Today marks the start of Ramadan, the ninth month in the Islamic calendar.
Muslims across the world will fast during daylight hours for the duration of Ramadan in order to practice self-restraint and feel closer to God.
After Ramadan, Eid al-Fitr is celebrated and Muslims come together to eat and forgive each other.
But how long does Ramadan last? And when is it expected to end in 2023?
Let’s find out.
How long does Ramadan last?
Ramadan lasts for either 29 or 30 days, depending on moon sightings.
Last night, religious leaders spotted a crescent moon in the sky and thus, Ramadan began.
When a new moon is sighted, this will mark the end of Ramadan and the start of the Muslim month of Shawwal.
Many Muslim countries have their own national moon sighting systems so the start and end dates of Ramadan can vary by a day or two, depending on whether the religious leaders in different countries saw the crescent moon or not.
In the UK, we do not have a national moon sighting system so British Muslims follow declarations from Mecca, in Saudi Arabia which is the holiest city in Islam.
This year, the first day of Shawwal will either occur on April 21 or April 22.
The first day of Shawwal is also the festival Eid al-Fitr.
During Eid, Muslims enjoy a feast, and celebrate with family.
It is forbidden to fast during Eid and during the celebration, Muslims are obligated to give to charity.
Eid lasts between one and three days, depending on the country and is a public holiday in many Muslim countries.
What to say to someone during Ramadan and Eid?
During Ramadan, you can say to those that are fasting Ramadan Mubarak or Ramadan Kareem.
In English, this translates to ‘blessed Ramadan’ or ‘generous Ramadan’.
During Eid, you can say ‘Eid Mubarak’ which means ‘blessed Eid’.
If someone says Eid Mubarak to you, you can respond by saying ‘Khair Mubarak’ which wishes goodwill on the person who greeted you.
You can also say ‘JazakAllah Khair’ which means thank you, but literally translates as ‘May Allah reward you with goodness’.
Ramadan 2023 London times and dates
- Thursday, March 23: 4.20am, 6.20pm
- Friday, March 24: 4.18am, 6.22pm
- Saturday, March 25: 4.15am, 6.24pm
- Sunday, March 26: 5.14am, 7.25pm
- Monday, March 27: 5.12am, 7.27pm
- Tuesday, March 28: 5.11am, 7.29pm
- Wednesday, March 29: 5.08am, 7.30pm
- Thursday, March 30: 5.06am, 7.32pm
- Friday, March 31: 5.05am, 7.34pm
- Saturday, April 1: 5.02am, 7.35pm
- Sunday, April 2: 5am, 7.37pm
- Monday, April 3: 4.58am, 7.39pm
- Tuesday, April 4: 4.56am, 7.40pm
- Wednesday, April 5: 4.53am, 7.42pm
- Thursday, April 6: 4.51am, 7.44pm
- Friday, April 7: 4.49am, 7.45pm
- Saturday, April 8: 4.47am, 7.47pm
- Sunday, April 9: 4.45am, 7.49pm
- Monday, April 10: 4.42am, 7.51pm
- Tuesday, April 11: 4.40am, 7.52pm
- Wednesday, April 12: 4.38am, 7.54pm
- Thursday, April 13: 4.36am, 7.56pm
- Friday, April 14: 4.34am, 7.57pm
- Saturday, April 15: 4.31am, 7.59pm
- Sunday, April 16: 4.29am, 8.01pm
- Monday, April 17: 4.27am, 8.02pm
- Tuesday, April 18: 4.24am, 8.04pm
- Wednesday, April 19: 4.22am, 8.06pm
- Thursday, April 20: 4.20am, 8.07pm
- Friday, April 21: 4.17am, 8.09pm.
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