The virtue of the days of the Eids is great. The nights that come after the first, the second, and the third days of Eid al-Adha are termed the nights of Eid al-Adha. The night that is between the last day of the holy month of Ramadan and the first day of Eid al-Fitr is termed the night of Eid al-Fitr.
It is declared in hadith-i sharifs:
(Whoever spends the nights of Eid a-Fitr and Eid al-Adha doing righteous deeds [such as engaging in acts of worship, knowledge …], his heart will not die on the day when hearts die.) [Ibn Maja, Tabarani]
(The gates of Compassion are opened on four nights. Supplications and repentance done on these nights will not be refused. [They are] the first nights of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, the night of Barat [the fifteenth night of Sha’ban], and the night of Arafa.) [Isfahani]
(Supplications done on five nights will not be refused: the night of Raghaib, the night of Barat, the night of Friday, the nights of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha.) [Ibn ‘Asakir]
It is sunnat to do the following things on the days of the Eids: to get up early, to make a ghusl (ritual washing), to clean the teeth with miswak, to put on fragrant scents, to wear new and clean clothes, to manifest that you are happy, to wear a ring, to greet the Believers you meet with a smiling face, to give alms generously to the poor, to give help to those who are working to disseminate the true Islam, to reconcile those who are cross with one another, to visit your relatives and Muslim brothers, and to give them presents. At Eid al-Fitr, it is sunnat to eat sweetmeat before the namaz of Eid al-Fitr, to eat dates, to eat an odd number of them (like 1, 3, 5 …), and to prefer to do things in odd numbers. It is declared in a hadith-i sharif:
(Allahu ta’ala is one, and He loves a person who prefers to do things in odd numbers.) [Bukhari]
We should be happy and cheerful on the days of the Eids. When Hadrat Abu Bakr went to the house of our mother Aisha, his daughter, he saw two jariyas (female slaves) dancing by playing a tambourine. They were eulogizing the heroic actions of the Blessed Companions and were reciting an epic. Thereupon, Hadrat Abu Bakr stated that it was not appropriate to do so in the house of the Messenger of Allah and told them to stop it. Our Master the Prophets said to Hadrat Abu Bakr, “Do not prevent them! Every nation has an Eid, and this is ours. Eids are the days of happiness” (Bukhari).
Those who are cross with one another should be reconciled immediately without waiting for the Eids because a person who loves Allahu ta’ala and our Master the Prophet does not see the faults of people and is tolerant toward them. A good person, that is, a Believer, gets on well with everybody. He/she never causes others trouble and endures the trouble caused by them.
We should not become cross with anyone. When we become angry or offended with another person, this state should not last for more than three days. If it has lasted until the Eids, reconciliation should be achieved without any more delay. As a matter of fact, it is declared in hadith-i sharifs:
(It is not permissible for a person to become cross with his brother-in-Islam for more than three days. If he comes upon him after three days, he should give greetings [salam] to him and ask him how he is. If the latter returns his greetings, they will share the reward. Otherwise, the sin will be recorded for the latter. The one who gives greetings is absolved of the responsibility for being cross with him.) [Abu Dawud]
(Deeds are presented to Haqq ta’âlâ [Allahu ta’ala] on Mondays and Thursdays, and He forgives all people who do not attribute a partner to Him. But those who hold grudges against one another cannot become beneficiaries of this forgiveness. Janab-i Haqq [Allahu ta’ala] says, “Do not bring their deeds to Me until they are reconciled.”) [Imam-i Malik]
(Do not sever ties between one another! Do not turn your back on one another! Do not nurse hatred and animosity toward one another! Do not be jealous of one another! O the servants of Allah, be brothers [or sisters]. It is not halal [lawful] for a Muslim to forsake his brother-in-Islam by becoming cross with him for more than three days.) [Bukhari]
(He who becomes cross with a Muslim for more than three days will go to Hell.) [Nasai]
(Of the two people who are cross with each other, whoever gives greetings [salam] first, his sins will be forgiven. If the second party does not return his greetings, then angels will return his greetings. Thereupon, Satan will gladly compliment the one who has not returned the greetings.) [Ibn Abi Shayba]
(If two people become cross with each other and die in this state, they cannot enter Paradise without seeing Hell. Even if they enter Paradise, they cannot meet each other.) [Ibn Hibban]
(He who becomes cross with his brother-in-Islam for a year incurs a sin as if he killed him.) [Bayhaqi]
We celebrate Eid al-Fitr not because Ramadan has passed, but because our sins have been forgiven and we have attained rewards and blessings. It is declared in a hadith-i sharif:
(When Muslims gather in mosques for the salat in the morning of the Eid, Allahu ta’ala asks angels, “What is the reward for a person who has completed his task?” Angels answer, “To receive a payment.” Thereupon, Allahu ta’ala says, “Then bear witness that I gave My servants My own pleasure and forgiveness in return for their fasts and salats in Ramadan. O My servants, ask for anything you wish from Me today. By My Honor and Glory, I will grant you whatever you ask for.) [Bayhaqi]
When our master the Prophet stated, “Allahu ta’ala forgives fasting people on the last day of Ramadan,” the Blessed Companions asked him, “O Messenger of Allah, is that day the night of Qadr?” Our master the Prophet answered, “Don’t you know that when a person renders a service he gets paid after completing it” (Bayhaqi).
