This article may be unbalanced towards certain viewpoints. (November 2021)
Rabiʽ al-Awwal (Arabic: رَبِيع ٱلْأَوَّل, romanized: Rabīʿ al-ʾAwwal, lit. 'The initial Rabi', also known as Rabi' al-Ula (Arabic: رَبِيع ٱلْأُولَىٰ, romanized: Rabī‘ al-ʾŪlā, lit. 'The first Rabi'), or Rabi' I, is the third month of the Islamic calendar. The name Rabī‘ al-awwal means "the first month or beginning of spring", referring to its position in the pre-Islamic Arabian calendar.
|Native name||رَبِيع ٱلْأَوَّل (Arabic)|
|Number of days||29-30 (depends on actual observation of the moon's crescent)|
During this month, the majority of Muslims celebrate Mawlid, the birthday of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.[why?] Other Muslims do not believe the celebration is evidenced as necessary or even Islamically permissible in the Quran or authentic Hadith and has evolved as an imitation of the Christian celebration of Jesus' birthday on Christmas. Although Muhammad's exact birthday is unknown, some Muslims believe it to have been the twelfth of this month.
In the days of the Ottoman Empire, the name of this month in Ottoman Turkish was Rèbi' ulèvvèl, with the abbreviation Ra. In modern Turkish, it is Rebiülevvel.
The word "Rabi" means "spring" and Al-awwal means "the first" in the Arabic language, so "Rabi' al-awwal" means "the first spring" in Arabic. The name seems to have to do with the celebratory events in the month, as spring marks the end of winter (a symbol of sadness) and consequently the start of happiness. As the Islamic calendar is a purely lunar calendar, the month naturally rotates over solar years, so Rabīʽ al-awwal can fall in spring or any other season. Therefore, the month cannot be related to the actual season of spring.
Although historians and scholars disagree on the exact date of Muhammad's birth, it is celebrated by some Muslims on the 12th or 17th of Rabi' al-awwal.
However, some Muslims do not celebrate the Prophet's birthday, as neither the Prophet himself nor any of his companions observed any such birthday celebrations, and they do not consider it an Islamic obligation nor an act of any religious merit with any basis in the Quran or in any authentic Hadith.
When the celebration of the Mawlid is done by Muslims, it is done differently depending on the country. In some areas, celebrations begin as early as the first of the month and can continue till the end of the month. Muslims generally put coloured lights on roads, streets, and their homes and fly green flags as well to celebrate.
In many countries, a procession is also conducted on the night and day of the 12th or 17th of Rabi' al-awwal. On these occasions, sweets and drinks are also distributed widely from home to home and to the general public. In some areas, Muslims also exchange gifts.
The Islamic calendar is a purely lunar calendar, and months begin when the first crescent of a new moon is sighted. Since the Islamic lunar year is 11 to 12 days shorter than the solar year, Rabī‘ al-Awwal migrates throughout the seasons. The estimated start and end dates for Rabī‘ al-Awwal are as follows (based on the Umm al-Qura calendar of Saudi Arabia):
|AH||First day (CE/AD)||Last day (CE/AD)|
|1442||18 October 2020||15 November 2020|
|1443||7 October 2021||5 November 2021|
|1444||27 September 2022||25 October 2022|
|1445||16 September 2023||15 October 2023|
|1446||4 September 2024||3 October 2024|
- 01 Rabī‘ al-Awwal 897 AH, the fall of the Emirate of Granada, the final Muslim kingdom of al-Andalus
- 08 Rabī‘ al-Awwal, death of Imam Hassan Al-Askari Twelver Imām, Hasan al-‘Askarī (see: Chup Tazia)
- 09 Rabī‘ al-Awwal, Eid e shuja
- 12 Rabī‘ al-Awwal, Sunni Muslims observe Mawlid in commemoration of Muhammad's birthday
- 13 Rabi‘ al-Awwal, Death of [Umm Rubab] (beloved wife of Imam Hussain)
- 17 Rabī‘ al-Awwal, Shia celebrate the birthday of the Imām Ja‘far al-Sādiq.
- 18 Rabī‘ al-Awwal, birth of Umm Kulthum bint Ali
- 26 Rabī‘ al-Awwal 1333 AH, death of Khwaja Sirajuddin Naqshbandi, a Naqshbandi Sufi shaykh
- The Hijra (migration) took place in this month
- Eid-e-Zahra (a.k.a. Eid e shuja), a celebration of Shi‘ah Muslims
- Marriage of Muhammad to Khadijah bint Khuwaylid
- Building of the Quba Mosque (first mosque in Islam)
- The week including 12th and 17th is called Islamic Unity Week in Iran to address both Sunni and Shia views on the birth date of Mohammad.
- ^ Annemarie Schimmel (1994). Deciphering the signs of God: a phenomenological approach to Islam (illustrated ed.). Edinburgh University Press. p. 69.
- ^ Eliade, Mircea, ed. (1987). The Encyclopedia of religion, Volume 9 (illustrated ed.). Macmillan. p. 292. ISBN 9780029098004.
- ^ Youssof, R. (1890). Dictionnaire portatif turc-français de la langue usuelle en caractères latins et turcs. Constantinople. p. 479.
- ^ Youssof, R. (1890). Dictionnaire portatif turc-français de la langue usuelle en caractères latins et turcs. Constantinople. p. 476.
- ^ "المنجد في اللغة - المكتبة الوقفية للكتب المصورة PDF". waqfeya.net.
- ^ "mysticsaint.info". ww1.mysticsaint.info.
- ^ "The Umm al-Qura Calendar of Saudi Arabia". webspace.science.uu.nl.
- ^ Iranian Revolutionary Guards, Institute of Islamic Studies. Days on viewpoint of Imam Khomeini. Tehran: Islamic research center. p. 176.