Eid: Allah’s recurrent Mercy

Praise be to Allaah who  has guided  us to the  path of   Islaam   and    granted     this    ummah    special moments   of communal  joy. The  Eid is a moment of communal joy for the Muslims and as Ibn ul Arabee  said:

"It is called Eid because  it returns every year with renewed  happiness." (Usaan ul­'Arab)

Ibn Aabidayn also said:

''The Eid days are thus named  because  Allaah renews  His bounties  in them;  and  He distributes  His blessings to  His worshippers.  Thus  on  Eid ui-Fitr, He  permits them  to eat  after having been  restrained  from food; and He requires paying sadaqat ul-fitr (the charity of breaking the fast) to the needy. And on Eid ul-Adha, He permits the completion of Hajj (pilgrimage) with  the  final Tawaaf (circulating around  al-Ka' bah);  and  He  requires   offering sacrificesand distributing their meat, etc.  Also, it is customary for people to be joyful, happy, and rejoicing during the'  lid days." [Haasheeyatu ibn 'Aabidayn]

The Eids are  a mercy  from Allaah

Anas  (RA) reported   that  upon  arriving in al­ Madeenah, the  Prophet  (sallallaahu  'alayhi wa sallam) found  its people  celebrating two  days whose significancewas held over the Jaahiliyyah. The Prophet  (sallallaahu  'alayhi wa sallam) said:

"When I came upon you, you had two days that you continued  to celebrate  from the Jaahiliyyah; indeed Allaah has substituted them for you with what is better: the  day of Sacrifice   and the day of  Fitr (breaking the fast)."  (Ahmad. Abu Dawud and others; authentic)

Shaykh Ahmad  Abdurrahmaan  al-Banna said: "(They are better  because.) the day of Sacrifice and that of Fitr are legislatedby Allaah,and are His choice   for   His  creatures.   They   follow  the completion of two of the greatest pillarsof Islaam: Hajj and fasting. On these days. Allaah forgives those who performed  Hajj and who fasted. and He sheds mercy on all of His obedient creatures. On  the  other  hand, the  days of Nayrooz and Mihrajaan were  devised by the people of those times. because of good weather or other passing qualities. The difference between the two cases is apparent for whomever ponders upon this." (Al­ Fath ur-Rabbani).

The  Islamic Concept  of celebrating

Islaamteaches Muslimshow to celebrate the Eids. On these days, the Muslim'stake a bath and wear their  best  clothes.    Even though fasting is not permitted on the day of Eids, yet. the major part of the celebration is not eating or drinking- rather, it is a  prayer  that   brings  Muslims together   to remember  Allaah's bounties and celebrate  His glory and greatness.

The Eids and their celebration in Islaam carry a distinctive meaning and spmr. They are totally different from the celebrations in other nations and cultures.     For other  nations, a holiday is a chance to immerse in worldly  pleasures, or  to  involve oneself in prohibited  acts to  the utmost. Not so for Muslims!  For Muslims, the Eid is an occasion to increase in good deeds. Each Eid marks the conclusion of an important  worship,  and the determination to continue in obedience and submission to Allaah.

In moments of extreme pleasure or   sadness, a Muslim   never forgets   his   Lord's   greatness, might, glory, and watchfulness. A Muslim's   actions   are   always controlled    by   this   continued remembrance   and awareness. Thus the Eid is not an occasion to take   a vacation   from   Islamic responsibilities and commitments, nor to waste time and money in extravagance.

It is not "fun for the sake of fun". Rather,   it   is  controlled     and directed    rejoicing    that   is  of ultimate and definite  benefit for the Muslim. The Eid is a chance to multiply good deeds by bringing happiness and  pleasure  to  the hearts   of   other    Muslims,   by helping and supporting the poor and needy,and by getting involved in pastimes that  emphasize the strong    and   serious    Islamic character.

