M. Mizanur Rahman :
Our National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam thus sings the song on Eid-ul-Fitr:
"Oh! Great soul, pleasant Eid has come
after the end of Ramadan-fasting!
Now be resigned yourself
by Allah's gracious bidding;
Distribute your jewelry-treasury's sum
and building-asset's sum as Zakat
but in the name of Allah
by waking up the slumberous dead Muslims!
Today you'll say your prayer of Eid by heart at that Eidgah
and that warfield where Gazi Muslims became martyrs!
Today forget your friend and foe,
better embrace each other hand in hand
mingling the whole universe
with sweet love of Islam.
On the tray of your heart keep sweets of Tawheed.
It is hoped, Your invitation will be accepted by Rasulullah.
Eid-ul-Fitr has its universal appeal. It taught human being equality in all human status. But, as a matter of fact, human beings are yet to be mentally fit to have themselves understood that every person has come on earth having equal physical body along with other physiological criteria. That is what we are yet to learn in Islam. Our outward fashions bragging of artificial riches seem to have been meaningfully exposed just on the coffin. After the burial of the dead body one can expect nothing from the dead. Death the leveler can always give us the sense that we people are all equal. Hence instead of wasting money and materials in blood-feuding wars of attrition we should inculcate the spirit of love that is preached by Islam.
The teaching of Islam is paradoxically a matter of love for human and ideologically it asks us to be so good for each one's welfare without an iota of poisoning mind with arrogance and enmity. The last Prophet of Islam Hazrat Muhammad (Sm) never wield sword or any kind of arms of violence to preach this religion of peace. One must have to learn Islam in the truest sense of the term and refrain from doing anything irrelevant about this Faith where peace and tranquility should have been prevailed to maintain equality and fraternity for the betterment of mankind in general and for the very essence of the Faith itself. Hence whatever idea of good and beneficial to human beings is Islam, where there is no room for greed and avarice. Accumulation of undesirable wealth and riches is absolutely forbidden in Islam for the benefit of all mankind.
Any kind of inordinate behaviour or cruelty to human beings is said to be causing directly hurt to the Creator of the universe.
Man cannot live alone. He is to take the help of another person. Similarly the woman is the sacred body to assist her man who naturally work together to benefit each other for the accomplishment of a family. By and large they make a community. Thus they create an environment conducive to a society. This is the relative factor that works among the people all over the world.
Islam is the religion of man on plain cause of its ethics. Here equality in all respect among human beings without any distinction between the male and the female requires to be preserved. Both social and economic equality in Islam is just obligatory. While observing fast from the beginning of the month of Ramadan one has to realise the torment of those who remain hungry for want of food. So the person must do something to ensure that no one among his neighbours should remain unfed:
Here is the soul-searching ritual realisation of the person fasting in accordance with the tenet of Islam.
You ask yourself as a Muslim how far you are obliged to perform your fasting properly or making show-business of fasting. This is a great learning in Islam. It taught the Muslim how to remain self-restraint (self-purified). The fasting of Ramadan symbolises a sort of Jehad (holy war waged against evils out of the soul). During this period abstinence is a boon to an individual while charity is an opportunity for a wealthy Muslim to succor the suffering humanity in distress.
This month of Ramadan is against the gluttonous greed of the rich people. These people are warned also to reduce their caprice and temptation to nil. Thus fasting inspires one for self- rectification.
Through this learning none of the Muslims can become the evildoer. Fasting also makes the mind of an individual balanced and patient towards recluse of purified soul where the spirit of love for the have-nots wakes up. Scientifically a moral obligation among human beings is built up here to bring about a serene and sacred compassionate heart from all of the social turbidity.
At the end of the month of Ramadan comes the great day of festival of Eid-ul-Fitr that is the most ecstatic joy of charity. Prior to saying prayer of Eid-ul-Fitr every able person among Muslims must pay Fitra to the needy relatives or neighbours. After saying the prayer one embraces another to confirm amity according to Islamic brotherhood. In this performance there should not be made any difference between the rich and the poor, high and low, distinguished and undistinguished. Everybody must be treated equal irrespective of so-called social status.
This is the glaring example of social uniformity in Islam. Eid-ul-Fitr festival does neither invite competition of fashion shows on any account nor allow undue privileges of unfair income or expenditure. This joyous day of great grand festival otherwise hardly entertain fun or frolics, pomp and grandeur, aristocratic pride of passion or vaunt of riches. It is straight love for humanity as a whole. Be happy here making others happy. That is why distribution of sweetmeats among all irrespective of age, sex, caste or creed, Muslim or Non-Muslim, poor or rich, high or low of any status is in vogue in the Muslim families.
