Islamic New Year / Muharram is the month with which the Muslims begin their Hijrah Calendar. The Islamic New Year was observed in this way since 622 A.D. when the Prophet Mohammed emigrated from Mecca to Yathrib (now called Medina) to spread Islam. This migration known as the Hijra in Arabic, also spelled Hegira.
Abu Hurairah (a companion of the prophet Muhammad) reported:
I asked the Prophet Mohammed: ‘Which prayer is the best after the obligatory prayers?’ He said, ‘Prayer during the middle of the night.’
I asked, ‘Which fast is the best after the fast of Rarmadan?’ He said, ‘The month of Allah that you call Muharram.’
Fasting of Ashura (10th of Muharram)
‘Ashura is a religious observance marked every year by all Muslims all over the world. The word ‘ashura literally means “10th,” as it is on the 10th of Muharram.
In the year 680 A.D., an event happened that was a turning point for what was to become the Shi’a Muslim community. During a Battle of Karbala, Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, was brutally murdered by Shimr Ibn Thil-Jawshan, along with most of his family and companion on the 10th day of Muharram (‘Ashura). Shi’a Muslims observe the day in mourning for Hussein and in remembrance of his martyrdom.
It has been established through a number of authentic hadith that fasting on the day of ‘Ashura’ is Sunnah of the Holy Prophet, peace be upon him, and makes one entitled to a great reward by Allah. Muslim should be more generous during this day by providing more food to their families and neighbors.
According to another Hadith, it is more advisable that the fast of ‘Ashura’ should either be preceded or followed by another fast. It means that one should fast two days: the 9th and 10th of Muharram or the 10th and 11th of Muharram.
To conclude this article and to sum it all up, here are some quick facts and information regarding the Islamic year:
- The Hijri New Year, also known as Islamic New Year is the day that marks the beginning of a new Islamic calendar year, the first month of the Islamic New Year is called Muharram
- Islam has a calendar based on the revolutions of the moon. Thus, it is only 354 days long though it has 12 months. 1)MuHarram-2) Safar -3)Raby` al-awal-4) Raby` al-THaany- 5)Jumaada al-awal-6) Jumaada al-THaany-7) Rajab-8) SHa`baan-9) RamaDHaan-10) Shawwal-11) Thul Qa`dah-12) Thul Hijjah
- The day is an official holiday in some Muslim countries, but is a regular working day in others.