Religious events like Eid-al-Fitr in the time of coronavirus have undergone huge changes due to restrictions, changing the way people practice their faith and celebrate their traditions. This year’s Ramadan is the second to take place under coronavirus restrictions, meaning families won’t be able to gather once again in the numbers they normally would.
During Ramadan, Muslims abstain from eating and drinking during daylight hours.
Fasting is one of the five key pillars of the Islamic faith.
The others are faith, prayer, charity, and making the holy pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in a lifetime.
Fasting is practised to remind Muslims of their fortune, and that there are others out there who do not get to eat at all.
Muslims who are mature and healthy enough to do are required to fast.
This does not include the elderly, sick, or pregnant women.
Fasting involves abstaining from all food, drink, smoking, and having sex from sunrise to sunset.
The fasting rules are strict, meaning you can’t even drink water during fasting hours.
It is recommended to drink as much water as possible in the early morning to stave off thirst during the day.
Before the sun rises and after the sun has set, is common to have a meal with your family: suhoor in the morning, and iftar, after sunset.
Families and friends will often get together for iftar to break their fast after sunset each day.
What is Eid-al-Fitr? When is it?
At the end of Ramadan, there is a special three-day festival called Eid al-Fitr – the Festival of the Breaking of the Fast.
Eid-al-Fitr begins when the first sight of the new Moon is seen in the sky.
Ramadan is based on the cycle of the moon, meaning that the dates are different from year to year, and cannot be predicted precisely.
Children are often given presents or new clothes and thanks is given to Allah.
The celebration of Eid is a public holiday in many Islamic countries but is not currently one in the UK.
The greeting Eid Mubarak is often used during Eid -Eid means “celebration” and Mubarak means “blessed”.
This year, Eid-al-Fitr will take place from Wednesday, May 12, until the evening of Thursday, May 13.