Sunnahs of Eid ul Adha

About the Day of Eid ul Adha: The tenth day

  • Eid ul Adha is a day for festivity and worship and one of the noblest days

Eid ul Adha, first and foremost is a day of worship. It is also a day of festivity and merriment.

It was narrated that ‘Uqbah ibn ‘Aamir said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: ‘The Day of ‘Arafah, the Day of Sacrifice and the Days of al-Tashreeq [the three days following the Day of Sacrifice] are a festival for us Muslims, and they are days of eating and drinking.’” [A Jami’ al-Tirmidhi Hadith 773] (Hassan)

Nubayshah narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: We forbade you to eat their meat for more than three days in order that you might have abundance; now Allah has produced abundance, so you may eat, store up and seek reward. Beware, these days are days of eating, drinking and remembrance of Allah, Most High. [Sunan of Abu-Dawood Hadith 2807]

  • It is recommended to perform a full bath (ghusl) on the morning of Eid

It was narrated in a saheeh hadeeth in al-Muwatta’ and elsewhere that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar used to do ghusl on the day of al-Fitr before going out to the prayer-place in the morning. [Al-Muwatta’ 428]

Al- Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said that the Muslims were unanimously agreed that it is mustahabb (recommended) to do ghusl for Eid prayer.

  • New or best clothes should be worn, but women must ensure that they are properly covered in public

It was narrated that Jaabir (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (peace be upon him) had a cloak which he would wear on the two Eids and on Fridays. [Saheeh Ibn Khuzaymah, 1756]

Al-Bayhaqi also narrated with a saheeh isnaad that Ibn ‘Umar used to wear his best clothes on Eid.

So a man should wear the best clothes that he has when going out for Eid.

With regard to women, they should avoid adorning themselves when they go out for Eid, because they are forbidden to show off their adornments to non-mahram men. It is also haraam for a woman who wants to go out to put on perfume or to expose men to temptation, because they are only going out for the purpose of worship.

  • It is recommended to eat when one gets back from the Eid prayer on the Day of Eid ul Adha

On Eid al-Adha it is mustahabb (recommended) not to eat anything until one comes back from the prayer, so he should eat from the udhiyah if he has offered a sacrifice. If he is not going to offer a sacrifice there is nothing wrong with eating before the prayer.

  • People should perform the Eid prayer in a central location

A special prayer is held on both of the days of Eid. The scholars disagreed about whether it is recommended or obligatory, but it is agreed that it is important to attend it.

  • Women are also encouraged to go to the Eid Prayer if possible

Women are also encouraged to go to the Eid prayer as long as all of the Islamic conditions are fulfilled especially relating to dressing and interacting. The Hanafis however do not recommend that women go out to the eid prayer based upon the potential problems when the Islamic requirements are not fulfilled.

Umm Atiyya said: We were ordered to bring out our menstruating women and veiled women in the religious gatherings and invocation of Muslims on the two ‘Id festivals. These menstruating women were to keep away from their Musalla. A woman asked, “O Allah’s Messenger ‘ What about one who does not have a veil?” He said, “Let her share the veil of her companion.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.347]

  • The Eid Prayer is a two unit prayer with extra takbeers followed by a khutba (sermon)

The person should recite their supplications of the Tahleel, Tahmeed, Tasbeeh and Takbeer until the Imam comes out.

He should then perform the Eid prayer following the Imam. In the first rak’at the beginning, the Imam does extra Takbeers, and in the second rak’at, he also does extra takbeers. There is a difference of opinion amongst the schools of thought as to how many are done, but it is necessary to follow the imam.

After the Eid prayer one should listen to the khutbah.

For the Hanafi, after the first takbeer and thanaa, there are three other takbeer with loose hands at the sides for the first two and hands folded on the third one. The ta’awwudh, bismillah and al-Faatiha are recited as normal and so is the second rak’at until after the al-Faatiha and surah, after which there are three additional takbeers with hands loose at the sides, before the fourth one which is to go into rukoo. The rest of the prayer as is done normally. This is the manner of prayer in our centre.

For the other schools, there are six or seven takbeers in the first rakat before bowing and going into sujood. When the Imam rises, there are an additional five takbeers.

