Eid al-Adha 2019: Significance of sacrificing sheep on Bakra Eid

Eid al-Adha, also known as Barka Eid, is celebrated with much fervor across the globe. It is one of the two most important Islamic festivals with 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 in to honour the willingness of Ibrahim to sacrifice his son as an act of obedience to god’s command. The literal translation of Eid al-Adha is ‘Feast of the sacrifice’. It is believed that Prophet Ibrahim was challenged by the God 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 Jibrail (Gabriel), who then replaced his son with a sheep. Since then as a tribute, Muslim families across the globe sacrifice a male goat on Eid al-Adha to celebrate the divine intervention.

As per the Islamic calendar, the festival is celebrated on the 10th day of Dhul al-Hijjah, which falls approximately 11 days prior to the previous year’s Eid al-Adha. In 2019, Eid al-Adha will be celebrated on August 11 and 12.

Significance

It is believed that Prophet Ibrahim, father of prophets was challenged by the god to prove his faith in him. God asked him to sacrifice something he is very fond of. He decided to sacrifice his 13-year-old son Ismail. Later, God intervened by sending his angel Jibrail (Gabriel), who then replaced his son with a sheep. Since then people celebrate the festival by sacrificing an animal. The meat is then divided into three parts – the first part is gifted to friends and relatives, the second part to the underprivileged and the third and last part is kept for the family.

Celebration

The traditional way to celebrate Eid al-Adha is to sacrifice a goat or sheep to the 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, Ghosht Haleem and Kheer.

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