What Qurban Means To Me

October 15, 2013

Prophet Ibrahim brought up his own son, not a lamb, it was his own son and then sacrificed him. And then in return, Allah granted Prophet Ibrahim a lamb for sacrificing…“that you [referring to the Prophet] attempted sacrificing your own son upon My orders, for My sake”.

Hi Assalamualaikum, how's your Eid Adha celebration? Eid Adha. The celebration of the sacrifice and its value for us muslims. The story of the Prophets Ibrahim and Ismail that deserves to be shared and remembered. It's essential. Let us remember that this Raya Qurban is more than celebrating it. What the sacrifice is supposed to symbolize. Let us avoid the waste and more importantly the wasted sacrifices.

Sacrifice (Qurban) does not directly means killing an animal but it is about performing such a deed in a way which will bring us closer to Allah SWT. Sacrificing ourselves to the extent of sacrificing our own lives JUST for the love for Allah SWT just like what the Prophets did. It's not about the rituals and festivals, but the worship and sacrifice.

What I mean by wasted sacrifice?

I am afraid that I see us, muslims, is now living in an age of ignorance. Some of us think that this is a celebration, not for the sake of worships. Now any talk regarding Qurban, people would think sacrificing animals. Yes. And when it comes to sacrificing, "You have paid too much for the animal, you have wasted your money! You've been cheated. You could get it much cheaper!”

Not at all. Performing every such deed, the aim of which is to get near to Allah, which Allah likes, is what is known as Qurban.

And what do we do to tell our children? To close their eyes?

When I was younger, I used to wonder. What exactly I have to feel in my heart to celebrate Qurban? The experience of witnessing is a bit traumatic. After the sad(?) ritual, people celebrating it like a festival. I was really confused. It's a sacred history in Islam and never should be forgotten, but why do we have to keep repeating it? But then, the time comes when I finally understand it's symbolic. Don't we forget about the lamb that let itself to be sacrificed. Tunduk dengan arahan Allah. It knows it's doing ibadah. Animal do ibadah. Allah has said in the Qur'an that every animal has its own world and its own way to do ibadah, or service, to Allah. And Qurban is one of it.

So I know. Qurban is beautiful. It reminds us to the life cycle we see almost all the time. Remember the song 'Bangau oh Bangau'? Allah created earth and everything in it in order - for good reasons. The things we eat, breath and enjoy right now didn't come out for free, yet we shouldn't close our eyes to the unpleasant side as it reminds us to respect creation and have conscious moderation based on Islam, within ourselves.

We sacrifice our wealth.
On Qurban and on Hajj.
Or Umrah as the pre-Hajj.
We sacrifice our time.
We sacrifice the uneasy feeling animal being killed because it is our and it's ibadah.
We sacrifice to perform charity.
We sacrifice, because it's ibadah.

May I, and us - by this, learn (if not much, just a bit also will do) about the real value of Qurban. May I, and us - be a better muslimah and live a more Islamic life, day by day. Amin. Amin Ya Rabbal 'Alamin.

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