Sunday, November 14, 2010

Hariraya Haji - Aidil Adha - Hariraya Korban

A mother (Pijot) and a girl (Emi) celebrate their birthday close to Hariraya Aidil Adha. Hence this party. Norzam Adha ( seated left) was born on the night of the Aidil Adha itself.

Three alternative names for the second hariraya to honor the completion of the Haj ceremonies for the pilgrims in Mecca and the end of the Muslim year. We will have only a one day holiday but many Muslims I'm sure are taking extra leaves to celebrate the occasion. For the Kelantanese, I believe, this is a more significant occasion than the hariraya Puasa or Aidil Fitri and celebrated more earnestly.

The greater significance if the occasion is indeed reflected by the fact the Takbir and Tahmid ( chanting the greatness of Allah) will continue for three days, not just a day and night as in the case of Aidil Fitri. It will continue until all the pilgrims have completed the three days of 'stoning the devil' ( tasyrik ie on the 11th,12th and 13th Dzulhijah) and returned home. Those doing the pilgrimage for the first time will then undergo a change of name to Tuan Haji. We have stories of people who insisted on the change of name being reflected in their iCs, Passports and other documents. But so far we have no such floods of request being reported by the Authorities concerned in Malaysia.

22 deaths of Malaysian pilgrims and 85 cases of being sick were reported this year. There's no explanation with regard to the cause as yet but the loss will be met with mixed feelings. On the one hand death while doing the Haj in Mecca is most welcomed and even desired by the elderly pilgrims for they will go straight to heaven, to the members of their family the sudden loss is quite traumatic. While others go the the airport terminal to welcome home their beloved ones, they could not see those they loved again for they are buried in Mecca in unmarked graves. You couldn't even go to visit their final resting place.

The return to Malaysia after a long sojourn in Mecca fulfilling the full obligations of the Muslim faith, is often quite traumatic.
While the hallmark cough of having done the Haj is a lingering reminder of the trip which some proudly enjoy, some changes in the manner of conducting the prayers may suddenly be realized. There's no "doa qunut" for the Subuh prayer in Mecca while that is a must here at home. In Mecca you can do the 'Sunnah' prayers for so many reasons (niat) and for as many times as you wish ( 2 raka'ts for each prayer). Back here in Malaysia it's forbidden to hold a sunnah prayer after Subuh and Asyar. The Khatib
in our mosque also does not echo loudly what the Imam recited before and after each movemnet in the prayer as they do in Mecca. We just follow the Imam or the movement of others when we can't hear him, especially in a small madrasah where the Imam does not use a microphone.

Well the Hariraya Korban itself is quite the same as the other hariraya except that it's marked by the slaughtering of some cows, buffaloes or goats, the act which gives the festive day its name. The animala are slaughtered to commemorate the day Prophet Ibrahim went out to sacrifice his beloved son Ismail to fulfill Allah's command. But just he was about to perform the goary task as proof of his unreserved loyalty to Allah, Allah replaced the son with a ram. Thus the ram became the sacrificial animal. But the day also coincides with the day of the wukuf for the pilgrims in Mecca, the final rite for being annointed as a Haj.

That was just as a little reminder to all the young Muslims. It shows not only how loyal Prophet Ibrahim was to Allah but also how loyal and courageous was Ismail to Allah and his father, ever willing to die as a scrfice to Allah at the hand of his beloved father. Would any son be willing to do that now? I think he would rather call his father mad and run away as far as he could from the old man. I for one, pity the animals that are sacrificed but they would ultimately face the same fate and to be selected for the sacrifice must, therefore, be something special for them.

The Aidil Adha is indeed a day of hallowed rejoice and a warm welcome home for the new Hajis. We celebrate the day in their
honour and in memory of Prophet Ibrahim and his son's sacrifice. The sacrificial meat is also given to others to cook and enjoy, thus spreading the festive mood to others. So, Selamat Hariraya Aidil Adha to all the Muslim and non-Muslims in this country.


Al-Manar said...

Unlike the earlier Hari Raya we are likely to have a quiet one. For one thing it is a short holiday, too short for our loved ones to travel all the way with their kids. Additionally, the weather is very unpredictable at the moment. We may soon get what we normally get this time of the year, rsin and flood.

Selamat hari raya Qurban.

norzah said...

Selamat hariraya to you n family, Akhi Pakcik Al-Manar. The threat of rain and flood is there but Allah is most kind and loving. Behind the veil of any unfortunate occurence if and whenever it takes place, will always hide untold blessings which often passed unnoticed. Only those who are appreciative (syukriyah) will notice it and thank Allah for it. May we all be included in that number.

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abdulhalimshah said...

Akhi Norzah,
I have been following the program Salam Baitullah on TV many nights and from what I saw, the place from Al-Haram to Mina would not be recognisable in time to come due to many construction and changes taking place.
Even the Jamrah is now a huge long wall, unlike the pillars that we were accustomed to in the past. With the introduction of the trains from Mina to Arafat and back, we might do away with the 4000 odd buses in the future. The places which were once familiar are now gone with the redevelopment of Makkah. Let us pray that the spiritual significance of the Hajj would not disappear with the development that seemed to be unstoppable. What is more important, the costs of doing the Hajj should not be so prohibitive that the future generations have to wait till they are too old for their savings to enable them to perform the Hajj.

kaykuala said...

Akhi Norzah,
The LRT from Mina to Arafah which operates only for 4 days in a year is the most welcomed news this year. There would not be cases of buses losing their way or of pilgrims getting left for hours not knowing when their bus would appear. However, I wonder what happens at the last stop in Arafah. Will there be buses there to ferry the commuters to the various locations to their tents? I'm sure not all the tents are nearby to the LRT stations.We'll wait for the new Hjs to tell us what happened when they return shortly.

norzah said...

Akhi Halim and Kaykuala, I suppose the physical development taking place in Mecca, Mina and Arafah is unavoidable and necessary. LRT is a good way of mass trasporting people between Arafah and Madina but I would recommend a people-mover type of transportation with extensions to some central points around which the rents are pitched.
If we miss the old sights and points of focus, the new ones will also become old and replaceable in time. It's the rising cost of performing the Hj which is very bothersome. Tabung Haji seems to be so absorbed in making profit rather than keeping the costs down as much as possible. The limited number of people who can perform the Haj every year ( the quoto set) is no reason to increase cost which only ensure that the rich and wealthy will be able to visit Mecca every year while the not so rich will find it difficult to bring the family members along. In any case doing Haj is a sacrifice and there should not be any complaint. But should Tabung Haji use that as a reason to hike up prices every two or theree years?

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