Abu Laylah provides an explanation of Ramadan, the month of obligatory fasting

Fatwa, posted 4.22.2010, from Egypt, in:
Religious Authority: 
Muhammad Abu Laylah
Websites and Institutions: 
Islam Online

Fasting as such is a human phenomenon, which is noticeable in all religions, whether primitive or developed, Divinely revealed or man-made. Allah Almighty says: (O ye who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you, even as it was prescribed for those before you, that ye may ward off evil) (Al-Baqarah 2: 183) Ramadan has a special appeal to all Muslims, even to our young children. It captures our souls. Fasting increases our goodness, cultivates our nature, and sharpens our consciousness of Allah. It disseminates brotherly feelings towards the community and all humanity, and above all sharpens in us the sense of responsibility towards one another. It helps us attain self-control and provides us with the ability to resist lusts and base desires during our fasting-time. Ramadan enables us to encounter hardships. In Ramadan, we don't only abstain from food, drink, smoking, marital sex, but also we abstain form all kinds of immoral acts and obscenity. Our social, religious, charitable acts are combined in our fasting. So, the month of Ramadan is an intensive course in physical and spiritual hygiene. We fast also to honor the Revelation of the Qur'an in this blessed month. The Qur'an is our guide and rule to advance in this world and to draw ourselves closer to Allah. During the blessed month of Ramadan, millions of Muslims gather in Mosques during the daytime for reciting and reflecting on the Qur'an. During the night, they gather to pray in congregation and listen to lectures from Muslim scholars. All these merits help us to be more adaptable, sociable, and practical.