Eid in Covid's Time: How Coronavirus Affected Ramadan and Eid for Muslims Around the World – Art and Culture


Ask any Muslim how they feel about Ramadan and Eid, and regardless of their level of piety, their faces will light up and they will give you details of all their Ramadan memories with childish excitement. Because Ramadan is so much more than the holiest time for Muslims, it is true that we pray more to Allah this month, we recite the Quran which unfortunately remains unread for most of the year, but we also strive. To be kinder, more compassionate and charitable, selfless, less angry and we try our best to keep gossip and negativity away. So when I ask them about their Ramadan all Muslims have said to me, "I feel very calm and peaceful as if I always do what I do." They tell me how they can better focus on their life, business and relationships during Ramadan, because they try to look at things from the perspective of others and let go of the things they don’t. How proud to starve all day. Even though they have to work long hours, and how this first sip of water makes them feel grateful, but also worries for their Muslim siblings, who don’t have that much.

Ramadan, indeed, is a wonderful time, it is such a spiritually inclusive experience, that for those thirty days we believe we can be better people and we will try our best to be theirs.

In India, for me, my memories of Ramadan in Bombay have been the best. Before you start fasting, you eat suhur or sehri (pre-fast meal), and every child who still lives with their parents knows how much screaming occurs during that time. Being one of six children, one or the other was always forgotten by my mother during Sehri time, who would later accuse us all of not loving her equally. I remember the days when I woke up prematurely, I would see my mother standing by the window, listening to the musaharis (public walker for Suhur during Ramadan), hi ”, his daddy voice echoing through the streets of Colaba as he sang his Duffy tune. Mom always sent food for them so they could get their sehri too, when I asked her why she would say, “Aren’t they doing noble work? Do you think that you can sacrifice the few hours you get to eat so that you can be sure that everyone else is awake? “It was a really noble deed, they walked all the way from Mohammed Ali Road to Colaba which runs smoothly for more than an hour, and during Ramadan, to do it every day, it’s a bit of a stretch.

Arrive at ift time, we all rushed to help Ammi cook, fry for breakfast and set the table, the smell of homemade samosa, chickpeas comes out of our mouths and in the days of chit, bhajiya, floating in the air. Being from a family of true food lovers, we love food in a way that makes us not want to spoil it. Even so, despite the variety of fruits and plenty of food on the table, it was just enough not to spoil, and with eight people at the table, it never happened. Then just 10 minutes before Iftar, the youngest in the house, my brother and I, giving a tray of food to share with our neighbors, house staff, etc., was a good thing to do, but then we didn't understand why my parents did it .

My father always hosts Tarawih Namaz (a special prayer during Ramadan) on the doorstep of his office, for which more than 200 people gather, and a grand feast will be organized for all the devotees on the last day of the prayer.

However, this year, there were no songs to awaken my family in Bombay, no food was sent to anyone to maintain safety, no prayers on the terrace and all charity was done remotely. Since a mandatory lockdown has been imposed by the government around the world and in India due to the coronavirus epidemic, people have been advised to stay indoors, and this has had a profound effect on the spiritual and social aspects of Ramadan. During Ramadan, Muslims go out for Iftar (post-fasting meal) parties, Suhur parties, they go to the mosque for Namaz, and shop in the markets, buy food and hang out a lot with his friends and family. This year when nothing came out, my mother told me that she received many calls in which people are thankful for her in her life, and she can't wait to eat her delicious food again.

This year Ramadan has been really a bit fierce, most of us are stuck indoors, unable to go to mosques for community prayers, unable to go to the beautifully lit streets near the mosque (be it Delhi's Jama Masjid or Mumbai's Mohammad Ali Road). Where I often saw people gorging on street food after prayers. For the first time in many years, the streets have become desolate, and it has definitely wet our spirits. Talking to many Muslims around the world, and learning their stories of Ramadan and their plans for Eid, it was easy to see that, despite our differences when it comes to culture and upbringing, there are many things that are inherently similar.

"Ramadan was very different this year, I was very involved and involved in it," says Arshi Azam, mother of Bay, a high school teacher based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. And because of the movement control order in Malaysia we could not get out as we normally do in Ramadan, the lack of deviations will help us to focus fully on improving ourselves spiritually. I have also taken a lot of online classes to improve my Arabic, cooking and painting, which I have not done in 15 years since I left Bombay. Circumstances allowed me to connect with the world from my bed. Unlike in India, we don’t have house help here, so my sons and I do all the work ourselves, so it was almost identical. Since school was closed and I didn't have to go to work, I was able to do other chores, so I often cooked and sent healthy food to the building staff and my friends. The dire situation of the world has made us very grateful for all our affairs, brought us closer to Allah and finally started taking care of lucky people like us. Coronavirus is evidence that tables can rotate at any point, it is very important to be kind. If nothing else, it gives you peace. ”

Bhatkal, a native of Karnataka, now living in Mumbai, talked about how 26-year-old Sadaf Mohteshem, the mother of one, would renew her faith in fear of an epidemic. He says, “This year I can focus on myself in reciting the Quran and offering prayers. I barely used my phone and didn't binge watching any shows. It also gave that we didn’t go shopping frequently, as the number of dishes was also limited and we ate really healthy. Fear of epidemics, frustration of being "safe" led to new faith in dua .. in Allah … and more importantly, I thought this was the easiest Ramadan ever. It didn't feel right like summer. ”

Talking about her Eid celebrations, she says, "I usually wait for my parents for Eid and visit my in-laws and other relatives that day. This year I will be staying with my in-laws, and I don’t know when I will visit my family. Usually I stay at my place for place d, and on that day I visit my in-laws, relatives .. This year apparently I am staying with my in-laws so I don't know if my family will visit or not! Secondly, id shopping people who are going crazy, I gave up my dress tank just a month before Raman, shopping while fasting is not for me! Even though my husband doesn't have one .. he's one of the late shoppers, so I don't wear a dress I intend to wear .. I have another one that I will wear .. usually I'll give it away from me Kid & # 39; I couldn't do this by making clothes. I put gems in my cousin's henna, set etc. there. Nothing like that !! Let’s see how Eid goes this year !! Despite the epidemic I was waiting for Ed BT after 31 active cases of Covid-19 in the city, the excitement is gone !!

Maybe now we will know how poor people celebrate Eid!

Saima Madhiya, the 26-year-old event organizer, admits she was more religious this year, but can't deny the lack of compromise between the Suhur and Iftar parties. He says, “This year Ramadan felt more spiritual, we were really doing what we had to do. Praying more than usual, reciting the Qur'an more. We also have a lot of gatherings at our Iftar and Suhur parties where we meet and dine with friends and family. So lockdown, epidemics and all these distances have really robbed us. It seems that a large part of Ramadan is missing and although we do our best to move our souls forward, because we have so much to be thankful for, it feels very lonely this Ramadan. "

Ayesha Ali, a local from Dubai, works in construction, which is listed as an essential area, and has been working from home for the past two months. The 27-year-old admits that this was her best Ramadan except that she could not go to the mosque for Tarawih prayers. It is said that people prefer solitude this Ramadan. Ramana was affected by coronavirus, but it was good in a way because there is less waste Idi not. But I'll admit, come to meet each other on the Eid is the worst thing. "


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