Ramadan celebration at Saddleback

The Ramadan celebration brought many cultures together. (Oliver Yu/Lariat Staff)

Alica Danesh

Students of multiple ethnicities and religious backgrounds attended the end of Ramadan, Eid al-Fitr, lecture and dinner celebration to learn and experience Islamic customs on Wednesday night in the student lounge.

Ramadan, which is held on the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, is symbolized by fasting and frugality and ends with the three-day celebration of Eid al-Fitr, the “festival of breaking the fast”.

“I didn’t expect there to be this many Muslims like me at Saddleback,” said Omar Ibrahim, 29, nutrition.

The purpose of the lecture was to gather both Muslims and non-Muslims together to learn about the Five Pillars of Islam and the significance of Ramadan.

“We want non-Muslims to learn about the beauty of the Muslim religion,” said Carmenmara Hernandez-Bravo, chair language department. “[And] show just how alike we all are.”
Speakers discussed the Five Pillars of Islam and the importance of fasting during the holy month of Ramadan.

“I like to fast because it’s a way for Muslim people to show that they feel for the pain of the poor and unfortunate,” said Khalifa Alasiri, 19, finance.
A slide show was shown during the lectures with pictures of various mosques around the world.

“The photographs were beautiful,” said Jennifer Brandi, 30, undecided. “I thought it was cool how they talked about making peace between different religions.”

Guest Speakers also gave lectures in Persian, Arabic, Spanish, and English.

“I think I’m one of the few people here that speak all four languages the lectures were given in,” said Waleed Falah, 18, engineering.

Throughout the night, Muslim students elaborated on the meaning and importance of

Ramadan and taught non-Muslims about Islam.

“It was nice getting to meet people of different backgrounds and learning about the holy month of Ramadan,” said Rekea Simmons, 23, communications.

The night ended with a feast of Persian food catered by Hatam Restaurant. Students quickly lined up to enjoy the Mediterranean-style dinner and dessert.