“This world is a prison for the believers and a paradise for the non-believers.”
– Prophet Muhammad
This is one of many teaching of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) that the Muslim community abide by wholeheartedly. So, when it’s his birthday, the many things he has said about love, life and peace have to be celebrated and preached on a large scale. Eid-e-Milad is among the holiest Islamic festivals that mark the birth and death anniversary of the Prophet Muhammad. It falls on the 12th day of the month of Rabi-ul-Awwal and will be celebrated on October 8 this year. Keep reading this blog to get yourself familiar with the history, significance and celebrations of this pious festival.
Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi: History & Origin
Also known as Mawlid and Mawlid un Nabi Sharif, Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi is an auspicious occasion that observes the Prophet Muhammad’s birthday. He is believed to have been born in Mecca on the 12th of the third month of the Islamic calendar, Rabi al-Awwal. It was Prophet Mohammad to whom Allah handed over the Holy Quran first of all. He later preached the teachings of the Quran to the people.
‘Mawlid’ is an Arabic term which means to give birth. But specifically, it refers to the birth of the Prophet. The day is also observed as the death anniversary of the Prophet. That is why the occasion is mourned by some.
The occasion gained popularity during the 8th-century post the change of the Prophet’s home into a prayer hall which was then done by Caliph Al-Khizuran. By the 11th century, Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi was celebrated in Egypt where people offered prayers and recited verses from Holy Quran. While the present form of the day began to be observed in the 12th century.
The day commemorates both birth and death of Prophet Mohammad. The occasion is an all-important one for the Muslim community where people seek mercy and forgiveness from the Almighty.
The two major sects of Islam – Sunnis and Shias – honour this occasion on different days of the same month. Sunnis commemorate this occasion on the 12th day of the month, whereas Shias mark it on the 17th day of the month.
Prayers are observed for the whole night of Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi. Processions/marches/parades are carried out in many places, communal meals are offered in mosques & other community buildings and people gather to discuss Islam and spread the holy words of Hazrat Mohammad.
People recite verses from the Holy Quran in mosques or homes and pledge themselves to follow the path of righteousness as preached by the prophet. Additionally, since the green colour is the symbol of Islam, people wear green pieces of clothing and carry green flags or banners on this day. Traditional Eid delicacies are prepared to relish with family and friends. The day is particularly celebrated to discuss the teachings of Prophet Muhammad and Islam and spread the message of love & peace that he wanted to spread.
Long prayers, delicious delicacies, bright lights and blessings pouring from heaven, that’s the beauty of Eid-e-Milad. And this brings us to the end of everything you need to know about the festival.