The Feast… OUR FEAST!

THE FEAST… OUR FEAST

 

 

The Two `Eids and their Significance

Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, and peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and upon all his family and companions.

Definition of `Eid

The Arabic word “Eid” refers to something habitual, that returns and is repeated, thus stands literally for a recurrent event. It also implies a place often visited by people, and the period of time in which a particular act is regularly performed. Likewise, each gathering that assembles regularly comes under the category, ‘Eid’. Some scholars say that it derives from `aadah (custom or practice) because people are accustomed to celebrating it. Its plural is a`yaad. 

Ibn ul `Arabee said: 

“It is called `Eid because it returns every year with renewed happiness.” [Lisaan ul-`Arab] 

Ibn `Aabidayn said: 

“The `Eid days are thus named because Allah (swt) renews His bounties in them; and He distributes His blessings to His worshippers. Thus on `Eid ul-Fitr, He permits them to eat after having been restrained from food; and He requires paying sadaqat ul-fitr (the charity of breaking the fast) to the needy. And on `Eid ul-Adha, He permits the completion of Hajj (pilgrimage) with the final Tawaaf (circulating around al-Ka`bah); and He requires offering sacrifices and distributing their meat, etc. Also, it is customary for people to be joyful, happy, and rejoicing during the `Eid days.” [Haasheeyatu ibn `Aabidayn]

The Unbelievers’ Religious Festivals

There are numerous religious festivals and fairs of the unbelievers. Islam prohibits the Muslims to celebrate their festivals and fairs. The Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had prohibited his companions from sports and enjoyment on two particular days on which the pre-Islamic Arabs used to hold sports. Likewise, he forbade them to sacrifice their animals at the places where the polytheists used to celebrate their festivals.

The festivals of the kaafir nations may be connected to worldly matters, such as the beginning of the year, the start of an agricultural season, the changing of the weather, the establishment of a state, the accession of a ruler, and so on. They may also be connected to religious occasions, like many of the festivals belonging exclusively to the Jews and Christians, such as the Thursday on which they claim the table was sent down to Jesus, Christmas, New Year’s, Thanksgiving, and holidays on which gifts are exchanged. These are celebrated all over the world nowadays, some so-called Muslims join in these holidays, out of ignorance or hypocrisy. 

Muslims are strictly prohibited from joining these religious festivals of the People of the Book and other unbelievers on two grounds; (1): it represents a resemblance to the unbelievers and (2): these are acts of innovations. All such festivals and fairs which have come into vogue as a result of innovation are to be treated in the same way, whether these resemble the practice of the unbelievers or not.

Muslims’ Innovated Religious Festivals

Al-Raghaib: it is the first Thursday and the following Friday night of the month of Rajab celebrated by ignorant Muslims. There is no evidence of this ceremony from the Glorious Quran and Sunnah of the Prophet (SAW). According to Shaikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, it was first introduced after the 4th century A.H. A fabricated hadeeth is presented in support of this practice.

Salaat Umm Daadoo: A prayer which is offered in the middle of the month of Rajab. A particular day is set apart and a specific prayer is offered on this day.

‘Eid Khum Ghadeer: The Baatinis have their own festivals too, such as “Eid al-Ghadeer”, when they claim that the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam gave the khilaafah to ‘Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) and to the twelve imams after him. It is the name of place where the Prophet had delivered a sermon on 18 th Thul-Hijjah. This report is based on Hadeeth narrated by Zayd ibn Arqam which is collected by Imaam Muslim in Sahih Muslim: vol. 4, p. 1286, no.5920. Shaykh Imaam ibn Taymeeyah said in regards to this hadeeth in his book Iqtidaa as Siratil Mustaqeem: “the misguided people have, however, effected certain interpolations into this report. They even claim that the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had clearly commanded that ‘Ali be appointed the Caliph and had seated him at an elevated place. …”. He further said: ” We are not concerned here with the issue of Imaamah. Our objection lies in declaring that it is an innovation to regard this particular day as a special day.” 

And many many other different festivals have cropped up.

These festivals and fairs of the people of the book or unbelievers or similar festivals introduced by Muslims are all innovations and every Muslim should avoid them to protect his faith. All kaafir or innovated festivals are haraam, such as Independence Day celebrations, anniversaries of revolutions, holidays celebrating trees or accessions to the throne, birthdays, Labour Day, the Nile festival, Shimm al-Naseem (Egyptian spring holiday), teachers’ day, and al-Milad al-Nabawi (Prophet’s Birthday).

