A Non-Muslim on the Shore of Islam: Can He Fast Ramadan?

Question and answer details
I've just started to study and learn Islam. I have not yet decided to convert. Is it OK for a non-Muslim like me, in an attempt to learn more about Islam, to practice rituals such as Prayer and fasting Ramadan?
Muhammad Muhammad Abu Laylah

In The Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

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Dear questioner, we implore Allah from the depth of our hearts to guide you to Islam and strengthen your feet along the path of truth.

We greatly appreciate your enthusiasm in trying to know about Islam. Indeed, your brief question indicates that your way of thinking is good and sound, and that your nature is good because it is in tune with the truth and ready to accept it. Allah Almighty says: (Allah’s Fitrah (i.e. Allah’s Islamic Monotheism) with which He has created mankind…) (Ar-Rum 30: 30)

Really, we congratulate you for this good start and for opening your heart to Islam, and for wanting to learn about it!

Responding to your question, Dr. Muhammad M. Abu Laylah, Professor of Islamic Studies and Comparative Religions at Al-Azhar University, states the following:

As Muslims, we consider you a brother as a Muslim by intention. Good intention is a basis in Islam. Islam is a religion for all humanity at large. It is not limited to any particular nation or location or time.

It is always good and highly appreciated by Allah to try your best to know the truth and then to adhere to it.

Allah will definitely help you and guide you to come to the light of Islam. Until you are practically a Muslim, we advise you to practice Islam.

Don’t worry about this, but, in fact, practicing Islam will help you spiritually and psychologically to receive by your heart what you are trying to know by your mind about Islam.

You can fast Ramadan with Muslims, attend prayer at the Mosque, share with Muslims in their iftar in the Mosque, and visit some Muslims. This will put you in the climate of Islam and help you feel it. If you would like to say La ilah illa Allah ‘There is no god but Allah’ with your heart and tongue, then you are a complete Muslim.

Islam is a very easy and forward religion, though it is very rich and deep. It offers mankind what helps them in this world as well as in the Hereafter. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

May Allah support and guide you, Amen.

Allah Almighty knows best.