Audrey Hepburn photographed by Milton H. Greene on the set of War and Peace, 1955.
Ramadan is a time of spiritual reflection, improvement and increased devotion and worship. The fast (sawm) begins at dawn and ends at sunset. In addition to abstaining from eating and drinking, Muslims also increase restraint, such as abstaining from sexual relations and generally sinful speech and behavior. The act of fasting is said to redirect the heart away from worldly activities, its purpose being to cleanse the soul by freeing it from harmful impurities. Ramadan also teaches Muslims how to better practice self-discipline, self-control, sacrifice, and empathy for those who are less fortunate; thus encouraging actions of generosity and compulsory charity (zakat). According to Islam, the thawab (rewards) of fasting are many, but in this month they are believed to be multiplied.
Fairy Tales. George Harcourt (English, 1868-1948). Oil on canvas.
As the younger sister gazes out, holding the next story to be read and with her foot on a stack of other well-read tales, her older sister reads to her. Harcourt chose dusk as the time of day to allow an internal light source to illuminate the open book and the younger child.
Louis-Léopold Boilly, Lady in a White Dress Seated at her Desk
John William Godward,A Congenial Task (Detail) 1915.
English doesn’t do Arabic justice. Arabic is a poetic language. There are words in Arabic that are literally not available in English. Translate a proverb to English and it’s suddenly just a bunch of words just strung together. Translate a poem or song lyrics to English and they sound simple, and it takes away from the poetry of the words. English is the weed in a garden full of flowers when compared to other languages.