Every Muslim must consider the following saying of the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam very seriously, Jaabir reported that the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam used to deliver his sermon with this opening:

“The best word is the Book of Allah and the best way is that of Muhammad (SAW). The worst deed is innovation and each innovation is a deviation from Islaam.” [Sahih Muslim: (vol. 2, p. 410, no. 1885).]

There is an additional remark in Sunan An-Nasaaee:

“Every deviation from Islaam leads to Hell-fire”. [Sunan Nasa’i: English Translation: (vol. 2, pp. 343-4, no. 1581.)]

‘Aayshah reported that the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Whoever does an act which is not in agreement with our faith, such an act is rejected.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari: (vol. 3, no. 861.).]

There is another report by her with different wordings:

“Whoever invents something in our faith which does not originally exist, has nothing to do with us.” [ Sahih Muslim: (vol. 3, p. 931, nos. 4266-7).]

‘Irbaad ibn Saariyah reported that the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Whoever survives me would observe many differences. However, you should follow my sunnah and that of my rightly guided caliphs. Adhere to it firmly. Beware! Avoid innovation, for each innovation is a deviation from Islaam.” [Sunan Abu Dawud: (vol. 3, p. 1294, no. 4590).] 

Islamic ‘Eids

Muslims must celebrate only three ‘Eids:

  1. ‘Eid-ul-Fitr,
  2. ‘Eid-ul-Adh-haa,
  3. Friday is the day of ‘Eid for Muslims

These three `Eids are exclusively for the Muslims, and that it is not permissible for Muslims to imitate the kuffaar and mushrikeen in anything that is a distinctive part of their celebrations, whether it be food, dress, bonfires or acts of worship.

Significance of Muslims’ ‘Eids

Anas (radhiAllahu `anhu) reported that upon arriving in al-Madinah, the Prophet (sallAllahu `alayhi wa sallam) found its people celebrating two days whose significance was held over the Jaahiliyyah. The Prophet (sallAllahu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “When I came upon you, you had two days that you continued to celebrate from the Jaahiliyyah; indeed Allah has substituted them for you with what is better: the day of Sacrifice and the day of Fitr (breaking the fast).” [Ahmad, Abu Dawud and others; authentic]

Shaykh Ahmad `Abdurrahmaan al-Banna said: “(They are better because,) they day of Sacrifice and that of Fitr are legislated by Allah (subhaanahu wa ta`aalaa), and are His choice for His creatures. They follow the completion of two of the greatest pillars of Islam, Hajj and fasting. On these days, Allah (swt) forgives those who performed Hajj and who fasted, and He sheds mercy on all of His obedient creatures. On the other hand, the days of Nayrooz and Mihrajaan were devised by the people of those times, because of good weather or other passing qualities. The difference between the two cases is apparent for whomever ponders upon this.” [Al-Fath ur-Rabbani]

‘Aayshah reported that the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:

“For every people there is a feast and this is our feast.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari: (vol. 5, no. 268).]

“Our feast” has a great meaning to Muslims because it tells us that our feasts are our own and derived from our Sharee‘ah alone. Holidays are usually based on religious traditions. It is very important that we demonstrate our celebrations with great joy and gathering, and observe them in such a way that distinguishes us from the Mushrikeen. The Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has ordered us in numerous speeches to defy the Mushrikeen, and these ‘Eids are among what the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam wanted us to take special care of. That is why he has said, after seeing that the people of Madeenah had two holidays which they celebrated from before Islaam, which is reported by Anas ibn Maalik that the Prophet Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said,

“Allah has given you better than those feasts: the ‘Eid-ul-Adh-haa (Feast of Sacrificing), and ‘Eid-ul-Fitr (feast of Breaking the fast).” [Sunan An-Nasaaee: English translation: (vol. 2, p.333, no. 1559), Sunan Abu Dauwud: English translation: (vol. 1, p.293, no. 1130). It is authenticated by Shaykh Al-Albaanee in Saheeh Sunan Aboo Daawood: vol. 1, p. 210, no.1004.] 