Singing on Eid

Singing  accompanied    by   the beating of duff isan approved type  of lahw (vanity) for women during the Eid.  Aa'isha   (RA)   said:   "Allah's Messenger  (sollolloohu ' alaihi  wa sallam), entered  (my house) when I had two little girls singingthe songsof Bu'oath  (pre-Islamic war  lore)  and beating on a duff; so he lay down on the  bed and turned  his face away. Then Abu Bakr came in and scolded me  saying, 'The  flutes  of  Shaytaan played  in  the  presence  of  Allah's Messenger?' So Allah's  Messenger, turned  toward  him and said

 'Leave them alone. 0 Abu Bakr! Every people have 0  'Eid.  and this  is our  'Eid.' (Bukhari, Muslim)

AI-Baghawi commented  on this hadeeth  by  saying:

"Bu ' aath  is  a famous battle of the Arabs, in which there was a great victory for the Aws over the Khazraj. The war between the  two   tribes  went   on  for   one hundred andtwenty years - until Islam came. The  two   girls  were  singing poetry that described fighting and courage, the mention of which is supportive to the Deen.

But   as  for   songs   that    involve mentioning   sins,    announcing prohibited matters, and displayingevil deeds - it is all prohibited.  And it is impossible  that  anything  like  that would ever take place in the Prophet'S presence   without    him   objecting adamantly to it. And as for his saying 'this is our Eief, it provides the reason for  displaying joy in the two  Eids as being a symbol of the Deen, because they are different  from  other  days." (Sharhus Sunnah 4:322)

From    this    hadith, and   other subsequent evidence, it is important to note the following:

A) The Prophet (sallollaahu 'aloihi wa sallam) did not object to Abu Bakr's statement   that   the  duff,  being  a musical  instrument,   is  a  flute   of Shaytan. This is taken as an approval from  him  this general  rule,  which conforms    with    other    authentic evidence   prohibiting    the   use  of musicalinstruments.

B)   He    modified      Abu    Bakr's understanding by indicating that there is an exception to this general rule on specific occasions.A) The Prophet (sallollaahu 'aloihi wa sallam) did not object to Abu Bakr's statement   that   the  duff,  being  a musical  instrument,   is  a  flute   of Shaytan. This is taken as an approval from  him  this general  rule,  which conforms    with    other    authentic evidence   prohibiting    the   use  of musicalinstruments.

C)  The  occasions in  which  Islam permits women  to  beat on the duff are the following:

I. The two Eids

2. weddings, and

3. to celebrate the arrival from travel of a respected individual.

D) On these occasions, hearing the beating of duff is permissible for men. for  Allah's  Messenger did  so  and approved of it as is seen in the above hadith. However, it is not permissible for men to listen to women's singing. becausethis is an unjustifiable source of   great   fitnah.    The   Prophet's (sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) listening to two  little girls does not constitute an evidence in this regard.

E)  Because of   the   general  texts prohibiting   the use of musical instruments,   the only musical instrument that the women are permitted  to use is the duff; deriving any analogy from  this to other instruments   in  clear   violation   of simple principles of fiqh and reason.

F) This  privilege  of  using the  duff  is not granted  to men on any occasion  - as will be discussedbelow.

G) The permission given to sing during the  Eids applies only  to acceptable poetry  that  encourages good deeds and behavior. It cannot be extended to the songs calling to Prophet (salallahu alayhi  wa sallam) And Ibn Qudamah (RAH) said:

"As for has cursed those men who  imitate beating it  (the  duff)  for  men,  it  is   the women." [A1-Mughni, 9: 174]

makrooh    (despised    act)    in   all situations.   It   was  only   done   by    Ibn Hajar al-Haythami, commenting women; and if men do it, they would    on Ibn Qudamah's words. said: "It is be  imitating  the  women;  and the    obvious  that  his words  mean  its sinsand disobedience,   as is common in manycultures.

As  indicated above, there  are  no reports  that  the  male companions beat on the duff. Thus, beating the duff is allowed for women becauseit is  typical   of   them.   and  Allaah's Messenger   (salallahu  alayhi  wa sallam)  permitted them to do it, but he forbade men's imitation of women andvice-versa. This view is upheld by the majority of the scholars; for instance Shaykh ul­ IslamIbn Taymiyyah(RAH) said: "The Prophet (salallahu  alayhi wa sallam) permitted some types of rejoicing on the occasion of weddings and their like. He permitted  the  women.  as well. to beat the duff during weddings and festivities. As for the men, during his time, not one of them would beat the duff nor clap their hands.

