Here, we are in the most splendid month of Ramadan, the end of which marks the celebration of Eid ul-Fitr 2020
India is a melting pot of cultures, be it Holi, Diwali, Eid, Christmas all the festivals are celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm. We bring to you some of the intricacies and interesting facts related to this beautiful month.
What is Eid ul-Fitr?
Eid-al-Fitar/Eid-ul-Fitar/Id ul-Fitar whichever way you may pronounce it as all could be interchangeably and synonymously used for the glorified and much-celebrated festival of Eid. Eid ul-Fitr one of the most auspicious and beautiful festivals celebrated worldwide by the Muslim Community. Eid ul-Fitr was started by Prophet Muhammad.
Importance of the pious month of Ramadan
This month of Ramadan gives its believers and followers an opportunity to introspect, to comprehend one’s inner self in a better way. This time is nothing but the true test of one’s patience, strength, generosity, ability to surrender oneself to the almighty.
The holy month of Ramadan is nothing short of an examination, and if passed changes are evident in one’s personal growth. Greetings are exchanged during this month as Ramadan Kareem or Ramadan Mubarak which simply means have a generous and beautiful Ramadan.
Significance of Eid ul-Fitr
Eid ul-Fitr marks the first day of the Islamic month of Shawwal. Shawwal is the tenth month of the lunar-based Islamic calendar. Eid marks the end of Ramadan fasting and Muslims are prohibited from fasting on this day.
During the Shawwal month as well, some Muslims observe about 6 days of fasting. The reason behind fasting during this month is its equivalence to fasting the entire year.
It is often believed that fasting for a period of 30 days and additional 6 days helps in fulfilling the obligation for fasting the whole year.
Muslims perform different rituals on this religious day of Eid ul-Fitr such as attend communal prayers, make their offerings, listen to the sermon (khutba) and give charity mainly in the form of food (Zakat al-Fitr). Zakat al-Fitr consists of a quantity of food such as raisin, dates, wheat flour, or at times a monetary equivalent donated to the poor.
On the day of Eid, ul-Fitr Muslims prepare festive meals to be shared, dress themselves in new clothes the finest ones indeed, pay visits to their relatives, and present candies to children.
The devotees often go to the mosque for attending congregational Eid prayers in the morning.
Public holiday for Eid ul-Fitr 2020
In Muslim countries, the festival of Eid ul-Fitr marks a National holiday. However, in the United Kingdom, Muslims may take a day off to work, or kids might not go to school. As far a public holiday is concerned there are countries wherein it is not a holiday however the organizations provide a reduced number of working hours. Some congestion around the mosques is observed during the day. Due to the difference in time zones, the moon may be slightly earlier or later in few places depending on which the celebrations may begin a day prior or later.
Eid ul-Fitr 2020 Expected dates
This year the festival of Eid ul-Fitr 2020 is to be celebrated between 23rd May 2020 – 25th May 2020 depending on the difference in time zones.
Reference of Eid ul-Fitr in the Holy book of Quran
In the 2nd chapter, verse 185, of the Holy Quran, the Almighty Lord states:
“You shall complete the number [of days] and you may glorify God for his guiding you, and that you may be thankful.”
This verse points towards the completion of either 29 or 39 days of fasting in the Islamic month of Ramadan. Post which there is a celebratory day of Eid al-Fitr. The literal meaning of Eid al-Fitr is “festival of breaking the fast” or “Feast of breaking the fast”.
One needs to understand that the celebrations do not signify an end to month-long fasting rather Muslims get an opportunity to get more enlightenment and seek awakening.
Eid ul-Fitr is celebrated with great zeal and pomp. It is time to be spent with families, friends, and neighbors. It is a time to have a great get together, a good hearty meal with your loved and dear ones.
Often gifts and cards are exchanged during this festival. People exchange greetings by saying “Eid Mubarak”. ‘Eid’ means celebration and ‘Mubarak’ means Blessed.
Well, the festivities are truly a time that helps in promoting unification and brings about a spirit of camaraderie in the community. It is indeed a time of serenity and reflection. Completing an entire month of fasting truly brings in a transformed person.
An individual or a devotee who has combatted and coped against hunger and temptations is now expected to have the strength to combat against the trials and ordeals of life during the rest of the year.
The aspects of willpower, determination, self-discipline, spirituality, insight, and feelings of proximity to the omniscient, which were gained while fasting, should rejuvenate, recreate the believer.
Ali ar-Ridha, the eighth Imam or the eight successor after Prophet Muhammad said,
“Eid is a day of unity. Hence, it is a day to give thanks and reaffirm faith in the Lord’s favors and praise him. Eid day is the first day when eating and drinking is once again permitted during daylight hours. So, for the believers, Eid Al Fitr is the first day of the year”.
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