Once again, the Muslims of the world complete the days of fasting during the holy month of Ramadan wherein they engaged themselves in the offering of Taraweeh prayers, recitation of the Holy Qur’an, giving charity and various acts of worship. These dedicated believers then ask Allah for acceptance and forgiveness of any shortcomings that came about during this holy period. The day of Eid then dawns and it is the occasion to celebrate after all the hard work.
The day of Eid is the day wherein all the Muslims feel happy and express their joy for the blessings of completion of fasting and the ability from Allah upon the fulfillment of one of the greatest commands of Allah. They thank the Lord for the virtues derived and the obedience they were able to display during this month. This is, in reality the most rightful and legitimate joy in Islam. Many enjoyments of this world transpire due to temporary passion, lust and fleeting ambitions, which are generally regarded as reprehensible. This is why Allah states in the Holy Qur’an: “Say in the bounty of Allah, and in His mercy (i.e. Islam and the Qur'an); therein let them rejoice. That is better than what (wealth) they amass.” (Qur’an, 10:58)
In reality the day of Eid is a day of gratitude and remembrance and a day to enjoy a good meal in happiness of this day. This is why it is regarded haram and unlawful to fast on this day. This is the day of the Muslim calendar, when we are the guests of Allah. Fasting on this day is like rejecting the call and invitation of Allah the Almighty.
When the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) arrived for the very first time to Madinah and witnessed the people of Madinah maintaining two days for their celebrations, pleasures and amusement, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) whilst addressing his companions exclaimed
“Verily, Allah has given you in exchange of this, two other days superior then them, the days of Eid Al-Fitr and Eid Al-Adha. Allah has altered those two days of amusement and pleasure to two days of remembrance, gratitude and forgiveness.” (Abu Dawood)
For the believers, in this temporary abode, there are three days of celebration. Each of them approaches us after the completion of some great worship of Islam. There is the Eid of the week, Friday, which comes after the completion of all the daily five prayers of the week. Allah the Almighty has prescribed for the Muslims on this day of the week a congregational prayer wherein all the Muslims of different localities united, gather and listen to the sermon.
Then, is the Eid Al-Fitr which arrives upon the completion of the obligatory fasting of the holy month of Ramadan, which stands as the forth pillar of Islam. They had persevered the trouble of fasting and asked Allah for forgiveness and release from the Hellfire, for verily from amongst the benefits of fasting is the forgiveness from Allah of any previous sin and finally the attaining freedom from the hellfire. When the Muslim world concludes these fasts, Allah rewards them with the blessed day of Eid so that they may gather and thank, remember and praise the Almighty for these great blessings. This day is also the day of reward for all those who fasted. They return to their homes in the state of being forgiven and attaining the pleasure of Allah. The Muslims offer the prayer of Eid as Allah has prescribed in the Holy Qur’an: “Indeed whosoever purifies himself and remembers shall achieve success” (Qur’an, 36:14-15)
Then is the day of Eid Al-Adha that is followed by the offering of the Haj (sacred pilgrimage) being the fifth pillar and one of greatest principles of Islam. In this, we justify that the joy of a Muslim is upon the completion of some sort of worship.
There remains no other celebration in Islam, other than the three discussed above, whether it be the birthday of someone, a national celebration, a festivity of incidents or commemoration of victory, because by doing so, will be an innovation in the pure and completed deen of Allah. This may also be the imitation of the non-believers and polytheist. Many great victories and incidents took place in the history of Islam but the Muslims and in fact the pioneers of Islam (Companions and the pious predecessors) had never celebrated anything nor are there any support for such festivals in the Holy Qur’an or in the teachings and actions of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
We should all be aware that the lawful days of celebration and joy are on the days of Eid, which are awarded to the Muslims. They are not merely events of amusement and pleasures but rather for thanks, gratitude, remembrance of Allah and an occurrence to increase and excel in the obedience of Allah. The Islamic days of joy are unlike the celebrations of the kuffar and nonbelievers, which are programmed for pride, becoming drunk, behaving like animals etc.
Our day’s of joy should signify humbleness, and be a means for us Muslims to draw nearer to our lord Allah upon the completion of fasting and giving of charity and other righteous deeds. The fortunate one, on this auspicious day of Eid, is not the one who wears new flashy garments and fills the belly with different courses of food and delights or rattles some jokes and words of laughter. But, in reality, the fortunate on this day of Eid is the one whose fasts and prayers are accepted and is forgiven for his faults and sins. The one who offers the prayer of Eid after the completion of fasts and returns from the prayer hall reaping the rewards from Allah.
We as Muslims, should develop the fear of Allah and comprehend the prominence of this day of Eid and for what reason it has been stipulated and what has been prescribed for this day and take heed from the passing of these Eids and remember the moments of death and understand that the only code of life which will lead us to success is the way demonstrated to us by the final Prophet and Messenger of Allah Muhammad (peace be upon him), for verily Allah the Almighty says: “And whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted of him, and in the hereafter he will be one of the losers.” (Qur’an, 3: 84)
n Courtesy of ccmt.jucanada.org