(Arabic: رمضان Ramaḍān, (also Ramadhan, Ramadaan) is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is the Islamic month of fasting, in which participating Muslims refrain from eating and drinking from dawn until sunset. Fasting is intended to teach Muslims about patience, humility, and spirituality. It is a time for Muslims to fast for the sake of God (Arabic: الله, trans: Allah) and to offer more prayer than usual. During Ramadan, Muslims ask forgiveness for past sins, pray for guidance and help in refraining from everyday evils, and try to purify themselves through self-restraint and good deeds. As compared to the solar calendar, the dates of Ramadan vary, moving backwards about eleven days each year depending on the moon. Muslims believe Ramadan to be an auspicious month for the revelations of God to humankind, being the month in which the first verses of the Qur'an were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him).
During the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims refrain from eating and drinking starting from dawn till dusk. To prepare for the fasting, Muslims wake up before dawn to eat a meal (Sahoor). Muslims break their fast at Maghrib (at sunset) prayer time with a meal called Iftar. During 2010 Ramadan started from 11 August and based on sighting of moon, Muslims celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr on 10 September.
Ramadan is a time of reflecting , believing and worshiping God. Muslims are expected to put more effort into following the teachings of Islam and to avoid obscene and irreligious sights and sounds. Purity of both thoughts and actions is important. The act of fasting redirects the heart away from worldly activities, its purpose being to cleanse the inner soul and free it from harm. It also teaches Muslims to practice self-discipline, self-control, sacrifice, and empathy for those who are less fortunate; thus encouraging actions of generosity and charity (Zakat).