Due to these clear facts, Muslim scholars put great emphasis on the concept of being different from the Mushrikeen in our ceremonies. This is because ceremonies have great effects over the human mind and behavior. Being different in our ceremonies means too that we must not participate in the Mushrikeen’s ceremonies on their holidays. It is mentioned in Sunan Al-Bayhaqee the statement of ‘Umar that, he said, “Do not learn the language of the Mushrikeen without a necessity nor enter the churches of Mushrikeen on their festivals because the anger of Allah dissends on them then”. Muslims should not celebrate their festivals instead they should oppose them. Muslims can fast on the Mushrikeen’s holidays.

The purpose behind the `Eid Prayer

Islam exhorts its followers to make social life a visible expression of God-consciousness. Prayer is the most effective means of fostering this virtue in man. This is the reason why it has been made essential for Muslims to observe obligatory prayers in congregation. It starts with five daily prayers then Jumu‘ah is a step forward in this respect, then comes ‘Eids prayers and then once a year the Hajj. The purpose behind it is to provide opportunities to a greater number of Muslims to attend larger congregations in an atmosphere of religious piety. Apart from prayer, the sermon has also been made an integral part of this gathering and the prayer.

Allah says: “Say-O Muhammad-if you love Allah follow me, Allah will love you.” [Aali ‘Emraan: 31.]

A Muslim is required to follow the teachings of the Messenger of Allah, SallAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam before going to the ‘Eid prayer. It is of great importance to follow the Sunnah of ‘Eid so we can truly say that our feasts are different from the Mushrikeen’s feasts.

Eating on the two ‘Eids

It is a sunnah to eat dates before leaving for ‘Eid-ul-Fitr. It is preferable not to eat anything on the day of ‘Eid-ul-Adh-haa until performing the ‘Eid prayer in the morning; then one should return home, slaughter an animal, and prepare the meal and eat from it. For ‘Eidul Fitr, it is a sunnah to eat an odd number of dates before going to pray salaatul ‘Eid while for ‘Eidul adh-haa the eating should be delayed until one returns from the ‘Eid prayer and then he may eat of his sacrifice if he has sacrificed an animal.

Anas reports:

“The Prophet would not go out on the festival of breaking the fast until he had eaten an odd number of dates.” [This is related by Sahih al-Bukhari: vol. 2, no.73.]

Buraidah reports: “The Prophet would not go out on the day of breaking the fast (‘Eidul Fitr) until he had eaten and on the day of sacrifice (‘Eidul adh-haa) he would not eat until he had returned [from salah].” This is related by at-Tirmithee and Ibn Majah, and also by Sunan Ad-Daaramee who added: “And he would eat from his sacrifice.” [Sharhus Sunnah: vol. 4, p. 306]

How One can say Takbeeraat?

These takbeeraat can be made in many different forms. The most authentic form is that which has been recorded with a sahih chain by ‘Abdurrazzaaq from Salmaan, who said: “They made takbeeraat with: ‘Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar kabeera.”‘ From ‘Umar and ibn Mas’ood the following is related: “Allahu akbar. Allahu akbar. La ilaha ill Allah. Allahu akbar. Allahu akbar wa lillahil-hamd.

Translation: Allah is the greatest, Allah is the greatest. There is no God but Allah. Allah is the greatest, Allah is the greatest. All praise belongs to Allah. [See Sharhussunnah: vol. 4, pp. 301. See Zaadul Ma’aad: vol. 1, p. 449.]

On the day of `Eid, there are some Sunnah acts that we should do, here is what the Prophet used to do on the day of `Eid, May Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him:

