Calendar Islam 2017
Calendar Islam 2017: A Comprehensive Guide to Islamic Dates, Holidays, and Observances
Islamic calendar, also known as the Hijri calendar, is a lunar-based system that Muslims around the world follow to determine their religious dates, holidays, and observations. As we delve into the year 2017, it is essential to understand the significance of the Islamic calendar and be aware of the important dates and events that will shape the lives and practices of Muslims worldwide. This comprehensive guide will provide you with all the necessary information about Calendar Islam 2017, including key dates, holidays, and important observances.
Understanding the Islamic Calendar
The Islamic calendar follows the lunar cycle, consisting of 12 months of 29 or 30 days each, with a total of 354 or 355 days in a year. This lunar-based system makes the Islamic calendar approximately 10 to 11 days shorter than the Gregorian calendar, which is a solar-based system. As a result, the Islamic calendar does not align with the regular calendar year, causing Islamic dates to shift annually.
Each Islamic month begins with the sighting of the new moon, which is determined by legitimate Islamic authorities through the physical sighting or astronomical calculations. The first month of the Islamic calendar is Muharram, followed by Safar, Rabi’al-Awwal, Rabi’ath-Thani, Jumada al-Ula, Jumada al-Akhirah, Rajab, Sha’ban, Ramadan, Shawwal, Dhu al-Qa’dah, and finally Dhu al-Hijjah.
Key Dates and Holidays in Calendar Islam 2017
Here are the essential dates and holidays in the Islamic calendar for the year 2017:
1. Muharram – Islamic New Year (October 2, 2016)
The first day of Muharram marks the Islamic New Year and is considered a time for reflection and renewal. Muslims may observe this day with fasting, prayer, and offering thanks to Allah for the year that has passed and seeking blessings for the year ahead.
2. Ashura (October 11, 2016)
Ashura, the tenth day of Muharram, is a significant day for Muslims. It commemorates various historical events, including the day Prophet Musa (Moses) and the Israelites were saved from the Pharaoh, and the day on which Imam Husayn, the grandson of Prophet Muhammad, was martyred in the Battle of Karbala. This day is observed with fasting, prayer, and acts of selflessness.
3. Rabi’al-Awwal – Birth of Prophet Muhammad (December 1, 2016)
Rabi’al-Awwal is the third month of the Islamic calendar and holds great importance for Muslims around the world as it marks the birth anniversary of Prophet Muhammad. This day is celebrated with religious gatherings, recitation of the Quran, lectures about the life and teachings of the Prophet, and spreading love and kindness in his honor.
4. Laylat al-Miraj (April 24, 2017)
Laylat al-Miraj, also known as the Night Journey of the Prophet Muhammad, is an event commemorating the night Prophet Muhammad traveled from Mecca to Jerusalem and ascended to the heavens to meet with Allah. This night holds immense spiritual significance for Muslims, who engage in extra prayers, recitations of the Quran, and reflection on the Prophet’s journey.
5. Ramadan (May 26 – June 24, 2017)
Ramadan is undoubtedly the most significant month in the Islamic calendar. It is the month of fasting, self-discipline, reflection, and increased devotion and worship. Muslims observe fasting from dawn to sunset, abstaining from food, drink, and other physical needs. This month is also an opportunity for Muslims to strengthen their relationship with Allah through prayer, recitation of the Quran, and acts of charity.
6. Eid al-Fitr (June 25, 2017)
Eid al-Fitr marks the end of Ramadan and is a joyous celebration for Muslims worldwide. It is a day of gratitude, happiness, and giving to those in need. Muslims attend special congregational prayers, listen to sermons, exchange gifts, visit friends and family, and indulge in delicious feasts.
7. Hajj (August 30 – September 4, 2017)
Hajj is the annual pilgrimage to Mecca that Muslims strive to undertake at least once in their lifetime if physically and financially able. It is a five-day journey that follows specific rituals and commemorates the actions and trials of Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham) and his family. The culmination of Hajj, known as Eid al-Adha, is celebrated worldwide by Muslims.
8. Islamic New Year (September 21, 2017)
The Islamic New Year is celebrated on the first day of Muharram and marks the beginning of a new year in the Islamic calendar. It is a time of reflection, gratitude, and seeking blessings for the year ahead.
FAQs about Calendar Islam 2017
1. Are the dates mentioned for 2017 fixed, or can they vary?
The dates mentioned for Calendar Islam 2017 are based on the lunar calendar and might vary slightly depending on the sighting of the moon in different regions. Please consult your local Islamic authority for precise dates in your location.
2. Can I, as a non-Muslim, participate in the Islamic holidays and observances?
Islamic holidays and observances are primarily intended for Muslims. However, as a gesture of inclusivity and cultural understanding, non-Muslims are often welcome to attend community events, celebrations, and learn more about Islamic traditions.
3. What is the significance of fasting during Ramadan?
Fasting during Ramadan holds deep spiritual and religious significance for Muslims. It teaches self-discipline, empathy for the less fortunate, and strengthens one’s relationship with Allah. Muslims also believe that fasting allows them to purify their mind, body, and soul.
4. Is it necessary for every Muslim to perform Hajj once in their lifetime?
Performing Hajj is one of the Five Pillars of Islam and is obligatory for every Muslim who is physically and financially able to undertake the journey. However, it is not mandatory for Muslims who are unable to fulfill the physical or financial requirements.
As we navigate Calendar Islam 2017, understanding the Islamic calendar and the significant dates, holidays, and observances can foster unity and inclusivity among Muslims worldwide. It is important to respect and acknowledge the cultural and religious practices of the diverse Muslim community. May the year ahead bring peace, blessings, and prosperity to all Muslims, and may we continue to learn and grow together, embracing the principles of love, compassion, and understanding.