Hari Raya Puasa as they call it in Malaysia or Eid al-Fitr is the “Festival of Breaking the Fast” commonly referred to as EID, a religious day celebrated by Muslims worldwide that marks the end of the month-long dawn-to-sunset fasting of Ramadan. Many Muslims attend communal prayers, listen to a khutba (sermon) and give zakat al-Fitr (charity in the form of food) during Eid al-Fitr.
Love to share some of the festive mood swings, dos & treats that happen in ASEAN countries in particular Malaysia during this festive period.
The words ‘Hari Raya’ mean ‘day of celebration, to some Hari Raya Puasa is often mistaken to be the Muslim New Year but it is not, instead it marks the end of the month of Ramadan preparations for the Festival of the Breaking of the Fast
The Spirit of Hari Raya
In these South East Asian Countries, of Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines where there are many Muslims, Hari Raya preparations in a Multicultural Society as Malaysia, the mood of this festive becomes visible from about one month prior to Ramzan.
A variety of delicacies to break their fast.
In each suburb, night Street markets come alive, the place is lit up with glittering lights. where varieties of savory food and sweets are made available for Muslims to purchase and take how to break their fast, whilst non-Muslims purchase and savor the varieties of their favorite flavor of food, at the street side outlet.
During Ramadan. Women start to sew beautiful curtains and buy new clothes for the family.
Some families also do renovation so that their home will look better when any guests visit it during the festival. After fulfilling their month-long fast, the Muslims are joyful to celebrate Hari Raya Puasa.
On the morning of the festival, the Muslims wear their new clothes and go to the mosque to pray. They offer their thanks to Allah (God) and ask for forgiveness from their elders, relatives, friends, work colleagues, business associates for whatever wrong they had done over the last year. They feel the need (a wonderful practice to be imbibed in their life) to ask for forgiveness, during this period is an important part of the Ramzan ritual.
On the day, they also visit their relatives and friends to celebrate the happy occasion. Being in a Multi-cultural society, with numerous race and religious practices that blend in creating that unique tapestry of Life. A unique fabric of a community.
During this period, it’s an open house for friends, work, and business colleagues to visit the homes of Muslim families that they know and be part of this celebration. The opportunity to taste a wide variety of delicious spicy dishes. Some favorite dishes that can be found in Muslim homes on this special occasion are ketupat, lontong, nasi padang, and beef rendang. The Muslims also have the habit of giving packets of money to kids when they go visiting. The packets are usually green, and children often look forward to getting these money tokens on Hari Raya Puasa.
Life in Kampong (Village)
The week prior to Hari Raya, many start their journey home to their villages, in India commonly referred to as their native, in Malaysia its referred to as Balik Kampung
The ambiance of Hari Raya is totally different celebrating it from a kampong. A once in a lifetime experience.
Hope you enjoyed reading this!