Some Muslims started their month-long fast called Ramadan Monday. Others begin it today. Usually, the world's Muslims can agree on when to start Ramadan, but cloudy weather impeded the sighting for the new cresent moon, which marks the beginning of the holiday. Observant Muslims fast from dawn till dusk, even abstaining from water. They break their fast each night. Some Muslims prepare for the month by weaning themselves off certain foods they like ahead of time. They end it all with the Eid al-Fitr festival, a joyous time when big meals are a focus.
Ramadan commemorates the prophet Muhammed receiving the Quran, the holiest book in Islam. In celebration, many Muslims recite the entire Quran during the month.
It's a good time to give a shout out to your Muslim friends, as New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg did today.