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Breaking Cultural Stereotypes: 7 Principles of Ramadan

July 12th, 2013

7 Principles of Ramadan

There are over 1.5 million Muslims all over the world and every year during Ramadan, Muslims fast which means refraining from food, drinks, and any negative thoughts and actions from sun-up to sundown. Many people are confused by Muslims refraining from food and drinks but the meaning behind Ramadan is to focus on God, reflect with clarity, and to purify the body and soul. There are a lot of stereotypes about Islam and many people are unsure of what the religion stands for and what exactly Muslims practice. Similar to other religions, fundamentally, Muslims practice respect for faith, peace, and caring for your neighbor. Ramadan is a time to focus on bettering one’s self and on one’s relationship to God. Dr. Tariq Ramadan, who is a writer and Professor at Oxford University and teaches Islamic studies, believes Muslims should live by the 7 C’s which are usually practiced during Ramadan. The 7 C’s include:

1. Confidence

2. Consistency

3. Communication

4. Contribution

5. Creativity

6. Contestation

7. Compassion

Confidence is putting trust in Allah and being confident in your religion. Consistency is acknowledging your weaknesses and when you do wrong. Communication is to remind people to always speak up and be vocal. Contribution is a reminder to always give back to others and the community. Creativity is to always remember to display your skills and share them whether it be art or writing. Contestation is to know right from wrong and the ability to say no. The last principle is compassion which is to spread peace and love to others. Many people who do not understand the religion Islam or Ramadan might assume certain things which may be untrue, but Dr. Tariq Ramadan wants everyone to know that just because you are not Muslim, it doesn’t mean that the Muslim community will not practice these 7 principles with you or will interact with you differently. He wants people from any and all religions to practice these principles because they teach respect and love which at the end of the day, he believes these are two values everyone in the world ultimately wants.

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