The confusion in sighting the Eid-ul-Fitr!
By: M S Nazki
Was it a self construed geographical confusion caused in Pakistan where both the concerned parties wanted to prove something and in the end led Pakistani people into confusion!
- Also it had it’s effect on the people of Jammu and Kashmir. This is not a human error but a mega blunder.
- The religious leaders in Rajouri and Poonch are saying vociferously that Pakistan has fooled them by making them believe the Eid was on Thursday while the entire country of India is celebrating it today (Friday).
- They were unanimous in saying that they were carried into a make believe world of lies and confusion by Pakistan and if their own religious leaders are to be heard they are firm in their belief that the moon was not sighted at all because there is no reliable witness to testify the same
- It seemed that was the case and it later percolated into a situation that no one actually knew as to when the Eid would be celebrated?
*This insistence is based on the fact that according to a Hadith, Prophet Muhammad said, ‘Fast when you see it (the moon) and stop fasting when you see it.’ A verse in the Holy Quran also notes, ‘…So whoever of you sights (the crescent on the first night of) the month, he must observe Sawm (fasts) that month… (al-Baqarah 2:185).
*Ramadan, the month of fasting, Doesn’t begin all at once. It begins with a whisper. And a prayer. And a wish. Muslims all over the world celebrate Ramadan and the joyful days of Eid-ul-Fitr at the end of the month of fasting as the most special time of year.
*The Moon is always there. A half blink of shadow, a crescent of an eyelash, opulent in fullness, spellbound in nothingness, and a friend.
- In fact the moon has a great significance in almost all the religions.
- Moon worship, adoration or veneration of the moon, a deity in the moon, or a personification or symbol of the moon. The sacredness of the moon has been connected with the basic rhythms of life and the universe. A widespread phenomenon, appearing in various eras and cultures, moon worship has engendered a rich symbolism and mythology.
*The mythology of the moon emphasizes especially those periods when it disappears the three days of darkness in the lunar cycle and eclipses. Both are usually interpreted as the result of battles between some monster who devours or slays the moon and who subsequently regurgitates or revives it.
*The interregnum is interpreted as an evil period necessitating strict taboos against beginning any new or creative period. In some areas loud noises are part of a ritual activity designed to scare off the moon’s assailant.
- Lunar deities, gods and goddesses who personify the moon and its cycles, are comparatively rare. In primitive hunting cultures the moon is frequently regarded as male and, particularly in regard to women, is understood as a preeminently evil or dangerous figure. In agricultural traditions the moon is usually regarded as female and is the benevolent ruler of the cyclical vegetative process.
*The moon is alive because of the darkness – how could we ever be afraid of something that gives the stars a home?
- Have faith that what you require already exists and you only have to retrieve it.
Therefore the Moon has a tremendous amount of significance in religions but in the holy month of Ramadan everything revolves around the moon be it right at the start of the holy month or when the fasts have to end. But this time in Pakistan a mega confusion took place which baffled the people no end. This is what happened:
- Most Arab countries announced that Eid al Fitr 2021 was to fall on May 13 completing 30 days of Ramadan. However, many in Pakistan expected the Eid to fall on May 14 a day later than the rest of the world because that is how it’s been for the country down the history.
- However, things took a turn when the authorities told Pakistan that it was to celebrate Eid with the rest of the world on May 13. And what was most shocking about this announcement was that it came around midnight when the entire country was convinced that it would be on Friday.
*But as the moon would have it, in a late Wednesday night surprise, the Ruet-i-Hilal Committee announced that Eid will be observed all over Pakistan on Thursday.
*Every moon sighting has controversies galore. And where there is controversy, confusion is bound to take place. Pakistan’s information and broadcasting minister, Chaudhry Fawad Alam shared his thoughts of the new moon being 13 hours and 42 minutes in Pakistan, and how it was impossible to sight it. He claimed that Eid will fall on Friday, 14 May.
- The same Minster if reports are to be believed had earlier, as minister for science and technology, worked on a calendar and a digital app that uses scientific ways for moon sighting. But his ways were hardly met with enthusiasm by the clerics running the show.
- Chaudhry also suggested on Wednesday that there are people who want to celebrate Eid with Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan, and they should plainly confess it. Why conclude the holy month with a lie?
*Then there are the people who are superstitious about Eid falling on a Friday and think it could be a bad omen for the government?
*The same superstition made military ruler Ayub Khan declare Eid at Sheri time to avoid a Friday Eid because it could lead to trouble for him. Rather horrendous but that’s the truth of the past.
*The Ruet-i-Hilal’s announcement came after 11:30 pm on Wednesday if they had waited, they would have seen the sun too. What matters is that Pak rulers are safe. Rest can roll down the dumps.
- In the confusion about celebrating Eid or keeping fast, there were those VIPs who were looking for sacrificial animals on Eid-Ul-Fitr that isn’t about qurbani. This was a bit insane of them.
*There were others celebrating Eid on 13 May 2021 without sighting the moon and after only 29 Rozas contrary to Holy Quran and Sunnat. This has added to the confusion and leads to the fact that Pakistan announced without sighting the moon. There are voices saying so.
- Okay, celebrating Eid with Saudi Arabia was good but confusing its own people and the others is a bit of a shame and that is what Pakistan exactly did. Other than their own people they fooled the people of UT Jammu and Kashmir and they are fuming.
To add catalyst to the fire as regards sighting of the moon the following things followed up randomly:
- Mufti Muneeb and certain ulema have claimed that the Ruet-e-Hilal committee made a mistake in announcing Eid and the decision was done at the behest of rulers.
- Mufti Muneeb, who is the former chairman of the moon-sighting committee, said that people should fast tomorrow (Friday) or before the next Ramadan, as qaza roza.
- The question is, was the moon sighted first of all? There were no reliable witnesses and scientific evidence that showed the sighting of the moon.
- This was a clear and concise example of making the fool of the people in a resounding way.
*The decision was announced at 11:30pm, which was not accepted by the public or the ulema. But it had to be and thus the Eid was celebrated on the 29th day! This was outrageously wrong.
- Under Mufti Muneeb’s leadership, it had been decided to issue a fatwa. The fatwa says that people can say their Eid prayers, so that there is no confusion among the public. They should, however, fast tomorrow, and those who were in itikaf should also complete their last day in the mosque.
- All said and done it was a streaky mega blunder in the auspicious day. Anyway let us keep the spirit of Ramadan alive. As long as your heart is beating, you have a purpose. God is intentional, so He does not keep anyone on Earth that doesn’t have to be here; if we are blessed with more life, it is because someone in the world needs us. If we are alive, it means that what we were sent to this Earth to create and that has not yet been accomplished thus far! That is what the great month taught us this year 2021!