Question: I have a query related
Instead of sacrificing sheep on Eid, can one donate the equivalent in money
to the Edhi Trust or other bonafide Charity? Secondly, can one give money
as Sadqah to charity instead of sheep
slaughter? Can one adopt some other token form of Sadqah
and give balance amount to charity?
Answer: Your answer needs a
For every human being who believes
in Allah, there are two distinct spheres of interaction in which relationships
come into existence. The first sphere covers a person's relationship with
Allah, while the second one constitutes a person's relationship with his
fellow human beings. Islam and all divinely revealed religions nothing
but guide human intellect in these two spheres. A person's relationship
with Allah manifests itself in worship, which in Islam has some distinct
forms. Similarly, a person's relationship with his brethren takes
the form of social interaction, which again has many areas. Total or partial
negation of any one of these spheres results in an unbalanced life. Extremism
in the first sphere breeds monasticism and ascetism while extremism in
the second one breeds materialism. Islam wants every person to create a
balance in his life by giving each sphere its due. Similarly, it wants
a person to undertake the various prescribed forms of interaction in both
the spheres since each has a definite purpose.
In the first sphere, Islam has prescribed
specific forms of worship of which one form cannot replace the other, since
each has its own purpose and objective. Animal Sacrifice is one such form
of worship. It has an underlying philosophy which must be well be appreciated
in order to do it in letter and spirit. Just as salat
cannot replace zakat and vice
versa, animal sacrifice also cannot be replaced by zakat
or charity. What animal sacrifce induces in a person, zakat or salat or hajj do not.
The raison d'etre for animal
sacrifice on Eid is to commemorate a great event which depicts an extraordinary
expression of submission to the command of Allah -- the essence of Islam.
The Prophet Abraham (sws) while obeying the Almighty set a platinum example
of this submission. When we offer an animal in sacrifice, we
actually symbolize our intention that we are ready to submit ourselves
to Allah in any way that may be required by Him, just as His great Prophet
Abraham (sws) had once done so with spirit and splendour, glory and grandeur.