When is Eid al-Adha and how is it celebrated?
Eid al-Adha, the Festival of Sacrifice or Greater Eid as it is often known, is an important Islamic holiday which commemorates the willingness of Abraham (Ibrahim) to sacrifice his son as an act of obedience to God, and his reprieve at God's command when he was instead allowed to sacrifice a ram.
Eid is also celebrated by spending time with family and friends, and giving thanks for being able to afford food and housing. Traditionally each family would slaughter a domestic animal, such as a sheep, goat, cow, or camel as a sacrificial symbol and, though some Muslims today choose not to (or are unable to) to do this, it is still a very popular tradition. The meat from the sacrifice is then divided into three equal parts to be distributed. The family keeps one third, another third is given to relatives, friends or neighbours, and the final third is given to the poor.
Eid al-Adha is the latter of two Eid festivals celebrated by Muslims and, like Eid ul-Fitr, it begins with a short prayer followed by a sermon.
Eid al Adha is celebrated annually on the 10th day of the month of Dhu al-Hijjah of the lunar Islamic calendar. Eid al-Adha celebrations start after the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia by Muslims worldwide. This date is approximately 70 days after the end of the month of Ramadan and ritual observance of the holiday lasts until sunset on the 13th day of Dhu al-Hijjah.
Estimated Dates for Eid al-Adha
Eid al-Adha 2012 (1433) - 26th October
Eid al-Adha 2013 (1434) - 15th October
Eid al-Adha 2014 (1435) - 4th October
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