Eid Milad-un-Nabi or Eid-e-Milad is celebrated during Rabi’ al-awwal, the third month in the Islamic calendar by the Muslim believers of the Sufi or the Barelvi school of thought to commemorate the birth anniversary of the last messenger of God — Allah SWT — Prophet Mohammad.
Muslims of the Sunni community celebrate Eid-e-Milad on the 12th day of Rabi’ al-awwal. This year, according to the Hijri calendar, Eid-e-Milad will begin on the evening of October 29 and will conclude on October 30. However, the Shia community celebrates it on the 17th of Rabi’ al-awwal. Read on to know more about Eid-e-milad-un-Nabi.
Who is Prophet Mohammad?
Prophet Mohammad (Full name- Abu al-Qasim Mohammad ibn ‘Abd Allah ibn ‘Abd al-Muttalib ibn Hashim), who was born in 570 CE (Elephant Year) in the Arabian city of Mecca (now in Saudi Arabia), was the last and final messenger of Allah, upon whom the holy book of Quran was revealed through Gabriel, the arch angel. The Quran yields little concrete biographical information about Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). His teachings were followed across the globe by the Muslim community. According to the Hadith (the written texts of Prophet Mohammad’s life), he is the guiding light of his Ummah (his people) and will lead them Jannah (heaven) on the day of judgment.
According to the texts, Prophet Mohammad and his followers dwell at a settlement called al-madinah (“the town”) or Yathrib (modern-day Madina in Saudi Arabia) after having previously been ousted by their unbelieving foes, presumably from the Meccan sanctuary.
Why we celebrate Eid-e-Milad on the birth anniversary of Prophet Mohammad
Eid-e-Milad celebrations begun during the early four Rashidun Caliphs of Islam by the Fatimids. They believed that Prophet Muhammad was born in Mecca on the twelfth day of Rabi’ al-awwal in 570 CE and to commemorate his birth anniversary, Eid-e-Milad was started. Eid-e-Milad began to be celebrated by Morocco, Turkey, Syria and Spain only in the 12th century, with time, the practices got modified with the greater influence of Sufism.
Eid-e-Milad or Eid Milad-un-Nabi is celebrated widely by people around the globe. On this day, people assemble at the mosque or dargah to offer morning prayer, wears new clothes, exchange gifts and host social gatherings. However, according to the belief of Muslims from Salafi and Wahhabi schools of thought, the birthday celebration of the prophet is not a part of Islamic culture and there is no concrete evidence of the birthday of Prophet Mohammad.