By: Sadruddin Noorani, Chicago, USA
The joyous day of Eid al-Fitr is finally upon us, MashaAllah, marking the end of the blessed month of Ramadan.
Tomorrow, InshaAllah we will wish one another Eid Mubarak. Eid means ‘recurring happiness’ and Mubarak means “may (Allah’s) blessing be with you’. So when we wish each other Eid Mubarak we recognize that our happiness derives from God’s abundant blessings.
The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him (p.b.u.h), offered Eid prayers and celebrated the occasion even when his peace sanctuary of Madinah was repeatedly under the threat of attacks. So let go the anxiety of Covid-19. Simply learn to adjust with the situation, follow the government guidelines and medical professional’s advisories. Its time to learn what is difference between virus and bacteria. Moving forward, we will be in a new world and new landscape. But, enjoy Eid as best as possible. Allah has mentioned in Qur’an (94:5-6) that “with every hardship and difficulty comes relief.” So keep thanking Him for all He has given us. Keep committing to the mission of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) to establish peace, justice, fairness, and equity. Resolve to live a better and a purposeful life for all humanity.
It is said that once when Hazrat Hasan and Hazrat Hussain (a.s), were children they both fell ill, Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h), came to visit them with a few followers. They counselled Hazrat Ali (a.s), to make a vow to God in supplicating for their children’s recovery. So, Hazrat Ali and Sayyida Fatimah al-Zahra (a.s) vowed that they would fast for three consecutive days if their sons recover. After a few days, the boys were well again.
To fulfill the pledge they had made, the family began fasting. Times were difficult and they only had some bread with which to break their fast at the end of each day. On the first day, as they were about to break their fast, an indigent person came to their door. He looked weak and ill. ‘Can you spare some food for a poor man?‘ he asked. Imam Ali’s family had never turned away from their door anyone in need. they invited the man into their home, gave away the bread they had prepared, and broke their fast with only water.
The second day, just as they were about to break their fast, there was a knock on their door. This time it was an orphan boy asking for food. ‘Please give me something to eat, I haven’t eaten for two days.’ Again, the family gave away whatever bread they had. Although they themselves had been hungry for two days, they all happily gave their loaves of bread to the orphan and again broke their fast with water. On the third day, just as they were about to break their fast, a weary man knocked at their door. ‘Could you please spare me some food?‘ he asked. ‘I am a helpless prisoner.’ The family did not ignore him and, again, they gave away their bread, and broke their fast with water and slept without any food.
It is believed that after this event, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) received a revelation which is part of Surah al-Insan (76:8), Allah refers to the family of the Prophet and says:
“And they give food, in-spite of their desire for it – to the poor, the orphan and the captive, for the love of Allah.”
The selfless action and the words of the Ahl al-Bayt contains significant lessons for us. Their compassion demonstrates their recognition of the equality and dignity of all humans. They put those who they deemed to have greater needs before their own or the needs of their own children. And they did it all for the love of God.
Mowlana Hazar Imam teaches us to always think of all humanity before our self.
Whilst Eid al-Fitr marks the end of Ramadan as a defined period of abstaining from food and drink, the notion of maintaining purity of thought and deeds is equally important. The fasting which results in our ethical and compassionate action – oriented towards and out of love for God – continue beyond Ramadan.
On this joyous day of Eid al-Fitr, let us offer thanks for the blessings for the Almighty Allah and for the love and guidance of Mawlana Hazar Imam, which he has offered to us so selflessly for over six decades.
Mawlana Hazar Imam said in his speech at Conference of Indigenous Philanthropy
Islamabad, Pakistan (17 October 2000)
“Philanthropy and charitable giving hold a very central place in the teachings of the Holy Quran, the writings of Islamic thinkers, and the history of Muslims in all parts and cultures of the Islamic World, including here on the sub-continent. Islam’s clear and explicit injunction is to share resources beyond one’s reasonable commitments, and to care for those in need.”
Eid al-Fitr Mubarak!