As the holy month of Ramadan winds down, Muslims all over the world eagerly await Eid Al-Fitr, one of the most auspicious occasions in the religion. It is literally translated as the Festival of Fast-Breaking. The three-day-long Eid celebration activities will mark the end of Ramadan. Our Eid celebration is generally preceded by days of detailed preparation.
Our religious fervor comprises shopping of fine clothing, attractive footwear and other embellishments that aptly fulfill our Eid resolution. The Eid day marks making traditional sweet dishes at home, meeting relatives and exchanging Eidi cash. While the religious aspects are identical, Eid Al-Fitr customs and cultural traditions vary from nation to nation. Here’s a textual and visual journey through Eid Al-Fitr celebrations in Pakistan.
Eid Celebration Activities Prevailing In Our Society
The Pre-Eid Celebration Activities
The month of Ramadan calls for kind deeds and charitable actions. Spending the entire holy month in accordance with the Prophetic sayings and Quranic injunctions leads us towards Divine Blessings and Mercy. Eid celebration right after the fasting month is a token to make a commitment to one’s self to be faithful and be kind to the poor.
In Pakistan, Eid Al-Fitr is also denoted as “Chhoti” (minor) and “Meethi” (sweet) Eid. Eid preparations usually start with the beginning of Ramadan and continue throughout the month. It is customary for almost everyone to wear new clothes. So, the purchase of garments is ever more popular all around the month of Ramadan. Besides acquiring new stuff for the festival, there are several other celebration activities that we as believers carry out.
Women’s Eid Preparations: Bangles And Ornaments Form An Essential Part!
Shopping In Market Areas
The markets and bazaars are adorned to welcome Eid shoppers. Special sale prices are offered on select garments and shoes. Young girls and older women buy and wear bangles made of fine glass. The moon-sighting night is usually scheduled for this all-essential activity.
Moon-Sighting And Its Announcement
As soon as the Shawwal moon is sighted, womenfolk and youngsters in huge numbers throng the special bangle stalls and shops. Women of all age groups arrange for decorating their palms and feet with beautiful patterns out of “mehndi” or “henna” that is plain or attractively mixed with color. Henna artists do roaring business on “Chaand Raat”, as the practice has long been associated with women dolling up for Eid. Men and elders usually exchange late evening moon greetings over their mobile phones or via social media.
The Eid Celebration Activities On The Day
The Eid Al-Fitr Prayers
Rising early, the rich as well as the poor wash and perform a ritual called “ghusl” (ablution), wherein they cleanse their body. Then they dress up in new clothes, and start the day with a light breakfast which usually consists of fine wheat noodles mixed with milk, commonly known as Vermicelli. Then the men congregate at the mosques or “Eidgahs” (large enclosures for prayers). On the way they give away the obligatory alms called “fitrana” to the needy. When Eid prayers and Thanksgivings are over, they hug and congratulate each other.
Congregation Of Eid Al-Fitr Prayers: Symbol Of Unity And Brotherhood
Visiting Graveyard And Settling Disputes
After offering the communal Eid prayers, many a faithful visit the graves of their loved ones. The Eid day offers the best time to remember our dear ones who are no more amongst us. On this day, Muslims are encouraged to settle mutual disputes as it is the time of forgiveness and giving rise to brotherhood.
Greeting Family, Friends And Relatives
Men returning from the mosque or graveyard wish children, women and elders of the household “Eid Mubarak”. Since it is a time of luxuriance, children are given gifts called Eidi, which can be in the form of cash, accessories, food and flowers. Later in the day, families usually visit their relatives and friends for greeting and wishing one another, usually with Eidi exchange for the minors.
Recreation And Festivity As The Prime Eid Celebration Activities
Contrary to the tranquil and rigorous observance of fasting during Ramadan, Eid Al-Fitr is celebrated with joy and festivities. We as Muslims believe that after Ramadan our sins are forgiven through Divine Mercy. Also as an additional treat, a variety of dishes and delicacies are prepared. Eid Al-Fitr recreation usually continues till late night and may be extended to the next two Eid days. Celebrating Eid is linked with traditional food. It is always an occasion for a big meal best consumed during this day.
Our Noble Eid Resolutions As The True Essence Of Eid
Ramadan As A Way To Stave Off Evil And Vice
The month of Ramadan entails prolonged fasting for Muslims around the world, from sunrise to sunset. It also requires abstinence from drinking alcohol, smoking, sexual activities and other pleasures. Muslims honor this month to mark the beginning of revelation of the Holy Quran to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
Revelation Of The Holy Quran: Guidance For All Humankind
How Ramadan Grooms And Polishes Us To Execute Our Eid Resolutions?
While keeping in line with the Islamic teachings the entire month of Ramadan, we all aim to gather maximum Mercy and Bounties Of Allah Almighty. As we gradually progress towards the Eid Al-Fitr day, we get accustomed to performing virtuous deeds and refraining from vice as much as we can. This 30-day training program that the holy month provides projects goodness and nobility which all faithfuls strive to acquire. The Eid festival is a way of thanking Allah for all His Graciousness and Benignity in the form of good health, ample earning resources, loving family and so much beyond. Beyond the worldly affairs with favorable circumstances, He has bestowed upon us the potency to obey His Commandments and His Last Prophet’s Sunnah.
What Actions Should Ideally Comprise Your Eid Resolutions?
Eid is essentially a time of caring, loving and giving. Islam clearly defines the true objectives of this auspicious day of religious festivity. The poor, invariably, also join in the Eid celebrations because it is generally during Ramadan that Muslims give Zakah to the impoverished. The affluent communities distribute tens of millions in cash or kind among poor who also share in the festivities. Hence, we should take all measures to create a sense of inclusion among the poor and needy population. After all, giving in the way of the Almighty is not only our religious duty, but also a source of building up a society that presents equality and justice to all members.