Celebrating Eid al-Fitr and the end of Ramadan

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Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting came to an end on June 15, known as Eid al-Fitr. It began on May 15, Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, is incredibly important to Muslims as it was the time in which the Quran, the holy book of Islam was revealed to the prophet Muhammad.

Observant Muslims will fast from sunrise to sunset during Ramadan. Tanvir Ahmad, president of the Islamic Center of the Five Towns in Hewlett, explained that this is so that they can feel the same hunger that those in need feel. “At the end you feel much more pious,” he said. “You feel your hunger and can compare it to the hungry people around the world.”

Eid al-Fitr is a celebration, a time for personal reflection and to remember the good deeds done during Ramadan. This year the Islamic Center of the Five Towns collected more than 200 meals to feed New York City’s homeless, in conjunction with Muslims Giving Back, a nonprofit organization based in the city.

The Islamic Center of the Five Towns met at the Hamza Mosque in Valley Stream, because with the expected turnout larger accommodations were necessary. The doors of the center in Hewlett at 437 Hamilton Ave. are open to anyone looking to learn about Islam. Ahmad just asks that people don’t show up unannounced so they can prepare.

For more information on the Islamic Center of the Five Towns, go to www.icftli.com or call (516) 900-2170.

—Tyler Marko