With the coming of Eid Al Adha, the Feast of the Sacrifice, many Muslims appear to misunderstand this purely religious practice, especially as they make mountains of molehills over the acts of buying and slaughtering sheep.
Rabat – Today, all that seems to matter to many Muslim families is the perceived necessity of slaughtering a sheep, regardless of any financial hardship this may cause. Foregoing a sheep sacrifice on this religious occasion often carries a negative social stigma. Although Islam does not require poor families to make this sacrifice, many Muslims have turned Eid Al-Adha into an obligatory festival rather than an act of obedience to Allah.
During the days of Eid Al-Adha, many practices counter the teachings of Islam, the very religion that decreed the sacrifice. Muslims may spend more than they can afford to dress well, to eat as much meat as possible, and to buy trivial accessories to show others how well they are celebrating. Many forget the holiday’s central meaning, which is to help the poor who lack means to eat meat during the year.
The proof is clear. Very few Muslims give away a third of the slaughtered sheep’s meet as the prophet instructed, and some do not even attend Eid Al-Adha prayer. It appears that some celebrate the act of eating and drinking, rather than worshipping and giving charity to the needy, on this religious day.
Many Muslims seem to forget the meaningful rationale behind the sacrifice. Originally intended as an act of obedience, the festival is now an act of devouring barbecued meat. Only few true Muslims properly value Eid Al-Adha and carry out practices as the prophet ordered.
The practice has evolved across the Islamic world. Muslims who used to buy a reasonably affordable sheep now opt for the ostentatious sheep that their neighbors expect to see. It is hypocritical for Muslims to believe they are obeying Allah by celebrating the sacrifice, while simultaneously forgetting to care for their fellow struggling Muslims. Eating without worshipping is a clear sign of indulging in a festival, not in a religious practice.
Like Ramadan, Eid Al-Adha is becoming a mere festival where Muslims prioritize themselves personally, rather than their brothers and sisters. They only think about eating and drinking rather than worshipping and asking Allah for forgiveness. They think about the sheep’s size rather than the worth of performing a significant Islamic ritual. They think about making a mat out of the sheep’s wool rather than seeking Allah’s eternal satisfaction. They show devotion to earthly pleasures over devotion to their faith.