Ramadan in Cairo

Egypt’s Dar al-Ifta announced that Ramadan will begin on Thursday, September 13.

Official authoritative bodies for establishing lunar months are a great mercy for their constituents. It is a great shame that each year, some starry-eyed visitor arrives from the US or UK and refuses to fast once the official announcement has been made – on the grounds that they personally did not personally sight the new moon (nor the last one!) or didn’t hear whether Sheikh Fulan back in the US allows his students to follow the local Islamic authorities. What folks coming from the West don’t seem to get is that once one steps foot within an Islamic jurisdiction, one is required to hear and obey so long as it is not an order that contravenes the Sacred Law. This applies even for faqihs who question the Kingdom of Saudi Arabi’s moon sighting history and reject using calculations must follow them.

But this year, al-hamdu lillah, it looks like the Jeddah Accord is actually being respected by all parties.

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