Rather it  is confirmed  in  the  Two Sahihs that the  Prophet (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam)  said:

"Clopping the hands is for women; and raising  the voice with tasbeeh is for men." And "AIlaah curses those men who imitate women.  and those women who imitate men."

And  singing and beating the duff are of the acts typical of women. Because of this, the righteous Salaf labeled  the   man  who   did   that. effeminate."   (Majmoo'    ul-Fatawa, 11 :565)

And Ibn Qudamah (RAH) said:

“As for beating it (th duff) for men, it is makrooh (despised act) in all situations. It was only done by women; and if men do it, they would be imitating the women; and the prophet (Sallalahu alayhi wa sallam) has cursed those men who imitate the women [Al-Mughni 9:174].

Ibn Hajar al-Haythami, commenting on Ibn Qudamah’s words, said:

“It is obvious that his words mean its prohibition (for men)” (Kaff ur-Ru’aa 35).

And al-Hafidh Ibn Hajar al-asqalani, the author of the great commentary of Saheeh al-Bukaaree said:” The hadith that says

“Announce (masculine plural command) the weddings and beat (masculine plural command) the duff for it” is used by some people as evidence that beating the duff is not specific to women. However, this hadith is unauthentic; and the authentic hadiths (in this regard) give that permission to do that for women. Men cannot be included in that because of the general prohibition for men to imitate them.” (Fathul-Bari 9:226).

Al-Mubarakpuri agreed with this statement of Ibn Hajar, and he added:

“The Fuqaha (scholars) have said that the duff is that which has no bells, as Ibn al-Hammaam mentioned…Likewise, the permissible singing during weddings is specific for women; it is not allowed for men” (Tuhfat-ul-Ahwathi 4:210).

And the great commentator  of the Qur'an, Ibn Kathir (RAH) said: "...Nothing  is excluded from  that prohibition  of musical instruments, except beating the duff for the young girls - during Eid days, at the arrival of a respected individual from travel, and during weddings - as has been indicated in the hadeeths, and ashasbeen established in various places.And permitting that in some situations does not lead to permitting It in all situations.

Common in our times are the ugly scenes prophesized by Allah's Messenger (salallahu alayhi wa sallam) in which men and women gather to entertain themselves with musical instruments  and  other   prohibited   acts. (Bukhari) May Allah guide the  Muslims to what isgood forthem  in both lives.

Common Sins on Eid

There  are many sins and acts of   disobedience practiced by some Muslims more frequently during the Eid days. To them, the Eid is an occasion to give up some of the Islamic principles. They are usually encouraged to do so by the state of joy that they experience during the Eids.

Mingling of sexes

One of the frequently practiced acts of disobedience is for men and women who are not mahrams (those prohibited to marry each other) to mingle and do things prohibited in Islam, such as touching and shaking hands

Playing music and Drinking Alcohol

It is very common for people to play music and listen to it during the Eid all in the name of Islam! They call it “Ileya Jamz” or “ Ileya musical festival”. All of these are prohibited by the consensus of the early scholars including the four imams. The prophet (Sallalahu alayhi wa sallam) said:

"There will be among my disobedience  practiced  by  some   Ummah those who would indulge in hir (unlawful  sex), wearing silk (for men), Khamr (any   alcoholic beverage),  and musical  instruments. Some of those people would camp beside a mountain. A poor  shepherd tending their animals would come to them in the evening asking for a need of his. They  would say. “Come back tomorrow”. So Allaah would destroy (most of) them during the night, bringing the mountain over them and would transform others to ape and pigs until the day of resurrection” (Bukhari) 

Improper Appearance

Muslims are supposed to dress up for the Eid. In doing so, however, both men and women commit mainly violations in Islam among which are the followings: men wearing natural silk or gold, wearing tight pants and shaving their beards, women exposing their hairs and other parts of their bodies that are Islamically obligatory to cover, wearing perfumes, make ups, decorated and alluring clothings.