Eid is a time of joy, a time of celebration, and a time of thanks. Eid-ul-Adha, though some consider it a lesser is Eid is by no means so. It comes after one of the best acts of worship; the Hajj. For those who are not performing Hajj, it is still a great day, for it comes in the ten best days of the year, after fasting the day of Arafah for which your sins have been expiated. What greater way to thank Allah for this immense blessing that the Eid of Sacrifice! What makes the Eid even more enjoyable, is when we please Allah. Let us learn the Sunnan of Eid-ul Adha to be able to follow the footsteps of our beloved Messenger.
When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) came to Madeenah, he found that they had two days on which they used to play. He said, “Allah has given you two days better than these, the day of al-Fitr and the day of al-Adha.” (Abu Dawood, Saheeh by Sh Al-Albaani)
Moreover, Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) said in Zaad al-Ma’aad: The best of days before Allah is the Day of Sacrifice, which is the greatest day of Hajj as it is narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “The greatest of days before Allah is the Day of Sacrifice.” (Abu Dawud, Saheeh by Sh Al-Albaani). Hence this Eid is the greatest day!
This day is filled with timeless rituals for those on Hajj, who eagerly rush to perform the tawaf, sa’i, stoning the Jamratul ‘Aqabah, shaving/cutting the hair and sacrificing an animal for Allah just as Ibrahim (peace be upon him) millenias ago.
For those celebrating Eid, then it is a festival of “eating and drinking” and happiness. The day begins, with a ghusul, wearing one’s best clothes, women should be careful of exposing their awrah and adornments. It’s tempting to want to dress-up and look pretty (especially when such occasions only come once a year!), but let’s follow what is prescribed to earn Allah’s pleasure. Men may perfume themselves, but women should avoid doing so, if she is heading out for Eid prayers. (More information about perfume here). If one is offering an udhiyah, he should not cut his hair/nails or touch anything from the or his skin (except in cases of necessity), until after his udhiyah is done.
One should head out for the Musalla, reciting the takbeer individually until he reaches the musalla and the imam comes out. Ibn Shihaab al-Zuhri (may Allah have mercy on him) used to say, “The people used to recite takbeer from the time they came out of their houses until the imam came in.” In the case of Eid al-Adha, the takbeer begins on the first day of Dhu’l-Hijjah and lasts until sunset on the last of the days of tashreeq.
One should pray the Eid Salah, and may also stay for the Khutbah after it. The Khutbah provides a great reminder and uplifts spirits on this blessed day.
It is better not to eat before the Eid prayer, and to eat the sacrificial meat after the prayer. If one is not offering a sacrifice, one may eat before the prayer.
One may greet other muslims, it is part of good manners and brings warmth and establishes brotherhood/sisterhood. Furthermore, it was narrated that Jubayr ibn Nufayr said: When the companions of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) met one another on the day of Eid, they would say to one another, “May Allah accept (good deeds) from us and from you.” Ibn Hajar said, its isnaad is hasan)
There is great reward in offering an udhiyah, which is to be done after the Eid Salah until the 13th of Dhul-Hijjah. One should try to slaughter his own, but if he is unable, he may appoint another to do so on his behalf. After this one may cut his nails, hair etc…
One may enjoy the rest of his day as he pleases provided he does not violate the limits set by Allah.