Law of Celebrate Birthday in Islam – Pro – Contra
Birthday is a celebration that has been known by people in the world. There is some traditions in birthday celebration processing, such as you will invite friends and make a party to memorialize birthday. Commonly, Birthday celebration is done every years and every date of birth. Islam is the biggest religion in the world with a big number of followers.
Islam has set a law to arrange many things include about birthday. Today, there are pro and contra, May we celebrate birthday in Islam or not?
As stated in Hadith :
مَنْ عَمِلَ عَمَلاً لَيْسَ عَلَيْهِ أَمْرُنَا فَهُوَ رَدٌّ
It means : “The person who do the worship ritual that is not come from us, then the charity is rejected.” (Bukhari-Muslim)
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Many ulama consider that the law of celebrate birthday in Islam is haram because there is strong postulate and hujjah. These are some reasons about that :
- If that birthday celebration is an activity which must be done, so it is considered as bid’ah. Because the Prophet Muhammad never do that thing during his lifetime and he never command his people to do it. So, we are prohibited to celebrate birthday if it is a duty. Allah says in the Holy Quran Surah Al Ahzab verse 31 : There is indeed the best example for you to follow in the Messenger of Allah (Muhammad saw), for every such person who looks forward to Allah and the Last Day, remembers Allah much.
- Birthday celebration is an activity that was done by westerner or non-Moslem. This opinion express because there is no culture in Islam about birthday celebration. Ironically, this celebration is imported by Moslem without adaptation in Islam. So, it is a wrong thing if everything which come from west, must be done by everyone.
- There is no benefits from birthday celebration. For this opinion, many people ask about effect or benefits from birthday celebration. Is there benefits clearly or only a vogue? Is there a purpose clearly or only wasting money? So if there is no benefits from birthday celebration for what we do it.
- Birthday celebration must not be done if it doesn’t contain thing that someone add his faith and piety to Allah S.W.T.
- Commonly, Birthday celebration is identical with exhibition material and wastage. Whereas there is another thing that we can do with that money for something more important.
من تشبه بقوم فهو منهم
Its mean : “Someone who imitates a people, he seems to be a part of that people.” (Abu Dawud and Ibn Hibban)
But, there are some ulama who allow birthday celebration, you can see the reason below :
- Birthday celebration may be done if it do not imitate ritual which was done by westerner. So, if you don’t do birthday celebration and the ritual from westerner or non-Moslem together, this birthday celebration can be done.
- Indeed, Rasulullah never celebrate his birthday and recommend his people to do birthday celebration. So, There are two types of prayer in Islam. They are praying that must been done as law and the command of Allah S.W.T that must been done without any changing. For example is salat, in salat the human only need to do some rakaat, its movements without asking why. But another prayer is doing something that it is not until His prohibition. For example, you may not drink alcohol, but you may drink water. Because of that, birthday celebration may be done.
- If birthday celebration was considered as bid’ah because it was never done by The Prophet Muhammad and because of hadith, ‘Someone who imitates a people, he seems to be a part of that people”. So, if you want to celebrate your birthday based on Islam ways, you can do thanksgiving with orphans, recitations, alms and many more. See also rewards for helping orphans in Islam and rights of orphans in Islam.
- Birthday celebration may be done if there are many benefits from that celebration. When one of your family member has birthday for example your grandmother from big family. It can be a connectives ties moment in that family. So that, it will be more close because of that meeting.
- Birthday celebration is not always a party as non-Moslem did in the west world, but it can be done with Islam ways such as remembering that age has been add, we have to do self evaluation, so we will be better in the next year. This thing can become a reminder that age is less, so our faith and piety must be increased. See also signs of strong Iman.
- Commonly Birthday celebration is interspersed with offering dua to person who has birthday. As we know, praying for one another is a demand and birthday celebration can be a moment to pray for each other. See also Importance of helping others in Islam.
- Birthday celebration is not allowed if it contains something that is prohibited by Allah S.W.T such as excessive partying, showcase, wasting money, there are haram drink and foods like alcohol and pork. Birthday celebration will make someone who has birthday too busy, so he leave salat times.
- Birthday celebration can be a change of thanksgiving to Allah S.W.T for age, good fortune, love and many more that He gave to him all this time. It can also become a parents way to thanksgiving for His belief to take care their children until now. See also dua to thank Allah for His blessings.
Thus information about law of birthday celebration in Islam. Indeed, there is no fixed law about haram or halal the birthday celebration. But as a wise human, we should do consideration first. Is there benefits of birthday celebration in real term for our faith?
Is it for showcase because many people celebrate their birthday? Is there intention for another thing? Those must be noticed because everything should be back to our self and our heart. Hope this article can add your knowledge and you don’t be ensnared into pro and contra about it. Thank you.