  • Men often embrace one another after the prayer and give Eid greetings – women do the same

It was narrated that Jubayr ibn Nufayr said: When the companions of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) met one another on the day of Eid, they would say to one another, “May Allah accept (good deeds) from us and from you.” [Ibn Hajar said its isnaad is hasan. Al-Fath, 2.446]

Offering congratulations was something that was well known among the Sahaabah, and scholars such as Imam Ahmad and others allowed it. There is evidence which suggests that it is prescribed to offer congratulations and good wishes on special occasions, and that the Sahaabah congratulated one another when good things happened, such as when Allaah accepted the repentance of a man, they went and congratulated him for that, and so on.

Undoubtedly these congratulations are among the noble characteristics among the Muslims.

The least that may be said concerning the subject of congratulations is that you should return the greetings of those who congratulate you on Eid, and keep quiet if others keep quiet, as Imam Ahmad (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: If anyone congratulates you, then respond, otherwise do not initiate it.

  • It is recommended to walk to the prayer, and return from the Eid prayer via a different route

Jabir bin Abdullah said: On the Day of Eid the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to return (after offering the Eid prayer) through a way different from that by which he went. [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 2.102]

It was said that the reason for that was so that the two routes would testify for him on the Day of Resurrection, for the earth will speak on the Day of Resurrection and say what was done on it, both good and bad.

  • It is common for people to visit each other and give gifts or money, especially to children

Because Eid is a time for celebration, it is customary to invite and share the feast with family and make merry, but in a halaal way that does not impinge upon the forbidden. Children should be given money and gifts to keep them happy and to make it feel like a celebration.

  • The sacrifice should be done after the Eid prayers and the festivities can continue for three days

The period of Eid ul Adha includes the Days of tashreeq, which is the 11th and 12th of Dhul Hijjah, and according to some views the 13th as well.

Performing the Sacrifice on the tenth day

  • If one is able, then it is recommended to sacrifice an animal

The sacrificial animal is from the realm of cattle, and is slaughtered by those who are performing the Hajj pilgrimage and those who are not. It is necessary for those performing the pilgrimage. Those who are not on hajj but have sufficient wealth should also perform a sacrifice.

Al Bara’ ibn Aazib narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever slaughtered (the sacrifice) after the prayer, he slaughtered it at the right time and followed the tradition of the Muslims.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 7.453]

  • The sacrifice can be a sheep, goat, cow or camel

The best is a camel, then a cow, then a sheep, then a share of a camel, and then a share of a cow.

This is because of the narration in which the most reward is given.

Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “When it is a Friday, the angels stand at the gate of the mosque and keep on writing the names of the persons coming to the mosque in succession according to their arrivals. The example of the one who enters the mosque in the earliest hour is that of one offering a camel (in sacrifice). The one coming next is like one offering a cow and then a ram and then a chicken and then an egg respectively. When the Imam comes out (for Jumu’ah prayer) they (i.e. angels) fold their papers and listen to the khutba.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 2.51]

Aisha narrated that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) commanded that a ram with black legs, black belly and black (circles) round the eyes should be brought to him, so that he should sacrifice it. He said to Aisha: Give me the large knife, and then said: Sharpen it on a stone. She did that. He then took it (the knife) and then the ram; he placed it on the ground and then sacrificed it, saying: In the name of Allah, O Allah, accept (this sacrifice) on behalf of Muhammad and the family of Muhammad and the Ummah of Muhammad”. [Sahih Muslim Hadith 4845]

Abu Ayyoob al-Ansaari (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “At the time of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), a man would sacrifice a sheep on behalf of himself and his household, and they would eat some and give some to others.” [A Jami’ al-Tirmidhi Hadith 1505] (Sahih)

The camel or the cow can be shared by seven people.

Jabir ibn Abdullah said: In the year of Hudaybiyyah (6 A.H.), we, along with Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him), sacrificed a camel for seven persons and a cow for seven persons. [Sahih Muslim Hadith 3024]

  • The slaughter must be done after the prayer

The time of slaughtering is after the Eid prayer. Anyone who sacrifices it before then, must repeat the sacrifice.

