jq-abstract

2014

Issue . 59
P. 12
Features
Laylat al-Qadr
ABSTRACT

Shu‘fat, 24 July 2014

Before I came to live in Palestine I wasn’t very familiar with the traditions of Ramadan. Laylat al-Qadr in particular I knew nothing about. Occurring a few days before the end of Ramadan, it commemorates the first revelation of the Qur’an. This evening is normally a time for family gatherings, with children’s excitement mounting as Eid al-Fitr draws closer and sweets such as qamr al-din and al-halabi served. We would gather around my father-in-law, listening to his stories about how heaven could open up to your prayers on this special night and wondrous things happen. Venturing into the city late in the evening, one would find crowds of people and many peddlers selling everything from sweets and nuts to socks and kitchen utensils, while boy scout bands played and marched in the main streets.