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Eid al-Fitr: “The festival of breaking the fast”

Eid Celebrations by AMISOM Public Information marked with CC0 1.0

When directly translated, the Eid al-Fitr meaning is “the festival of breaking the fast” and commemorates the end of a month-long fast throughout Ramadan for Muslims around the world.

The festival is a very important time in Islam and allows families, loved ones and communities to come together and celebrate following a month of abstinence and dedication to Allah (SWT).

This is important because it marks the end of Ramadan, the month in which the Holy Qur’an was first revealed to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

Throughout Ramadan, Muslims undertake a fast between the hours of sunset and sunrise and spend a lot of time in self-reflection while studying the Qur’an and connecting with Allah (SWT) on a spiritual level.

After a full month of sacrifice and dedication, Eid al-Fitr is a time to come together to enjoy everyday blessings.

However, before the festivities can begin, there are a number of important rituals that must first take place to give true thanks to Allah (SWT) for all he has done.

Dawn/Eid prayers: also known as Fajr – are performed at dawn, after which the family prepare for the day, by wearing the finest clothes they own, then head over to the local mosque to wish friends, family and the local community “Eid Mubarak, which is translated to ‘blessed feast/festival’, but it is also used in the context of ‘happy Eid’ and ‘blessed celebration’. After the greetings are said, Eid prayers begin.

Zakat ul-Fitr: Charity donation which must be made before Eid prayers commence, as this is distributed amongst the neediest to ensure they can take part in Eid festivities.

It’s also traditional to exchange gifts or food during the Eid celebration, particularly between young children, neighbours and close family members.

Eid is a joyous time and many Muslim communities look forward to the celebrations with eagerness. 

Saadatu Albashir

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