The Islamic calendar is purely lunar, as opposed to the Gregorian calendar, which is solar or lunar-solar based. The Islamic year is approximately 11 days shorter than the Gregorian year and the months in the Islamic year are not related to seasons, unlike the Gregorian year whereby seasons and months are determined by the solar cycle. Therefore important Muslim events and festivals always fall in the same Islamic month; i.e., the months of Hajj and Ramadan which take place in summer as well as winter.
|The Islamic year consists of 12 lunar months:||The Gregorian year consists of 12 lunar months:|
Crescent Moon Sighting
For religious reasons the beginning of the Islamic months will now be determined through use of astronomical calculation with the consideration of the sight ability of the crescent moon anywhere on the globe, rather than actual human physical sighting, of the crescent moon, according to Islamic Society of North America and the Islamic Fiqh Council’s (religious point of view). Additionally to determine a lunar Islamic calendar, a conventional point of reference will be used; i.e., The International Date Line (IDL) or the Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).? The new method allows the Islamic lunar month to begin at sunset, of the day when the conjunction occurs, before 12:00 Noon GMT.
Source – www.isna.net
Islamic Calendar Terms and Information
Ramadan – is the 9th month of the Islamic lunar calendar, during which Muslims fast from dawn to sunset.
Eid ul-Fitr – is the Festival at the end of Ramadan, in celebration of ending the month of fasting.
Dhul-Hijjah – is the 12th month of the Islamic lunar calendar, during which the Hajj takes place, from the 8th through 13th.
Eid ul-Adha – is the Festival that takes place during the Hajj, on the 10th of Dhul Hijjah, in commemoration of the sacrifices of Abraham and his family.
Lailat ul-Qadr – also known as the Night of Power is one of the most important nights in Islam. It is a night of Mercy, a night of Blessing, a night of Peace and a night of Guidance.
Ashurah – is the day Musa (Moses) and his people were freed from Pharaoh. Muslims observed voluntary fasting in thanks and memory of that event to demonstrate the solidarity among the Messengers of Allah as Muslims believe Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) came to perfect and preserve not nullify the earlier religious teachings and practices brought by previous Messengers of Allah
Arafat – means to know – to become acquainted with Allah in being with each other. Arafat is the name of the desert in Arabia and the ninth day Arafa, in the month of Zul-Hajj. It is when Muslims meet to know one another, to live together, to recognize they are one “Ummah” (community), one nation, with different languages and cultures from different races, tribes and boundaries. The day of Arafa is a day Muslims are neighbors spending their time together, as one, in the World of Islam.
Isra and Miraj – is the miraculous night of journey for Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) from Mecca to Jerusalem and his ascension up to the heavens where he received the command from Allah for Muslims to make five daily prayers
MuHarram – is the first month of the New Year in the Islamic calendar and means “Forbidden.” Even before Islam, this month was always known as a scared month in which all unlawful acts were forbidden, prominently the shedding of blood.
Nuzul Al-Qur’an – Ramadan is also the month during which the Qur’an was given (revealed) to the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)
Important Islamic Days
|Lailat ul-Qadr (Night of Power)||25,27,29 Ramadhan|
|Eid ul-Fitr||01 Shawwal|
|Hajj||08-13 thw al-Hajjah|
|Arafa Day||09 thw al-Hajjah|
|Eid ul-Adha||10 thw al-Hajjah|
|Isra & Miraj||27 Rajab|
|Muharram (Islamic New Year)||01 Muharram|