Documents Cited in the Supreme Court Ruling - 23
Concise Encyclopedia of Islam
The Concise Encyclopedia of Islam
Cyril Glasse

'Id al-Adha (lit. "the feast of the sacrifice"). Also known as the 'Id al-Kabir ("the great feast") and, in Turkey, as the kurban bayram, this is the most important feast in the Islamic calendar. It falls on the 10th Dhu-l-Hijjah which is also the culmination of the pilgrimage at Mecca. For those not performing the pilgrimage, the feast is one of communal prayer followed by the sacrifice of an animal; for those who are in Mecca performing the pilgrimage, the sacrifice is the concluding rite.

    The feast is a commemoration of Abrahamís sacrifice of the ram as a Divine dispensation releasing him from the intended sacrifice of his son.  When Abraham had confirmed his obedience to God, the Angel Gabriel brought a ram at the last moment as a substitute for the son. This son is not named in the Koran, hut it is usually accepted in Islam that the sacrifice was to be of Ishmael (Isma'il). For those commentators who hold that Ishmael was indeed the promised victim, Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his then only son, at an age which left no hope for another, constituted the greatness and depth of his obedience. The second son, Isaac, is precisely understood to be God's reward for Abrahamís perfect submission.

    In Islam the place of Abraham's sacrifice is said to be Mina, just outside Mecca. The pillars at Mina, which are stoned during the pilgrimage, symbolize the devilís tempting of Abraham, three times, to abandon the sacrifice.

    On the morning of the 'Id al-Adha, the people assemble at the communal place of prayer (musalla), usually an open field, for thc 'Id ("feast") prayer is performed in principle, by all members of the community or city together (see PRAYER). After the prayer, the Imam sacrifices a sheep for the nation, or the community, and then one for his family. The believers return to their homes where each head of a household sacrifices a sheep, a camel, or an ox for his family. The sacrifice is consumed over the course of several days.

    The sacrifice is performed by a man, usually, but not necessarily, the head of the household. He faces Mecca, utters the appropriate ritual intention an-niyyah (essentially a statement of the clear nature and purpose of the act to be performed), speaks the name of the person or persons on whose account the sacrifice is being made, pronounces the words bismi-Llah; Allalhu akbar, and then cuts the throat of the animal, both wind-pipe and jugular, in one stroke (see SACRIFICE). Women who head households ask a man, a relative or the Imam of the local mosque, to perform the sacrifice for them, although a woman could perform the sacrifice herself if no suitable adult male could be found. The celebrations continue for three days and consist chiefly of family visits. The sacrifice renews a sense of consecration towards God and perpetuates a primordial sacerdotal function.

    The Prophet instituted the feast in the second year of the Hijrah in Medina when he and the refugees could not fulfill the pilgrimage to Mecca. See PILGRIMAGE.

Hialeah Ordinances
FlaStat 585
Fla Stat 826
310 So2d 42
7 USC 1901-5
721 F2nd 729
688 FSupp 1522
723 FSupp 1469
Bill of Rights
XIV Amendment
Petitioners' Brief
Respondants' Brief
Petitioners' Reply Brief
Francione Brief
Oral Arguments
Scalia Opinion
Souter Opinion
Blackmun Opinion
Encyclopedia of  the American Religious Experience, Vol. 1
Encyclopedia of Religion, Vol. 7
Encyclopedia of Religion, Vol. 12
Encyclopedia of Religion, Vol. 13
Encyclopedia Judaica, Vol. 14
Concise Encyclopedia of Islam
Biblical Quotations
Webster's 3rd International Dictionary
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