After being absorbed in a month long exercise of vigorous worship and spiritual enrichment, the Muslim Ummah stands on the threshold of Eid-ul-Fitr. The day of Eid is one to express sincere gratitude to Almighty Allah (SWT) for His favours – gratitude for the opportunity to fast through the day, stand in prayer at night, give charity and recite Holy Quran abundantly. It is a day of celebration for the believers who have executed their duties honorably.
Eid is the culmination of this spiritual empowerment and a festival marking the accomplishment of all Muslims. However, it does not signal the end of the mission. The good discipline developed in Holy Ramadan must remain and be sustained. A true reflection of our efforts in Holy Ramadan being accepted is continuity with good actions post Holy Ramadan.
Whilst the day of Eid is a joyous occasion the night should be one of contemplation and worship. It had been the practice of Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw), that he would not sleep in the night preceding the day of Eid-ul-Fitr. This night has been named in a Hadith as the Night of Reward (Lailatul Jaiza). Almighty Allah (SWT) bestows his rewards on those who have spent the month of Holy Ramadan abiding by the dictates of Shari’ah, and all their prayers in this night are accepted. Therefore, it is desirable to perform Nafl prayers in this night.
Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) is reported to have said: “Whoever stands up (in worship) in the nights preceding the two Eids expecting rewards from his Lord, his heart will not die when the other hearts will die.” (Ibn Majah)
Holy Prophet Muhammad al-Mustafa (saw) said: “I swear by Him Who has sent me with the truth as Prophet; Archangel Gabriel has reported to me from Archangel Israfel who directly reports from Almighty Allah (SWT) that one who offers this prayer, (at the last night of Ramzan al-Mubarak) will not raise his head from prostration before Almighty Allah (SWT) would forgive him, accept his acts during the month of Ramzan, and overlooks his sins …” (Mafatih al-Jinan)
To benefit from this opportunity, one should perform as much worship in this night as he can and should pray for all his needs and desires.
Surely for those who repented profusely in the month of Holy Ramadan and used the auspicious month in the best possible way to gain proximity to their Creator, the day of Eid is one of true joy and celebration. They know well that they have seized the opportunities that availed in Holy Ramadan, and have firm hope in the reward and pleasure of their Creator. On the other hand those who squandered the opportunities, procrastinated in their repentance, and did not seize the blessed moments, will be left to regret their failure. Eid is a sweet sour occasion for such people, as they eat, meet, and greet with a regretful heart and look back at what could have been a life changing experience.
Our life is no different. The month of Holy Ramadan may be likened to the entire life span of a person and the day of Eid likened to the day a person will meet Allah (SWT). Every day is an opportunity to run towards Allah (SWT) and those who seize the opportunity of life and fulfill life’s objective will be truly celebrating ‘tomorrow’, on the day of Qiyamah, when mankind will stand before their Lord. Holy Quran urges a believer ‘to run to Allah’ and ‘hasten to the forgiveness of your Lord and paradise.’
Just as Holy Ramadan comes and goes in flash, so will life. The end of each Holy Ramadan signifies the inevitable end of our lives. Whilst one may have some hope that if this Ramadan was squandered, Allah (SWT) may give life until another, there is no such hope for the journey of life, for when the ‘Ramadan’ of life is over then it shall never return. So, if we have been unmindful, we have a chance with every moment of life to repent and mend our ways. For a believer who spent his life fruitfully, the meeting with his Creator will be the Eid of all Eids.
We ask Allah (SWT) to bless us this Eid-ul-Fitr and give us such a bond and relationship with him that will grant eternal happiness on the day we return to Him.
(From Islamicoccasions With Thanks