Reasons for fasting

CategoriesSawm (fast) [228]

What is the main reason Muslims fast during the month of Ramadan?

In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful.


Allah states in the Quran the reason behind the order of fasting. “O those who believe, the fasts have been enjoined upon you as were enjoyed upon those before you so that you be God fearing.” (Surah Al Baqarah :183)

Allah has pointed out the inherent quality of fasting which contributes significantly to ones ability to abstain from sins and become God fearing. Fasting grows in to man a power which helps him control his desires, which is really the foundation of Taqwa, the very special term of the Holy Quran which has been tentatively translated as fear of God, abstinence and the warding of evil. (Maariful Quran)

Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi in his book “The Wisdom behind the commands of Allah” has mentioned a number of reasons why fasting has been prescribed. A few of them are mentioned below.

Fasting opens a person’s insight.
Fasting allows a person with an opportunity to show gratitude to Allah.
Fasting is like spiritual nourishment for man. It will serve as a sustenance in the next world.
Fellow feelings grow in a fasting person. This excellence is explained by realising that one who does not experience hunger and thirst cannot understand the plight of the hungry and thirsty. The individual cannot value the blessings on him and be grateful to Allah the bestower of sustenance. A person may thank Allah but cannot show gratitude from the depths of the heart until hunger and thirst are experienced. Only when a person is separated from something to which he is deeply attached does the true value become understood.

As a final word it should be remembered that a man should obey Allah’s command without having a need to understand or investigate the wisdom behind the command. If anyone makes knowledge of the wisdom a condition then this will in fact be rebellion rather then obedience.

And Allah knows best

Sayeedur Rahman

Darul Ifta Birmingham

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