THE KARAITE ISRAEL MOSQUE OF ASCENSION
AND THE TEMPLE OF KEDAR MINISTRIES
(The Original Kedar-Rite of the Karaim)
WHY WE FAST FROM 6AM TO 6PM
According to the Madhab(School) of the Isawiyya the Koranic decree of Fasting from Sunrise to Sunset is always observed from 6AM to 6PM. This stands in sharp contrast to that which is traditionally practiced by most Sunni Muslims who observe fasting from the literal time of Sunrise to Sunset in the various parts of the world. Within the observance of the latter the amount of hours required to Fast varies according to geographical location,Time Zones and Seasons, while those of the former consistently and justly observe a 12 hour Fast regardless of the environmental factors mentioned above. The problem with the Sunni practice is twofold:
1. It is unjust in the fact that it requires Muslims in different parts of the world to Fast for varying amounts of time.For example a Muslim living at the Equator would always Fast for 12 hours a day, while a Muslim living on the East Coast of the United States during a year in which Ramadan fell in December would only be required to Fast for approximately 9 hours. In many regions of Scandanavia that are South of the Arctic Circle there are only 2-4 hours of sunlight during the winter indicating that the Fasting requirement would only be 2-4 hours as well.
2. According to the Sunni Rite there are times when Fasting can not be observed at all in locations North of the Arctic Circle which includes parts of the United States(Alaska), Canada, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. This is due to the fact that these locations experience periods of 24 hours of darkness during the winter and during the Summer there are periods with 24 hours of continuous Sunlight. For example in Barrow Alaska there is a two month winter period in which the Sun does not rise at all. In the Summer the same Alaskan City experiences an 85 day period of continuous daylight. If Koranic decrees cannot be applied in certain regions then Islam could not possibly be a commissioned universal religion! However we know that it is!
In order to understand the true Islamic answer to this dilemma it is imperative that the problem is understood and addressed from the root. The root of the problem that we are discussing is an imbalance in the ratio of light to darkness and darkness to light.
It is known that Allah masterfully created everything in Perfect Balance.The perfectly balanced ratio of light to darkness would be 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness.This is the center of balance and is the standard at the Equator which is the center of the earth. At the Equator it is always 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness. At one time all of the continents were one land mass at the Equator.This was called in scientific terms, Pangea.
When the continents divided they drifted from the Equator and fell from the 12 hour balance,while those lands that remained at the Equator still experience the balance of 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness. The imbalance varied from continent to continent with land extending North of the Arctic Circle being the most extremely effected thereby experiencing both 24 hour periods of darkness and 24 hour periods of continuous Sunlight.
The entire earth experiences the perfect balance between light and darkness just prior to the Spring Equinox and just after the Fall Equinox.The perfect balance between the 12 hours of light and the 12 hours of darkness is known as the Spring and Fall Equilux.The perfectly balanced 12 hour ratio of light to darkness of the Equilux only appears twice a year( outside of the Equator) and therefore the true center of balance which we need to use as the standard in correcting all areas of imbalance is the PERFECT Balance at the Equator where it is always LIGHT FROM 6AM TO 6PM. In this regard the Holy Quran mentions that there are TWO PERIODS OF LIGHT. THIS IS COUNTED FROM 6AM TO 12PM AND 12PM TO 6PM. THE TWO PERIODS OF LIGHT ARE PERFECTLY BALANCED AS ALLAH IS PERFECT IN HIS CREATION.
SURAH 11:114 HOLY KORAN (H.K.)
' And keep up prayer in the TWO PARTS OF THE DAY '
CORRECTING THE IMBALANCE:
The Islamic scholars have not provided a unanimously agreed upon Fard solution or ruling for the dilemma of Ramadzan Fasting in those locations North of the Arctic Circle which are experiencing 24 hours of light or 24 hours of darkness during the month of Ramadzan but one of the "Sunnah solutions" is called AQRAB AL-BILAD.
AQRAB AL- BILAD States:
That if you are living in a place in which light cannot be distinguished from darkness then you are to go by the timing of the nearest place where the distinction is visible. What this ruling implies is that because of the extreme imbalance of the ratio of light to darkness, that one is to disregard the visible identifiers of which all other Muslims are accountable and simply follow the timing of another location. The fact of the matter is that any place outside of the Equator is subject to the same imbalance but to varying degrees. The solution of looking to another place for a more balanced ratio of light to darkness cannot only apply to those places North of the Arctic Circle but must apply to all places that experience an imbalance to whatever degree. The alternative place can only be the one place that maintains the perfect balance which is the Equator where 12 hours of light occurs between 6AM and 6 PM.
IN THE NEW TESTAMENT JESUS STATES THAT THERE ARE 12 HOURS IN A DAY.THIS IS THE PERFECT BALANCE OF LIGHT and DARKNESS WHICH IS 6AM TO 6 PM.
JOHN 11:9 NEW TESTAMENT (N.T.)
' Are there not twelve hours in a day.'
The Messiah Jesus(Isa) Christ understood that there were exactly 12 hours in a day and that a Fast Day would be from 6AM TO 6PM!
The New Testament Book of Mark lets us know that in the 9th hour Jesus cried out in terrible agony:
MARK 15:34 (N.T.)
' And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou Spared me?
Most Christian scholars have determined that the terrible 9th hour took place at 3PM. This conclusion was based on the understanding that a Day began at 6AM and therefore the 9th hour would be 3PM.
THE 6AM TO 6PM FASTING TIME REPRESENTS COMPLETE SUBMISSION TO ALLAH IN RECOGNIZING HIS PERFECTLY BALANCED CREATION.THE EQUATOR IS THE CENTER OF BALANCE IN TERMS OF SUNLIGHT AND IS OUR GUIDE FOR FASTING AND PRAYER TIMES!