According to the Oxford dictionary, Ramadan (also known as Ramadhan) is “the ninth month of the Muslim year, during which strict fasting is observed from dawn to sunset.” The word Ramadan is derived, as it is stated in Oxford dictionary, “from Arabic raman, from ramaa ‘be hot’. The lunar reckoning of the Muslim calendar brings the fast eleven days earlier each year, eventually causing Ramadan to occur in any season; originally it was supposed to be in one of the hot months.”
Ramadan is indeed the month of blessings, rewards and forgiveness. The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “When the month of Ramadan starts, the gates of the heaven are opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the devils are chained (Imam Bukhari).” That is, people should exploit the month of Ramadan when Satan, the enemy of mankind, is chained, and the gates of heaven are opened. The Messenger of Allah also said: “He who gives food for a fasting person to break his fast, he will receive the same reward as him, except that nothing will be reduced from the fasting persons reward.” [Ahmad, at-Tirmidhee, Ibn Maajah, Ibn Hibbaan, Saheeh].”
It is deduced that Allah, during the month of Ramadan, showers endless rewards and blessings upon His worshippers. He, Muhammad (saw), said: “… whoever fasts during Ramadan out of sincere faith and hoping to attain Allah’s rewards, then all his past sins will be forgiven (Imam Bukhari).” With regards to the aforementioned quotes, the month of Ramadan is indeed the month of non-stop blessings, rewards, forgiveness, also it is stated in the Quran that the holy month of Ramadan is better than one thousand months. Therefore, Muslims must seize the opportunity and perform Ramadan, as it should be performed, because many people inadvertently make mistakes which must be strictly avoided during the holy month of Ramadan.
Here are some mistakes that people make during the blessed month of Ramadan:
Some people quickly get angry in Ramadan, claiming that they are fasting and they are liable to fight anyone if he/she should irritate him/her. Some claim that they are drug addicts and the abstinence from such substances, during Ramadan, is agitating and angering them. Those people are oblivious to the prophet Muhammad’s (saw) Hadith: “the strong person is not the one who can wrestle someone else down. The strong person is the one who can control himself when he is angry” [Sahih al-Bukhari (5763) and Sahih Muslim]. That is to say, people are measured by their attitude towards others, not by their potency or external attribute.
Many Muslims spend their Ramadan days sleeping; neglecting the purpose of fasting, which is experiencing hunger and thirst and showing a certain amount of self-control. Some people, particularly the younger generation, maintain that it is arduous to wake up early, believing that they could not easily make it to Salat Al-Maghreb without spending half of the day asleep.
Fasting without prayer
Many Muslims do not pray whatsoever. They are agonizingly unaware of the importance of Salat (prayer) in Islam. Those people, as well, are oblivious of the fact that it is prohibited to fast without praying any prayer. The prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “between a man and shirk and kufr there stands his giving up prayer.” That is, Salat is the only conduit to Allah, and without it one’s faith is incomplete.
Cooking the entire day:
Many women spend their entire day preparing for Iftar, forgetting that Ramadan is the month of worshipping, not cooking. It may not be their fault, because they, often, try to satiate their husbands. In consequence, they are exhausted to pray to Allah or read the Quran. As a matter of fact, satisfying their husbands is absolutely fine, but they must proportion time for spirituality.
Many Muslims use foul language during Ramadan, which is not acceptable at all. The Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (saw), said: “Fasting is a shield, so the one who fasts should avoid obscene speech and ignorant behavior. If someone abuses him or starts to fight with him, he should reply by saying: I am fasting, I am fasting” [Sahih al-Bukhari (1795)]. That is, one should entirely avoid vulgar speech because it is absolutely frowned upon during Ramadan.
These are some of the common mistakes that must be avoided during Ramadan if one wants to properly fast Ramadan.