Every tribe, people or race throughout the world celebrates a festival of one sort or another. Muslims also celebrate some festive occasions on some days of the year. But the festival of Eid is one that we are commanded to celebrate in festivity, joy and happiness by Allah Almighty Himself ! This in itself portrays its importance.Inquiries from numerous places have been initiated to know as to the honor of which ceremony, the Eid-ul-fitr is celebrated and that what the purpose of this festival is. The answer tendered to this question is that at the eve of Ramadan – and that of its ending – Eid-ul-Fitr is, in deed, a sacred function of the annual celebration of the Quran’s revelation. Usually the festivals of jubilation and rejoicing are celebrated in the world for the change of the seasons or for establishing the monument of any person or for preserving any prominent event of history. But what Islam declares is this: The change of season takes place according to the Law of Allah; the human’s monuments can perish and the world’s events can be made to forget. But the message of Allah preserved in the Quran can never vanish – the charge of its preservation He got unto himself; He who is alive and can never die; is so lasting that He has neither any decadence, nor is destined to decay. This rejoicing Festival of Eid is the monument of the revelation of living and lasting Book of Allah, the Allah who is the Living and the Everlasting. Preparations were made all over the month for the celebration of this festival (those preparations were, in deed, the integral part of this Festival as well). Islam is the name of obedience to the Divine Laws – not the obedience by compulsion but the obedience from the core of the heart. It is the accomplishment of the Laws in such a way that a true sub-ordinate to these Laws can not even touch a thing, unlawful and unrecognized. It is he, in whose hands, no illegitimate loss can be rendered to the property, life, honor and chastity of any human. For the consolidation of this very passion of obedience, it has been ordered that in compliance to this Law, even the thing lawful and pleasing be left for some time so that there be never any casting of the eye to the thing unlawful and unrecognized. They were made habitual to bear the intense pangs of hunger and thirst all the day over so that they are addicted to pass smilingly and steadfastly through the extremely difficult stages of their life struggle. It was, as if, an Annual Training Camp in which provisions were made to revitalize the new inspirations in life; it was a refresher course, a memoria technica, to reinvigorate the memorandum, - that in which the direct link between Allah and man was refreshed. It was stock taking through which we had to evaluate the sum total of our deeds and consequences spread over the whole year to oversee as to what extent we have marched ahead on this scale in one year. When, after the labor of hard work and during the obedience of a complete month, growth in the tender feelings of heart, vision in eyes, sharpening in minds and invigoration in psyche were inculcated, they were ordered to assemble at a place so that they may sit jointly and contemplate as to what they have to do to achieve and perpetuate the life which is the characteristic feature of the party of those who follows the Laws of Allah (Party of Momineen); and that the contracts of which are vividly glistening, like the true diamonds, in every page of the Quran. As a result of this contemplation they may develop such a program, which their selected leader (Imam) may announce in his address. After that, their representatives with this decisive program may start going to the concrete capital of the Islamic Ummah (i.e. the House of Allah at Mecca) where, in the light of these various local programs, a common system is devised for the all Ummah. It is these – the various integers of this mirthful festival and the brief outline of its integral parts. Keep these in view and then reflect how these festivals on the basis of which there were living hopes bouncing on every facet of its vastness, and the fresh thrilling invigorating the psyche of human have gradually transformed into the icons of rituals. According to Allama Iqbal;
That Blood no longer remain in thy veins That heart, that craving no more in thy life
Thou hast the prayer, the fasting, the sacrifice, the Hajj
All in rituals alive in thee But thou hast lost thyself.
Ghulam Ahmed Parvez