Ramadan, Islam's holy month of fasting
Ramadan has been observed and celebrated by Muslims for over 14 centuries.
In the seventh century, Prophet Muhammad said that Islam is built upon five pillars and that fasting in Ramadan was one of them.
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Ramadan means 'intense heat', indicating the scorching summer month to which it was first ascribed. Muslims embrace Ramadan as the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar.
In 610AD, Muhammad retreated to a cave on Mount Hira on the outskirts of Mecca. During this time occurred the first revelation of the Quran. The Quran was revealed to Muhammad over 23 years, and the verses instructing Muslims to fast the entire month of Ramadan came in the latter half of that period.
Prophet Mohammad specified that Muslims feed the poor towards the end of Ramadan.
A portion of dates or barley was given directly into the poor's hands. Over time, the bartering system translated into a monetary one. Now Muslims give a minimum of £5 to mosques or charities.
The festival, known as Eid ul-Fitr, marks the close of Ramadan. Prophet Muhammad appointed it as a day of community and celebration. It started with a special communal prayer.
Breakfast consisted of something sweet, known as 'Sweet Eid'. In the Prophet's time, Eid morning started with a simple breakfast of dates, but as Islam spread through different lands, various sweet dishes were used like sheer-kurma, a milky dessert of vermicelli, nuts and dates.
Coconut originated from India and Southeast Asia but spread naturally to other Pacific Ocean coastlines.
Coconut milk is the liquid found when grating coconut meat. It can be very thick and creamy or thinner and more milk-like. Of all the plant milks, coconut milk has been consumed the longest.
The story goes that that Kaldi discovered coffee. He noticed his goats became energetic after eating the berries from a certain tree.
Kaldi shared his findings with the abbot of a monastery, who found a drink from the berries kept him alert. The abbot, in turn, shared his findings with other monks. Word moved east and coffee reached the Arabian peninsula.
The ancient Mesopotamia civilization was the origin-place for many inventions including scriptures, wheels, and .. soap.
The first evidence of a soap-like substance was in 2800 BC, in Mesopotamia, inhabited by the Sumerians. The oldest soaps, made by using animal fats with wood ash and water, were used to wash wool, treating skin diseases, and also for ritualistic purposes by Sumerian priests.
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