How doesn’t a Muslim who knows these rewards become happy and celebrate the Eid?
Hadrat Ali stated, “Today is the Eid of those whose fasts have been accepted, whose services have been rewarded, and whose sins have been forgiven.” A hadith-i sharif says, “In Ramadan, Allahu ta’ala forgives the sins of all people except the sins of four groups of people: those who go on drinking, those who are disobedient to their parents, those who abandon silat-ur-rahm [upholding ties of kinship; visiting and helping relatives], and those who despair of becoming Believers” (Ghunya).
If they make repentance, Allahu ta’ala forgives their sins. If people knew the rewards that are given in Ramadan, they would wish that everyday were a day of Ramadan. It is declared in a hadith-i sharif, “If the special rewards in Ramadan were known, it would be wished that the whole year were Ramadan” (Abu Nasr).
Happy are those who fast by abstaining from sins. They will celebrate the real Eid in the Hereafter.
The nights of the Eids
Question: In the book Endless Bliss, it is written, “A sacred night is named after the day following it. It is the duration of time from the early afternoon prayer of the preceding daytime till the dawn following the night. Only, the night of Arafa and the three nights of Qurban [Eid al-Adha] are not so. These four nights follow the daytime after which they are named.” From which Islamic book is this quotation taken?
It is written as follows in Durr-ul-mukhtar in its section about i’tikaf:
Know that nights precede days, with the exception of the night of Arafa and the nights of Eid al-Adha. To facilitate the affairs of people, these nights follow their days that have passed. This is also written in Walwaljiyya in its section about sacrifice.
Eating and drinking at Eids
Question: It is written in Maktubat, “Eating and drinking during the Eids are more rewarding (thawab) than observing voluntary fasts for years.” Why do eating and drinking bring rewards?
What brings rewards herein is not eating or drinking, but obeying the commandment of Allahu ta’ala by not fasting. What is meant here is that since it is prohibited to fast on the days of the Eids, not to fast on these days, that is, to obey the commandment of the religion, is more precious than voluntary fasts.
Question: What are do’s and don’ts when we visit people at the Eids? Who should be given priority for such visits?
It is not necessary to visit relatives who will cause us to commit sins, but pious and devout relatives should be visited. Similarly, it is very rewarding to visit pious and devout friends. A visit should be paid purely to earn the good pleasure of Allah.
It is declared in hadith-i sharifs:
(A person left his home to visit his friend living in a village. Haqq ta’ala [Allahu ta’ala] sent an angel to him. The angel said to that man:
“Where are you going?”
“I have a friend in this village. I am going to visit him.”
“Will you visit him because he had done you a favor or he had done you a service?”
“No, I will visit him purely for the sake of Allah.”
“Glad tidings be to you. It is Allahu ta’ala who has sent me. As you are going to visit your friend without expecting anything in return, you have earned Allahu ta’ala’s love.) [Hakim]
(Whoever pays his brother-in-Islam a visit, an angel will say to him, “How lucky for you, you entered Paradise.” Haqq ta’ala, on the other hand, says, “I will grant My visiting slave rewards in Paradise that he will enjoy.”) [Bazzar]
(There is no servant who has visited his brother-in-Islam for the sake of Allah except that an angel will say to him, “You have done well! Enjoy Paradise!” On the other hand, Allahu ta’ala will say, “My servant has come to visit Me. It devolves on Me to entertain him.”) [Abu Ya’la]
(He who pays his brother-in-Islam a visit is in mercy until he returns.) [Tabarani]
(There are so beautiful mansions in Paradise that they have been prepared for those who visit one another for the sake of Allah and who love and help one another for the sake of Allah.) [Tabarani]
(Whoever leaves his home to visit a Believer, 70 000 angels will pray, “O our Lord! Show compassion to this slave of Yours who is going to pay a visit for Your pleasure.) [Abu Nu’aym]
(When a Muslim visits his brother-in-Islam, 70 000 angels will pray, “O our Lord! Be pleased with this slave of Yours who has visited him for Your pleasure.”) [Tabarani]
(He who visits his brother-in-Islam only for the pleasure of Allah will be in Paradise.) [Tabarani]
(Whoever visits his brother-in-Islam, he will be given a rank in Paradise.) [Ey Oğul İlmihali]
(Offer hospitality to your visitor.) [Haraiti]
(Whoever visits his brother-in-Islam and shakes hands with him, Haqq ta’ala is pleased with both of them before they withdraw their hands. Their sins fall off like leaves falling off a tree.) [Ey Oğul İlmihali]
(Make visits from time to time, so that you boost love.) [Bazzar]
People of wisdom say:
“Do not give up paying someone a visit because he/she will forget you then. Also, do not pay him/her a visit frequently because he/she will be fed up with you then.”
