Is Eid Al-Adha Dependent Upon Hajj?

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    In Malawi, unfortunately, upon the announcement of starting of the month Zel-Hijjah, discussions start floating on the assumption that Eid Al-Adha should be observed on the second day of Oqoof-e-Arafaat (Hajj). Emphasis is exerted on the belief that there is no need to observe the Moon on a local level. Those who oppose this idea are thought to be wrong. Apparently, there is no logic towards that assumption. #

    Here is a verdict by Mufti Muhammed Qamarul Hasan Qadiri in his book published by Al-Noor Society of Greater Houston, Texas, 77081 in 2005.

    If Eid Al-Adha is dependent upon Hajj, then the following objections arise:

    I. Making Hajj a condition or dependency factor for Eid Al-Adha is against the Qura’an and Hadith. There is neither proof of it in the Qura’an nor Hadith because there is a long time span between the permissibility of both events. The Eidain (‘Al-Fitr’ and ‘Al-Adha’) were made obligatory in the first year of the Hijrah calendar and Hajj was made obligatory in the ninth year of the Hijrah calendar. The Eids were declared festivities eight years before Hajj was made obligatory.

    “Hadhrat Anas (May Allah Be Pleased With Him) reported that when the Messenger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him) came to Medina, the people had two days on which they engaged in games. He asked, ‘What are these two days (what is the significance)?’ They said, ‘We used to engage ourselves on them in the pre-Islamic period. The Messanger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him) said, ‘Allah has substituted for them something better than them, the day of sacrifice (Eid Al-Adha) and the day of the breaking of the fast (Eid Al-Fitr).’” (Abu Dawood, Book 1, Page 161) / (Nasaee, Book 1, Page 231) / (Sunane Bayhaqee, Book 3, Page 277)

    All of the Islamic Laws since the time of our Noble Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) are continuously being observed and followed. “Eid al Adha” and Sacrifice are also being performed continuously without termination.

    The Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) performed Eid Al-Adha prayers on 10th of Zel-Hijjah and then sacrificed animals. Now for argument’s sake, let us consider that Eid Al-Adha is dependant upon Hajj. Then the question arises: How did Muslims perform Eid Al-Adha and sacrifice animals without the Hajj for those eight years that didn’t have Hajj?

    Apart from this, other doors of objection open up.

    As today’s technology in communication and its progressions make the transfer of information seem easy, knowing the day of Oqoof-e-Arafaat is simple. But when these technologies were not available, then depending upon Oqoof-e-Arafaat to observe Eid Al-Adha would be impossible. In those days the information of Ooqoof-e-Arafaat would reach distant locations relative to Mecca in months, only after people come back from the journey of Hajj.

    Keeping in mind the above fact, how is it possible for Islamic Shariah to command its followers to go through the hardship which is beyond their reach? Allah says in the Qura’an:

    “Allah places not burden on any soul but to the extent of his strength…”
    2:286 (Sura Al-Baqarah, Verse 286)

    Still, who knows that in this technological age, how many parts of the world have no communication; and yet, Islam is practiced there and those who reside there observe their Eid day based solely on local Moon sighting.

    III. To link Eid Al-Adha with Hajj does not have any basis, as Hajj is an act of worship which is limited to a specific location. On the contrary, Eid Al-Adha and sacrificing animals are observed all over the world. How can a global event depend on a local event?

    1.  Not having any Islamic historical evidence to link Hajj with Eid Al-Adha, and inventing something which has no consistency and yet calling it an Islamic act, how can one suspend the Islamic Shariah’s rules and formulate something new that never happened in Islamic history. To follow something unlawful can result in weakening the religion. (May Allah protect us from such things. Aameen!)
    2. Under the situation of the conflicting doctrine, it will follow that Eid Al-Adha should be observed on a date other than the 10th of Zel-Hijjah with the exception of Saudi Arabia, even though its dependency is upon the 10th of Zel-Hijjah. As according to Hadith, Eid Al-Adha is to be observed on the 10th of Zel-Hijjah only.

    “Hadhrat Baraa bin Aazib (May Allah Be Pleased With Him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him) gave us a sermon on the day of Nahr (10th of Zel-Hijjah).”

    (Bukhari, Book 1, Page 132)

    Suppose that the Moon is not sighted in Saudi Arabia; but in the countries west of Saudi Arabia, it is observed. So when in Saudi Arabia it will be the 9th of Zel-Hijjah, in the countries west of Saudi Arabia, it will be the 10th of Zel-Hijjah. If you follow the conflicting doctrine, in Saudi Arabia Eid Al-Adha will be on Hajj day, but for people in western countries Eid-Al-Adha will be on the 11th of Zel-Hijjah. And that is against the rules of Shariah. Now suppose in Saudi Arabia the moon is sighted, but for any reason it is not sighted in any countries west of Saudi Arabia. If it is 9th of Zel-Hijjah in Saudi Arabia, then in western countries it will be 8th of Zel-Hijjah. Under this condition, if Eid Al-Adha and sacrifice are dependant upon Hajj, then the countries west of Saudi Arabia will have to observe Eid Al-Adha on the 9th of Zel-Hijjah which is, again, a deviation from laws of Shariah. In Saheeh Bukhari, this Hadith is mentioned:

    “Hadhrat Baraa (May Allah Be Pleased With Him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him) gave us a sermon on the day of Nahr (10th of Zel-Hijjah): ‘The first thing we will do on this day of ours is offer the Eid prayer and upon return we will sacrifice the animals. Whoever did so, he acted according to our Sunnah, and whoever sacrificed before the prayer, what he offered was just meat he presented to his family, and that will not be considered as sacrifice.’ Abu Burdah bin Niyaar (May Allah Be Pleased With Him) got up, and said, ‘O Messanger of Allah, I sacrificed before Eid Al-Adha prayers. Now I only have a baby ram that looks like it is a little well over one year old.’ The Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) said, ‘Sacrifice it but it will not be sufficient for any-one else after you.’” (Bukhari, Book 1, Page 132)

    From the study of this Hadith, it is very clear that sacrifice before Eid Al-Adha prayer is rejected by the Holy Prophet and he ordered Abu Burdah (May Allah Be Pleased With Him) to sacrifice another animal. Now, consider those who make Oqoof-e-Arafaat a condition for Eid Al-Adha and sacrifice. They may perform their sacrifice one day prior to the actual day. How do you think their sacrifice will be accepted in accordance with the rules? There is no danger of delaying the sacrifice and the Eid prayers (with a legitimate excuse) until the 12th of Zel-Hijjah. Even without an excuse, delaying Eid prayers is permissible as an undesirable (Makrooh) act. Fiqh-e-Hanafi’s renowned book: “Fatawa Qazi Khan” mentions the following:

    “If the Eid Al-Adha prayer, with a legitimate excuse, or not, is not performed on the first day (10th of Zel-Hijjah), then it should be performed on the second day (11th of Zel-Hijjah). And if it is not performed on those two days, then it should be performed on the third day (12th of Zel-Hijjah). After that, it can not be validly performed.”

    (Fatawa Qazi Khan, Volume 1, Page 89)

    In the light of these explanations, all aspects are quite clear that if Eid Al-Adha prayers and sacrifices are performed before the 10th of Zel-Hijjah, they will not be accepted in the eyes of Shariah. But if they are performed after the 10th of Zel-Hijjah, Eid Al-Adha and sacrifices, with a legitimate excuse, will be treated as performed without any defect. Without any excuse, they will be acceptable, but undesirable (Makrooh).