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What is Ramadan?

Here are 4 important things about Ramadan, a special month for Muslims.

1. Ramadan is a super important month for Muslims.

Muslims think Ramadan is the most special month. They believe that during Ramadan, heaven's doors open and hell's doors close. This is also when their holy book, the Quran, was given to them. Ramadan ends with a big celebration called Eid al-Fitr, where Muslims have a big feast and exchange gifts.

2. Muslims don't eat from sunrise to sunset during Ramadan.

For the whole month, Muslims don't eat or drink anything during the day. This is a time for them to pray, help others, and think about their faith. Kids, old people, pregnant women, sick people, and travelers don't have to fast. Fasting helps Muslims understand and help people who don't have much.

3. How do Muslims fast?

Muslims don't eat, drink, chew gum, smoke, or do a few other things from sunrise to sunset. If they accidentally do any of these, they have to try again the next day. If they miss a day of fasting, they have to fast later or help feed someone in need. They also try to avoid bad feelings and activities like watching too much TV or listening to music.

4. A day in Ramadan looks like this:

Muslims wake up early to eat before the sun comes up, then they pray. They don't eat or drink anything all day. After sunset, they eat a small meal to end their fast, go to the mosque to pray, and then have a bigger meal with family and friends. Even though they're fasting, they still go to school or work. In Muslim countries, work hours are often shorter during Ramadan.

The 5 Pillars of Islam

Islam has five main rules that grown-up Muslims follow:

1. Shahada: Saying "There is no God but Allah, and Mohammed is his prophet." Muslims hear this when they're born and try to say it before they die. If someone isn't Muslim and wants to become one, they say this and really mean it.

2. Salat: Praying five times every day. Each prayer time has its own name: Fajr, Zuhr, Asr, Maghrib, and Isha.

3. Zakat: Giving money to help poor people. Muslims give 2.5% of the money they've had for a year, but only if it's more than a certain amount.

4. Saum: Not eating during daylight in Ramadan, the holy month.

5. Hajj: Going to Mecca at least once in their life, if they can. It's a big trip that Muslims make to show their faith.

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