Id or Eid

Islam is the latest of all the religions that originated in the world. It came into existence in the seventh century. It was revealed to the people by prophet Muhammad. He was sent by the almighty to lead and spread the belief of Islam. People having faith in Islam are the Muslims and they respect their god Allah. Today, Islam is the third largest religion in the world.

Prophet Muhammad is the messenger of Allah and Muslims revered him. There are several moments in Muhammad's life that are special for the followers of Islam. Muslims celebrate his birthday with devotion. For them, the receiving of the holy book, the Quran, which was delivered by Angle Gabriel, is also an important day.

Eid-Ul Fitr (Ramzan Id):

Id

Id or Eid is an important festival for Muslims that falls on the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. This festival is celebrated over a period of one month and is known as Ramadan or Ramazan. During this period, all Muslims fast for one month. The last day of the fasting period is the Ramzan Id when Muslims break their fast after the appearance of a new moon night.

The Ramzan month is very important in the Islamic calendar. This month is usually an absenteeism from all the worldly pleasures and devoting oneself to worship. During this time, no Muslims resort to any activities that are termed illegal or inhuman in the Islamic laws. They will never indulge in any altercations, utter bad words, or tell lies. The mandate or decree is so strong that it is not easy for everyone to fast. They are not allowed to drink even a drop of water from dawn to dusk. They cannot even devour their own spit for it will break the fast.

This auspicious occasion is the time when the holy book Quran was revealed. The Quran has all the rituals and practices a true Musalman must follow. It also states that every person following Islam must pray five times a day and fast for one month. It also requires Muslims to go for a pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in their lives. On Id, several services are held in mosques throughout the country. Many Muslim countries also celebrate Eid on the same day or one day before or after depending on their geographical location.

Devotees read the God's command from the Quran each day. Till the month end, they finish off reading the entire holy book. Fasting at Ramzan is not compulsory for those who are old, having medical problems, kids and pregnant women. Some parents allow their children over 8 years old to fast for a few hours of the day so that they get to know their tradition and by the time they reach an adolescent stage, they are ready to fast for the entire month.

Muslims distribute foods and other necessities to poor on Eid-UL-Fitr. There are two Eids in a year. The first one is known as Eid-UL-Fitr. Fitr is Urdu means breaking the fast. The second one is the Bakri Eid. There is a great story behind fasting during this month. In 622 AD, when there was an exodus from Mecca to escape ill-treatment, prophet Muhammad joins the others. On their way to Medina, he prays to the God for the safety of the people by fasting for three days. After a few years, God commands him to persuade all Muslims to fast for a month for the well-being of the people and spread the message of self-atonement and brotherhood. In India, this is a great occasions not only for Muslims but for Hindus as well. Other communities greet Muslims with 'Eid Mubarak' and embrace each other for three times. Muslims invite friends and families for a feast which they call it a Dawat. Many dishes are cooked and served to guests. Among which, Sheer Khurma is the most famous.

Bakri Id (Eid):

Bakri Id or Id-UL Azha or Id-UL-Zuha is another important occasion in the Muslim calendar. Like Ramzan Id, this festival too is celebrated worldwide. It is mainly observed as a day of sacrifice and has a deep root connected to mythology. Prophet Ibrahim, an ardent follower of Allah dreams one night that Allah is asking him to sacrifice his son, Ismail. Both Ibrahim and his son have deep faith in Allah. They happily accept His will and start the sacrificial procedure. Ismail blindfolded his father before the last act of sacrifice. When Ibrahim opens his eyes after using the weapon, he finds his son safe and instead of him there lay a dead male sheep.

No doubt sacrificing one's own son is a nightmare for any father, and for the son to accept his fathers' wish is a great dilemma. However, the faith showered on each other and the God allows them to endure the hardship. And to honour this faith and the test the father and son had gone through, Muslims sacrifice goat on this day and celebrate it as Bakri Id to show their faith towards Allah.

Both the Eids are a great representation of unity between Muslims and Hindus. Like the Muslims, Hindus also look forward for these festivals to come as they get invitations and an opportunity to enjoy fantastic meals and Sheer Khurma.