As over a billion people are observing the month of Ramadan, I thought I’d share some spiritual significance regarding this month, as, after all, we may share different beliefs, but we share the same spirituality.
Just a child is born in the 9th month of pregnancy, Ramadan is the 9th month of the Muslim Calendar and is the month of Re-birth.
We are re-born on 4 levels, an internal level, an external level, a social level and a spiritual level.
Whereas every other month of the year is about external muscle and resource, where we use our body and external fuel, Ramadan is a month in which we really appreciate what we have inside us, our will power, our resoluteness, our commitment and our ability to transcend the needs of our body, which we find can still function and equip itself just as well. Ramadan is a month of inner re-birth and, through this, the foundation of outer re-birth is laid, as private (inner) victory always proceeds public (outer victory).
Only when we have conquered our internal world and have the ability to fully harness our internal capacity, can external re-birth be possible. Just as a plant needs to develop its roots below ground before it can grow above the surface, likewise, external success can only come when our internal root system is developed.
Ramadan is the month in which this root system is developed. We literally shut-off from external influence (food, drink, negative habits and negative talk) so that the focus remain internal, on developing those capacities of will-power, endurance and resourcefulness that will be so crucial for our ahead.
Ramadan is a month of Social Re-birth as it is an opportunity to see everyone as they are once again. Just as on Hajj, everyone dresses the same regardless of status and wealth, Ramadan reminds us that we all share the same human needs, of food and water, of warmth and security.
The feeling of relief when you break your fast is universal, whether a king is breaking their fast or a slave is breaking their fast and this appreciation that we are all the same and have the same basic needs, and the actual experience of this, ensures that we leave this month of Ramadan with a much more balanced viewpoint of everyone else.
Lastly, on the most important level, the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said that this world is just the womb for the next world, our final world, our permanent home.
The Holy Month of Ramadan, the 9th month of the Muslim calendar and is Allah’s month and it is a reminder to us that just as we were born in the 9th month, our creator, without whom we could not be born, is the one whom we dedicate the 9th month of our year to.
We hold firmly the belief that just as we were born into this world in the 9th month, Allah will, after our death, raise us to heaven as we leave this womb (our temporary home) and move towards our real home.