Muslim Festivals, Festivals of Muslims Religion
Islamic festivals are celebrated by Muslims. Islam was founded in the 7th century by Prophet Muhammad. Islam is the
second largest religion in the world. The Arabic word “Islam” means compliance. Muslims believe that Prophet Muhammad is the final messenger from God.
It is said that the major goal of a Muslim’s life is to live in a way to please Allah. So Muslim people celebrate many festivals all round the year, you can get information on some of them here. All the famous Muslim festivals are celebrated with religious excitement in India.
Ramzan takes a special place in Muslim calendar of events. So Holiday is declared in schools, factories and government offices, on this occasion of Islamic festival Ramadan.
The Five Pillars of Islam are:
SHAHADAH : Faith – “There is no god except Allah; Muhammad is the messenger of Allah”.
SALAH: Prayer – Praying five times a day.
ZAKAH: Donate – Each year, Muslims are supposed to donate a fixed proportion of their savings for good activities.
SAWM: Fasting – Fasting during the month of Ramadan.
HAJJ: Pilgrimage – Making a pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in the lifetime of a Muslim, if it is reasonable.
Some of the Muslim festivals are Ramadan, ‘Id al-Fitr, Hajj, Muharram, ‘Id al-Adha, Milad-an-Nabi, ‘Ashura, Lailatul Bara ‘at, Lailatul Mi’raj and Muharram.
Ramadan – an Important Month
The Ramadan festival is celebrated in the month of Ramadan, the ninth month of the Muslim year. Ramadan is one of the most important months in the Islamic calendar because the Quran was shown to Muhammad. The Battle of Badr took place during this month. It spread of Islam to Mecca.
Every Muslim over twelve years of age is required to fast during Ramadan. Eating, drinking, and smoking are prohibited between morning and evening. A meal is eaten before sunrise and after sunset the fast is broken with a meal called iftar. It represents that how the poor people live without food or water. Muslims keeps fast during Ramadan because God has asked them to do so. Giving of food and aid to the poor during this time is one way to remember this special night.
‘Id al-Fitr – The Month of Fasting
‘Id al-Fitr is celebrated at the end of the Ramadan (The month of fasting). This festival occurs during the first day of the tenth month Shawwal. On this day houses are decorated, gifts and cards are sent to neighbors friends and relatives. At the early morning eId prayers are said. Women and children form home are also included in this prayer time. Children receive gifts during Id ul- Fitr. On this day people come together for a special lunch. Muslims usually give zakat (charity) on the occasion.
Hajj – Muslim Pilgrimage
The Mecca Pilgrimage is under taken by Muslim men and women only once during a lifetime. It is a place of worship where Muslims from all over the world to get together in brotherhood. The Hajj takes place during the Islamic month of Dhul-Hijjah it is the last month. The people do not take more than five days in Mecca. The Hajj is for those who can afford it. Every Muslim has to wear white gown to Mecca. Each pilgrim must circle the Ka’ba seven times. The Ka’ba was built by Abraham for the purpose of worshiping one God. The hair must be shaved or trimmed as the rites of Hajj.
‘Id al-Adha – Means Sacrifice
This festival is celebrated during the Islamic month of Hajj. Id al- Adha is known as the festival of sacrifice. The day is begun with common prayers. The sacrifice of animals is carried out on this day. On this day school, universities, government offices and private sector are closes for three days so that they can celebrate Id al Adha. On this day Muslims sacrifice a sheep or goat to the God. The meat of sheep or goat is divided into three portions firstly for the poor, secondly for friends and relatives and lastly for the family members. Special gifts and clothes are purchased for this day. Id Al-Adha is celebrated at the end of Hajj.
Milad-an- Nabi is the celebration of Muhammad’s birthday on 20 August. This is held on the 12th day of Rabi’al-Awwal, the third month. All Muslims do not celebrate this festival and because many scholars are actually against the celebration of the Prophet’s birthday and consider it bid’ah (innovation).
Lailatul Bara ‘at – Forgiveness
Lailatul Bara ‘at occurs on the 14 of Sha’baan, the eighth month on the Islamic calendar. Lailatul Bara ‘at is Known as Forgiveness. On this day Muslims offer extra prayers, read the Quran and awake the entire night to carry out the tasks. The people prepared special foods and sweets on this day money are given to children during this festival.
Lailatul Mi’raj – Rise into Heaven
Lailatul Mi’raj is the celebration Muhammad’s rise into Heaven. Lailatul Mi’raj takes place on the 27th day of Rajab, the seventh month of the Islamic year. On this day religious prayers and discussions of the Prophet’s life are held to remember the event.
Ashura – Tenth
Ashura is celebrated on the 10th day of Muharram, the first month of the lunar calendar. Ashura is an Arabic word means “tenth”. Ashura is celebrated only by the Shiites. On this day the fasting is done for two days during Ashura and the day after. The people provide a special meal and are served on end the fast.
Muharram – Islamic New Year
Muharram is the Muslim’s New Year’s celebration. Muharram is one of their main festivals which fall on the first Muslim month. This festival is celebrated on the 1st day of Muharram. It is celebrated by greetings exchanged to each other and one tries to bring their lives closer to the tradition of Islam.