Books · Islamic Months · Ramadan · Ramadan · Shahrul Ramadan · Sunnah

Ramadan: the Pre-Dawn and Fast-Breaking Meals

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Fasting trains us to submit to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala in full obedience. At Allah’s directive, a person refrains from eating and drinking until a certain time. He also eats the Sahoor meal at a particular time even if he does not wish to eat.

Abu Darda radhiAllahu ‘anhu narrated: Three things are from the traits of the Prophethood. To hasten in Iftaar (opening fast), delay the Sahoor meal and to put the right hand on top of the left hand in prayer.” [Saheeh Jami al-Sagheer, Vol: 2, 3038]

The Sahoor Meal

For a believer, there are blessings in Sahoor and it is also a Sunnah of the Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. He said, “Take the Sahoor meal, for there is in it (much) blessing.” [Bukhari: 1923]

The Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam called Arbaz ibn Saarya radhiAllahu ‘anhu to join him in eating Sahoor with the words: “(Arbaz), come to the blessed food.” [Sunan Abu Dawud: 2344]

Sahoor is a Blessing from Allah

‘Abdullah ibn Harith narrated from a person among the companions of the Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that he once went to the Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam while he was eating Sahoor. He said, “This Sahoor is a blessing that Allah has given you so do not leave it.” [Musnad Ahmad, Vol: 38, 23142]

Miqdam ibn Madi Karb radhiAllahu ‘anhu reported that the Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “You all should make the morning meal (Sahoor) compulsory upon yourself as it is the blessed food of morning.” [Sunan an-Nasai: 2166]

One must have Sahoor even if it is a Sip of Water

The Messenger of Allah salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “There is blessing in eating Sahoor so do not leave it, even if one is to drink a sip of water.” [Musnad Ahmad: 11086]

[Time for Suhoor]
Mercy descends upon those who eat Sahoor

It is related by Ibn ‘Umar radhiAllahu ‘anhu that the Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “Verily Allah and His Angels send mercy upon those who eat Sahoor.” [Al-Mujam al-Awsat al-Tibrani, Vol. 7, 6430).

This means that Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala showers upon them His mercy and blessings while the angels pray for mercy and forgiveness for them.

Dates are the Best Sahoor

The Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “How excellent are dates as the believer’s Sahoor.” [Sunan Abu Dawoud: 2345]

Eat a balanced and healthy meal at Sahoor in order to stay awake, active, and fresh throughout the day and be able to perform all obligatory rituals and others acts of worship properly.

Two Joys for the Fasting Person

The Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “The fasting person has a two occasions for joy, one when he breaks his fast because of his breaking it and the other when he meets his Lord because of the reward for his fast.” [Bukhari: 1904]

Masnoon to Open the Fast Early

We should have the fast-breaking meal (iftaar) as soon as the Sun sets. The Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “The people will continue to do well so long as they hasten to break the fast.” [Bukhari: 1957]

Fast should be opened with Dates or Plain Water

The Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “If anyone of you is fasting, let him break his fast with dates. In case, he does not have them, then with water. Verily, water is purifier.” [al-Jami’ al-Saghir: 746]

The Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would end his fast with fresh dates. If there were no fresh dates, he would eat dried dates. If there were no dried dates, he would drink a few sips of water. [Abu Dawoud: 2356]

[Food, Glorious Food!]

The Reward for giving Food to a Fasting Person

The Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “He who gives food to a fasting person to end his fast will receive the same reward as him, except that nothing will be reduced from the fasting person’s reward.” [at-Tirmidhi: 807].

Things to Do:

Practice moderation when preparing the meals for Sahoor and Iftaar since this is the month of fasting, and not ‘feasting.’

Avoid eating greasy foods and eating to your fill so that you do not feel lethargic.

Give leftover food to the needy instead of throwing it away.

Invocation for Iftaar (Opening Fast)

While opening the fast, The Prophet ﷺ used to say:

iftaar dua

Supplication for those who Offer Iftaar

dua for him who offers iftar

[Book: Shahrul Ramadan – the Month of Ramadan by Dr. Farhat Hashmi]

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