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Special prayers in Idgah seeking divine blessings, eternal peace

Syed Muthahar Saqaf

Religious fervour fills the air as the holy month of Ramzan draws to an end


TIRUCHI: As the holy month of Ramzan draws to an end, Muslims are preparing to celebrate the Id-ul-Fitr (Festival of Charity) with religious fervour.

They will be offering special Id qutba prayers, seeking divine blessings and eternal peace, progress and prosperity, in Idgah (open ground) maidans and in mosques on the Id Day. Idgah is an open-air mosque outside the city. As the Id-ul-Fitr is observed after the month-long fasting and self-restraint, the festivity is marked by an unparalleled aura of contentment.

Id-ul-Fitr is one of the two major festivals of Muslims. The other one being Id-ul-Zuha, popularly known as Bakrid or Festival of Sacrifice. Id-ul-Fitr is celebrated only on sighting the moon heralding the tenth month of Shawwal.

Id prayer is very important in Islam and Prophet Mohamed (peace be upon him) never neglected it. The Shariah commands that the Id prayer be performed on an open field. It is essential that the Idgah is located on the outskirts of the town. The regular practice of Prophet, the Sahaba (his companions) and all the great learned scholars of Islam as well as the Muslims down the corridor of the centuries of Islamic history is to perform the Id prayer in the open field. The major Islamic books stand testimony to this.

The Prophet always ordered young and old to proceed to the Id prayer ground on both the Id days. The Prophet always performed Id prayers in the Idgah, except once due to inclement weather. The basis and proof for this is that, verily, the Prophet would go out to the Idgah.

He did not perform the Id prayer in his mosque Masjidun Nabawee, despite the elevated rank of this mosque. The Idgah in the outskirts of holy Madina city near the Masjidun Nabawee, is the first ever Idgah.

Complying to the practice of Prophet, performing the Id special prayers on the outskirts of the town is better and more virtuous, than performing it in the mosques in the town.

The Id prayer performed in the mosques is complete, but performing it in the Idgah is Sunnah. Without any valid excuse, not offering the Id prayers in the Idgah is contrary to the Sunnah. The main aim of praying in Idgah in huge gathering is to prove unity and the might and power of Islam. However, the old and sick have been exempted and given permission to perform Id prayers in the local mosques. A huge open area could be chosen and converted into temporary Idgah according to the need. One huge gathering is more superior compared to many small congregations in the mosques.

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