Monday, 06 June 2016 00:43

Ramadan well-wishes and an Etiquette Guide for non-Muslims Featured

Written by Bruinou.com
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Every year thousands of Muslim men gather at Seapoin Promenade, Cape Town, for prayers and the sighting of the new moon which signals the start and will also a month later signal the end of Ramadan.
For a vast majority of non-Muslims living on the Cape Flats, the guidelines suggested further below are mostly common knowledge, but we at Bruinou.com know that there are also many of our non-Muslim readers from all over the country who might not be too familiar with Muslim religious observances and might be at a loss for what level of consideration their Muslim friends and colleagues might  'expect' from them while they are observing the month of Ramadan.


Muslims make up nearly 2% of South Africa's total population, with the highest density of Muslims occurring in the Western Cape at nearly 7% of the total WC population and the vast majority of those in the WC are considered to be or deem themselves to be part of the Coloured population group.
There are of course Muslims of other population groups as well, including Indians, Blacks, a very small minority of Whites and a fast growing number of Immigrants from other African countries as well as from Pakistan and other parts of the Asian sub-continent, but the largest number of Muslims in South Africa are descendents of those who have been in the Cape since the early parts of colonisation and became mixed with the local population.

In the Western Cape one will also find among the Coloured population group a high incidence of mostly Christian families but also other non-Muslim families being directly or indirectly related in some way or other to individual Muslims or entire Muslim families.

It is customary on the Cape Flats that particularly Christian and Muslim relatives, friends and neighbours respect each other’s religious observances and to the extent where it is possible, even participate in each other’s traditional celebrations.

It is in that spirit which our Bruinou.com team says...
Ramadan Mubarak to all of our Muslim Readers and Registered Members, as well as our Muslim Content Contributors.
We wish you and your loved ones all well during your observance of your holy month.

Ramadan for Non-Muslims: An Etiquette Guide
by Saeed Ahmed, CNN

There are 7 billion people in the world. And a full 22% of them — 1.6 billion — are about to begin a fast that’ll last from sunup to sundown. Every day. For an entire month.
Ramadan, the holiest month of the Muslim calendar, begins after the sun sets Sunday.

But what if you’re not a Muslim; just a caring, considerate person. Is there anything you should be doing so you don’t come across as insensitive to your fasting friends?

Short answer: No.

Long answer: No. But you can earn some cool points if you follow these 10 tips.

1. You can totally eat in front of us ....
For the next 30 days, Muslims around the world will abstain from eating and drinking during daylight hours. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t carry on business as usual. (Just turn a deaf ear to our growling stomach)

2. ... but try not to schedule a work lunch
If you have to have a brownbag, you should. But don’t feel bad if we sit there, like a vegetarian friend at a churrascaria. Ditto for a happy-hour mixer. If your Muslim co-worker takes a pass, understand.

3. You don't have to fast with us ...
You can if you want to see what it feels like. But it’s not going to hurt our feelings — even if we’re best friends.

4. ... but you can join us for Iftar
Iftar is the breaking of the fast after sundown. We like to make it a big communal meal. You should come.

5. You don't have to know when it begins ...
Ramadan isn’t like Christmas or Thanksgiving, as in you know exactly when it’ll fall. It bounces around, because the Islamic calendar is lunar. When it begins depends on when the new moon is seen.
That’s why the precise dates change from year to year.

6. ... but please be a little flexible
How we determine when Ramadan begins is decidedly old-school — you have to physically see the moon (even though there are apps for that). That’s why, if your co-worker says, “Starting tomorrow, can I start work early so I can leave sooner?” try to accommodate.

7. We'll still go for coffee with you ...
No, we can’t drink. Not even water. But we’ll walk with you if you want to take a break.

8. ... but we may keep our distance
One word: Halitosis. You try not eating or drinking the entire day. That’s why we’re standing a foot away from you when we talk.

9. You can say "Ramadan Mubarak"
There’s no “war on Christmas”-level controversy surrounding the greeting. (It means “Happy Ramadan”).
Your Muslim co-worker will appreciate the thoughtfulness.

10. ... but please don't say "I should fast too. I need to lose weight"
Ramadan’s not about that. Plus, one of Ramadan’s side effects is obesity. (It’s all that post-sundown overeating)

Click Here to Read The original Article on CNN