(In the vicinity of ‘Arsh on the seats made of nur will be people shining like nur. Prophets and martyrs will yearn to be like. They are those who love one another for the sake of Allah, who meet one another for the sake of Allah, and who visit one another for the sake of Allah.) [Nasai]
(Allahu ta’ala says: “Those who visit one another for My sake, who love one another for My sake, who give for My sake, who help one another for My sake will earn My love.”) [Hakim]
(Whoever goes to visit his friend whom he loves for the sake of Allah, an angel will say behind him, “What a good deed you are doing. You deserve Paradise.”) [Tirmidhi]
It is very rewarding (thawab) to visit Muslims for the sake of Allah. It is a lot more rewarding to visit scholars, poor people, and pious (salih) relatives. It is declared in hadith-i sharifs:
(Whoever visits a rich person, he earns the rewards that are given to a person who fasts [in the daytime] and who worships at night. Whoever visits a poor person, he earns the rewards that are given for jihad in the way of Allah. His each step equals the step taken in the way of Allah.) [Daylami]
(He who visits a scholar earns rewards as if he visited me.) [Tabarani]
(Silat-ur-rahm is to visit and to do favors to your relatives who have severed ties with you.) [Tirmidhi]
(Let him who wants to have bountiful sustenance and a long life do silat-ur-rahm.) [Bukhari]
(Silat-ur-rahm increases property, boosts love in a family, and lengthens one’s lifetime.) [Tabarani]
We should visit our pious and devout relatives at least once a week or month, not more rarely than every 40 days. If our relatives are in faraway countries, we should please their hearts over the telephone or with letters. If we are cross with them, we should be reconciled.
When a namaz is performed, the host should act as an imam, or the person he has appointed should act as an imam. The visitor, even if he meets the conditions for being an imam, should not act as an imam without receiving an offer. A hadith-i sharif says:
(Let a person who goes to visit a tribe not act as an imam for them.) [Tirmidhi]
Accepting an invitation
Question: Should we accept every invitation?
You must not partake in an invitation if sins are committed where the meal is offered. It is conceit to refuse a poor person’s invitation and to accept a rich one’s. To visit those who are lower in rank than you is a sign of humility.
For a person invited, it is sunnat to attend a wedding banquet while it is mustahab to attend other banquets. Some Islamic scholars stated, “It is wajib to go to a wedding banquet, and it is sunnat to go to other banquets.” One of the five rights of a Muslim over his fellow Muslim is to accept his/her invitation, that is, to accept and attend it. It is declared in a hadith-i sharif, “Accept an invitation” (Muslim).
It is not necessary to attend the invitation of a person who inconveniences himself/herself with great expenses for preparing a meal. Also, you should not partake in the invitation of a miser person. Our master the Prophet says on this issue, “The meal of a generous person is curative while that of a miser person causes a disease” (Dara Qutni).
You should partake in an invitation to which you are invited sincerely. It is declared in hadith-i sharifs:
(He who does not accept an invitation has rebelled against Allah and His Messenger.) [Bukhari]
(If you are invited by two people at the same time, accept the invitation of him whose door is closer to you because the rights of the one whose door is closer to you come first.) [Bukhari]
Question: Can we kiss everybody’s hand at Eids? That is, whose hand can be kissed and whose hand cannot be kissed?
Not everybody’s hand is kissed. It is permissible to kiss the hands of parents, and it is also permissible to kiss the hands of old relatives as it is customary. It is haram to kiss the hand of a friend. A woman can kiss the hand of her husband. However, a woman cannot kiss the hands of na-mahram men and a man cannot kiss the hands of na-mahram women without an extreme necessity.
Putting the forehead on the hand
Question: When we are kissing the hands of those whose hands can be kissed, is it permissible to put our foreheads on their hands?
It is not necessary to do so, but there is nothing wrong with it because it is done customarily.