Doha: With the holy month of Ramadan coming to a close, Doha residents recounted the virtues of observing the blessed month, and how impactful the act of abstinence has been on their mental, physical, and spiritual being.

Fasting during the holy month, according to Monjarul Hoque, is a great test of patience, and has offered him the chance to tackle problems without resorting to anger.

Ramadan, he told The Peninsula, is a month in which he feels Allah’s abundant mercy everywhere, which in turn has helped him prioritise understanding over conflict.

“I fix my problems with patience,” he said. Mohammed Faiz, a resident experiencing Ramadan for the first time in Qatar, told The Peninsula that the holy month brings about an unparalleled spiritual comfort wherever one may be in the world.

“Before Ramadan, you feel that the pressures of everyday life are a bit overwhelming, however once the holy month arrives, all that disappears. A surge of positive energy courses through your body and prepares you for the month of blessings ahead.”

Mohammed, who is from Sudan, explained that the Sudanese community in Qatar maintained the same values from back home over here, where the tradition of communal Iftar of his home country is still practiced in Doha.

Reciting the Quran brings great joy to Mohammed, who said it greatly aids with the spiritual well-being he feels during the holy month as it “makes you forget about life so that you could be free of troublesome thoughts and redirect your thinking towards getting closer to Allah.”

This is the first Ramadan Mohammed has spent away from his family, and although he said he does feel homesick, that has not changed the Ramadan experience for him.

“Ramadan is a month generous with its blessings wherever it may find you, and I was fortunate enough to have experienced the generosity of this month in Qatar and among the friendly Qatari people,” he told The Peninsula.

Mehboob, another resident experiencing his first Ramadan in Qatar, affirmed to The Peninsula that fast has helped him undergo a process of transformation, making him less preoccupied with food.

“In the first days I was very hungry when Iftar came, and I ate too much, but then would spend the rest of my night with a very full stomach. I could not move very much.” The added benefit of having staved off the sluggishness that usually follows a big meal has helped Mehboob be more active after Iftar, and enjoy various physical activities.

“I realised that you do not need to eat much to feel full, and that portioning one big meal into smaller meals actually makes you feel more energetic,” he said. This has allowed Mehboob to enjoy his free time in a more productive manner.

“When your mind is clear and your body feels great, you can do so much in even just ten minutes, which you could as easily waste doing nothing productive.”

Ramadan has also helped Mehboob decrease his social media use and time spent on the internet, opting instead for more time spent with friends and building healthy social relationships.

“I feel very nice when I am with friends laughing and eating good food and chatting over karak,” he concluded.

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