Saturday, August 30, 2008

BENIFITS OF FASTING

International Islamic Society of Virginia, Inc.

In Islam, the spiritual, social, economic, political and psychological benefits of fast are interrelated, each affecting the other. Rituals regulate the Muslims' social and individual life and bring them closer to their Creator. A combination of fast, prayers, and meditation may be the very best dose for any and all psychological, financial, and spiritual ills from which one may be suffering. They purify the soul, cleanse the intention, and bring about an abundance of good from the Almighty Who is ever-watching over us and Who desires nothing but good for His sincere servants. On p. 353, Vol. 94, of Bihar al-Anwar, al-Majlisi traces a saying of Imam Muhammad al-Jawad (as) saying that if one fasts at the beginning of a month, reciting in the first rek'at the Fatiha once and al-Ikhlas thirty times (i.e., as many as the maximum days of the lunar month), and the Fatiha once and al-Qadr thirty times in the second rek'at, following that with offering the poor something by way of charity, it will dispel everything about which he is apprehensive during the entire month. Two other rek'ats are described in the same reference as having even a greater effect on a believer's life: Imam al-Jawad (as) is quoted saying,

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