`Eid is a time for rejoicing, sharing, doing away with petty grudges harbored against family, friends or relatives, and forgiving others. It is a time of the year in which Muslims communally celebrate their brotherhood.
Here are some ideas that will help:
Talk It Out With Everyone
Make a specific Eid plan TODAY. Sit with the family and discuss what you will do on the day of Eid. Plan things step by step; where will you go for `Eid prayers? Where will you go afterwards? Or will you first go to the local farm to sacrifice an animal ? Get everyone involved and listen to all suggestions.
Arrange for Udhiyah
Eid Al-Adha is a time to go on a farm to sacrifice an animal for the sake of Allah, distribute its meat and to talk about Prophet Ibrahim’s sacrifice. Remember to stress that it was Ismail (Ishmael) who was the son meant to be sacrificed, not Ishaq (Isaac), as the Bible says. Arrange to go to a farm and sacrifice an animal.
Talk about Hajj during a family story night. Recount the memories of your experience or that of other family members. Also, discuss as a family when you want to go for Hajj or Umrah. Be concrete, don’t say someday. Make a formal target. Tell the story of Hajar (may Allah be pleased with her) and Hajj and talk about why millions of Muslims run between As-Safa and Al-Marwa. You can also have an open book competition in your home about Hajj and Prophet Ibrahim with prizes for all participants. For ages of 8 and above, a software about Hajj and Umrah may provide some new information.
Arrange to Meet Someone Really Important
Take your children to see a person who has completed his/her Hajj (often called a “Hajji”) when he/she comes back. Call relatives or friends of the Hajji-to-be to find out when they are coming back, at which airport, time, etc.
“Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar….”
Involve the kids, especially the younger ones, in loud takbir (saying: Allahu Akbar) while going and returning from the `Eid Prayer.
Share `Eid with Family and Neighbors
Have two Eid dinners: one for the family on the day of Eid and the other with neighbors. Or maybe you just want to share some dishes on `Eid with your neighbors.
A Family Trip
Take the family, for a car trip, to some place of enjoyment. On the way, sing `Eid songs in the car, eat, drink and stop in between for prayers. Make this a long happy family drive.
`Eid With Real Entertainment
Please avoid TV or movies during the Eid break. Eid is time for the family, and you don’t really need films or television to have a good time.
Decorate the Home for `Eid
There’s nothing wrong with decorating the home for `Eid. It’ll help liven up the atmosphere. Use balloons, banners, streamers, lights, and other decorations.
School Presentation on Hajj
The whole family can get involved in preparing a school presentation about the Hajj, Prophet Ibrahim, the Kabah, or Eid. You would be surprised at how many Muslims don’t know how central Prophet Ibrahim is to Islam.
Give Gifts Generously
In some parts of the Muslim world a small amount of money is given to children as ‘`Eideyah’. You can do that or give a simple present. Encourage the kids to make handmade gifts for each other. Indeed, these inexpensive handmade gifts tend to come from the heart, more than the wallet.
Start a Family Project
Why not mark `Eid-Al-Adha with a new family project? For example, starting a family library. Discuss the issue practically: how many books, which kinds, the budget, where the library will be set up in the home, etc.
Share with Needy Kids
During `Eid-Al-Adha, the needy children must be remembered by sharing something with them. Encourage a family donation from each member for needy children in a specific part of the world.
Hug Your Brother
There should be a lot of hugging at the place where Eid prayer is held. You will find some Muslims standing alone. They are either new Muslims or new immigrants without relatives or friends. Do hug them and greet them. If possible invite them to your home for a meal. Also inform them of any planned Eid celebrations at any community center.
Have a great `Eid everyone. May Allah bless you with more and the best of this world and the real best in the everlasting life.
By Abdul Malik Mujahid