While length and rules differ, the act of fasting, abstaining from food or from certain types of food is prescribed in all major world religions today.
One of the pillars of the religion of Islam is indeed fasting; whereby Muslims are told to fast from dawn till dusk for a period of 30 days, in a month named Ramadan.
Though it may seem a harsh or peculiar act, fasting in Islam is performed to attain closeness to Allah and has been described as one of the best deeds by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
Fasting has also provides experience of hunger and thirst to the believers and thus develops a deeper understanding and sympathy to those in poorer parts of the world.
This week’s Islam and Life asks: What is the purpose of fasting in Ramadan?