstaining from foods, sex and smoking from dawn to dusk for soul cleansing and strengthening the spiritual bond between them and the Almighty.

Tens of millions across the Muslim world fast from dawn to dusk and strive to be more pious and charitable during the month, which ends with the Eid holiday.

Faith and fasting: Ramadan rules

  • Fasting at Ramadan is deemed to be one of the "five pillars of Islam", which are the basis of the Muslim faith.
  • Only children or those health conditions or children are excepted from fasting.
  • Fasting is seen to cleanse the soul from worldly impurities. It also serves to formally train Muslims to repel negative social vices through self-control and restraint.
  • In the UK, 2.7 million citizens are Muslim, according to the 2011 census, comprising 4.8 per cent of the population. Among under-25s, the figure is 10 per cent.

See our Ramadan gallery below

Google's Ramadan Companion is available here.

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