In order to become a true Muslim, the most important issue is to become a Muttaqi. The month of Ramadan is doubtless the fastest among the Paths to Taqwa. The month of Ramadan is a period in which Muslims openly and without hesitation invite each other to the Khayr, in which they enjoy to compete with each other in their ibadat and good deeds, and put their utmost effort to become one of the Muttaqeen. Most beautiful however, is that they have no problem what so ever in getting into the “great atmosphere” of Ramadan. This is because the ideas and emotions regarding Ramadan are in total harmony among every individual Muslim. This is the case for the individuals within the society.
However, we have big difficulties in getting into the “Month of Ramadan” as a society, i.e., a single Ummah. Moreover, this is made impossible to us. Whilst Muslims all over the world are supposed to start and end every Ramadan at the same time, they are forced to start and end their fasting on different days due to nationalist regimes and religious institutions who also claim to be modern, for one of the most important elements that make up society – namely the systems – are not compatible with the Aqeeda of the individuals. Furthermore, they diametrically oppose it and are even of a hostile structure. It is due to these systems that Muslims across the world are subjected to wars, invasions, slaughter, torture and all kind of oppression. Alongside this, the mental and cultural invasions led by these systems have eradicated the clarity, and purity of the Islamic ideas, and implanted ideas, views and rulings into the minds of the Muslims which have no relation to the revelation, producing faulty Islamic personalities. They planted politicians upon us implement non-Islamic solutions to social and political problems, and boast with nationalism and patriotism. During this eminent month, which is supposed to be the month of victories and eradication of all evil, we are silenced with 3 days of “national mourning” to the slaughter in Palestine, and are forced to watch on the intensifying the slaughter and wars during Ramadan in our other lands. In the morning we send our children, whom we raised with great enthusiasm to become good servants of Allah, to school, and the non-Islamic education systems return them back to us as persons who abstain from their ibadat, or even worse, as deists, feminists and democrats. We eat less in order to provide good nutrition to our children to raise them healthy, but we pick them up from the streets addicted to drugs and alcohol. And of course we continue to endure the pain and suffering of these even during Ramadan. And to top it off, we get doubts even on our ibadat and especially on Ramadan.
Throughout their 1300 hears history, Muslims led the world in science, in particular in astronomy. The astronomical calculations they developed and devices they invented are still used today. Despite that they never said, “we are modern, capable of reading and calculating, so let’s determine the moon sighting through technology”. Moreover, having reached that level of knowledge hundreds of years ago, scientists of the Islamic civilisation were also experts in the basic of Islamic sources, i.e. the Arabic language, science of Hadith and Fikh, and many other Islamic disciplines. They were unlike the today’s so-called scientists, who struggle for tens of years in order to specialize in a single branch. Despite the possession of all these technological advancement, this civilisation, that enlightened the world for thousand years, was aware of the obligation to determine the moon with the “naked eye” and not through astronomical calculations, and thus took all necessary appropriate precautions. This was possible, because it was the system implemented upon the Muslims that promoted these qualities.
During the very early ages of the Islamic Khilafah, the 9th century, the Umayyad Khalifah al-Ma’mun let built the first observatory in Baghdad. The main task of this observatory was to observe the moon, so that the Muslims could truly fulfil their worship. After that, observatories where built across every corner, and almost every city of the Islamic lands. And the Ottoman Khilafah maintained this practice. The Khalifah appointed special officials who usually were qadis, and ordered them to observe the moon. The officials would choose a few reliable persons among the people as witnesses while observing the sighting of the moon. And everyone among the Ummah who had the possibility joined this action of observing the moon. The sighting of the moon was fix after confirmation of witnesses. So the witnesses accompanied the official to the Fatwa Office. And the director of the Fatwa Office would sincerely interrogate the official and the witnesses, and after being convinced of the statements and testimony, he would prepare a writ and forward it to the Qadi. The writ would be sealed by the Qadi after being recorded in the court record book, and forwarded to the Sheikh al Islam, and finally to the Khalifah. The Khalifah would declare the beginning of the Ramadan and let it announce everywhere. So any doubt about the beginning of Ramadan would be removed. Therefore, throughout the history of Islam, it was never seen that Muslims started fasting and feasted on different days. The Unity of the Ummah was preserved in every aspect of life. Rasulallah ﷺ said: «الْحَلاَلُ بَيِّنٌ وَالْحَرَامُ بَيِّنٌ وَبَيْنَ ذَلِكَ أُمُورٌ مُشْتَبِهَاتٌ لاَ يَدْرِي كَثِيرٌ مِنَ النَّاسِ أَمِنَ الْحَلاَلِ هِيَ أَمْ مِنَ الْحَرَامِ» “The lawful is clear and the unlawful is clear, and between that are matters that are doubtful (not clear); many of the people do not know whether it is lawful or unlawful.” [Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Davud, Tirmizi, an-Nesai]
Today we are in urgent need of Khalifah who clarifies the doubtful matters and removes uncertainty, who ensures that the Muslims can conduct worship in unity, and who mobilizes his armies to the rescue of the Believers as it is obliged upon him. Our Ramadans, our fasting and all of our ibadaat, as well as our children and the whole Ummah will only regain their true identity under the Khilafah. And our Ramadans and our Ummah will flourish again year after year.
So, do your yearn for the old Ramadans, my sisters and brothers? Then proceed on the Path to Taqwa by starting the work for the change of the current systems. For Allah (swt) ordered:
إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوْمٍ حَتَّى يُغَيِّرُواْ مَا بِأَنْفُسِهِمْ
“Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves.” [Rad 11]