Greetings and Happy New Year, according to the Islamic calendar, on July 30 2022 after sunset, the New Year starts as 01 Muharram, 1444 Hijrah. The Hijri calendar, which comes from the Arabic word “Hijra”, is named for the migration of the Prophet Muhammad from Makkah to Madina more than 1,400 years ago. Hijri calendar months are determined by the sighting of the new moon. The first month is Muharram and the last is Dhul-Hijjah. According to Hijrah Calendar, the month is either 29 or 30 days usually. It is also possible a month has only 28 days seldom. Most Arab countries use this calendar officially, in parallel to Western Calendars.
Many religions and cultures use calendars other than the Gregorian – which is the most widely used calendar today. The Gregorian calendar was introduced in October 1582 by Pope Gregory XIII as a modification to the Julian calendar, named after Julius Caesar, leader of ancient Rome. The Gregorian and Julian calendars are both 12-month solar calendars based on the time it takes the Earth to complete one revolution around the Sun – a bit more than 365 days.
Other types of calendars include the lunar, lunisolar and fixed calendars:
A lunar year is 12 lunar months, each measuring the time it takes the moon to pass through its phases, i.e. new moon, half-moon, and full moon. A lunar month is about 29.5 days long and a lunar year is approximately 354 days. This means that every 33 years, there is a one-year lag between solar and lunar calendars.
A lunisolar year incorporates both lunar and solar characteristics, where the year is divided according to the phases of the moon, but adjusted to correlate with the solar cycle length. Lunisolar calendars include the Buddhist, Chinese, Hindu, Jewish, Korean, and Tibetan calendars.
The Hijri calendar is used to mark important dates for Muslims such as the beginning of the fasting month of Ramadan, Eid al-Fitr at the end of it, and the start of the Hajj pilgrimage and Eid al-Adha, etc. Because the Islamic year is shorter, every year the festivals come almost 10 days earlier. That is the reason that Ramadan and other festivals are rotating throughout the year. Usually, the cycle is of around 25 years. It means, that if Ramadan occurs in winter, it will come back in winter after 35 years almost. Therefore. Almost every Muslim has fasted twice in winter or in summer in his average life cycle. So other festivals too.
Muslims do not celebrate the New Year the way how other nations do, especially the Christians in the Western World. Islam teaches us simplicity and humbleness. So Muslims mark the New Year with special prayers and asking Allah for betterness on Ummah.
Although there are around 2 Billion Muslims around the globe, mostly concentrated in 57 Muslim countries according to OIC studies. It means almost every fourth or fifth person ling in this world is a Muslim. Most Muslim nations are blessed with enormous natural resources, especially the most important is energy resources like Oil and Gas. Muslim nations are also blessed with excessive resources of renewable energy like solar energy.
Muslims are major trading partners with the rest of the World and contribute heavily to the global economy and trade. Muslims are playing important role in global developments. Yet, they are discriminated against, hated, and cases of Islamophobia are growing. The Western media is projecting Muslims as terrorists, extremists, or lavish only. Ugly media is spreading fake news, fabricated stories, and distorted narrative regarding Muslim Ummah.
Whereas, Muslims are the victims and had suffered huge damages during the last few decades. Whether it was Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen, or Egypt, it is Muslims who have been suffering. Millions were killed, millions were injured, some of them with lifetime disabilities, millions of Muslims were made homeless, and Millions were displaced either to live in temporary camps in their own countries or forced to flee to other countries and suffer the refugee life.
History has witnessed that when Muslims were strong the world was safer. When Muslims ruled India for almost 800 years, have never converted locals to Islam by force. As a result, the capital, New Delhi, was always dominated by a non-Muslim population. Similarly, When the Ottoman Empires rule parts of Europe, Asia, and Africa, non-Muslims were safe and protected. Today, Christians are in majority in European parts of the Ottoman Empire. Muslims never forced anyone to convert to Islam but some people impressed by Islam have accepted Islam as the best religion and joined the Ummah.
Although Muslims have an abundance of natural resources and human resources, still face challenges of Islamophobia, hate, and discrimination. It is due to a lack of unity and deviation from the true spirit of Islam. If, Muslims come on the right track and follow Islam in later and spirit, can revive their past glories. Ummah possesses the full potential to restore its lost status and traditions, but, it requires appropriate leadership and a strong will to struggle for change.
Availing of this opportunity, Wish a happy new year to everyone. Pray to Allah for strengthening our faith and belief, health, unity, and prosperity. May Allah guide the Ummah to revive its lost traditions, status, and glories. May Allah protect Islam and Ummah. May Allah strengthen our Eman (Faith) and guide us to the right path. May Allah transform us into perfect Momin, which you desire from us. Ameen.
Good Article on the begining of Islamic (lunar) year & its historical aspects.
A very informative article