the ritual of Eid El Kébir


Eid El Kébir is this festival which celebrates the devotion of Sidna Ibrahim, to whom ALLAH had asked to sacrifice his son Ishmael

When it was time to take action, ALLAH had sent a sheep through the Archangel Gabriel to replace Sidna Ibrahim’s son. Muslims are therefore invited during Eid El Kebir to sacrifice a sheep according to a specific rite.

The sheep, to be sacrificed, must not be one-eyed, nor have its tail cut off, and above all it must be less than a year old. Beyond that, the lamb is no longer fit for sacrifice before Allah.

The sheep must be slaughtered precisely on the tenth day of the month of Dou Al Hijja, the twelfth lunar month of Islam, marked by the Hajj (pilgrimage) to Mecca. It occurs the next day (the ninth day of Dou Al Hijja), therefore the passage of pilgrims in the plain surrounding Mount Arafat, 20 kilometers from Mecca, an obligation of the Hajj.

The sacrifice must take place immediately after the Eid prayer

“When you slaughter an animal, slaughter it well”: this is a hadith which prescribes it. The head of the lamb should be turned towards Mecca, then the priest should say the ritual prayer “Bismillah Allah Akbar” before proceeding with his office. He can also announce out loud for whom the sheep’s throat is going to be slaughtered.

According to tradition, the animal cannot be stunned and the sheep must not see the blade that will slit its throat, but the stab must be quick and very precise so that the animal does not suffer.

The Surah, “Al Haj” in the Koran, specifies: “Eat of it yourselves and make the needy wretch eat of it.” This gave rise to the rule of three thirds, observed by certain Muslims: a third of the sheep for themselves, a third as a gift to friends and neighbors and a third as alms for the poor.

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