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Eid al-Fitr Around the Globe: How Each Countries Celebrate It

Thursday, 11 April 2024 - 03:20
Eid al-Fitr Around the Globe: How Each Countries Celebrate It Muslim celebrating Eid with tea and another halal food. (Photo: Freepik)

TIMES JAZIRAH, JAKARTA – Eid al-Fitr, also known as the Festival of Breaking the Fast, marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. This joyous occasion is celebrated by Muslims around the world with various customs, traditions, and festivities.

However, what sets apart the celebration of Eid al-Fitr is its unique blend of cultural diversity, rich traditions, and vibrant festivities that encapsulate the essence of global unity and joy.

1. Malaysia: The Tapestry of Traditions

In Malaysia, Eid al-Fitr, locally known as Hari Raya Aidilfitri, is a grand affair that unites people of various ethnicities and backgrounds. The festivities begin with the sighting of the new moon, signaling the end of Ramadan. Families come together to perform special prayers at mosques, followed by visits to the graves of departed loved ones.

The celebration is incomplete without the iconic dish, Ketupat, a type of rice cake wrapped in palm leaves, served with delicious rendang and traditional Malay sweets. The streets are adorned with colorful lights, and the air is filled with the sounds of laughter and joy as people exchange greetings and seek forgiveness from one another.

2. Egypt: The Spirit of Generosity

In Egypt, Eid al-Fitr, or Eid el-Fitr as it's known locally, is a time of immense generosity and community spirit. The streets bustle with excitement as families prepare for the festive occasion. One of the most cherished traditions is the giving of 'Eidiyah', gifts of money or sweets, to children and those less fortunate.

Special prayers are held in mosques, followed by large communal feasts where friends and neighbors come together to share traditional dishes like Fattah, a savory dish made with rice, meat, and bread, symbolizing abundance and prosperity. The spirit of giving extends beyond familial ties, with people reaching out to those in need, embodying the true essence of Eid.

3. Indonesia: A Symphony of Cultures

In Indonesia, the world's largest Muslim-majority country, Eid al-Fitr, or Lebaran as it's colloquially known, is a tapestry of diverse cultures and traditions. From the bustling streets of Jakarta to the tranquil villages of Java, the entire nation comes alive with the spirit of celebration.

Homes are adorned with colorful decorations, and the aroma of traditional delicacies fills the air. Families gather to perform prayers at mosques and visit the graves of ancestors, paying their respects and seeking blessings for the year ahead.

One of the most iconic traditions is the 'mudik', where millions of people journey back to their hometowns to celebrate with loved ones, creating a spectacle of unity and togetherness. On this time, kids will also gathered in group of their age and visiting each houses to get alemony or angpau.

4. United States: Diversity in Unity

In the United States, Eid al-Fitr is celebrated by a diverse Muslim community hailing from various corners of the globe. Despite being a minority, Muslims across the country come together to mark the end of Ramadan with a shared sense of joy and gratitude.

Special prayers are held in mosques, followed by community gatherings and feasts where people of different backgrounds come together to share their cultures and cuisines. From the bustling streets of New York City to the serene suburbs of California, Eid al-Fitr serves as a reminder of the nation's rich tapestry of diversity and the values of unity and inclusion.

5. Nigeria: Harmony in Diversity

In Nigeria, Eid al-Fitr, known locally as Sallah, is celebrated with great fervor and enthusiasm across the country's diverse regions. Muslims of different ethnicities, including the Hausa, Yoruba, and Igbo, come together to observe this auspicious occasion.

The day begins with special prayers at mosques, followed by visits to family and friends, where traditional dishes such as Jollof rice, Suya, and Masa are shared with gusto. Despite occasional challenges, Eid serves as a testament to the country's resilience and the spirit of harmony that transcends ethnic and religious divides.

In conclusion, Eid al-Fitr, the celebration transcends geographical boundaries and cultural differences, uniting Muslims around the world in a shared spirit of joy, gratitude, and community. Whether in the bustling metropolises of Malaysia, the tranquil villages of Indonesia, or the diverse neighborhoods of the United States, the essence of Eid remains the same – a celebration of faith, family, and unity in diversity. (*)

Writer : Khodijah Siti
Editor : Khodijah Siti

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