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12/20/2007

The Islamic Spirit in the Festival of Sacrifice

1220 In Jordan, the five consecutive days following December 18th are holidays celebrating the Festival of Sacrifice.

For the Festival of Sacrifice, each Muslim family is expected to offer one sheep, cow or camel as a sacrifice if it is economically feasible for the family to do so. This custom has its roots in a historical story. In this story, the Prophet Ibrahim offered his son to Allah, as a sacrifice yet Allah understanding the strength of his religious devotion, told him he should sacrifice a lamb instead. 

Sheep are the main choice of sacrifice in Iraq and Jordan. According to the laws of Islam, the family should keep one third of the sacrifice, give another third of it to their relatives, and give the last third to their poor neighbors.  Billboards advertising sheep could be seen all over Amman before the Festival of Sacrifice. An organization, Um Ali, collects donations from these billboards in order to provide meals to the poor. Um Ali derives its name from Prince Ali’s mother, the late princess Alia, wife of the former King Hussein. It is clear that Islam places a strong emphasis on making contributions to the poor.

December 20, 2007 in Iraq |