On July 9, Muslims will commence the holy month of Ramadan from all over the world. It will continue for 30 consecutive days until the 7th of August. In the Muslim calendar, Muslim holidays usually begin at the sundown of the prior day so that means that Muslims will begin to take their prayers in the sunset of the 8th of July. In case you are newly immersed in a Muslim environment, it is important that you must know about the basics, and the dos and don’ts during a month of Ramadan.
Ramadan is the holy month of the Islamic religion wherein people give each other time for introspection and peacefulness. In Kuwait, Muslims observe a strict rule which everyone must follow. For example, during Ramadan, all establishments which offer drinks and foods must not operate during the Ramadan period, although some food retailers, like supermarkets are sometimes open. In case an establishment is caught serving food during daytime, it would be forced to be closed for two months. Also, drinking and eating in public is strictly prohibited. Anyone that would be caught will be put in jail for at least one month. These rules apply even stricter on expatriates. Fellow kabayan in Kuwait need to be aware of these things in order to avoid getting into trouble.
Some non-Muslims or even fellow Filipinos in Kuwait spending time for vacation or work could even join in the fast or participate in subtle and worthwhile ways which would not trespass the law. Ramadan could seem long, especially when you’re not doing anything.
Here is a list of suggestions that you could do on a Ramadan in Kuwait:
- Exercise. Many people will be swarming the streets to take a walk before or even after the Iftar. You could join in and start getting healthy and fit. You could also try out other exercise, like swimming or working out in a gym.
- Diet. Since rules regarding about not eating or drinking in public are enforced strictly, you could opt to join the fast, or cook yourself a healthy diet.
- Read. Life as a kabayan in Kuwait could really be difficult and hectic. You could use this time to expand your knowledge and let your mind relax through reading a good book. An uplifting or inspirational could get you into a deep thinking about life and such.
- Participate in the fast. You could join the fasting and empathize with your Muslim neighbors, friends, or colleagues for a day.
- Iftar. After the long-hours of fasting, Muslims break their fast together through a traditional Iftar. You could go along with them and attend a traditional Iftar. During this time, even foreigners come to gather in order to taste various Arabic dishes that are not usually served during an ordinary time.
Ramadan season is approaching and it is importantto be aware and be knowledgeable about these things. Ramadan Mubarak to all.