Happy Ramadhan, Eid Mubarak - عيد فطر مبارك
Happy Eid to you, this is my gift (عيدي) for you :)
We didn't pick that lovely rose. She just held it between her hands (huged it!) and I shoot this for you!
Eid ul-Fitr (Arabic: عيد الفطر, Persian: عید فطر), often abbreviated as simply Eid, sometimes spelled Eid al-Fitr, is an Islamic holiday that marks the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting. Fitr means "to break the fast" and therefore symbolizes the breaking of the fasting period. On the day of the celebration, a typical Muslim family gets up very early and attends special prayers held only for the occasion in mosques, in large open areas, stadiums or arenas. The prayer is generally short, and is followed by a khutba. The festivities and merriment start after the prayers with visits to the homes of friends and relatives and thanking God for all blessings. Eid is a time to come together as a community and to renew friendship and family ties. This is a time for peace for all Muslims in the world to devote to prayers and mutual well-being.
It is a joyous occasion with important religious significance. Happiness is observed as attaining spiritual uplift after a month of fasting. Muslims dress in holiday attire. After attending the special congregational prayer in the morning, worshippers greet and embrace each other in a spirit of peace, love, and brotherhood. Visiting friends and relatives is common.
For Muslims, Eid ul-Fitr is a joyful celebration of the achievement of enhanced piety. It is a day of forgiveness, moral victory and peace, of congregation, fellowship, brotherhood and unity. Muslims are not only celebrating the end of fasting, but thanking God for the help and strength that they believe He gave them throughout the previous month to help them practice self-control.
The first Eid was celebrated in 624 CE by the Prophet Muhammad with his companions and relatives over the completion a month of fasting.
The holiday follows the month of Ramadan, falling on the first day of Shawwal (the tenth month in the Islamic calendar). As with all months in the Islamic calendar, it begins with the sighting of the new moon, although some people choose to use scientific calculations instead of a confirmed visual sighting.
Because the day depends on the sighting of the moon, the sighting could only be possible just before the sunset. Most check with local mosques or other members of the community to see if the moon has been sighted by authoritative parties. In Malaysia, they are using both sighting of the moon and astronomical calculation to verify the date. But the calculation is only used to verify the sighting of the moon (i.e. the exact time of the visibilty of the moon). For this reason there may be regional differences in the exact date of Eid, with some Muslims fasting for 29 days and some for 30 days.
Eid ul-Fitr commemorates the end of the month of Ramadan. Fasting is forbidden on this day as it marks the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan. A Muslim is encouraged to rise early and partake of a light snack such as dates before then attending morning prayers with family members in the local community mosque.
Traditions and practices
Common greetings during this three-day festival are the Arabic greeting "Eid mubarak" or "Eid saeed" which, loosely translated, mean "Happy Eid!". In addition, many countries have their own greetings based on local language and traditions.
Muslims are encouraged to dress in their best clothes, new if possible, and to attend a special Eid prayer that is performed in congregation at mosques or open areas like fields, squares etc. When Muslims finish their fast at the last day (29th or 30th Ramadan), they congregate to recite Takbir:
Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar,
laa ilaha illallah,
Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar
God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest
There is no deity but God
God is the Greatest, God is the Greatest
and to God goes all praise
The Takbir is recited after confirmation that the moon of Shawwal is sighted on the eve of the last day of Ramadan. It continues until the start of the Eid prayer. Before the Eid prayer begins every Muslim (man, women or child) must pay Zakat al Fitr, an alms for the month of Ramadan. This equates to about 2 kg of a basic foodstuff (wheat, barley, dates, raisins, etc.), or its cash equivalent, and is typically collected at the mosque. This is distributed to needy local Muslims prior to the start of the Eid prayer. It can be given anytime during the month of Ramadan and is often given early, so the recipient can utilise it for Eid purchases. This is distinct from Zakat based on their wealth, which must be paid to a worthy charity.
The Eid prayer (salah) is followed by the khutba (sermon) and then a prayer (dua') asking for forgiveness, mercy and help for the plight of Muslims across the world. It is then customary to embrace the persons sitting on either side of you as well as your relatives, friends and acquaintances.
Muslims spend the day thanking the Creator for all their blessings, as well as just having fun and enjoying themselves. Children are normally given gifts or money. Women (particularly relations) are normally given special gifts by their loved ones. Eid is also the time for reconciliations. Feuds or disputes, especially between family members, are often settled on Eid.
Eid -e- Fetr in Iran
In the predominantly Shia culture of Iran, Eid is a highly personal event, and celebrations are often more muted. Called Eideh Fitr by most Iraninans, charity is important on that day. Typically, each Muslim family gives food to those in need. Often meat or ghorbani, which is an expensive food item in Iran, will be given by those in wealthier families to those who have less. Payment of fitra is obligatory for each Muslim. The tradition in many families holds that for each member of your household on the day of Eid, one person outside of your family needs to be fed. Many Iranian families have chelo kabab, which is skewered meat served with white rice, grilled tomatoes, herbs and yogurt on that day. Thanking God for all blessings is top on the list of activities for the day. The day is a national holiday. So most people spend the day at home or visiting family or going for outings in the areas around the big cities.
Eid ul-Fitr in the United States and Canada
Typically, the end of Ramadan is announced via e-mail, postings on websites, or chain phone calls to all members of a Muslim community. Working persons usually attempt to make arrangements for a lighter work day on the days that may possibly be the Eid day, but many North American Muslims are often noted to not be able to take the entire day off.
Typically, a Muslim family in the United States or Canada will wake up very early in the morning and have a small breakfast. Next the family will go to the nearest congregational prayer group to pray. The prayer may be held at the local mosque, a hotel ballroom, local arena or stadium. Often these prayers are held in shifts; for example, the first prayer would at 7 am, the second at 9 am, and the third at 11 am. After prayers, the family members disperse to school or work accordingly, or head home to prepare celebrations if they managed to get the day off. Depending on the nation, Muslims in North America tend to celebrate different traditions, yet most of these are based off of similar customs which are simply followed out differently in each individual country.
Since every family has a different work related situation, some Muslims may attempt to take the entire day off to spend it as a family. A few other families may have to ask for a partial day off, or in many cases, not take the work day off at all due to the importance of their job in terms of the family's fianancial situation or in terms of importance to the company itself, though this does not generally occur due to being denied the time off work as this goes against religious freedom laws in both nations. Because North American Muslims come from all parts of the world, one particular type of food cannot be identified as served on this day. Many Muslim North American families visit the homes of others to congregate on a day of celebration.
From Wikipedia: Eid ul-Fitr.
Added to flickr Explore (interestingness) page of 23 October 2006.