Bendigo Islamic Centre is holding an Eid Dinner to celebrate cultural diversity and promote social harmony.
A Story of Eid
Eidul-Fitr, or Eid, is a Muslim holiday that marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. Eid is an Arabic word meaning “festivity”, while Fiṭr means “to break the fast;” Eid thus symbolizes the breaking of the fasting period. It is a joyous occasion as well as a day of forgiveness, moral victory, peace, fellowship, brotherhood and unity. Muslims celebrate not only the end of all that fasting but also thank God for the help and strength that he gave them through the previous month to help everyone practice self-control. It is also a time of giving and sharing. Traditionally, during the last few days of Ramadan, each Muslim family gives a donation of money or food – rice, barley, dates, rice, etc. — to the poor. This ensures that the needy can have a holiday meal and participate in the celebration. On the day of the celebration, a typical Muslim family attends special congregational prayers. After the prayers, families visit the homes of relatives and friends to thank God for all blessings.
This particular Eid was like all others. It was a day of celebration rejoicing. There was an air of festivity in the streets of Medina. All the people, both young and old were dressed in their best clothes, for this special day.
As it was time for early morning Eid prayers everyone made their way to an open piece of land on the outskirts of the city. The Prophet Muhammad arrived and led the prayers. After they had finished they all greeted each other and everyone was walking back home. The children were running and playing in excitement, smiling and laughing, without a care in the world. As the Prophet walked back home, he suddenly became aware of a little boy (Zuhair Bin Saghir) sitting by himself on the side of the path. The little boy was crying and looked very sad.
The Prophet bent down,patted him on the shoulders and asked “Why are you crying?”
“Please leave me alone,” sobbed the little boy. The boy didn’t even see who was talking to him. The Prophet ran his fingers through the boy’s hair and very gently and kindly asked him again why he was crying. This time the boy said, “My father was martyred fighting, and now my mother has married again and my stepfather does not want me to live at home any more. Today is Eid and everyone is happy. All the children have new clothes and nice things to eat, but I don’t have any clothes except what I am wearing. I have no food and I don’t even have a place to live.”
The Prophet said to him, “I know how you feel. I lost both my mother and father when I was a little boy.” The boy was surprised to hear that it was an orphan who was comforting him, and when he looked up, to his great surprise, it was the Prophet Muhammad. He immediately jumped to his feet out of love and respect.
The Prophet said to him “If I were to become your new father and Ayesha you new mother, and Fatima your new sister, would that make you feel better?” “Oh yes, that would be the best thing in the world!” The boy started smiling. The Prophet took him home and gave him new clothes and good food on this beautiful day of Eid. The boy indeed had a wonderful Eid that day because the Prophet Muhammad practiced the true spirit of Eid – helping those that are less fortunate than us.
What: Bendigo Eid Dinner
When: Saturday, August 23, 2014 – Time: 6pm
Where: Venue: All Seasons Hotel, 171-183 McIvor Rd, Strathdale, Bendigo
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