Eid Al-Fitr - General Rituals

General Rituals

See also: Eid cuisine

Eid al-Fitr is celebrated for one, two or three days. Common greetings during this holiday are the Arabic greeting ‘Eid Mubārak ("Blessed Eid") or ‘Eid Sa‘īd ("Happy Eid"). In addition, many countries have their own greetings in the local language – in Turkey, for example, a typical saying might be Bayramınız kutlu olsun or "May your Bayram – Eid – be blessed." Muslims are also encouraged on this day to forgive and forget any differences with others or animosities that may have occurred during the year.

Typically, Muslims wake up early in the morning—always before sunrise— offer Salatul Fajr (the pre-sunrise prayer), and in keeping with the traditions of the Prophet Muhammad clean their teeth with a toothbrush, take a shower before prayers, put on new clothes (or the best available), and apply perfume.

It is forbidden to fast on the Day of Eid. It is customary to acknowledge this with a small sweet breakfast, preferably of the date fruit, before attending a special Eid prayer (known as salaat).

As an obligatory act of charity, money is paid to the poor and the needy (Arabic: Sadaqat-ul-fitr) before performing the ‘Eid prayer:

  • To show happiness
  • To give as much charity as is possible
  • To pray Fajr in the local Masjid
  • To go early for Eid salaat
  • To read the takbirat in an open field.
  • Go to the Eid prayer on foot
  • Do not speak one word other than words that remember Allah or anything Islamic terms before and after Eid Salaat. You can speak once you've left the Masjid, or Mosque or any other place you were praying
  • Say Eid Mubarak to other Muslims
  • Muslims recite the following incantation in a low voice while going to the Eid prayer: Allāhu Akbar, Allāhu Akbar, Allāhu Akbar. Lā ilāha illà l-Lāh wal-Lāhu akbar, Allahu akbar walil-Lāhi l-ḥamd. Recitation ceases when they get to the place of Eid or once the Imam commences activities.
  • Muslims are recommended to use separate routes to and from the prayer grounds.

The Eid prayer is performed in congregation in open areas like fields, community centers, etc. or at mosques. No call to prayer is given for this Eid prayer, and it consists of only two units of prayer with an additional six incantations. The Eid prayer is followed by the sermon and then a supplication asking for God's forgiveness, mercy, peace and blessings for all living beings across the world. The sermon also instructs Muslims as to the performance of rituals of Eid, such as the zakat. Listening to the sermon at Eid is a requirement i.e. while the sermon is being delivered; it is prohibited to talk, walk about or offer prayer. After the prayers, Muslims visit their relatives, friends and acquaintances or hold large communal celebrations in homes, community centers or rented halls.

Eid gifts, known as Eidi, are frequently given at eid to children and immediate relatives.

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