Eid Al AdhaIn: General
They repeatedly recite a single call, and proclaim the same slogan. They gather for one purpose and that is to declare their servitude and loyalty to Almighty God alone, freeing themselves from any trace of polytheism and ignorance, in a deeply effective, collective way, which fills the soul with feelings of faith and uniterism. As the Holy Quran proclaims, and the Prophetic traditions bespeak, Hajj is not only worship and a way of getting closer to Almighty God, but it is a way of granting the pilgrim social, educational, economic and political benefits. Combined together, these bounties are conducive to improvement within an Islamic society, increase its awareness, rectify the problems and activate its movements.
During Hajj, Muslims witness the most excellent example of equality, submissiveness and human brotherhood. This is accomplished by removing the outer difference and donning the dress of unity, the ihraam. The result is that all feel a oneness among the human race, brotherhood and equality. While performing Hajj, Muslims feel a oneness with the earth and the people. It invalidates all the artificial boundaries established by human, regional, national and racial superiority complexes and egoism. Travelling across thousands of miles, they penetrate all barriers, and rise above all man-made hurdles, in order to respond to Islam’s call of faith.
During Hajj, Muslims meet each other in a magnificent communion. They relate to each other’s domestic and regional affairs. They consult each other concerning their life and religion. They exchange experiences, opinions and good habits. They become acquainted with each other’s problems. They learn of each other’s viewpoints. This interchanging of ideas increases their awareness, knowledge grows, and the impetus to reform is invigorated. As a result, plans are proposed, projects designed, educational, political, social and economic centres are established. The Muslims support each other, as if they are one body and one soul. Since Hajj is a large and impressive human gathering, it attracts millions of Muslims from different countries. It also stimulates an economic movement which is beneficial to the world of Islam. During Hajj, the pilgrim imbibes ethical and educational lessons which reduce his faults. He acquires patience through hardship. He becomes humble, generous and tender. He renounces lying, backbiting, animosity and pride. He learns from his journey through mixing with others. Within him, positive social tendencies grow and morals are refined.
At the end of Hajj, the pilgrims and Muslims all over the world observe Eid (Festival) to celebrate the spiritual and all the other achievments. This festival is also known as Eid al-Adh-ha meaning ‘the festival of sacrifice’. Muslims are reminded about that great trial, which Prophet Abraham (Peace be on him) was put to, of sacrificing his young son Prophet Ishmael (Peace be on him). He complied to the command of the Almighty God and fully succeeded in it. One of the things that the pilgrims to the house of God do on this day, and so do many Muslims all over the world is to slaughter a lamb, or a sheep, or a goat or a camel. This act is not mere a ritual but has a meaning and a significance. God has not commanded us to sacrifice animals because He is bloodthirsty or meat hungry. The Holy Quran states: “Thus we have disposed them (animals) for your benefit so that you may give thanks.” (22:36 & 37) Then He (SWT) adds: “It is not their flesh or their blood that reaches God. Rather it is your Godwariness that reaches Him. Thus has He disposed them for your benefit so that you may magnify God for His guiding you. And give good news to the virtuous.” The significance of this act is that God wants to remind and train us to follow in the path of Prophet Abraham (Peace be on him)’s sincerity and devotion towards Him.
We wish all Muslims a very Happy Eid.