Even before the Gregorian calendar of 2011 officially ends on December 31, Muslims have already started a New Islamic Year as per the Islamic calendar which differs from the Gregorian on the basis of the number of days in each of its 12 months.
It only so happens that the Islamic Calendar virtually nonexistent in the lives of adherents of the faith (Islam) except at particular times of the year; these times are usually tied to festivities in the Muslim life.
Specific mention can be made of the two Eids (Fitr and Adha), Ramadan and Zul Hijjah.
Ramadan, the ninth month, being by far the most popular amongst the rest, as its buzz resonates far beyond Muslims and most times grips the entire society.
Zul Hijjah, is popular by virtue of the fact that it is in that month that prospective pilgrims make the sacred journey to the House of Allah in Saudi Arabia allied with other activities to seek Allah’s forgiveness and providence.
STATEMENT OF ISSUE
Zul Hijjah which is also the twelfth month of the year should ordinarily had been a key moment when Muslims reflect on the gone months as it ushers us into a new year as per the Hijriyyah Calendar calculations. This sadly is not the case.
Two reasons I can adduce for that; the social milieu within which we find ourselves is one that embraces the Gregorian date and yearly calculations, moreover; Muslims seem to have our bearing preferring to leave aside our own dates and I must say, very unique calculation of months and years.
Unique in what sense a person may ask; simply for that fact that application of the Islamic calendar to a large extent signifies obeisance to Allah’s Law; the months are based on the moon; a creation of Allah the Almighty.
This is the direct opposite that is based on a hard and fast, straight jacketed module that was couched years ago (supposedly 2011 years after the death of Prophet Isa (Jesus); the last but one Messenger of Allah as per Islam).
But are the two reasons enough for us to discard the Islamic dates? Certainly NOT! If for nothing at all, a blend of both dates at any given opportunity would be a better state of affairs than what currently pertains.