The Muslim community across the country is set to celebrate the birth anniversary of Prophet Muhammad, Eid Milad-un-Nabi, today, 18 October.
As per Islamic scriptures, this special day is observed in the month of Rabi-ul-Awwal, the third month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Eid Milad-un-Nabi is also known as Mawlid, which is an Arabic word for 'giving birth'.
How is the day celebrated in the country?
According to BBC, there are only restricted festivities on Eid Milad-un-Nabi as the same day also marks the death anniversary of the Prophet. The event is usually marked by congregations where religious leaders make speeches on the life of the Prophet. One of the most important part of Eid Milad-un-Nabi is to celebrate the life of the Prophet, his teachings, sufferings, and his character, as he even forgave his enemies.
Prophet Muhammad is believed to have been born in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, around 570 CE. For all the people, he was the last messenger of Allah who spread the message of love and unity among humans.
The celebrations of Eid-e-Milad became more popular during the 11th century and it was first celebrated as an official festival in Egypt. During this period, only Shia Muslim, who were the ruling tribe in the region could celebrate the festival and the festivities were not extended to the general public. In the 12th century, countries other than Egypt such as Syria, Morocco, Turkey and Spain, started celebrating Eid-e-Milad. And soon, Sunni Muslims too started celebrating the day.
Sunnis and Shias are the two major sects of Islam. They honour and commemorate this occasion on different days but in the same month. Sunnis observe this day on the 12th day of the month, while Shias celebrate it on the 17th day of the month.