Ramadan 2021 is about to end. Muslims across the globe will celebrate Eid al Fitr (alternatively spelled as Eid ul Fitr/ Id al Fitr) this week to mark the end of Islam’s holiest month. As mentioned in our previous blogs, Ramadan, the nine-month of the Islamic lunar calendar, lasts for 29 to 30 days, depending on the sighting of the moon. Eid al Fitr is celebrated during the first three days of Shawwal, the 10th month of the lunar Islamic calendar. Also known as ‘Festival of Breaking Fast’, Eid is one of the most important occasions in Islam.
Muslims ready themselves for the joyous occasion of Eid by performing the ritual cleansing of Wudhu (ablution) or Ghusl (full-body ablution). Since Islam places a special emphasis on being clean and presentable, Muslims don their best clothes and wear special perfumes or ‘ittar’ on the occasion.
Celebrations begin with Muslims offering congregational Eid al Fitr prayers at mosques or large open spaces known as Eidgahs.
Eid al Fitr prayers consist of two units or Rakat. These are offered with Niyyah (intention) of offering two Rakat behind the Imam with six additional Takbirs (Allahu Akbar).
The Eid al Fitr prayers are followed by Imams or prayer leaders delivering a Khutba or sermon to thank Allah for bestowing believers with steadfastness to observe the dawn-to-dusk fasting during the month of Ramadhan. The Imams may also dwell on contemporary issues.
Once the prayers and sermon are over, devotees then greet each other and chant
the Eid Takbeers of Allahu Akbar( Allah is Great )… La illaha il Allah (there is no God, but Allah) … Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar ( Allah is Great, Allah is Great)…walilahil Hamd (to Him belongs all Praise)
Muslims also pay the charitable donation of Sadaqa-al-Fitr or Zakat-al-Fitr before the Eid al Fitr prayers. This is in addition to the mandatory annual donation of Zakat, which is one of the five pillars of Islam, that is calculated as 2.5 percent of one’s wealth. Although Zakat can be paid at any time of the year, Muslims prefer to pay it during Ramadan since its believed good deeds are amplified manifold during the holy month.
After the Eid prayers, Muslims head home by taking a lengthier route in order to meet and greet as many people as possible, while chanting the Takbirs. The festival is marked by people visiting the homes of friends and relatives to offer Eid greetings. Special dishes are cooked on the occasion and the festivities last till two or three days.
People exchange Eid greetings through cards, SMS messages or through social media or messaging platforms. Here are some for you to wish your near and dear ones:
Eid Mubarak! Wish you and your family a very happy and peaceful Eid.
Eid Mubarak! May the festival fill your life with love & happiness.
Eid Mubarak! May the year ahead prove great for you and your family
May the blessings of Allah fill your life. Eid Mubarak!