October 03, 2014.
By: Comrade Abdulbaqi Aliyu
Every year, Muslims faithful from around the world sacrifice rams on the day of Eid el Kabir-10th of the 12 month of Dull Hajji (pilgrimage month). This is a long tradition which is dated back to over nine thousand years ago during the time of Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham).
According to narration as provided by the Holy Book, Prophet Abraham was inspired by Allah The Most High in a dream to slaughter his son Ishaq (Isaac) for sacrifice. Same Abraham lived about 100 years before he could give birth to his son and was commanded by God to slaughter him on 10th of Dhul Hijjah, as a sacrifice unto him.
Prophet Abraham narrated his inspiration to his son that the act to sacrifice him was the commandment of Allah. His son found no fault in the decision and said: “God willing you find me among the patient ones”. As Abraham was about slaughtering his son, Allah directed Arc Angel- Jibril (Gabriel), to make provision for a ram in place of his son. Then, Abraham slaughtered the Ram and Allah was pleased with his action. Ever since, the ritual has come to stay and it is practiced by Muslim faithfuls.
In Islam, ram is the most prepared animal for sacrifice; while she-Camel is the least wanted. The animal for sacrifice should be healthy and fully matured before it is offered as. One is advised to divide the meat into 3- one for his house-hold consumption, one for neighbours, and the other for sacrifice.
The significance of the ritual is to strengthen oneself with the fear of Allah and also pay obedience to his laws. In chapter 22 verse 37, it is stated that neither the meat nor the blood reach Almighty Allah, but only the fear of Allah. The reason for the ritual was also stated in the same chapter that we respect Allah and appreciate his gratefulness for Allah’s guidance to mankind.
Prophet Muhammad, during his days on earth slaughtered many animals and gave the poor to feed. For the wealthy ones seeking the mercy and blessings of Allah, let them use this season to feed the poor and also make the less privileged enjoy the Eid celebrations.
The essence of charity and Zakat (mandatory charity) in Islam is to increase unity and strengthen brotherhood, while Zakat purifies ones wealth and eradicate poverty in the society.
May Allah accept our Fidya (sacrifice), protect us, and make peace to reign in our country. Ameen.
Comrade Abdulbaqi Aliyu Jari