First, during Eid-ul-Adha we remember
the spirit of Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) and how he was willing
to sacrifice the person he loved the most, because it was Allah's (SWT)
command. Allah chose Ibrahim to restore the Kabah from disrepair, and Ibrahim
had his son Ishmael (peace also be upon him) help him. It took them months
in the desert heat, but they kept going because of their burning love for
Once the Kabah was finally done, Allah
asked Ibrahim (on the 10th day of the month of Dhul' Hijja - the day we celebrate
Eid) to sacrifice Ishmael on that very spot. Wow - Allah asked Ibrahim to
sacrifice his own son Ishmael, and Ibrahim didn't even once think "why"
or that he might say "no" - if that's what Allah wanted, he trusted
Him no matter what! His faith was rewarded when his son's life was spared
by Allah at the very last minute. Just as the knife was coming down, there
was a lamb in the place of Ishmael and that's what Ibrahim actually sacrificed.
Second, Eid-ul-Adha ends the period
of Hajj (the 5th pillar of Islam - remember?). Every year, about 3 million
people go to Mecca and perform the pilgrimage together. Everyone is dressed
the same, nobody is better than anybody else. Seeing the Kabah is like a homecoming
- the place on earth where you can be closest to Allah. This is the spot you
face everyday at home when you do your prayers - and now you're really there!
You forget about everything else in the world except what you are doing at
that moment. Even the people who do not perform the Hajj that year think about
what it symbolizes and celebrate that.
Celebrating Eid-ul-Adha with your family
and friends is similar to that of Eid-ul-Fitr. Many people also sacrifice
animals (like goats or lambs) for this Eid, which is a sunnah act. When this
is done, 1/3 of the meat goes to the needy people, 1/3 is given to neighbors
and friends, and 1/3 stays with your family.
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