Samar Jarrah of Port Charlotte, Florida describes the benefits she sees in experiencing Ramadan in the United States:
I just got back from Jordan…and my family was telling me, Why can’t you just stay a bit longer and spend a week of Ramadan in Jordan or in Egypt? And I said, You will never understand this, but the best Ramadan I ever spend in my life is always in America. Because I feel sometimes that I am the only person fasting, it’s more strenuous, I feel like every day is a jihad for me – a struggle to maintain my faith, to maintain my fast despite the amazing food around me and the smells. If I go shopping or if I go to the mall, there is food everywhere. Everybody’s eating except myself and this brings me amazing strength. And I wake up very early in the morning. I can be lecturing. I can be driving to my class – a hundred miles each way. I can be feeding the homeless. I can be doing amazing stuff that I would not be doing if I were living in a Muslim country, because the whole country would be fasting and I would be one of many.