  • Rise early in the morning. Engage in takbeer (saying “Allahu Akbar“) from fajr until the imam comes out for salah. Takbeer is recommended for males, females, young and old.
  • Take a full bath. Clean the teeth.
  • Wear the best clothes you have. Appear in the best clean clothes dress that you can afford to, that are reasonable and modest. Wear perfume.
  • Eat something sweet like dates before leaving home.
  • Go to the `Eid prayer location very early. (The Prophet used to offer `Eid prayer in the central location, that is not to offer it in a mosque of a locality without any legitimate excuse.)
  • The Prophet used to go to the `Eid Prayer location by one route and return through another route. He used to go for `Eid on foot. He used to chant slowly on the way to the `Eid prayer location the following words: “Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Laa ilaaha illallahu Wallahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Wa lillahil Hamd.“ (Translation: Allah is the greatest, He is the greatest. There is no god except Allah. He is the greatest. All praises and thanks are for Him.)
  • The Prophet used to give zakatul fitr before the `Eid day. But if you have not done so please give now before the `Eid. Giving just before `Eid is ok but against the spirit and the purpose of it. Ideally, it should be given in advance so that the poor can enjoy their `Eid. 
  • Meet and greet. Wish every one the joy of `Eid and show true signs of Islamic brotherhood by shaking hands and embracing and supplicating: “Taqabal Allahu Minna wa Minkum” (May Allah accept it from us and you).
  • Exchange gifts. It is also considered a good Islamic practice to visit one another and exchange gifts. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Exchange gifts in order to foster love.”
  • Show generosity. Remember the true spirit of `Eid is reflected in our extreme generosity to the poor and the needy. So, be charitable as best as you can.
  • Seek pardon and acceptance. Make lots of istighfar (asking Allah for forgiveness) and pray that Allah accept our fast, prayers and devotion, and may He grant the Muslim community glory and success.

SINNING ON `EIDS 

There are many sins and acts of disobedience practiced by some Muslims more frequently during the `Eid days than at other times of the year. To them, the `Eid is an occasion to give up some of the Islamic principles. They are usually encouraged to do so by the state of joy that they experience during the `Eids. 

Mingling of Sexes 

One of the frequently practiced acts of disobedience is for men and women who are not mahrams (those prohibited to marry each other) to mingle and do things prohibited in Islam, such as: 

  • Touching and shaking hands
  • Men and women chatting, laughing, and sometimes flirting with each other.
  • Men and women looking intently at each other. 

Playing Music and Drinking Alcohol 

It is very common for people to play music and listen to it during the `Eid. they often associate this with drinking, or with national or belly dancing, all in the name of Islam! All of this is prohibited by concensus among the early scholars including the Four Imams. The Prophet (saws) said: 

“There will be among my Ummah those who would indulge in hir (unlawful sex), wearing silk (for men), Khamr (any alocoholic beverage), and musical instruments. Some of those people would camp beside a mountain. A poor shepher tending their animals would come to them in the evening asking for a need of his. They would say, “Come back tomorrow.” So Allah would destroy (most of) them during the night, bringing the mountain down over them, and would transform others to apes and pigs until the day of Resurrection.” [al-Bukhari #5590, Abu Dawud. Authenticated by Ibn Hajar through nine chains] 

Improper Appearance 

Muslims are supposed to dress up for the `Eid. In doing so, however, both men and women commit many violations in Islam, among which are the following: 

  • Men wearing natural silk or gold.
  • Men wearing tight pants 
  • Men shaving their beards.
  • Women exposing their hair and other parts of their bodies that Islamically are obligatory to cover
  • Women wearing perfumes, makeup, decorated and alluring clothing, and some national costumes (Sari for example) that contradict Islamic teachings. 

Extravagance 

People often spend extravagantly during the `Eid. They waste money on things that are useless and of no benefit for the Muslims. Allah ta`aala says: “Do not waste your wealth senselessly. Those who spend wastefully are the brothers of the Shaytans; and the Shaytan is ever ungrateful to his Lord.” [Qur’an 17:26-7] 

And Allah’s Messenger (saws) said: “A son of Adam will not depart from his position (of reckoning) before his Lord on the day of Resurrection until he is questioned about four things:

  • His lifetime – how did he pass it,
  • his body – how did he utilize it,
  • his wealth – where did he earn it, and how did he spend it
  • and his knowledge – what did he do with it.” [authentic hadith related by At-Tirmidhi]


Finally… the Reward!

Wish you all in Islam.. `Eid Mubarak!! May Allah accept all our acts of worship, our dua, dhikr, quran[recitation], taraweeh, qiyam….

May Allah accept our sajood, our ruku, all of our salat…

May Allah allow us to witness [have witnessed] Lailat-ul-Qadr during the blessed days of this month, and May Allah clear our book of sins this Ramadan… AMEEN!

I wish to all the Muslim Ummah a Happy `Eid-ul-Fitr.

I hope this Ramadan has been beneficial for all of us and that our actions and our character improved. Just hope and wish that the good habits that we’ve adopted during the month of Ramadan, we continue with them for the rest of the year. Ameen.

Taqabbal Allahu minnaa wa minkum. (May Allah accept [the fast and worship] from us and from you)

`EID MUBARAK TO ALL!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email