Skygazing dictates holiday start

eid new moon

Yesterday afternoon, the UAE Crescent Moon Committee declared,

No moon was visible and Ramadan continues for a further day.

In line with Islamic tradition, teams of men are sent out on the 29th day of Ramadan to try to catch a glimpse of the new crescent moon, which dictates the start of the feast of Eid al Fitr, the feast to mark the end of the fasting month of Ramadan.

Despite the no-moon show, government offices have declared their holidays from today until Sunday while the private sector had to drive to work this morning, including myself. Yesterday before I went home, I asked my Muslim colleague to inform me if we’re going to have work the next day but up until 10 pm, there was no message from him so it meant no holiday for our company yet.

I know many people will argue, including my husband that we have advanced technology and sattelites than can determine the actual rise of the new crescent moon but the moon sighting committee maintains,

Tradition still dictates that groups step out to look in person. The moon plays a very important role in Islam, said Hasan Hariri, the head of the Dubai Astronomy Group. The act of going out to check for the moon is not an option, regardless of technology, it is an obligation under Islam.

It’s the 30th day of Ramadan today and the moon is expected to be visible in the early evening so it’ll be declared a non-working holiday tomorrow (and Saturday). However, Fridays are ALWAYS an off day here so I won’t be jumping for joy that high.

You can read the article about this sky staring here.

4 thoughts on “Skygazing dictates holiday start

  1. So interesting that they still have to actually see the moon… what happens if it is super cloudy? Would Ramadan go on indefinitely? And bummer for you not getting an extra day off work. 😦

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  2. This is so very fascinating for me! Other religious traditions and whatnot always capture my attention. My philosophy:: You can always learn something new from different cultures 🙂

    I agree with the committee-Some things you just can’t take a shortcut to do no matter how much time, energy, money it saves. Sometimes, you just have to do it yourself for self satisfaction and gratification.

    Even though you didn’t get an extra day off, I hope you enjoy you regularly scheduled weekend 🙂
    .-= Kayla´s last blog ..Win It Wednesday8-11 =-.

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