And this cosmopolitan custom is continuing with such a great festival started by the great Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (Pbuh) since his Hijrat (migration) from Makka to Yathrib Madina) in 622 AD. At that time the people of Arabia got influenced by the Persian people in some of their culture, tradition and civilisation.
They used to celebrate Nouroz and Mihirjan for a few days with funs and frolics, enjoying vulgar dances of women and drinking bouts of those highly placed people and gambling, violence and conflicts often led them to bloodshed.
Moreover there was a gulf of difference between the rich and the poor in course of celebration of this auspicious day of the New Year (Nouroz) along with other festivals. These were absolutely incompatible with Islam. Hazrat Muhammad (Pbuh) was shocked having seen such immoral and inhuman carnival. Thus Eid-ul-Fitr was introduced for the Muslims. This is a huge congregation of people saying prayer to the Almighty Allah's blessings for the benefit of all. This great assembly of pleasant people, united people of all classes that throng with the great expectation of love and amity among all in the community. There is no bar of such ritual assembly and congregation on the part of Muslim women also. They can share such joy of prayer equally with their counterpart men. And that is why the poet sang :
O great Eid! O song of humanism!
Let all sorrow go, let all heart sing that psalm.
Welcome O Eid! Touch all hearts, welcome!
Delighting and lighting every human heart.
This is the green land
Which needs everything that's good.
Come O come to each abode.
O immortal Eid come!
Ward off sickness, suffering and diseases
and separation between man and man ..
Let all strife and conflict of man is gone.
Overwhelming the mental horizon,
Let only good abide in the heart,
Welcome O welcome heart unto heart!
Some of the aforementioned basic important aspects of Islamic ideals have been discussed meticulously in accordance with the Quran and Hadith without an iota of misgivings. Why Islam is said to be the complete Code of Life? The answer is inherent in different Ayats (Verses) of Al-Quran. These Ayats are required to be interpreted by the wise academics properly and propagated among the common people in simple but explicit language, so that no ambiguity takes place anywhere. It is observed that some of the interpreters boost on miraculous aspects of Behesht (heaven) and Dojokh (hell) stories only before the common people. All aspects of Islamic concept should be preached and propagated in details. Islam, the simple religion, should not be complicated by contradictory interpretations in order to exploit the people of candid mentality anyway. The poet says:
Who says heaven and hell are far away?
Both heaven and hell, pious and devil exist among human beings.*
Religious ideals are not mere words of ethics. We must have them in our everyday life in practice. The very simple adage is to be considered that 'practice makes a man perfect'. Islam professes perfect unity of human entity. That is the reason why five times prayer in Jamat (assembly) is obligatory for the Muslims. And each mosque is the local assembly house for the Muslims to strengthen the fortitude of Faith without any distinction between the rich and the poor. This Faith must have reciprocal interests both social and economic in order to make the community free from all material bonds to live peacefully. Eid-ul-Fitr is the proof of that large assembly of the faithful to have the test of Islamic fraternity. Honestly speaking if Muslims used to practice their Faith in the truest sense of Islamic terms the people of other Faiths would have been attracted to the beauty of this religion. Let us fortify that spirit of Islam faithfully by the grace of Almighty Allah.
Let us sing of Nazrul's song on Eid-ul-Fitr in unison:
"After the end of the fasting of Ramadan
the Eid-ul-Fitr of our grand pleasure has come ...
Let's sacrifice our excess wealth to those have-nots
expecting their shares of our riches.
And every Muslim must remember Allah's message:
"Behold, Allah enjoins justice, and the doing of good and generosity towards [ones] fellowmen; and forbids all that is shameful and all that runs counter to reason "AI-Koran, Surah UnNahl-90Cpart)."
Eid-ul- Fitr should be considered as the demonstration of Islamic faith towards definite unity among the faithful that inculcates discipline to bring about peace for social equilibrium politically and economically for the Muslim Ummah all over the world. This is not for the Muslim community alone for one day's performance. Rather this is a bright example for the people of the world irrespective of caste and creed in order to maintain peace and harmony among mankind. This terrestrial affinity of Islam binds humanity in oneness without distinction where violence does not have place to exist and where every individual's interests have its inherent protection with natural discipline.
This universal festival should not be treated as one day's performance. This performance of social and economic equality between human beings in the truest sense of terms and conditions that boosts harmonious affinity should be carried on perpetually.
*Welcome To Eid by poet M. Mizanur Rahman ( Under The Same Sky/Under The Same Sun). *Poet Sk. Fazlul Karim, Tr. by M.Mizanur Rahman *Lyrics by poet Kazi Nazrul Islam, Tr. by M. Mizanur Rahman. 'O Mon Romjaner oi Rozar seshe elo Khusir Eid'... Translated by M. Mizanur Rahman :
(The author is a poet, essayist, storyteller, translator and columnist.)