While Eid 2020 isn’t full of streets filled with decorative festive lights and carnivals, it will still be filled with traditional sweets, puddings, biscuits and cakes that can be enjoyed within immediate loved ones.
In a wonderful display of unity, Australia’s largest mosque – Sydney’s Lakemba Mosque broadcasted the Adhan, Islam’s call to prayer through its loud speakers at dusk each day of Ramadan.
The call to prayer is traditionally made by the sheikh of the mosque from the top of one of the minarets using a microphone and is intended to propel across the sky.
While this is common practice in other countries, it is uncommon in Australia and was a move that helped bring the community together despite the physical distancing.
And it worked.
“Some people drove from different suburbs, parked their cars around the mosque to see it happening, they filmed it, and the videos were circulated widely, even in the Arab countries.” said Ahmad Malas of the Lebanese Muslim Association (LMA) in an interview with SBS.
Across Australia, we:
- Got together in family units (within legal limits) to offer Eid salah with Local Mosques placing guides and videos on how to perform Eid salah at homes;
- Families made and offered food to local communities, homeless shelters and essential workers
- In heart-warming displays of empathy, children discussed how they could use their Eid money to help others in the local community rather than purchase something for themselves.
- We also face-timed each other, reminiscing on past times and planning for the future.
Islam’s holiest sites in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere were largely empty of worshippers during Ramadan & Eid as the coronavirus crisis forced authorities to impose unprecedented restrictions.
The Eid al-Fitr holiday attracts Muslims from all around the world, but this year the 5-day holiday was spent in a countrywide 24-hour curfew lockdown.
For the first time in Islam’s 1,400-year history, Mecca’s Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina were closed to the public during the fasting period and Eid.
Prayers from inside the mosque at Mecca on the first evening of Ramadan on Thursday were restricted to clerics, security staff and cleaners, in a ceremony broadcast live on television.
In any other year, there is usually nothing like Idul Fitri (Eid al-Fitr) in Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim-majority country.
However, with the devastation that COVID-19 inflicted on the country’s capital Jakarta this year, it was difficult for this Eid to be a happy one. With the human toll so high, the Government’s ban on “mudik” – the tradition of Indonesian Muslims returning to their hometowns to celebrate with their families – was well received by those outside of the COVID-19 epicentre of Jakata.
With many individuals and their families no longer able to afford the most basic essentials or unable to travel to places of work for income, it is important that we be as charitable as possible to our fellow brothers and sisters in their time of need.
Muslim-majority Malaysia was among the countries that had relaxed coronavirus rules to allow prayers to take place in mosques in time for Eid.
Congregations of 30 prayers or fewer were permitted throughout Kuala Lumpur as well as a number of Malaysia’s other federal territories.
The capital, Kuala Lumpur, is among Malaysia’s federal territories which will allow prayers by congregations limited to 30 or fewer, said Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri, the religious affairs minister.
“Even though worship in Islam is not confined only to mosques and suraus, it has a profound effect on the spiritual development of Muslims.” the country’s religious affairs minister Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri said in reference to permitting smaller prayer sites.
Pakistan also lifted restrictions ahead of Eid. This year, the country observed a six-day Eid holiday from May 22 to May 27 and while many parts of the economy were still under shutdown, retail malls and transport were opened up and drew massive crowds.
The market shutdown during Ramadan has significantly impacted small businesses, particularly tailors who’s busiest period of the year are the weeks leading up to Eid.
“Compared to last year, there is a 50% decrease in tailoring customers,” said Muhammad Faizan, a well-known tailor from Shalimar Link Road in Punjab.
The economic impact of Coronavirus is as severe as the virus itself and as Government’s balance the re-opening of the economy, we all pray, inshallah, that it is done as safely as possible and that many will be on the path to recovery soon.
Eid Mubarak again from all of the Crescent Wealth family.
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Talal currently serves as a Non-Executive Director on the Whitlam Institute and Western Sydney University Foundation Council Board. He also serves as Chairman of First Quay Capital and Chairman of the Australian Arab Dialogue. Talal has also served on the Australia Post, Board of Sydney Ports, Macquarie University and the Western Sydney Area Health Service and the Chairman of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade; Council of Australia Arab Relations. In an executive capacity, Talal spent 10 years at PwC as a director and strategist, and at investment firm Babcock & Brown in the Corporate Finance Group and later in the Technical Real Estate Division. Later Talal held leadership positions in Better Place Australia, Platinum Hearing and Star Transport Australia.