Friday, November 04, 2005

November 4 - Eid_ul-Fitr - The End of Ramadan

Eid_ul-Fitr - The End of Ramadan

The Islamic holiday of Eid ul-Fitr (Arabic: عيد الفطر), often abbreviated as simply Eid, marks the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting. Fitr means to break and therefore symbolizes the breaking of the fasting period and of all evil habits. On the day of the celebration, a typical Muslim family gets up very early and attends special prayers held only for the occasion in big mosques, in large open areas, stadiums or arenas. The festivities and merriment start after the prayers with visits to the homes of friends and relatives and thanking the Creator for all blessings. Eid is a time to come together as a community and to renew friendship and family ties. This is a time for peace for all Muslims in the world to devote to prayers and mutual well-being.

It's a joyous occasion with significant religious significance. Happiness is observed at attaining spiritual uplift after a month of fasting. Muslims dress in holiday attire. After attending the special congregational prayer in the morning, worshippers greet and embrace each other in a spirit of peace, love, and brotherhood. Visiting friends and relatives is common.

For Muslims, Eid ul Fitr is a joyful celebration of the achievement of enhanced piety. It is a day of forgiveness, moral victory and peace, of congregation, fellowship, brotherhood and unity. Muslims are not only celebrating the end of fasting, but thanking God for the help and strength that he gave them throughout the previous month to help them practice self-control.

A common greeting during this 3-day festival is the Arabic greeting "Eid mubarak" or its Urdu variation "Eid mubarak ho!" which, loosely translated, means "Happy Eid!"

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