Saudi and American Muslims embrace the ‘giving nature’ of Islam during Eid al-Adha

Chicago: American and Saudi Muslims said on Wednesday that Muslims are very “giving” and that generosity is reflected in local and global charity drives, especially during celebrations of Islamic holidays such as Eid al-Adha, which begin this week. it happens.

Eid al-Adha, the “festival of sacrifices”, refers to the historical tradition adopted by Jews, Christians, and Muslims of the Prophet Abraham wishing to sacrifice his son Ishmael to show his faith in Allah (God), But instead who was directed by the Almighty to sacrifice a lamb.

Arab News deputy section head and regional correspondent Rawan Radwan said that “giving” is a core belief in Islam, especially during Eid celebrations.

“After the prayer, Muslims traditionally honor the devotion of the Prophet Abraham by sacrificing sheep, goats, and cows. Each person has, of course, to contribute a portion, depending on the animal, for the needy. We give to our families, our friends. But, of course, the biggest chunk goes to those who need it the most, the poor,” Radwan explained during an appearance on The Ray Hanania Show.

“Every year during Eid al-Adha there are different charities that are giving aid and food or produce or even sacrificial animals. That is, from one side. And of course here (Saudi Arabia) charity. (a) Many of these charities are funded by the government, and are also funded by those who contribute a great deal. They are given food, and produce, and clothes.”

“There is only the power of giving here. You are surrounded by it so it is a part of nature. It is second nature to many people here as a community. For Saudis, and I’m sure a lot of different people and other communities, the power to give is something that is very much felt here. ,

Atya Kazmi, senior researcher at PEW and Chicago area manager of Islamic Circle of North America Relief, said the spirit of community solidarity and inclusivity is reflected in the conduct of Muslims migrating to the US during the Eid holidays.

Kazmi described how ICNA, which has chapters across the US, oversees 70 food pantries for the poor, manages 20 transitional homes for homeless families, and even during holidays like Eid al-Adha. Organizes events to coincide so as to please everyone. ,

ICNA Relief, Kazmi said, is hosting a 1,000 toy drive so that children can celebrate the Eid al-Adha holiday this week.

“Not only do we try to give them clothes, we (sure) also do food distribution. As we all know, Muslims have an obligation to help the needy people wherever they are and whatever religion or caste or culture they belong to, so our services are for all,” Kazmi said.

“People in need walk into our offices and we do proper case management to provide much needed services to them.”

Kazmi emphasized that while the toy drive focuses on the Muslim children of refugees who have recently fled Afghanistan to the US, ICNA Relief’s efforts also help all families in need.

Kazmi said, ‘We are open to all. “(W)e is a faith based organization and supports the Muslim community, but no one is spared regardless of their religion.”

ICNA Relief Chicago is a chapter of the Islamic Circle of North America Relief, which provides programs for homeless women across the country including transitional shelter, food pantries, back-to-school gifts, Muslim family services, refugee empowerment, women’s hygiene kits, winter going along. Clothing drives, disaster relief, and free health checkups.

Mohamed said PEW’s research shows that most Americans do not understand Islam because they have never met a Muslim.

“One of the things we see on Muslims’ own data and that applies to everyone is that people who say they know a group member personally tend to have more positive views. So people who say they know someone personally who is a Muslim have more positive views of Muslims, more positive views of Islam.

Mohamed said, “And it may come as a surprise to some of your (radio) listeners … where you’re broadcasting (Detroit, Washington DC and Chicago), half of the American public says they’re in person. don’t really know Muslim,” said Mohammad. PEW Research.

We “There are so many people who say that I don’t know anyone who is Muslim, except the people I see on TV. Many people say that they do not know much about anything. Only one in 10 Americans say they think they know a lot about Islam.

“Only six out of 10 Americans in the multiple choice survey can correctly identify that the Hajj is to Mecca, not to Medina, nor to Jerusalem. So four out of 10 Americans say I don’t know.

The data shows that when Muslims engage directly with the American public, it “has a serious impact and can result in more positive views of Muslims”.

He said that since Muslim communities are concentrated in certain areas such as Dearborn or Chicago, misunderstandings and stereotypes are reinforced in areas where Muslims do not live.

Most Americans, Mohamed said, are unfamiliar with Muslim traditions and religious holidays like Eid al-Adha. This results in both empathy and fear.

Statistics show that eight out of 10 Americans believe that Muslims face more discrimination than Jews and evangelical Christians. He is more specific when it comes to American politics.

“The data shows that there is a huge gap between Republican and Democratic perceptions of Muslims,” ​​he said.

According to research data from PEW, Mohamed said, 72 percent of Republicans say Muslims are more likely to encourage violence (compared to other religious groups), while only 32 percent of Democrats believe Muslims are more likely to encourage violence. is more likely.

The first Iftar was organized by former President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, and Eid celebrations were recognized by presidents, including former President George W. Bush, a Republican. Former President Donald Trump, a Republican, suspended the formal White House Eid Iftar but was reinstated President Joseph Bidena Democrat.

But the more government officials acknowledge events like Eid al-Adha and Eid al-Fitr, the more Americans are willing to understand Muslims, Mohamed said. The public celebration of these festivals by the US governments not only influenced American understanding but encouraged more Muslims to participate in the festivities.

“One thing we see is that the holiday of Eid, the holiday of this Eid and the holiday of the second Eid which is after Ramadan, both of these things are actually very much, even among the Muslims who say that They do not attend religious services. Very often or those who do not pray five times a day, which is standardly prescribed,” said Mohammad.

“You see a large number of people saying that they attend religious services a couple of times a year around Eid. They think that the Hajj to Mecca is very important and they hope to do so at some point.”

The Ray Hanania Show is broadcast live every Wednesday at 5 p.m. Eastern EST on WNZK AM 690 Radio in Greater Detroit, including parts of Ohio, and WDMV AM 700 Radio in Washington DC, including parts of Virginia and Maryland. The show is broadcast on Thursdays at 7 a.m. on WNZK AM 690 in Detroit and 12 p.m. on WNWI AM 1080 in Chicago.

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