For Muslims, one of the hopes of Ramadan is that they will be able to carry the drive and 'increase' they experienced through the blessed month forward into the year. That they will:
- pray more;
- read the Qur'an more;
- learn more
That's all well and good, and commendable goals, but what about the other aspects of Ramadan?
- to reach out to those less fortunate?
- to provide food to those who would otherwise be hungry?
- to be a source of comfort (even if it's just momentary) to those in need?
These are also important (and fundamental) parts of Ramadan and being a Muslim, and are supposed to be a major aspect of our everyday lives. For many of us, however, they only seem to be important at certain times of the year.
Many of us consider 'charity' to be 'giving some money or clothing I can spare'. There are other ways of being charitable, the prime one being:
- volunteering a few hours of your time.
Instead of, for example, going to the cinema you could (schedule) to pop in to the local shelter and lend a hand.
You could help hand out food to impoverished children (London-folk, there are a lot of kids who are below the poverty line and don't get nutritious meals, especially during school holidays).
You could visit an elderly person.
Spend time with an ill person.
It doesn't have to 'cost' you anything other than a few hours of your time.
70,000 people volunteered to help out at the Olympics - imagine the change 70,000 people could make each week by merely giving 4 hours of their time...