Eid al-Adha ( “festival of sacrifice”), also called Feast of the Sacrifice, the Major Festival and the Greater Eid, is an important religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide to honour the willingness of ʾIbrāhīm (Abraham) to sacrifice his son Ismā’īl (Ishmael) as an act of obedience to Allah Almighty, before Allah intervened to provide him with a sheep to sacrifice instead. Muslims all around the world celebrate this festival on the completion of Hajj and on the 10th, 11th and 12th day of the Islamic month Dhu al-Hijjah.
The Eid holidays are just around the corner. In Pakistan it starts off with people going to the “Bakr-Mandi” (The animal market) to buy an animal to offer for sacrifice. There are different categories of animals ranging from price to its breed. There is no limit to the number of animal one can offer for a sacrifice. It depends on the financial condition of the buyer and sometimes, the zeal which drives him.
Children rush with enthusiasm as the animal reaches their home. They play with it, feed it, paint names on it with “Mehndi” and become so attached with it that it’s sometimes difficult to call your child in for dinner. One thing which they enjoy is taking their animal out for a walk. The main purpose behind it is to boast about and show their animal to their neighbours Everybody wants to display their animal in the best possible way. Some kids even make their animals fight which is a very wrong thing to do.
The day comes near and arranging for a good professional “Qasai” (Butcher) becomes a problem for the adults of the family. They want their meat to be touched by professional hands only. There are fake butchers moving around on Eid in yearn for money. They’re able to fool a lot of people by saying, “Oh sahib jee hamari tou dukaan hai falaani jagah pe” (Sir, we have a meat shop at the blah blah place).
On the dawn of Eid al-Adha, Muslims wake up to get ready for the Eid prayer. It is generally advised to get done with the sacrifice as soon as possible after the prayer. Children, who consider the animal to be a part of their family by now, are heartbroken.
The meat is prepared, the stoves are lighted. It is time for our women to take over the grounds. The party is on! You can, through the disgusting smell of animal insides, feel the aroma of brilliant spicy foods being cooked everywhere. Barbecues are arranged and the nights are spent eating and partying like animals.
Meat is of course distributed among the poor and the needy as per Sunnah so that everyone can enjoy the flavours on this auspicious occasion.
It is related that al-Bara’ said, “The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, ‘The first thing we do on this day of ours is pray and then we go back and slaughter. Whoever does that has followed our Sunnah. “
We pray that you have a very happy Eid this year and those to come. Do not forget to give share to those around you and those who need it. Eat, enjoy and Stay blessed! =)