On a typical Ramadan, attentive Muslims spend the month fasting from morning to night, praying through the night, serving charities, and spending time with loved ones and the local community. This year, the typical process was made impossible, because orders are left at home in large parts of the world due to the new corona virus.
In the United States, some states have since been ordered at home on March 23. This means that many people were already in social isolation for a month at the beginning of Ramadan in late April. And because it is not clear when or how the orders will be canceled, the Muslims had to massively change their expectations for the month.
In North America, mosques have been closed for weeks and no longer offer fast communal meals or nightly Tarawih prayers. Many Muslim "essential workers" who work in the healthcare, transportation, or childbirth sectors will suffer a double blow this year and will continue to be at risk of exposure while still fasting. Adeel Khan, MD, MPH, instructor at Harvard Medical School and hospital doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital, advises Muslims to continue following the CDC's instructions. They no longer turn to friends and family, but turn to zoom calls to find community.
by adhering to the social distance guidelines (which unfortunately means not visiting friends and family or going to your masjid), wearing a mask in public, and following their state’s rules regarding local protection.
For those who are stuck at home, little is enough to break the monotony of the tasks of everyday life ̵
While the virus is unpredictable and can affect people differently, according to Shabazz," we shouldn't forget the basics of optimizing our regular health through diet, regular exercise, and adequate sleep. All of these are challenges during Ramadan. Shabazz recommends talking to your primary healthcare provider to make sure they are “familiar with and respect Muslim tradition” if you find out whether you are healthy enough to fast. In addition, mental stress during quarantine was a major problem for Muslims who practice fasting. SELF spoke to mental health experts, doctors, exercise coaches and registered dietitians to help quarantined Muslims adapt to the new circumstances.
1. Acknowledge that Ramadan will be different.
Kameelah Rashad Psy.D., Founder and president of the Muslim Wellness Foundation, compares the overwhelming emotional experience of a quarantined Ramadan with whiplash. “Everything happened so quickly and people felt they didn't have time to prepare. We feel poorly equipped and overwhelmed. The feeling of loss acts as an obstacle to imagining opportunities. “
While the goal is to introduce new approaches to Ramadan, people first have to acknowledge the loss, Rashad says. “We have to recognize how difficult it is, how challenging it is. It can fill you with a feeling of despair. And that's okay. "The first step in finding ways to deal with the situation is to fully accept the truth and reality of the situation.
2. And then allow yourself to imagine new opportunities.
But once we accept that, we are ready to think creatively, Rashad says, which will help us adapt. "It is difficult. But it is also an incredible opportunity. "Muslims around the world have already begun the challenge of delivering meals to healthcare workers and unsafe food, hosting virtual iftars, and even finding ways to mourn relatives lost by the virus.