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It’s a common knee jerk reaction that birthdays in Islam = haraam.  In fact if you Google “birthdays Islam,” this is the first thing you get. 

So, many new converts, encouraged to go hardcore and do EVERYTHING in Islam the second they convert, choose to give up birthdays (along with Christmas, Halloween, nail polish, pork, music, movies, tv, their pet dog Muffy, their non-Muslim relatives (God forbid they die, b/c you ain’t going to Nana’s funeral now), Skittles, Starburst and every other questionably haraam candy, Crest toothpaste, rice crispy treats, photographs etc, etc, etc, omg the list goes on forever).

But wait.  How do we know birthdays are not “part of this matter of ours (i.e., Islam)?” Birthdays are a part of American culture, and American culture isn’t intrinsically haraam.

O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise (each other).  (Q. 49:13) 

“In Islam, birthdays are not considered `eid (a festival) like `Eidul-Fitr or `Eidul-Adha, because `eidshave conditions and guidelines such as not being allowed to fast during the days of Eid. Therefore, birthdays are simply occasions of a person’s date of birth and are a matter of culture. If a person wants to commemorate his/her date of birth, then he/she may do so, especially if he/she takes the opportunity to reflect on the past and pledge to be better during the following year. However, to make the birthday an important occasion is not recommended or encouraged.” (From Islamonline, which abridged it from islamicity)

Still, many of my friends don’t believe in celebrating birthdays.  And that is their right and I applaud them for shedding one more part of the dunya.  I recognize my birthday.  I don’t know if I should have balloons and a party (presents and cake are always accepted, for any occasion).  I don’t know if I will throw my kids parties.  But recognizing that I was born on a certain day, that my mother labored on that day and brought me into this world, that Allah created me for this world:  that makes me thankful. 

The Prophet (saw) used to celebrate his birth by fasting.

Muslim reports on the authority of Qatadah Al-Ansari that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), was asked about fasting on Monday and he replied: “It is the day on which I was born and on which I received the Divine Revelation”.

And maybe that is a good example for us.  

Anyway, Happy Birthday Audra. 🙂

*Asiah*

P.S. Clowns are DEFINITELY haraam.  Just say no to clowns. 

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I don’t think I’ve ever had a desire to live in Texas…until now. How is it Texas MSAs are pulling together such an awesome event, and East Coast MSAs have…? I have never been to any event that has offered anything even half as cool as a sisters’ kickball tourney. Go Texas MSAs! I might have to take up my friend T’s offer and mosey on down there.

TX MSA

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