Apr 20, 2023
Eid al-Fitr(celebration of breaking the fast in Arabic) is a joyous Muslim holiday that marks the end of Ramadan. Eid-Al-Fitr also marks the commencement of the tenth month of the Islamic calendar, Shawwal; and like the start of Ramadan, Eid-Al-Fitr moves back ten days every year as part of the lunar Islamic calendar. Every year, the date for Eid al-Fitr is determined by the sighting of the crescent moon, which signifies the end of the month of Ramadan. One of the two official Islamic holidays, Eid-al-Fitr is an occasion for Muslims to celebrate family and community, give gifts, eat wholeheartedly, and express gratitude to Allah for the blessings they have received during Ramadan. Festivities for Eid-al-Fitr typically last for up to three days, though many Muslims primarily celebrate and take off from work during the first day. During this time, Muslims engage in a range of activities, such as visiting family and friends, offering special prayers, giving gifts to children, and giving charity to the underprivileged.
On the morning of Eid al-Fitr, Muslims wake up early and perform the first prayer of the day, known as Fajr. Afterward, they get ready and dress in their best clothes to head to the mosque for Eid prayer, which is a particularly special prayer celebrating family and unity under God. Typically, Muslims will recite prayers in unison when they are making their way to Eid prayer. Though rituals can vary depending on the sect of Islam, the most common prayer recited is
Allāhu Akbar, Allāhu Akbar.
Lā ilāha illà l-Lāh wal-Lāhu akbar, Allahu akbar walil-Lāhi l-ḥamd
which translates to “Allah is the greatest, Allah is the greatest. There is no deity besides Allah, and Allah is the greatest. Allah is the greatest, and to Allah all praises belong.”
Unlike traditional Friday prayers (called Jummah prayer in Arabic), the Eid prayer (also known as Salat-al-Eid in Arabic) begins with a sermon from the Imam, the person who leads prayers in the mosque. Once the sermon concludes, the prayer begins, which is performed in a unique manner different from the regular five daily prayers. Eid prayer is performed exclusively in congregation, and it is considered a communal obligation (fard in Arabic) for Muslims, meaning that it is mandatory to perform it. The prayer consists of two rak'ahs (units of prayer in Arabic) with six extra takbirs (saying "Allahu Akbar" or "God is the Greatest") recited before and after the prayer. After the prayer, Muslims greet each other by saying "Eid Mubarak" (blessed Eid in Arabic), and exchange hugs. People exchange gifts with one another, and families prepare special meals and desserts to share with their loved ones. In many countries, such as Saudi Arabia and Malaysia, the celebrations include fireworks displays and traditional dances. Charity is also an integral aspect of Eid al-Fitr, and many Muslims donate money, food, and clothing to those less fortunate than themselves. This practice reflects the Islamic principle of zakat, which is the obligation for Muslims to give a portion of their wealth to those in need.
Eid al-Fitr is a time of joy, celebration, and unity for Muslims worldwide. It is an opportunity to strengthen family and community ties, express gratitude for the blessings received during Ramadan, and renew one's commitment to living a virtuous and compassionate life. We hope that this Eid-al-Fitr offers you peace, love, and compassion, along with plenty of delicious meals and quality time with your loved ones.
Eid Mubarak from the Asianati team!
Image courtesy of Canva
Here are some of the mosques offering Eid prayer services in Cincinnati:
The Clifton Mosque will have three prayer services on Friday, April 21, 2023, beginning at 7 AM, 9 AM, and 10 AM. More information can be found on their website.
The Clifton Mosque
3668 Clifton Avenue
Cincinnati, OH, 45220
The Islamic Center of Greater Cincinnati will also have three prayer services on Friday, April 21, 2023, beginning at 7 AM, 8 AM, and 10 AM. More information can be found on their Facebook page.
The Islamic Center of Greater Cincinnati
8092 Plantation Drive
West Chester, OH, 45069