Hari Raya Haji is also known as the Festival of Sacrifice. Hari Raya Haji is celebrated by Muslims around the world and is the commemoration of Ibrahim’s willingness to be obedient to Allah and to sacrifice his own son, Ishmael. At the last minute, Allah provided a ram for the sacrifice as a substitute for Ishmael.
The festival is 70 days after the holy month of Ramadan, on the 10th day of the Islamic month of Dhul Hijja and lasts for up to four days. The festival marks the end of the annual holy pilgrimage to Mecca and demonstrates each practicing Muslim’s submission to Allah.
In the mosques, prayers are said and sermons read out, then there are sacrifices of cows, goats and sheep by those who are financially able to do so. The meat from the animals is packaged and delivered to the poorer Muslim families, the practice of which helps the devotees remember those who are less fortunate.
Later in the day, Muslims visit parents and families for a happy celebration and big meal. Bazaars and festivities are held around Singapore in places like Kampong Glam and Geylang Serai. The markets are highly decorated and there is a happy and celebratory atmosphere everywhere.
Hari Raya Haji is also known as the Greater Eid, Kurban Bayram, Eid al-Bakr and Bakrid. The ritual observance of the festival continues until sunset of the 12th day of Dhul Hijja and the sacrifices may take place until sunset on the 13th day of Dhul Hijja.