Celebrations

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Islam is a Deen of peace and justice. Even in a truly Islamic country, the non-Muslim citizens are given full protection, helped when in need and are permitted to conduct their own religious rites and ceremonies.

It, however, does not mean that if people of other religions are allowed to conduct their religious ceremonies, it is permissible for a Muslim to join them in such celebrations. Islam has a distinct culture and totally shuns anything to do with shirk (idolatory) and the customs of other religions.

Christmas and New Year’s celebrations are Christian and pagan celebrations respectively. The element of shirk is evident. Consider the following:  

Christmas

The World Book Dictionary defines Christmas in the following manner: “1. The yearly celebration of the birth of Christ; December 25. Christmas is marked by special Church services, giving of gifts and sending of greetings. 2. The religious and festive season before and after Christmas day.”

New Years

As for New Year’s Day, the World Book Encyclopaedia describes it in the following words: “The Roman ruler Julius Caesar established January 1 as New Year’s Day in 46 B.C. The Romans dedicated this day to Janus, the god of gates, doors and beginnings. January was named after Janus, who had two faces - one looking forward and the other looking backward. The early Romans gave each other New Year’s gifts of branches from sacred trees. In later times, they gave coins, imprinted with pictures of Janus, or gold covered nuts.”

Thus as Muslims we should totally refrain from participating in such celebrations of shirk.

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