Mohammed incorporated many Jewish traditions into his message hoping to convince the Jews that he was a true prophet. Many of the religious terms and practices observed by Muslims today come from Hebrew or Aramaic terms that were in use among the Jews at the time. Ramadan, the Muslim fast that falls in the season between spring and summer, is Islam’s version of Israel’s Yom Kippur, though they miss the main point.
Mohammed was in close contact and heavily influenced by affluent Jews of Arabia who accounted for much of the population of al-Madinah (Medina), the first Islamic society, among whose residents were the ancestors of today’s Yemenite Jews in Israel.
Fast of Ramadan
Ramadan is the name of the month during which Muslims fast from sunrise to sundown. The fast is known as the sawm, which is the same word in Hebrew for fast, tzom. Islam bases this custom on a reference in the Koran to keeping “the fast...