So its few days to Eid al ahda and we are all preparing to buy our ram for the celebration, some people already bought theirs, some bought it many months back because its a very important celebration in Islam but do we really know what eid al ahda means? what are its significance? is it just about killing the ram or wearing new clothes and dressing up to the eid praying ground, in this issue we would be discussing few important details of eid al ahda:
what is eid al ahda?
Eid al ahda or Eid al kabir is one of the most important Islamic festivals, it begins on the 10th day of dhu'l Hijja, the last month of the Islamic calendar, it occurs at the conclusion of the annual hajj, or pilgrimage to mecca.
Eid al ahda commemorates prophet Abraham's willingness to obey God when he envisioned that he was to sacrifice his son.
Muslims observe this day by slaughtering an animal (usually a sheep/ram) then offer much of its meat in charity to the poor
This sacrifice symbolizes obedience to Allah and its distribution to others is an expression of generosity.
Eid prayer is usually offered in a Eidgah (a field where eid prayer is held)
Who must attend?
Men should go to a Eidgah (a field where eid prayer held)—to perform eid prayer, Women are also highly encouraged to attend, although it is not compulsory. Menstruating women do not participate in the formal prayer, but should be present to witness the goodness and the gathering of Muslims, any Muslim who is in good health should also attend.
When is it performed?
The Eid al-Adha prayer is performed anytime after the sun completely rises up to just before the entering of zhur time, on the 10th of Dhul Hijjah. In the event of (e.g. natural disaster), the prayer may be delayed to the 11th of Dhul Hijjah and then to the 12th of Dhul Hijjah
The Sunnah of preparation
In keeping with the tradition of the holy prophet Muhammad (pbuh), we are encouraged to prepare ourselves for the occasion of Eid ,we should make wudu and offer salat al fajr, take our bath and dress up, putting on new or our best cloth available so long as it is clean.
Rituals of Eid prayers
Eid prayers must be offered in congregation. It consists of two raka'ahs (units) with seven takbirs in the first Raka'ah and five takbirs in the second Raka'ah.
At the conclusion of the prayers and sermon, we embrace and exchange greetings with one other , give gifts to children, and visit one another. We can also take this opportunity to invite our non-Muslims friends, neighbors, co-workers and classmates to the Eid festivities to better acquaint them about Islam and Muslim culture.
I hope this gives a little in sight of what the festivity is really all about, its not just all bout you eating all the ram/sheep/animal you killed all by yourself but also giving to the poor, understanding what it means to be obedient to your creator and generousity in general,