For thousands of Muslims who live on Long Island, the tradition of fasting during daylight hours for the holy month of Ramadan will turn their lives upside down. From June 18 to July 17, breakfast becomes dinner, and throughout the night, families will pray and join in feasting.
Newsday.com asked five Long Islanders to share their experiences during Ramadan by sending in Instagram photos every day. You can share your photos by using #ramadan2015nd.
More about Ramadan
This year’s observance marks some of the longest fasts. The 30 days are set by the lunar calendar and come on the heels of the summer solstice, meaning that fasts will last about 15 hours. Those who practice the tradition will wake before the sun rises. In those early hours, some will eat an entire meal, while others may drink only a glass of milk. Then, they will go through half the day, in the heat of summer, without food or drink. The daylight fast is a religious rite passed down from the Prophet Muhammad, to exhibit self-discipline and patience and instill an appreciation of how it feels to go without food.
There’s much more to Ramadan than fasting and food. Communities come alive on weekdays as families come together for dinners. On weekends, youngsters visit mosques outside of their neighborhoods, making friends and tasting new flavors in the food offered to break the fast. In workplaces, colleagues will take a quick break to pray or find a quiet spot to nap. And in small, mundane moments — such as when one consciously chooses to pass on coffee — Muslims are reminded of their spirituality in the midst of their hectic everyday lives.Send us your Ramadan photos and thoughts
Project manager: Saba Ali; Copy editing: Martha Guevara