By Anadolu Staff
ANKARA (AA) - Muslims around the world welcomed the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan on Wednesday evening.
Millions of Muslims offered their first Tarawih, the special evening Ramadan prayer, which will continue throughout the holy month.
Ramadan is believed to be a time of intense spirituality when the believers are surrounded by angels, the gates of heaven are open, and Allah's blessings and mercy are abundant.
Muslims in Türkiye will fast for 29 days, beginning from Thursday, March 23, according to Diyanet, Türkiye’s top religious body.
Moreover, Muslims in countries such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iraq, the UAE, Libya, Tunisia and Iran will also begin fasting on Thursday.
Fasting, held from dawn to dusk during Ramadan, is one of the Five Pillars (fundamental religious duties) of Islam. It is a time of self-examination and increased religious devotion.
There is also a holy night called Laylat al-Qadr, which means "Night of Power", when the first verses of the Qur'an were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad.
Muslims are instructed to seek the Night of Power during the last 10 days of Ramadan, particularly on the odd-numbered nights.
The holy month will see many of the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims commit to a strict daytime fast, often taking the opportunity to make promises to improve their lives.
Muslims throughout the world fast for different hours. The longest fasting will take place in Greenland’s Nuuk city with 15 hours and 21 minutes, followed by Iceland’s capital Reykjavik with 15 hours and 16 minutes, Finland’s capital Helsinki with 15 hours one minute, Stockholm and Glasgow with nearly 15 hours.
Muslims will celebrate the Eid al-Fitr at the end of the holy month of Ramadan.