Bismillah Wa Hamdulillah Wa Salatu Was Salaam ala RasulAllah
I thought since there are visitors here from different parts of the world, why not share how the days are spent in the West during the month of Ramadan?
Of course, this may vary from place to place, but InshaAllah I will share how it is like in our place.
After finishing up suhoor, we go to the mosque which is about approximately a 2 minute drive. It is a walkable distance, but it would take a long time to get there; but it’s still pretty close… we can even hear the athan. Since the athan is already called out, after praying the sunnah of fajr we recite Quran as much as Allah wills, along with the many brothers who either live in the neighborhood or drive up.
The Iqama is called about 20 minutes after the athan and after the fard salat the imam gives a talk. Some brothers leave while other’s stay. After fajr some people may catch up with their sleep while others may get ready to go to work. Some may read Quran, etc. this may vary on an individual basis.
Before Zuhr, people try to get to the mosque early so they can do some reading of the Quran. Usually after zuhr there is no talk by the imam, so people just leave; most of them as some may work or have other things to attend. Similarly, people try to come in early before asr to get some more reading done, pray asr and then again theres a talk. Between asr and maghrib, there’s about more than a 2 hour gap of time, so one can either help the family for iftar or cooking ahead for suhoor and with time to do some reading before maghrib.
The fast is broken in the mosque along with the brothers. Since the mosque is majority Yemeni, the brothers bring and share kahwa and right after fard of maghrib, a lot of people rush to leave while others make their sunnah and leave slowly.
During these days, the gap between maghrib and isha is not much so after coming home from maghrib and eating iftaar with family, one can relax a few minutes only before getting ready to leave for isha.
The iqama used to be called 20 minutes after the adhan of isha, however, these days it seems a little shorter than that. One has to park far in order to avoid the traffic congestion or possibly get hit by a car! For Isha and tarweeh prayers, there are a lot of people Mashaallah. The masjid is very big mashallah… if I had to throw out a number I’d say between 500 to 700 people come (not counting the sisters who have a musalla upstairs). During the first 10 days, there’s a lot more people and one notices this year after year and during the middle 10, the number may go down and then again during the last 10, the number goes back up.
We pray 11 raka which includes witr for taraweeh and after that one needs to sit for a few minutes in order for the exits to clear up. Some times they have a talk after isha and sometimes they also do some fund raising.
During the last 10 days, they have congregation qiyaam at the 3rd part of the night and may have suhoor at the masjid and also sometimes they may have dinner after iftaar at the masjid.
During Eid, there’s even more people! The second part of the masjid accomodates a lot of people to, lot of kids get dressed up with their jambias and traditional clothes; the same goes with the elders.
The market places/restaurants here sell iftar boxes while in the other areas they may have some deals that they offer which may not be one of places one wants to go.
This is just a brief summary of how the month of Ramadan is spent here.