Anas bin Malik narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever slaughtered the sacrifice before the prayer, he just slaughtered it for himself, and whoever slaughtered it after the prayer, he slaughtered it at the right time and followed the tradition of the Muslims.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 7.454]

Jundub bin Sufyan Al Bajali narrated that once during the lifetime of Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) we offered some animals as sacrifices. Some people slaughtered their sacrifices before the (Eid) prayer, so when the Prophet finished his prayer, he saw that they had slaughtered their sacrifices before the prayer. He said, “Whoever has slaughtered (his sacrifice) before the prayer, should slaughter (another sacrifice) in lieu of it; and whoever has not yet slaughtered it till we have prayed; should slaughter (it) by mentioning Allah’s Name.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 7.408]

The sheep should also be a year old.

Al Bara bin Azib narrated that his uncle called Abu Burda, slaughtered his sacrifice before the Eid prayer. So Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said to him, “Your (slaughtered) sheep was just mutton (not a sacrifice).” Abu Burda said, “O Allah’s Messenger! I have got a domestic kid.” The Prophet said, “Slaughter it (as a sacrifice) but it will not be permissible for anybody other than you” The Prophet added, “Whoever slaughtered his sacrifice before the (Eid) prayer, he only slaughtered for himself, and whoever slaughtered it after the prayer, he offered his sacrifice properly and followed the tradition of the Muslims.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 7.463]

The meat should be eaten, given to friends and family or stored for later use.

Abu Sa’id al-Khudri narrated that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) having said: O people of Medina do not eat the flesh of sacrificed animals beyond three days. Ibn al-Muthanna said: Three days. They (the Companions of the Prophet) complained to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) that they had children and servants of theirs (to feed), whereupon he said: Eat, and feed others, and store, and make it a provision of food. [Sahih Muslim Hadith 4861]

Many organisations collect the money and arrange for a sacrifice in a poorer region of the world. One should pay special attention to ensure that their sacrifice is done correctly in order to absolve themselves from the obligation and so the charity which assumes the responsibility should be a reliable one.

  • The one commissioning the sacrifice should avoid cutting hair and nails until the sacrifice has been done

This is similar to those in ihram performing the Hajj. (They can be cut if there is a dire need).

Umm Salamah narrated that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: When any one of you intending to sacrifice the animal enters in the month (of Dhul-Hijjah) he should not get his hair or nails touched (cut). [Sahih Muslim Hadith 4869]

The significance of the Eid ul Adha and the Sacrifice

  • Eid ul adha is a commemoration of the sacrifice of Ibraheem (as)

The day of Eid ul Adha is based around the sacrifice that was made by Ibraheem (as) as commanded by Allah.

And he said (after his rescue from the fire): “Verily, I am going to my Lord. He will guide me!” “My Lord! Grant me (offspring) from the righteous.” So We gave him the glad tidings of a forbearing boy. And, when he (his son) was old enough to walk with him, he said: “O my son! I have seen in a dream that I am slaughtering you (offer you in sacrifice to Allah), so look what you think!” He said: “O my father! Do that which you are commanded, Insha’ Allah (if Allah will), you shall find me of As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.).” Then, when they had both submitted themselves (to the Will of Allah), and he had laid him prostrate on his forehead (or on the side of his forehead for slaughtering); And We called out to him: “O Abraham! You have fulfilled the dream (vision)!” Verily! Thus do We reward the Muhsinun (good-doers – see V.2:112) Verily, that indeed was a manifest trial And We ransomed him with a great sacrifice (i.e. ßÈÔ – a ram); And We left for him (a goodly remembrance) among generations (to come) in later times. Salamun (peace) be upon Ibrahim (Abraham)!” Thus indeed do We reward the Muhsinun (good-doers – see V.2:112). Verily, he was one of Our believing slaves. [37:99-111]

The story is about the gift of a child given to Ibraheem in his old age and the joy that came with it. Allah then commands him to sacrifice this son and Ibraheem duly complies. When sacrificing, Allah replaces the son with a ram, and commanded that to be a sign for generations to come.

  • The believers should be willing to sacrifice that which they love most for the pleasure of Allah

The commemoration is not simply about a sacrifice, but an indication for the believers to make sacrifices for the sake of Allah in what they love, taking the example of Ibraheem (as) who was willing to sacrifice the one thisng that he loved so much – his son.

Say (O Muhammad ): “Verily, my Salat (prayer), my sacrifice, my living, and my dying are for Allah, the Lord of the ‘Alamin (mankind, jinns and all that exists). [6:162]

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