On September 22, Muslims across the globe will welcome in the Islamic New Year, marking the beginning of Muharram – the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar. After Ramadan, Muharram is considered to be the second most holy month of the Islamic year. The date for this celebration differs year to year in the Gregorian calendar because it is based on the lunar cycle. This is also the case for many other Islamic observances.
The Islamic New Year starts at sunset with the sighting of the new moon, signalling the beginning of the month of Muharram. On the first day of this month, many Muslims take time to reflect on their lives and think about the ways in which they could improve themselves. Some may decide to fast, pray and spend time reading the Quran, while others might carry out good deeds – such as giving to charity. To find out more about the Islamic New Year and how you can do your bit for a good cause during this period, keep reading.
A time for good deeds
As they welcome in the Islamic New Year, some Muslims make a special effort on the first day to consider their deeds, and this is often done on the ninth, 10th and 11th days of the month too. Many Muslims perceive this as the perfect time to give to charitable causes by making a monetary contribution and some may use this opportunity to pay their Zakat.
Zakat is an act of worship that involves Muslims giving a certain percentage of their wealth to help a good cause. It is considered a religious duty and is thought to help cleanse impurities. It’s also believed that it ensures excess wealth is distributed among those who need it most. Zakat is due once a lunar year has passed. The Islamic New Year can be a good time to pay it because it can serve as a useful reminder that the donation should be made.
Other ways you can make a difference
Aside from donating to a good cause, there are a number of other deeds you can carry out. For example, some Muslims choose to donate blood or sign up for volunteer work during this time.
Regardless of whether you give to charity or decide to do something else, the beginning of the Islamic New Year provides you with the perfect opportunity to make a difference.