We look at Christmas and how fun and jolly it appears to be. But what about our own religious holiday? What are some ways to enjoy Eid as much as possible? How can we make Eid fun for our children and for ourselves?
Eid is a day of celebration! It is supposed to be a day full of enjoyment, and there are so many ways that we can make Eid fun...
Shaykh Waleed Basyouni answers
This is a very interesting question. How can we make our Eid fun? Eid is supposed to be fun. An-Nabi sal Allahu alayhi wasallam was heard in his house, for the first time Abu Bakr was very surprised when he hear two girls singing and using duff, which is a musical instrument. It's like a drum. He was angry and he said, "This is like the voice of the Shaytan in the house of Rasoolillah. Why are you doing this?" Then Nabi sal Allahu alayhi wasallam said, "Hold on. Don't scream at them, let them, it is Eid. Let them have fun." So people will know that we have fun as well in our religion. An-Nabi sal Allahu alayhi wasallam said, "Give an example of the Jews," who used to be his neighbor. And it's very interesting.
For me, today, when the Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wasallam told Abu Bakr, "so the Jews will also know that we have fun in our Eid, and when we celebrate." I said, "Let us compare how much we have fun as Muslims when Eid comes, comparing to our neighbors in Christmas, or on Thanksgiving, on Hanukkah. All these Eids that we see around us by other communities." How they can have so much fun, and what about us? I think we should learn how to have fun on that day. And by the way, fun is not only to stuff yourself up with all kinds of food from the morning all the way to the night, visiting every family, or peoples house just to eat, and that's about it, and you go into a food coma until next day. That I think, is maybe not the best way of having fun in Eid.
So, we need to be more creative, and let me start with this. The fun of Eid starts from Eid prayer. You know what? I hope that my friends and my colleagues, the Imams who give khutbatul-Eid please don't make it sad. This is the day where it is not to tell people, "Hey, you worshipper of Ramadan. Ramadan is not done, but the worship of Allah should continued", don't make them feel bad and say "Hey, you guys going to go back to your sin and not going to come back to the masjid." You know what? We need a good message at Ramadan to thank people for coming to Eid and thank people for fasting. Also, please on Eid don't bring the sadness of what's happening in Palestine and Kashmir, Syria and Iraq. This has it's time and we make dua for them. But every moment, the moment should be celebrated if it's a moment of happiness then it should be a moment of happiness.
An-Nabi sal Allahu alayhi wasallam with all the problems that were happening, you know what was happening in during the masjid during Eid with the Prophet sal Allahu alayhi wasallam? The Habasha (Abysinnian) young kids were dancing with their spears and having fun in the masjid. That's in their culture 1400 years ago. Part of the fun was that they used to have new clothes, even Umar RA saw a garment, a very nice dress in the market. He bought it and he said ya Rasollullah I bought this as a gift, so you can wear it on Eid. I love it when I see members of our community come wearing tuxedo, wearing nice, shining shoes and dressed up. This is so beautiful for people to have fun, to express their happiness as long as they follow the Shari'a by the way, they dress. So please, let's make this a fun day starting from the masjid.
Jubayr ibn Nufayr said that the Sahaba used to hug each others and say may Allah accept from both of us our good deeds. You know who also you need to reach out to? Some members of our community who don't have many people to celebrate Eid with, like a convert and people who are single or people who maybe moved to this community because of their job or work. A lot of those people are by themselves, they need someone not just to give them a hug and to say, Eid Mubarak but after that, during the day, they need to be part of whatever the community or some family celebrating. I give you examples, I love it in our community that we have an Eid prayer for example, where people who wear costumes. So we have Batman coming and making Takbir "Allahu Akbar" and we have the kids behind them making Takbir as well or Spiderman, people have fun.
We have a brother every year on Eid, he buys gifts for kids and distributes them. I know one brother in my community, he rents a moonwalk and make a barbecue outside his house and he invite all the neighbors, Muslim and non Muslims and they knew this the best cookies in the neighborhood for free and hot dogs and they celebrate, they really have fun and kids come and they do have a lot of activity for adults as well. I know other groups people go to a carnival and they organized that main events, these kinds of places where they have games and activities for adult and for the young, some used to rent Six Flags, I remember ICNA used to do that or maybe is still doing that as well, which is something I really appreciate. The point is the community has to put this in their priority.
Let's have fun on Eid. How can we make Eid fun for our community? I know we are tired, we are focused on Ramadan but also that is important. The moment of happiness. It's as important as the moment of reflections and when our spirituality is high and maybe our tears are coming down. The one who brought smiles and tears who created both situations. And it starts with the smile. So the laugh, the smile, the good times is something our Deen would love to see. I hope this has inspired us to start thinking and sharing on social media some of your experience, some of your ideas, how a community can have fun on Eid. But I think if we start thinking about it as a priority, as a goal, we will find a way. May Allah make it a very happy Eid for all of you.