First Published August 24, 2008
This year, the Muslim month of Ramadan in the year 1434, began on Friday, July 9th 2013 . The Quran was first revealed to the Prophet Mohammed during this, the ninth month of the Muslim Lunar calendar, making it the holiest month for Muslims. This is the month for not only physical, but even more importantly, spiritual cleansing for Muslims.
The Muslim calendar is about 10 days shorter than the Common Era calendar, thus, Ramadan begins about ten days earlier each C.E. Year, cycling through every season, over a period of about thirty-three years…including Summer! Continue reading
It is that time of the year again, it is time for Muslims to split along lines of “tradition”, “Sunnah” (practices of the prophet Mohammed s.a.w.) and other excuses covering sectarian and political differences while hiding behind Islamic justifications.
In two-and-a-half months, Muslims will abandon Islam en masse, in preference for the political jockeying for being RIGHT and nobody will object to it unless it is to say that their idea of seeing the Moon is “righter” than others.
In two-and-a-half months, the world of Islam will suffer its fractures again as Continue reading
What is Eid?
There are a few times when I miss the old country and my old friends, and Eid is among those times.
Eid in America is bittersweet event; on one hand there are the factionalized Muslim communities who insist on having Eid on at least two different days and sometimes, three. The inevitable and never-ending Moon-sighting controversy where Muslims cannot agree on whether to believe the science that accurately predicts to the minute, when the new moon will show and where or, to believe the old man on a hilltop claiming he saw the moon even as he points to en entirely different direction.
Should we accept the date set in Arabia? after all, that is where the final word on Eid is because that is when Haj is over.
Should we accept a global concept of moon-sighting where if it is sighted at one place, it is sighted all over the world or, should we accept local sightings by OUR religious scholars?
A Rabbi friend of mine told me that Jews addressed this problem (they too, work on the Lunar Calendar)…hundreds of years ago! They decreed that all holidays (except for Yom Kippur) would be observed for one extra day, just to be sure they observed it on the right moon-sighting day. Today, Reform (Liberal) Jews have removed the second day observance because they believe that it is scientifically possible to accurately determine the correct day.
Muslims’ dithering about when are our holy days, is what keeps us from having an actual holiday for Eid; if Muslims cannot agree when to hold their holy days, then how can we get our schools to agree on when the holy days are so they can give our children a holiday?
It never ends; we are doomed to celebrate our holy festivals on two, maybe three, different days. That’s the bitter part… Continue reading