Eid al-Adha is also known as the 'festival of sacrifice' and is the second of the two Muslim annual holidays celebrated worldwide.Muslims celebrate Bakrid to mark the Prophet Ibrahim's willingness to sacrifice his own son as an act of obedience and devotion towards God.
Worldwide this festival is celebrated by Muslims by sacrificing a male goat as a symbol of the same sacrifice. The families will feast on the goat's meat and also distribute it among friends, relatives, as well as the poor and the needy. According to the Gregorian calendar, the festival falls in the months of August or September, but according to the Islamic lunar calendar, Bakrid is celebrated during the month of twelfth or the final month of Dhu al-Hijjah. Bakrid falls on the 10th day of the Islamic month of Dhu al-Hijjah.
The story behind Bakrid is as the Prophet was challenged by God to prove his faith in Him and to do that, the Prophet had to sacrifice something that he held very dear to him. The Prophet decided to offer his 13 year old son, Ismail, for sacrifice. While doing so. God had intervened by sending the angel Jibra'il or Gabriel to place a goat in the place of Ibrahim's son. From that day onward, followers of Islam celebrate Eid al-Adha by sacrificing male goats, which are typically divided into three separate portions. These three portions are meant for separate purposes - one part goes to the poor and the needy, the other part goes to the friends and relatives, and the third part is reserved by a family for its own members.
While Eid al-Adha is always on the same day of the Islamic calendar, the date on the Gregorian calendar varies from year to year. This is because the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar and the Gregorian calendar is a solar calendar.
Each year, Eid al-Adha falls on one of about two to four different Gregorian dates in different parts of the world.
Confirmations of actual dates by moon sighting are applied on the 29th day of the lunar month prior to Dhu al-Hijjah to announce the specific dates for both Hajj rituals and the subsequent Eid festival. The three days after the listed date are also part of the festival. The pilgrims visit the Mount Arafat the time before the listed date and descend from it after sunrise of the listed day. The exact day of celebration varies by locality as the start of any lunar Hijri month varies based on the observation of new moon by local religious authorities in many countries.
The traditions may vary according to the country and its own local customs. However, the celebrations include visits to mosques and offering of prayers for peace and prosperity, as well as a special feast that mainly contains mutton preparations. Some of the most delicious Bakrid feast dishes include mutton biryani, mutton korma, mutton keema, bhuni kaleji, as well as some special desserts like sheer khurma and kheer.
Men, women, and children are expected to dress in their finest clothing to perform Eid prayer in a large congregation in an open waqf field called Eidgah or mosque. The sacrificed animals, called adhiya, also known as the term qurbani by the Perso-Arabic, have to meet certain age and quality standards or else the animal is considered an unacceptable sacrifice.