Etiquette of Eid-al-Fitr
Praise be to Allaah.
The Sunnahs that the Muslim should observe on the day of Eid are as follows:
1 – Doing ghusl before going out to the prayer.
It was narrated in a saheeh hadeeth in al-Muwatta’ and elsewhere that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Umar used to do ghusl on the day of al-Fitr before going out to the prayer-place in the morning. Al-Muwatta’ 428.
Al- Nawawi (may Allaah have mercy on him) said that the Muslims were unanimously agreed that it is mustahabb to do ghusl for Eid prayer. The reason why it is mustahabb is the same reason as that for doing ghusl before Jumu’ah and other public gatherings. Rather on Eid the reason is even stronger.
2 – Eating before going out to pray on Eid al-Fitr.
Part of the etiquette is not to go out to pray on Eid al-Fitr until one has eaten some dates, because of the hadeeth narrated by al-Bukhaari from Anas ibn Maalik, who said that:
The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used not to go out on the morning of Eid al-Fitr until he had eaten some dates… of which he would eat an odd number. [Al-Bukhaari, 953].
Ibn Hajar (may Allaah have mercy on him) suggested that the reason for that was so as to ward off the possibility of adding to the fast, and to hasten to obey the command of Allaah. Al-Fath, 2/446. Whoever does not have any dates may break his fast with anything that is permissible.
3 – Takbeer on the day of Eid
This is one of the greatest Sunnahs on the day of Eid because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“(He wants that you) must complete the same number (of days), and that you must magnify Allaah [i.e. to say Takbeer (Allaahu Akbar: Allaah is the Most Great)] for having guided you so that you may be grateful to Him” [al-Baqarah 2:185]
It was narrated in the Musannaf of Ibn Abi Shaybah with a saheeh isnaad from Ibn Mas’ood (may Allaah be pleased with him) that he used to recite takbeer during the days of tashreeq:
Allaahu akbar, Allaahu akbar, laa ilaaha ill-Allaah, wa Allaahu akbar, Allaah akbar, wa Lillaah il-hamd (Allaah is Most Great, Allaah is most Great, there is no god but Allaah, Allaah is Most great, Allaah is most great, and to Allaah be praise).
It was also narrated elsewhere by Ibn Abi Shaybah with the same isnaad, but with the phrase “Allaahu akbar” repeated three times.
4 – Offering congratulations
It was narrated that Jubayr ibn Nufayr said: When the companions of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) met one another on the day of Eid, they would say to one another,
“Taqabbala Allaah minna wa minkum (May Allaah accept (good deeds) from us and from you.”
Ibn Hajar said, its isnaad is hasan. Al-Fath, 2/446.
5 – Adorning oneself on the occasion of Eid.
It was narrated that Jaabir (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) had a cloak which he would wear on the two Eids and on Fridays. Saheeh Ibn Khuzaymah, 1756,
Al-Bayhaqi narrated with a saheeh isnaad that Ibn ‘Umar used to wear his best clothes on Eid.
So a man should wear the best clothes that he has when going out for Eid.
With regard to women, they should avoid adorning themselves when they go out for Eid, because they are forbidden to show off their adornments to non-mahram men. It is also haraam for a woman who wants to go out to put on perfume or to expose men to temptation, because they are only going out for the purpose of worship.
6 – Going to the prayer by one route and returning by another.
It was narrated that Jaabir ibn ‘Abd-Allaah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said:
On the day of Eid, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to vary his route.
Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 986.
It was said that the reason for that was so that the two routes would testify for him on the Day of Resurrection, for the earth will speak on the Day of Resurrection and say what was done on it, both good and bad. There are some other reasons too for this which needs explanation.
And Allaah knows best.