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Savour the True ‘Flavour’ of Qurbaani


We are fast approaching that special occasion which graces us only once a year – the occasion of ‘Eidul Adha or qurbaani.

As the countdown commences, the planning and preparations begin and the atmosphere is charged with excitement and joy. While the adults are locating the knives, hooks, buckets, aprons, overalls, gumboots, arranging for the carcasses to be sliced and the meat stored, etc., the children are probably running to and fro in a state of excitement. They eagerly pull on their gumboots and walk amidst the animals, ‘inspecting’ and ‘choosing’ their animals. Likewise, they beg their fathers to take them to other homes and farms so that they can see who has the biggest bull or grandest goat.

The occasion of ‘Eidul Adha is a happy occasion on which we are the guests of the most gracious of all hosts - Allah Ta‘ala. Hence, it is only befitting that the children be happy and filled with joy. They should be encouraged to ‘get their hands dirty’ by getting involved and helping in whatever way possible so that they also have a share in the activities of qurbaani. However, the be-all-and-end-all of the children’s ‘Eidul Adha should not merely be to participate in the activities, run outside, play and meet long lost relatives and friends. Rather, the essence and relevance of this qurbaani in the life of a Muslim should be imparted to them so that they may savour the true ‘flavour’ of qurbaani.

The parents should tell the children the incident of Nabi Ebrahim (‘alaihis salaam) and Nabi Ismaa‘eel (‘alaihis salaam). (Click here for a simple explanation of the incident). When telling them the story, explain to them that Allah Ta‘ala did not really want Nabi Ebrahim (‘alaihis salaam) to slaughter Nabi Ismaa‘eel (‘alaihis salaam), but He was testing them to see whether they would do what He told them to do. These great Ambiyaa (‘alaihimas salaam) passed the test ‘with flying colours’, and Allah Ta‘ala was so pleased that until today, the entire Ummah slaughters animals on this occasion in their remembrance. We should thus highlight the point to our children that throughout our lives, our goal is to make Allah Ta‘ala happy and fulfil what He wants from us, just as Nabi Ebrahim (‘alaihis salaam) and Nabi Ismaa‘eel (‘alaihis salaam) did. In this way, the children will view ‘Eidul Adha and qurbaani in a different light and will be able to appreciate the occasion.

Together with this, since the occasion of ‘Eidul Adha involves animals, it is important that the children are supervised and taught to treat the animals correctly. Sometimes, in excitement, the children climb onto the animals, jump on them, chase them and harass them to the extent where the animals are caused great inconvenience, are frightened and are not even allowed to rest. This is obviously impermissible, and we should thus teach the children to respect and care for the animals.

Finally, since ‘qurbaani is one of the symbols of Islam, let us try our best to give our children a true qurbaani. The honour of qurbaani should be firmly entrenched in their hearts, they should eagerly anticipate qurbaani, enjoy eating the meat which Allah Ta‘ala has provided for us, as his guests, and should understand its great importance and significance.

May Allah Ta‘ala bless us all with the true spirit and the rewards of ‘Eidul Adha and qurbaani.