Islamic New Year: From date, history to significance of Muharram 2023
Saudi Arabia has announced the first day of Muharram, marking the start of the Islamic New Year. Muharram holds significant importance for Muslims globally and is observed differently by Sunni and Shia Muslims.
India will mark the first day of Muharram on Thursday, 20 July. Saudi Arabia has announced the first day of Muharram for the Islamic year 1445 on 19 July, marking the beginning of the Islamic New Year. The announcement came after the sighting of the crescent moon, indicating the end of the month of Dhul Hijjah on July 18. Consequently, the first day of Muharram will be observed on Wednesday, July 19.
The date of Muharram varies each year in the Gregorian calendar due to the lunar cycle on which the Islamic calendar is based. Countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Morocco usually sight the crescent moon one day later than countries such as Saudi Arabia, UAE, Oman, and other Gulf countries.
Muharram commemorates the martyrdom of Imam Hussein, Prophet Muhammad's grandson, and his companions at the Battle of Karbala in 680 AD. This battle symbolizes the fight for justice against oppression. Imam Hussein's refusal to submit to the tyrannical ruler Yazid that ultimately led to his sacrifice. His sacrifice for truth and justice are remembered and honoured during Muharram, reported India Today. It serves as a time of reflection and inspiration for Muslims around the world.
Muharram is the first month of the Islamic calendar and holds significant importance for Muslims globally. The first day of this holy month is known as the Islamic New Year, Al Hijri or Arabic New Year. It commemorates the migration of Prophet Muhammad from Mecca to Medina and holds historical significance for both Sunni and Shia Muslims.
Muharram is observed differently by Sunni and Shia Muslims. While the former sects engages in remembrance, the later engages in mourning, Shia Muslims also participate in mourning processions, self-flagellation, and chest-beating as expressions of grief, reported HT. They hold mourning rituals, processions, and gatherings in mosques. On the other hand, Sunnis observe a fast 'sunnah,' following the tradition of Prophet Muhammad, who kept a fast on this day after Prophet Musa (Moses).
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