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True Stories Website > True Stories from the Life of the Prophet Abraham > Eid of Sacrifice (Eid-al-Adha)


True Stories from the Life of the Prophet Abraham:
Eid of Sacrifice (Eid-al-Adha):
by Sher Muhammad Akhtar


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"O my father! Do what thou art commanded; if God please, thou wilt find me of the patient ones" -- (The Quran: 37:102).

Hundreds of years ago the father of Prophets – Abraham – had a vision that he was sacrificing his son. And in order to carry out the command of Allah he sacrificed a herd of camels and distributed the flesh amongst the poor.

The next night he again had the same dream and believing it to be a true one, as all his dreams were, he thought that Allah wanted more sacrifice from him. Early in the morning he sacrificed more camels.

The third night he again saw himself sacrificing his own son. He did not sacrifice camels this time, but he called for his son, Ishmael, and said,

"O my son! I have seen thee being sacrificed in a dream; what sayest thou?" -- (The Quran: 37:102).

The son knew that his father was a prophet of Allah, so without any demur or hesitation he replied,

"O my father! Do what thou art commanded; if God please, thou wilt find me of the patient ones" -- (The Quran: 37:102).

Not only the Patriarch's son, but also his wife well knew that her husband was a man of character and an apostle of Allah. She received the news very cheerfully. All the three were making every thing ready to do what they were commanded to.

The mother took her only son and gave him a bath and new clothes to wear. The father was sharpening his knife, so as to enable his son's throat to be cut easily. The boy was happy and ready to go with his father to the altar. When they were leaving the house, the mother gave a farewell kiss on the forehead of the boy and thus did she show her submission to the commandment of Allah.

Father and son were going to the altar when on the way, Satan tried to dissuade the young man from going to the place of sacrifice, but he turned a deaf ear to his protestation.

Satan then turned to influence the mother saying that her husband was mad, who was going to sacrifice his son to effect a mere dream. She too did what her son had done.

At the Altar the son threw himself prostrate before his illustrious father, who blindfolded as he was, lest his parental love should come in the way, applied the knife to his son's throat. An exemplary conduct of complete submission to the will of Allah; sacrificing his only son in His way! The soul of Abraham within himself was praising the Lord, saying: "My prayer and my sacrifice and my life and my death are all for God, the Lord of the worlds".

Angels stood metamorphosed, as it were, into lifeless pictures and overcome by extreme anxiety. "God is great; God is great; God is great; God is great; There is no Allah, but He. And God is great; All praise for God."

Abraham was about to cut the throat of his only son. But lo! He heard a voice from Above:

"O Abraham! Thou hast indeed shown the truth of the Vision; thus We reward the doers of good. Surely this is a manifest trial" -- (The Quran: 37:104-106).

The Patriarch laid down the knife and there was rejoicing mingled with thanksgiving that God had accepted the Sacrifice. It dawned on him what his Vision really meant – viz., that what God wanted was not the blood of his son but the sacrifice of that highest of love which a father has for his son and vice-versa. It was the sacrifice of personal passion that was acceptable to God and that was done both by the father and the son. The father and son fell down in prayer praising their Lord.

And to mark this great act of self-sacrifice at the call of Allah a ram was sacrificed. This was the first Eid of Sacrifice (Eid-al-Adha), and in commemoration all Muslims celebrate it every year.

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True Stories Website > True Stories from the Life of the Prophet Abraham > Eid of Sacrifice (Eid-al-Adha)

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