This article from the Yemen Times celebrates Islam’s influential role in Western society, in particular that of Great Britain.
When mentioning Ramadhan, most attention is focused on Muslims of the Middle East or Southeast Asia. What is forgotten is how the millions of Muslims in the western world spend this holy month of Ramadhan. Here, we will put the light on Britain and the beauty of Islam during this precious month.
The major Muslim migration to Britain began from the mid-nineteenth century. Yemeni’s were the first group of migrants who arrived in the ports of Cardiff, Liverpool, and London. At the beginning of the migration a language barrier existed and was a serious issue that Yemeni’s faced. Therefore many misunderstandings between Yemeni and British citizens existed. Nowadays Muslims from over 75 countries live in Britain, most of which are from the sub-continent of India and Pakistan. Many places in Britain are also loaded with the presence of Muslims from Tunisia, Morocco, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and many other countries. The Muslim population is estimated to reach over 5 million in the present day. Cities with the biggest Muslim population are London, Birmingham, Liverpool, Sheffield, Manchester, and Bradford.
The fast growth of Muslims in Britain has created a greater chance for British people to learn more about Islam. In the early days of migration, Muslims had to call foreign Imams (Muslim scholars) to run local mosques, and teach their children basic Islamic education. These days native Muslims are replacing many foreign Imams for this post.
People from all age groups flock local mosques to learn more about Islam. Special classes for Quranic recitation are available in almost every mosque. Lessons in Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) are also given during the afternoon period of the day. For those who want to learn more about Arabic, classes are also available. Many mosques open their doors to Non-Muslims who would like to learn more about the beauty of Islam from within, and the love and brotherhood it calls for. Many British citizens embrace Islam during this great month of Ramadhan, for they see the reality of Islam and what it teaches. An estimated 16% of Muslims in Britain are English (native Britain’s).
Most of Britain’s Arabs live around Edgware Road, in the heart of London. This street is filled with Arab culture as many Arab restaurants and cafes are available. Most shops on this street are open 24hrs a day. When walking on this Arab culture rich street of London, you will feel that you are spending Ramadhan in a Middle Eastern country and not in Europe.
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