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Muslims Advised Against Excessive Social Networking

A senior Russian Islamic cleric Monday advised Muslims to avoid excessive messaging on social networks in order to remember to pray five times a day and perform other duties during the holy month of Ramadan.

The ninth month of the Islamic calendar, which this year runs from Tuesday (July 9) to August 7, Ramadan is marked by fasting during daylight hours and is considered a time for spiritual reflection and increased devotion.

"If a person is moderate in doing this [using the Internet, especially social networks], then, I hope, it won't be a problem," the deputy chairman of the Russian Council of Muftis said at a press conference dedicated to the start of the holy month.

"But if a person abuses it, he will miss regular prayers and other rites, and, of course, it will be difficult for him," Mufti Rushan Abbyasov said.

The Russian Orthodox Church issued a similar call before Lent began in March.

Church spokesman Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin at the time criticized the Internet as a source of "too much unnecessary information." He noted that "giving up excessive information is as important as abstaining from certain food and drinks."

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