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The holy month of Ramadan
The coming month in the Islamic Calendar is of Ramadan in which the Holy Quran was revealed for the guidance of the mankind and to give the criterion between right and wrong. Fasting is to be observed in this month. In this connection, the following verses of the Holy Quran are relevant:

2.185. The month of Ramadan in which was revealed the Qur'an, a guidance for mankind and clear proofs for the guidance and the criterion (between right and wrong). So whoever of you sights (the crescent on the first night of) the month (of Ramadan i.e. is present at his home), he must observe Saum (fasts) that month, and whoever is ill or on a journey, the same number [of days which one did not observe Saum (fasts) must be made up] from other days. Allah intends for you ease, and He does not want to make things difficult for you. (He wants that you) must complete the same number (of days), and that you must magnify Allah [i.e. to say Takbir (Allahu-Akbar; Allah is the Most Great) on seeing the crescent of the months of Ramadan and Shawwal] for having guided you so that you may be grateful to Him.

 2.186. And when My slaves ask you (O Muhammad ) concerning Me, then (answer them), I am indeed near (to them by My Knowledge). I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me (without any mediator or intercessor). So let them obey Me and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright.

 2.187. It is made lawful for you to have sexual relations with your wives on the night of As-Saum (the fasts). They are Libas [i.e. body cover, or screen, or Sakan, (i.e. you enjoy the pleasure of living with her - as in Verse 7:189) Tafsir At-Tabari], for you and you are the same for them. Allah knows that you used to deceive yourselves, so He turned to you (accepted your repentance) and forgave you. So now have sexual relations with them and seek that which Allah has ordained for you (offspring), and eat and drink until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night), then complete your Saum (fast) till the nightfall. And do not have sexual relations with them (your wives) while you are in I'tikaf (i.e. confining oneself in a mosque for prayers and invocations leaving the worldly activities) in the mosques. These are the limits (set) by Allah, so approach them not. Thus does Allah make clear His Ayat (proofs, evidences, lessons, signs, revelations, verses, laws, legal and illegal things, Allah's set limits, orders, etc.) to mankind that they may become Al-Muttaqun (the pious - see V.2:2).

I join my Muslim friends in praying that the sacred moon of the coming holy month of Ramadan may come with an unprecedented glory and grace to become the harbinger of a new watershed to transform mankind's values and face. The force of penitence, hunger and thirst may conquer the vices of revenge, rancour and greed to pave the way for love, affection and solicitude,that make this humanity an angelic creed.

Let the showers of Divine Blessings be in abundance which give solace to the world, and make it meek and mild to cover the angry globe with heavenly ambiance that enfolds within itself, each man, woman and child.

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