Ramadan is a holy month for Muslims when they pay their respect to Allah and fast from dawn to sunset each day of the month. During this month they also participate in various pious activities and at the end of this month they celebrate Eid al-Fitr for three days.
So Eid al-Fitr is actually the end of Ramadan and celebrated on the first day of Shawwal. In many Muslim countries, these three days have been declared a holiday. In countries Eid al-Fitr is a holiday.
The list of countries includes Iran, Egypt, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore, Bangladesh and Brunei to name some.
Greetings to Celebrate Eid al-Fitr:
On this day people greet each other with Arabic greetings:
- Eid Mubārak which means Blessed Eid
- Eid Sa‘īd meaning Happy Eid
Greetings in local language are also exchanged among people of various countries. For example:
- In Turkey they say ‘Bayramınız kutlu olsun’ meaning “May your Bayram – Eid – be blessed.”
Practices Followed by Muslims to Celebrate Eid al-Fitr:
- On this pious day, practicing Muslims typically wake up before offer a prayer before sunrise called Salatul Fajr.
- Then they clean up, have a bath and put on good clothes or new clothes before heading out for offering prayers.
- It is prohibited to fast on Eid al-Fitr. In the morning Muslims usually have something small for breakfast but it has to be sweet preferably a fruit like dates before attending Sallat, a prayer for the special occasion of Eid al-Fitr
General Rituals Followed by Muslims to celebrate Eid al-Fitr
On the day of Eid al-Fitr some rituals need to be followed:
- Happiness needs to be shown
- Try to be as charitable as possible
- The Masjid in the locality is visited by Muslims to pray Fajr
- Attend the Sallat early on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr
- Takbirat needs to be read in an open field
- Attend the prayer of Eid by walking on foot
- Even if you are not in the mosque for the prayers but the exact rules apply for the prayers
- While the prayer is being read, no one should speak other words than the words of Allah that is being recited by the Imam
- Wish fellow Muslims Eid Mubarak
- While going to attend the Eid prayers Muslims must recite the following: Allāhu Akbar, Allāhu Akbar, Allāhu Akbar. Lā ilāha illà l-Lāh wal-Lāhu akbar, Allahu akbar walil-Lāhi l-ḥamd. Recitation can cease once the Imam starts the prayers or you have reached the place of Eid prayers.
- While going to or coming from the grounds where the Eid prayer is held Muslims should take different routes.
- Women should also join the Salat of Eid
- Fasting on the day of Eid al-Fitr is strictly prohibited
The Festivities of Eid al-Fitr Celebrations:
The prayers for Eid al-Fitr are held in huge congregations in open places like fields or at the mosque. Many Muslims bring prayer rugs to the Eid prayer. This prayer does not involve a call to pray and has 2 units of prayer along with six additional incantations. After the prayers, the Imam gives a sermon and an appeal to Allah asking for peace, blessings, mercy and forgiveness for all. The sermon contains instructions to perform the rituals of Eid like Zakat.
Once the prayers are over and the sermon has finished, Muslims visit friends, relatives and family members as well as acquaintances. They also hold huge celebrations in the communities, homes or halls that have been specially rented for the occasion. Gifts for Eid called Eidi are also given to children and exchanged between immediate relatives.