How to support your friend during Ramadan with Imen Siar
We chatted to singer Imen Siar about Ramadan during lockdown, supporting your loved ones and more
To celebrate the start of Ramadan, we chatted to Imen Siar about her experiences and to get a little advice on how best to support our friends who may be fasting or partaking in the holy month.
You may recognise Imen from her iconic Britain’s Got Talent performances in 2020. She is a singer and performer who is on a mission to inspire young Muslim girls to pursue their dreams in the music industry. She wants to be the first high profile Muslim pop artist in the UK and a role model for women in her community. Take a look at our interview with her…
Imen is a proud Muslim and like millions around the globe, she will be celebrating the spiritual month of Ramadan.
What is Ramadan?
The holy month of Ramadan will start on Monday 12th April and continue for one month, until the celebration of Eid al-Fitr. Throughout the month, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset as a sign of devotion to Allah. Ramadan is a time for spiritual reflection, charity, prayer and spending time with family.
We spoke to Imen to find out about fasting during lockdown, Eid celebrations and more.
Imen Siar Q+A
What’s the most difficult thing about Ramadan?
Staying committed for a whole month ! It’s easy to be motivated in the first week of Ramadan but it takes a lot of effort to keep up the same energy throughout the whole month. Many think it’s the actual fasting that is hard but I guess that’s down to how much you believe in yourself, discipline and your faith which gives you the strength not to feel weak without food or drink. You’ll find that many people would agree that they feel even more energetic and they feel pure after Ramadan.
“Many think it’s the actual fasting that is hard but I guess that’s down to how much you believe in yourself, discipline and your faith which gives you the strength not to feel weak without food or drink.”Imen Siar
What is your favourite part about Ramadan?
My favourite part about Ramadan is when my family and I come together at sunset and sunrise to break the fast and eat together.
How will you celebrate Eid this year?
It will be my husband’s first Ramadan and first Eid so hopefully we can do something special but since we don’t know exactly what the covid restrictions will be, we hope to at least be able to pray at the mosque!
Is Ramadan easier or more difficult during lockdown?
In my case I found Ramadan easier during lockdown because at work I have fewer things to do and it’s quieter. But it just doesn’t feel the same because we don’t get a chance to pray at the Mosque in the evening, which is what usually makes Ramadan very special for my family and me. I am also very conscious that for some people it will be very hard as they are parted from their family.
“It just doesn’t feel the same because we don’t get a chance to pray at the Mosque in the evening, which is what usually makes Ramadan very special for my family and me.”Imen Siar about Ramadan during lockdown
How can non Muslims support their Muslim friends during the Ramadan period?
We can all help each other during Ramadan by being compassionate , non-judgmental and extremely supportive, especially considering how hard the last year has been.
There can be many genuine reasons why people are unable to fast ( particularly health reasons), so avoid questioning people on why they are not taking part and instead share your own experiences.
There are many taboos which surround Ramadan, which can make people feel uncomfortable around someone that is fasting. For example, if someone eats in front of us whilst we are fasting, they often try to hide it. However, hiding your food just makes the whole situation less natural. The individual fasting should feel strong enough to avoid the temptation to eat.
Lastly, I’d say, ask your friends how much you can support them, especially if you are at work and there are heavy things to carry …..it would be nice to help them out as fasting for a significant amount of hours can be very draining. My friends are wonderful at giving me their support and I appreciate it hugely.
“My friends are wonderful at giving me their support and I appreciate it hugely.”Imen Siar
Shop imen’s top picks
We asked Imen to choose some of her favourite items from Missguided, so you can shop her top picks below.
Ramadan Mubarak to all BabeZine readers.