Definitions

ʾId al-Adha

Eid al-Adha

Eid al-Adha (Arabic: عيد الأضحى ‘Īd ul-’Aḍḥā, Urdu: بقرعید) or the Festival of Sacrifice is a religious festival celebrated by Muslims and Druze worldwide as a commemoration of God's forgiveness of Ibrahim (Abraham) from his vow to sacrifice his son, as commanded by Allah. (Muslim tradition names Ishmael as the son who was to be sacrificed, whereas the Judeo-Christian tradition names Isaac.) It is one of two Eid festivals celebrated by Muslims, whose basis comes from the Quran. (Muslims in Iran celebrate a third, non-denominational Eid.) Like Eid el-Fitr, Eid ul-Adha begins with a short prayer followed by a sermon (khuṭba).

Eid ul-Adha annually falls on the 10th day of the month of Dhul Hijja (ذو الحجة) of the lunar Islamic calendar. The festivities last for two to three days or more depending on the country. Eid ul-Adha occurs the day after the pilgrims conducting Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia by Muslims worldwide, descend from Mount Arafat. It happens to be approximately 70 days after the end of the month of Ramadan.

Other names for Eid al-Adha

Eid-ul-Adha (Adha Eid) has other popular names across the Muslim world, such as Eid el-Kibir (the 'Big' Eid) in Morocco, Algeria, Syria, Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen and Libya; Tfaska Tamoqqart in the Berber language of Jerba; Tabaski or Tobaski in West Africa; Babbar Sallah in Nigeria; Ciidwayneey in Somalia and Somali-speaking regions of Kenya and Ethiopia.

In India and Pakistan it is also called Bari Eid (literally "Big Eid"). In Kashmir, where Kashmiri is spoken, it is called Baed Eid, and Keralites who speak Malayalam say Waliya Perunnal, both phrases also meaning "Big Eid." In Bangladesh it is called either ঈদ-উল-আজহা Id-ul-Azha or কোরবানী ঈদ Korbani Id. In South Africa it is also called Bakra Eid (or simply Baqrid in India, for the Hindi word baqara, meaning "goat", the traditional sacrifice).

In Southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, and in Sri Lanka, which has large concentration of Tamil-speaking Muslims, it is called Peru Naal meaning 'The Big Day'. Sometimes, Tamil-speakers say Bakr Eid Peru Naal, meaning 'the Big Day of the Sacrifice'.

By the Kurds it is called Jejhni Qurban meaning Feast of Sacrifice.

In Turkey it is called Kurban Bayramı or "Sacrifice Feast". Similarly, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo and Bulgaria it is referred as Kurban Bajram, the same root with Qorban Bäyräme in Tatarstan, Qurban Bayramı in Azerbaijan and Kurban Bayram throughout Russia. In Kazakhstan, it is referred to as Qurban Ait. In Iran and Afghanistan it is called "Eyd e Qorbán" by Persian-speakers and Loy Akhtar (literally, "the Greater Eid") or Kurbaneyy Akhtar by Pashto-speakers.

In China it is called "Corban Festival" (古尔邦节、宰牲节 in Chinese) or "Qurban Heyit" in Uyghur language.

In the Malay Archipelago, especially in the Malay-speaking areas; Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Brunei, the term "Idul Adha" (particularly in Indonesia) or "Aidil Adha" is used. "Hari Raya Korban", which means the Sacrifice Celebration Day is also widely used. Another term is called "Hari Raya Haji" which means Celebration Day of the Hajj.

Traditions and practices

Men, women, and children are expected to dress in their finest clothing to perform Eid prayer (Salatu'l-`id) in any mosque. Muslims who can afford to do so sacrifice their best domestic animals (usually sheep, but also camels, cows, and goats) as a symbol of Ibrahim's (Abraham's) sacrifice. The sacrificed animals, called "udhiya" Arabic: أضحية" also known as "qurbani", have to meet certain age and quality standards or else the animal is considered an unacceptable sacrifice. Generally, these must be at least a year old. At the time of sacrifice, Allah's name is recited along with the offering statement and a supplication as Muhammad said. According to the Quran, the meat is divided into three shares, one share for the poor, one share for the relatives and neighbors, and the last to keep to oneself. A large portion of the meat MUST be given towards the poor and hungry people so they can all join in the feast which is held on Eid-ul-Adha. The remainder is cooked for the family celebration meal in which relatives and friends are invited to share. The regular charitable practices of the Muslim community are demonstrated during Eid ul-Adha by the concerted effort to see that no impoverished Muslim is left without sacrificial food during these days. Eid ul-Adha is a concrete affirmation of what the Muslim community ethic means in practice. People in these days are expected to visit their relations, starting with their parents, then their families and friends. (Arabic audio with English meaning).

In the name of God بسم الله
And God is the greatest والله أكبر
O God, indeed this is from you and for you اللهم إن هذا منك ولك
O God accept from me اللهم تقبل مني

Distributing meat among people is considered an essential part of the festival during this period, as well as chanting Takbir out loud before the Eid prayer on the first day and after prayers through out the four days of Eid. (See Takbir in "Traditions and practices" of Eid el-Fitr.)

Eid ul-Adha in the Gregorian calendar

While Eid ul-Adha is always on the same day of the Islamic calendar, the date on the Gregorian calendar varies from year to year since the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar and the Gregorian calendar is a solar calendar. The Lunar calendar is approximately eleven days shorter than the Solar calendar. Each year, Eid ul-Adha (like other Islamic holidays) falls on one of two different Gregorian dates in different parts of the world, due to the fact that the boundary of crescent visibility is different from the International date line.

The following list shows the official dates of Eid ul-Adha for Saudi Arabia as announced by the Supreme Judicial Council. Future dates are calculated according to the Umm al-Qura calendar of Saudi Arabia. The three days after the listed date are also part of the festival. The time before the listed date the pilgrims visit the Mount Arafat and descend from it after sunrise of the listed day. Future dates of Eid ul-Adha might face correction 10 days before the festivity, in case of deviant lunar sighting in Saudi Arabia for the start of the month Dhul Hijja.

Notes

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