All you need to know about Islamic New Year
Published: 11:56 PM, 22 August 2019
The Islamic New Year 1441 is knocking at the door! The best way to kick off the New Year this time is with the recitation of the following Dua:
”O Allah, bring this [month or year] upon us with security, Iman, safety, Islam, your pleasure and protection from Satan.” (Tabarani 6237)
The Islamic calendar, also known as the Hijri Calender, is based on the sighting of the new moon. It started after the Holy Prophet (PBUH) migrated from Makkah to Madina in 624 CE. The word Hijri is derived from the Arabic word Hijra which means “migration”. The beginning of each month is contingent on the visibility of the moon at the end of the previous month. Once the moon is sighted, the new month commences. Each month starts with a new lunar cycle. Hence, the Muslim Calendar gives only a tentative overview of the upcoming Islamic dates as the start of each month is subject to the sighting of the moon.
The Islamic calendar consists of 12 months similar to the Gregorian calendar. However, it consists of 354-355 days unlike the 365-366 days in the regular calendar. The Islamic New Year starts off with Muharram followed by Safar, Rabbi al-awwal, Rabbi al-thani, Jumada al-awwal, Jumada al-thani, Rajab, Shaban, Ramadan, Shawwal, Dhul Qadah and Dhul Hijjah. Every month is significant in its own way. Four of these months are considered highly sacred. So much so, waging war or any act of violence during these four months is forbidden.
“The year is of twelve months, out of which four months are sacred: Three are in succession Dhul-Qa’ da, Dhul-Hijjah and Muharram, and (the fourth is) Rajab…” (Bukhari 3197)
The Hijri New Year starts off with Muharram. The 9th and 10th of Muharram are collectively known as the Days of Ashura. The 10th of Muharram holds significance for both Muslims and Jews as this is the day Allah (SWT) saved Prophet Musa (AS) and his people from the Pharaoh’s army. Moreover, the incident of Karbala also took place during this month. Therefore, this month is considered sacred.
Ramadan, which is the 9th month of the Islamic Calendar, is considered one of the most blessed months in Islam. This month is full of celebration and festivity as the Muslims immerse themselves in reading the Quran and Duas and spending maximum time doing Dhikr. The Muslims fast the whole month as it teaches them the true meaning of perseverance and tolerance. During this month, Muslims are not only supposed to refrain from eating and drinking during the stipulated timing but they are also required to curb all negative emotions like anger and prove themselves to be the perfect Muslim. This month of Ibadah culminates with the Muslim festival of Eid ul Fitr. Moreover, the Quran was also completed in this month.
The last month of the Islamic lunar year is Dhul Hijjah. In this month, Muslims from all over the world visit the House of Allah (SWT), the Holy Kaaba, for the annual pilgrimage; Hajj. After performing Hajj, Muslims celebrate Eid ul Adha which marks the perfect end to the year.
Islamic holidays and events like Eid ul Fitr, Hajj and Eid ul Adha among many others are held according to the dates of the Islamic calendar.
The Muslim New Year should be started with a very positive vibe with a new resolution to be an example of a good Muslim who inspires other people to do well as well as follows the Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH).