What is Eid?
Eid is the shorthand for Eid ul-Fitr, which is the Islamic celebration for the end of Ramadan. Ramadan is the Islamic month of fasting, which aims to strengthen a Muslim’s faith. Eid is a three day celebration marked with festivities, food feasts and gift giving. The term ‘Eid ul-Fitr’ literally means ‘festivity of the end of the fast’.
During Ramadan, Muslims observe 30 days of religious devotion through prayer and fasting. Muslims during this time refrain from eating or drinking from before dawn until after sunset, and devote themselves to prayer at least 5 times a day. During this time, Muslims also refrain from having physical relations. They also practice ‘Zakat’ or giving to the poor by those who can afford it. During Ramadan is also when millions of Muslims who are physically and financially capable observe Hajj, or the pilgrimage to Mecca. Self-restraint and kindness are two recurrent themes in observing Ramadan. In Christianity, Ramadan is equal to lent.
The end of Ramadan is marked by eating very early in the morning to signify the end of fasting. Prayers are then recited, usually in congregations, after which Muslims will usually have celebrations with family and friends. Muslims usually greet each other ‘eid mubarak’ or ‘eid sa’eed’ which means ‘blessed eid’ and ‘happy eid’ respectively.