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Posted On: 25 August 2018 12:00 am
Updated On: 15 May 2021 12:26 pm

Why do Muslims celebrate two Eids?

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Two Eids

Eid means ‘festival’ or ‘feast’ in Arabic and is a time of great celebration and festivity for Muslims all around the world. There are two Eids every year which are separated by approximately two months and 10 days between them.

Though both Eids have some similarities - Muslims gather together to offer the Eid prayers which take place early in the morning, just after the sun has arisen, they visit friends and family and exchange gifts and goodwill, everyone dresses up in their best clothes and there is joy and happiness everywhere – they are also very different from each other. Each Eid is based on a specific event that is significant to Islam and has different meanings and connotations.

Difference between Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha

Eid al-Fitr means ‘the feast of breaking the fast’ and is celebrated after the Islamic month of Ramadan in which Muslims around the world fast every day for 29 or 30 days (depending on the sighting of the crescent moon) from sunrise till sunset and practice restraint along with self-control. Eid is declared when the new crescent moon for the Islamic month of Shawaal is sighted and celebrations continue for three days.

Eid al-Fitr in Qatar

Eid al-Adha which is also known as the ‘Greater Eid’ means the ‘the feast of the sacrifice’ and is celebrated on the 10th day of the Islamic month of Dhul Hijjah just after Haj and the sacrifice of an animal in the name of Allah. A goat, sheep or a portion of a cow or camel is sacrificed to commemorate Ibrahim’s obedience towards Allah after Allah told Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his son, Prophet Ismail, and he agreed. At the time of the sacrifice Allah intervened and saved Prophet Ismail by placing a ram in his place. Eid al-Adha celebrations also continue for three days.

Eid al-Adha in Doha

The Islamic calendar

The Islamic Hijri calendar, like the Gregorian calendar has 12 months, but unlike the Gregorian calendar where a month has 30 or 31 days and is based on the sun, the Hijri calendar has 29 or 30 days which are calculated based on the sighting of the new crescent moon. As a result, the Hijri year is shorter than the Gregorian calendar by 10-12 days. That is why, ever year Eid al-Fitr and Eid al Adha fall on different dates.

To know more about Eid al-Fitr, click here.

To know more about Eid al-Adha, click here.

Did you know there were two Eids in the Islamic faith? Did you know why? How did you celebrate both Eids this year? Let us know in our Comments section. Like and share the article - it keeps us going!