Category : Eid al Fitr

Aura wishes its readers a beautiful Eid! Learn the significance of the festival in this article…

India is a country of numerous festivals associated with various religions. In a multicultural society like India, festivals play a major role in rejuvenating culture, mending relationships, boosting economic activities and bringing smiles to the faces of family members and children. Two major Muslim festivals, Eid Al Fitr and Eid Al Adha, strengthen family and social ties, economic activities, communal harmony, and societal happiness.

Eid Al Fitr, an Arabic word, literally means the festival of breaking the fast. It is celebrated at the end of Ramadan, commemorating the completion of one month of fasting and all other good deeds associated with fasting. It falls on the first day of Shawwal, the 10th month of the lunar year, and at the end of Ramadan, the 9th month of the lunar year.

Global Muslims celebrate Eid al Fitr with many local traditions of the respective region along with many common and uniform practices such as chanting ‘Allahu Akbar’, which means God is Great, additional Eid prayers preferably in Eidgah, an open plain identified for Eid prayer at a convenient place, compulsory charity on behalf of every member of the family to ensure support to the poor and needy on the day of the festival, enjoying special dishes of Eid as per local traditions, wearing good clothes, social and family interactions and various such festivities of the occasion.

Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) said, “There are two occasions to rejoice for a fasting person. An occasion to rejoice while breaking the fast and another occasion when he meets his Lord” (Sahih al-Bukhari 7492). Occasions to rejoice while breaking the fast is the daily moment of opening one’s fast, as well as the final day of Ramadan when a fasting person completes one month of fasting. Fasting in Ramadan is not limited to fasting as it includes a complete month-long practice of goodness. Apart from fasting, a fasting person indulges in many good deeds and charities, refrains from bad deeds and evils, shuns his anger, avoids conflicts, and practices self-restraint in every aspect of life. By the end of the day, when he breaks the fast, a fasting person experiences a sense of accomplishment. This feeling of self-satisfaction is further enhanced when he completes the month of Ramadan. Ramadan surely is a month of reformation that brings positive changes in every fasting person after practising self-restraint and undergoing conscious self-control, building within themselves many good qualities to rejoice in. The second occasion to rejoice is when a fasting person meets his Lord after his death, which is a part of the fundamental Islamic belief that he should reap immense and special rewards promised to the fasting person.

“A Believer is the one whose good deeds make him happy, and his bad deeds will distress him.”(Musnad Ahmad) This Hadith also implies that ‘happiness’ is primarily associated with good deeds and refraining from bad deeds. Eid Al Fitr comes after one of the training periods for global Muslims to accelerate good deeds and diminish bad deeds, providing an important basis on which to rejoice. In contrast, approximately 1.8 billion global Muslims try to add value to the world’s happiness index.

A thorough study on the real basis for happiness by Harvard University with 734 participants worldwide revealed that “positive relationships keep us happier, healthier and help us to live longer”. If we study the essence of the months of Ramadan and Eid Al Fitr, a festival of breaking the fast, more focus is on building positive relationships with family and society. Congregational breaking of the fast in a family or community atmosphere every day, celebrating the Eid festival collectively at the end of the month of Ramadan, and various relationship-building activities unite families and strengthen relationships with society. People spend billions of dollars in the form of Zakath, a compulsory charity during Ramadan, enhancing positive relationships between the rich and the poor. A compulsory charity of any useful things or amount equivalent to the value of approximately 2.5 kilograms of grains on behalf of every member of the family to be distributed before setting out for Eid Prayer also ensures the happiness of scores of unprivileged people in society. Thus, Eid Al Fitr is a festival which enhances happiness in society in a real sense.

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