‘ĪD/EID AL-FIṬR GREETINGS FROM THE HONORABLE ELIJAH MUHAMMAD COMMEMORATIVE CENTER
There is an ‘Īd for every nation and this is our ‘Īd. (Ḥadīth)*
On the occasion of ‘Īd/Eid al-Fiṭr, The Honorable Elijah Muhammad Commemorative Center (HEMCC) conveys best wishes for an ‘Īd/Eid al-Fiṭr mubārak to the Muslim community in the United States and abroad. May your ‘Īd/Eid be a blessed and joyous one!
‘Īd/Eid al-Fiṭr, which means festival of breaking the fast, is a three-day holiday that begins on the first day of Shawwāl, the month that follows the holy month of Ramaḍān. During Ramaḍān Muslims around the world fast from dawn to sunset daily, purify themselves through self-restraint and acts of charity, perform additional prayers and seek Allāh's (God's) forgiveness and mercy. ‘Īd/Eid al-Fiṭr is the Arabic term that was used during the time of the Prophet Muḥammad (peace and blessings be upon him) to refer to this holiday. Other names for the holiday exist in numerous languages spoken by Muslims. By one estimate, the size of the world’s Muslim population is almost 1.6 billion, residing in over 200 countries and representing close to a quarter of the global population.**
Muslims around the world welcome the ‘Īd/Eid with great joy and enthusiasm and are enjoined to exhibit their delight publicly. On the first day of the festival, Muslims give alms and perform the ‘Īd /Eid prayer collectively. Other customary practices that mark this holiday are the wearing of new clothes or special clothes for this occasion, preparation of special foods, extensive socializing with relatives, neighbors and friends over meals, the exchange of sweets and the distribution of gifts of money and toys to children. In addition to these customs, a number of ‘Īd/Eid-related activities occur that are specific to individual cultures in the Muslim world. Examples of these are parades, the visiting of cemeteries, musical performances, sporting events, potluck communal meals, and outings at amusement parks.
The Center also extends greetings of peace to the friends of the Muhammad family, who have supported the family's work for over 80 years. For more than 40 years, the Hon. Elijah Muhammad was the leader of the Nation of Islam, the world-renowned and largest Muslim-member organization in the United States. He was also the founder of the first Muslim school system in the United States, father of the late Imam W. Deen Mohammed, and mentor of Malcolm X (El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz), Minister Louis Farrakhan and Muhammad Ali.
*A saying attributed to the Prophet Muḥammad (may peace and blessings be upon him), as narrated by ‘Ā’ishah (may Allāh be pleased with her), in Ṣaḥiḥ al-Bukhārī, volume 2, book 15 [The Two Festivals], number 72, 24 July 2014 <www.sahih-bukhari.com/Pages/Bukhari_2_15.php>. **“Mapping the Global Muslim Population: A Report on the Size and Distribution of the World’s Muslim Population,” October 2009, The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, Washington, DC, 24 July 2014, < http://www.pewforum.org/2009/10/07/mapping-the-global-muslim-population/>
The Honorable Elijah Muhammad Commemorative Center (HEMCC) is a family project initiated in 2006 by descendants of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad. HEMCC, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is incorporated in the state of Illinois. The mission of HEMCC is to promote universal awareness of the historic contribution and legacy of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad, a famous twentieth-century social reformer in the United States.