Deen Digest | The Prophetic Ways of Observing Eid-al-Fitri

by Abu Hanifa
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Several hadiths of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) show that there are several steps to be taken on Eid al Fitr in order to have a perfect Eid.  These steps were either said or practised by the Prophet during his lifetime on Eid al Fitr day. Some of the steps or dos/don’ts are briefly presented below, quoting directly from hadiths.

Pay Zakat-al-Fitr

Ibn Umar narrated that the Prophet ordered the people to pay Zakat-ul-Fitr before going to the Eid prayer.

Also, Yahya related to me that Malik had seen that the people of knowledge used to like to pay the zakat al-fitr after dawn had broken on the day of the Fitr before they went to the place of prayer. Malik said, “There is leeway in this, if Allah wills, in that it can be paid either before setting out (for the prayer) on the day of Fitr or afterwards.”

 Don’t Fast

“I was present for Eid with Umar bin Khattab. He started with the prayer before the sermon, and said: ‘The Messenger of Allah (saw) forbade fasting on these two days, the Day of Fitr and the Day of Adha. As for the Day of Fitr, it is the day when you break your fast, and on the Day of Adha you eat the meat of your sacrifices.'”

Clean Up and Take Bath

In Sunan Ibn Majah. Chapter 7 number 1315,  Ibn Abbas narrated: “The Messenger of Allah (saw) used to have a bath on the day of Fitr and the day of Adha.”

Eat Before Going for Eid Prayer

In Sahih Bukhari, “The Prophet (saw) would not go out on the Day of Fitr until he had eaten some dates.” Sahih

In Imam Malik’s Muwatta, Chapter 10 number 6, Yahya related from Malik from Hisham ibn Urwa from his father that he used to eat on the day of the id al-Fitr before going out.

In Sunan Ibn Majah, Chapter 9 number 1756, Ibn Buraidah reported from his father, that: “The Messenger of Allah (saw) would not go out on the Day of Fitr until he had eaten, and he would not eat on the Day of Nahr (the day of sacrifice) until he came back.”

Do Ablution before going to the prayer ground

In Imam Malik’s Muwatta, Chapter 10 number 2, it says: “Yahya related to me from Malik from Nafi that Abdullah ibn Umar used to do ghusl on the day of Fitr before going to the place of prayer.”

Don’t perform nafilah (supererogatory prayer) before or after Eid Prayer

In Imam Malik’s Muwatta, Chapter 10 number 10, it says: “Yahya related to me from Malik from Nafi that Abdullah ibn Umar did not pray either before the prayer or after it on the day of Fitr.”

Join the congregation to pray 2 rakat and listen to Imam’s sermon

In Sahih Bukhari. Chapter 15 number 81, Ibn Abbas narrated: “The Prophet offered a two Rakat prayer on the Day of Eid ul Fitr and he did not pray before or after it. Then he went towards women along with Bilal and ordered them to pay alms and so they started giving their earrings and necklaces (in charity).”

Supplicate to Allah

In Lataif al-Ma’arif, Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated: “When the day of Eid al-Fitr [begins], the angels descend on earth, where they take their positions at access points of roads, calling out with a voice that is heard by the whole creation of Allah, except men and Jin, “O Ummah of Muhammad (saw)! Come out to your most Noble and Gracious Lord, who grants much, and pardons the major sins”.

When they (the Ummah) proceed to their places of prayer, Allah, Exalted is He, says to His angels, “O My angels! What is the reward of a worker when he has done his work?”

So they (the angels) say, “Our Lord and Our Master! To receive his reward [for the work, in full]“.

So He [swt] says, “I call you to witness that, for their fasts [during Ramadan], and for their standing in prayer at night, I have made their reward My Pleasure, and my Forgiveness. Depart [from here], you are forgiven”’.

As we celebrate Eid-al-fitr, we should remember to adhere to it prophetic guidance and rules so that we can earn reward and live a fulfilling life on earth, in preparation for the day of resurrection. May Allah accept all our ibadaat and supplications.

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