Message No : 2Sr.No : 194/725
Question By : Beazedin Mustafa

Al salaamu alaykum brothers in Islam

I have two questions regarding celebrating birthdays of the Jesses /a.s./ and Mohammed /s.a.w./ Prophets:

1. Chrisitans celebrate Christmas with which they celebrate birthday of Jesses /a.s./.

2. We, Muslims, celebrate mawlids or birthday of Mohammed /s.a.w./.

What is the ruling on celebrating such dates?
And if we /Muslims/ see that Chirstians are doing wrong with this how a Muslim can answer to a Christian regarding the birthadya celebrating of Mohammed /s.a.w/

I am very eager to receive your complete explanations insha'Allah.
Also for all your references regarding the very topic.

Al salaamu alaykum


Reply By : Mohd. Shihabuddin Qasmi
Designation : Mufti, ODI, MMERC, Mumbai 

In the name of Allah, All Gracious, All Merciful
Wa Alaikumossalaam
Dear Brother in Islam,
The answers to your questions are as follows:

People of every nation and religion celebrate their particular days. Some celebrate the birth days of their great people while the other celebrate the day they got freedom from their enemies. The tradition of celebration has taken the form of religious or national festival. But Islam, unlike other religion, condemns all these vain traditions and personal memorial. It lays down the principles to commemorate the objects not the persons or the days.

Once, some scholars of Jews came to the Second Caliph of Islam, Hazrat Umar Farooque (RA) and said, ¡°There is a verse in your Glorious Qur¡¯aan. Had it been revealed to Jews they would have celebrated the revelation day of that verse. Hazrat Umar (RA) asked, ¡°Which verse is this¡±? The Jews recited the verse No: 3 of Suratul Mayeedah. Hazrat Umar (RA) replied, ¡°We know where and when this verse was revealed¡±. He indicated that the revelation date of this was the two celebration days for us; Arafah and Jomo¡¯ah.

Hazrat Ibraheem (AS) was given the title of ¡°Khalilullah¡±. The Glorious Qur¡¯aan states all the tests he faced and appreciates his complete success in all. But the Lofty Qur¡¯aan neither mentions the celebration of his birthday or death day nor the birthday of his son, Ismayeel (AS) and wife, Hajerah as well as their other important days. Yes, Islam not only safeguarded their religious practices but also made them the part of religion for the generation to come. Sacrifice, circumcise, Sa¡¯yee between Safa and Marwa and throwing stones at three places in Mina are the memorial of the practices they carried only for the sake of Allah Almighty. A great lesson for the people of every period is laying in these practices. The lesson is that one should scarify one¡¯s beloved one and favourite thing for the sake of Allah Almighty. Similarly, Islam celebrated the sincere practices of a person related to a particular worship instead of celebrating his birth day or death day such as Shabe-¡®Baraat, Ramadhanul Mubarok, Sabe-Qadr and so on. In short, Islamic festivals are not based on historical events as the festivals of Christians, Jews and the people of other religious are.

Jews celebrated the birthday of Jesus (AS) and the Muslims followed them to celebrate the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW). Muslims started to practise several anti-religious deeds in this particular day considering them worship, such as lighting candles, caring out Juloos, arranging Kauwali program and like these unreligious practices, which were not carried by the companions of the Prophet (SAW).

In fact, the tradition of celebrating a particular day can be made by such community or nation, which gives birth a few great personalities who leave some tremendous works for their next generation. The coming generation feels proud to remember them and their services. If Islam permits the celebration of day then no time of the life of a Muslim will be free from celebrating a particular day. Since, more than one lacke twenty four thousand prophets and messengers were sent to this world. Their countless services are to be celebrated besides their days of births and deaths. Then, from childhood up to death, no part of the life of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) can be neglected to celebrate. After the Prophet (SAW), approximately, one lacke fifty thousand companions who were the live examples of the Prophet (SAW) deserve to celebrate their births and deaths as well as their works. After them, the number of the successors of the companions and great personalities and scholars comes. How many days will a Muslim celebrate? He will celebrate all the days or leave the some and celebrate the few ones. It is impossible to celebrate all the days and injustice to celebrate the some days leave the other ones. Therefore, the Prophet of Islam (SAW) and his companions neglected this kind of celebration considering vain tradition. The above-mentioned reply of Hazrat Umar (RA) refers to this kind of tradition. (All from Ma¡¯ariful-Qur¡¯aan)

No doubt, it is amongst the great virtues to remember a thing refers to the Prophet of Islam (SAW) whether it is his birthday or anything else. But the fashion of remembering should be according to the teachings of Islam. For, there are three conditions for a deed to be accepted. The first condition is Imaan. No good deed is valid before Allah Almighty without Imaan. The Glorious Qur¡¯aan says, ¡°We shall turn to their deeds and scatter them like particles of dusts¡± (Suratul-Furqaan 25: 23) The second one is Ikhlaas (sincerity). The deed done for the sake of other than Allah Almighty will be rejected. Allah Almighty says, ¡°It is not their meat or blood that reaches Allah: it is the fealty of your heart that reaches Him¡­¡± (Surtautl-Hajj 22: 37) The last one is Shariah. The act must be according to the Shairah otherwise it will not be accepted. The Lofty Qur¡¯aan says, ¡°¡­accept what the Prophet gives you and refrain what he forbids¡­¡± (Suratul-Hashr 59: 7)

The right way of remembering the birth of the Beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is to carry it out without following any tradition or deciding time and date. But his sacrifices, miracles, birth and death should be expressed in the view of the Glorious Qur¡¯aan and the Ahadeeth in any program at any time and date. The purpose of such program should be spending one¡¯s life as the Prophet (SWA) did. The person who will present the life of the Prophet (SAW) must be a practical Muslim too. The Glorious Qur¡¯aan says, ¡°Do you enjoin right conduct on the people, and forget (to practise it) yourselves, and yet you study the Scripture? Will you not understand?¡± (Suratul-Baqaraah 2: 44)


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