Eid al-Adha, also known as the ‘Festival of Sacrifice’ or ‘Bakra Eid’, is among the two Islamic holidays celebrated worldwide (the other being Eid al-Fitr).
The festival holds a huge significance as it pays tribute to one of the greatest demonstrations of faith with Islam. It is celebrated to honour the willingness of Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his son as an act of obedience to God’s command.
As per the Islamic lunar calendar, Eid al-Adha falls on the 10th day of Dhu al-Hijjah and falls approximately 11 days prior to the previous year’s Eid.
What is the story of 'qurbani' in the holy book of Quran?
The literal translation of Eid al-Adha is ‘Feast of the sacrifice’. The practice of sacrificing a livestock animal for God every year is called 'Qurbani', or 'Udhiya'.
Qurbani is not only the practice of sacrificing a livestock animal in the name of God, but also to draw us closer to God. In the holy book of Quran, let us go through the instances of 'qurbani' made by the Prophets.
First, the story of Prophet Adam who asked his two sons Habil and Qabil to make sacrifices in the name of Allah to resolve a difference between them. Whoever's sacrifice was accepted, would be the winner.
While Habil sacrificed a well-grown healthy ram (animal), Qabil was not willing to offer his best. Hence, Habil's sacrifice was ascended to heaven, making him the winner.
The story tells us that sincerity and purity of intention are the most important part of the Qurbani.
(Quran 5:27 - And recite to them the story of Adam's two sons, in truth, when they both offered a sacrifice [to Allah ], and it was accepted from one of them but was not accepted from the other. Said [the latter], "I will surely kill you." Said [the former], "Indeed, Allah only accepts from the righteous [who fear Him]).
The second story is of Prophet Ibrahim and his son Ismail. It is believed that Prophet Ibrahim was challenged by Allah to prove his faith in him and as an act of obedience he was willing to sacrifice his 13-year-old son Ismail. But, before Abraham could sacrifice his son, God intervened by sending his angel Jibreel (Gabriel), who then replaced his son with a ram. Since then, as a tribute, Muslim families across the globe sacrifice a livestock animal, on Eid al-Adha to celebrate the divine intervention.
(Quran 37:105 - You have fulfilled the vision." Indeed, We thus reward the doers of good).
Eid al-Adha 2020 in India:
This year, Eid al-Adha will be celebrated on Saturday, August 1, as per the Shahi Imam of Delhi's Jama Masjid. That means, celebrations will begin post evening prayers (Maghreb) on Friday, July 31.
The traditional way to celebrate Eid al-Adha is to sacrifice a goat, sheep or any livestock animal to God. People visit mosques, offer prayers, exchange gifts, meet their loved ones and have a feast together. Some of the delicacies prepared during the festival are Mutton Biryani, Bhuni Kaleji, Mutton Keema, Chapli Kebab, Gosht Haleem and Kheer.
However, this year, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the celebrations will be limited. As no religious gatherings are permitted, prayer meetings will not be held this year and people will be celebrating the festival at their homes.