Dates and Origins of Eid-al-Adha
Eid-al-Adha Dates in 2018, 2019 and 2020
Eid-al-Adha is celebrated at the following dates:
- Tuesday, August 21st 2018
- Sunday, August 11th 2019
- Thursday, July 30th 2020
Eid-al-Adha, known as the "festival of the Sacrifice" and is one of two Muslim holidays celebrated each year across the globe2. This celebration is in honor of Ibrahim (Abraham) to submit to God's command in sacrificing his son2. This celebration falls on 10 Dhu al-Hijjah, which usually occurs some time in August or September3.
According to religious texts, Abraham had several trials that he went through in order to prove his faith in God1. In the first, he was sent by God to the valley of Mecca, a dry and unhabited desert, with his wife Hagar and their Son Ishmael to leave them there. Ibrahim left food and water for them, but it quickly ran out. Within a few days, they were both starving and dehydrated2. Hagar ran between the hills Al-Safa and Al-Marwah seven times searching for water1. Finally, she collapsed next to Ishmael and prayed to God. Miraculously, a spring of water appeared at their feet3. From this, they were able to drink and trade for food with passing nomads. Later, Ibrihim would return under instructions form god and build a place of worship next to Hagar's well. This eventually became the desert city of Mecca and a major trade center2.
One of the most serious trials that Ibrihim went through to prove his devotion to God was showing his willingness to sarifice his own son1. Though not named explicitly in the Qaran, it is commonly believed that Ishmael was the son God ordered Ibrhim to sacrifice. God commanded Ibrihim to scrifice Ishmael, to which he begrudgingly agreed3. Ishmael was willing to be sacrificed as well, despite the devil tempting both Ibrihim and Ishmael to forgo the sacrifice. Unlike the Christian and Hebrew texts describing the same story, Ishmael is not replaced by a sacrificial animal2. Some accounts say that a copper band appeared around Ishmael's beck to protect him, whereas others say that Ibrhim's blade was flipped at the last second.
During Eid-al-Adha, men and women are dressed in their finest clothing while preforming Eid Prayer open field or mosque3. For affluent families, the best Halal domestic animal is sacrificed as a symbol of Ibrihim's willingness to sacrrifice his only son3. This sacrifice must meet certain quality standards and is preferentially divided into three parts2. The first goes to the family that sacrificed the animal, the second goes to relatives, friends, and neighbors, and the final third is given to the poor2. Families are permitted to divide the meet according to their wishes, but this is the preffered distribution according to tradition.