The month of piety, abstinence, and fasting draws to an end. We have remained unwavering in our faith; we have prayed and connected with the Divine. Now, the sighting of the new moon brings with it much cheer and joy. As friends and family gather around, sweets, gifts, and goodies mark the day.
There are 5 gifts, though, that best represent this holy festival. These, unlike others, make our Eid al-Fitr a truly memorable one.
“Those who spend in Charity will be richly rewarded” – Quran 57:10
In the holy month of Ramadhan Zakat– an obligatory contribution that is required of all followers of Islam. But Zakat is compulsory only for rich people. Giving to the needy is the greatest of noble deeds, says the Quran. So much so that Zakat is considered one of the five pillars of the religion along with staying in faith, praying, fasting during the Ramadan, and undertaking the Hajj pilgrimage. This above all is the one gift that you must give this Eid.
“…Son, if you are able, keep your heart from morning till night and from night till morning free from malice towards anyone; then he said, Oh! My son, this is one of my laws, and he who loves my laws loves me.” (Sahih al-Bukhari)
The word Islam means peace. At a time when the world seems increasingly fragmented, may this Eid bring us all the blessing, the gift of peace, and freedom from violence. Our children, the generations to come, will then learn to work together as global citizens, crusaders of a common cause, and unite against poverty, illiteracy, destruction of the environment, and other such evils rather than engage themselves in petty squabbles.
“Allah is the protecting friends of those who have faith: from the depths of darkness He will lead them forth into the light” – Quran 2:257
A lack of faith, of positivity, is the greatest shortcoming that one could suffer from. At a time when we hear of more and more students taking desperate acts for falling short of marks, we wonder how we can instill faith, confidence, hope, and resilience in ourselves and in those around us. Eid brings with it the message of discharging our duties to the best of our abilities having reposed faith in the Divine.
“The perfect Muslim cannot be a perfect Muslim, who eats till he is full and leaves his neighbors hungry.” (Ibn Abbas: Baihaqi)
In a country like India where there are many religions, cultures, languages, and other such divides Eid is the perfect time to strengthen the bonds of unity and brotherhood that bind us. Our country is at a crucial juncture of development and working together as a cohesive force will bring us the prosperity that we now seek.
“If you are grateful I will give you more”– Quran 14:7
No prayer to God is complete without an expression of thankfulness. No noble deed is fulfilled until we reflect in utter gratitude towards God and all those who have facilitated our success. This Eid let us bring this gift of gratitude to our friends and family and bring joy to others too.