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Eid al-Ghadir Celebrations Across the World

Feasts are being prepared across the streets of Najaf, Iraq, as the holy shrine of Imam Ali (AS) in Najaf is adorned with special flags and banners in anticipation of a joyous historic occasion. 

Across Africa, celebrations are in full swing as lights illuminate the streets, with melodious recitations singing praises of Imam Ali (as) in mosques across the city. The Islamic House of Wisdom in Michigan organizes a fun-filled carnival packed with family games and food. Muslims wear their finest of clothes and several wedding ceremonies are held on this auspicious day. Islamic centers in Dearborn initiate food drives for the less fortunate and hold  conferences with renowned speakers, all in the name of a man who was the very essence of humanity. 

The 18th of Dhul Hijjah marks one of the most significant holidays in the Islamic calendar. Known as Eid al-Ghadir, this day marks a historic event at Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)’s final Hajj pilgrimage, when he appointed Ali ibn Abi Talib as the successor and Imam after him following divine command from God.

As Muslims around the world celebrate this momentous event, the history behind the Eid al-Ghadir is worth revisiting. After the Holy Prophet (pbuh) completed his final pilgrimage, he summoned a crowd of Muslims in a place called Ghadir Khum, where pilgrims would bid farewell to one another before returning back to their homes. 

As the Holy Prophet (pbuh) and his followers approached Ghadir Khum, a Quranic verse was revealed: “O Apostle! Deliver what has been sent down to you from your Lord; and if you don’t do it, you have not delivered His message (at all); and Allah will protect you from the people …”(5:67). When he received the verse, the Prophet called onto Muslims to stop so that he could deliver an important message. 

He then declared, “It seems the time approaches when I shall be called away (by Allah) and I shall answer that call. I am leaving for you two precious things and if you adhere to both of them, you will never go astray after me. They are the Book of Allah and my progeny, that is my Ahlul-Bayt. The two shall never separate from each other until they come to me by the Pool (of Paradise).”

He continued, “Do I not have more right over the believers than what they have over themselves?” The people answered, “Yes, O’ Messenger of God.” The Prophet then raised the hand of Ali ibn Abi Talib and said, “Whoever I am his leader (Mawla), ‘Ali is his leader (Mawla). Oh God, love those who love him, and be hostile to those who are hostile to him.”

When the Prophet finished his speech, the following verse of the Holy Quran was revealed, “Today I have perfected your religion and completed my bounty upon you, and I was satisfied that Islam be your religion.”(5:3)

Both Shia and Sunni sources have confirmed the historic event of Ghadir, and it has been widely reported in Hadith books. Despite the differences between Shias and Sunnis in their interpretations of the Ghadir event, Muslims around the world revere Imam Ali (as) as an unparalleled leader in Islam who was the closest companion to the Holy Prophet (pbuh).

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  • Zamena Manekia Manji

    Zamena Manekia Manji is a breaking news writer for TMJ News with experience of over 10 years in the field. Her areas of focus are important breaking stories in North America specifically untold stories from a minority lens.

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