Did You Know?
Facts, Figures & Folklore
About Ramadan &
the Islamic Faith September 19-20
Did you know that the end of the month of Ramadan is marked with a joyous festival called Eid al-Fitr?
Eid al-Fitr (EID) literally means the “Festival of Breaking the Fast,” during which many Muslims partake in elaborate feasts. They also wear their finest clothes, exchange gifts, while simultaneously increasing their almsgiving.
EID begins tonight, Sept. 19, at sunset. EID MUBARAK!
The White House has released the following statement from President Barack Obama to mark the end of Ramadan and the beginning of Eid-ul-Fitr:
“As Muslims in the United States and around the world complete the month of Ramadan and celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr, Michelle and I would like to extend our personal greetings on this joyous occasion. Eid is a time to celebrate the completion of 30 days and nights of devotion. But even on this festive occasion, Muslims remember those less fortunate, including those impacted by poverty, hunger, conflict, and disease. Throughout the month, Muslim communities collect and distribute zakat-ul-fitr so that all Muslims are able to participate in this day of celebration. As I said in Cairo, my Administration is working to ensure that Muslims are able to fulfill their charitable obligations not just during Ramadan, but throughout the year. On behalf of the American people, we congratulate Muslims in the United States and around the world on this blessed day. Eid Mubarak.”
From the Whitehouse.gov Blog:
Over the past month, the President and several government Agencies participated in events to mark Ramadan – the President continued the tradition of hosting an Iftar here at the White House while the U.S. Department of Agriculture hosted the first in their history. The Corporation for National and Community Service spearheaded “Interfaith Service Week” as part of the President and First Lady’s Summer of Service initiative and many other groups and individuals came together to make this month a time of giving and reaching out to our neighbors in need.
The President and the First Lady extend their personal greetings on this special day. May you be well throughout the year.
Today, Secretary Clinton delivered a message for Eid-ul-Fitr.
Here is the transcript of the Secretary’s remarks:
“Hello, and Eid Mubarak. I’m delighted to celebrate the end of Ramadan by wishing all of you a happy Eid. In 1996, my husband and I were privileged to host the first ever White House Eid celebration, which has now become a tradition. And this year, I hosted an Iftar at the State Department, with Muslims and non-Muslims attending. We hope that reinforces every year that all faiths have a home here in the United States.
For Muslims all over the world, Eid ul-Fitr marks the end of a holy month of fasting and prayer. This time of self-reflection reminds us that the values of Islam – charity, community, cooperation, compassion – are values which we hold dear as Americans and which have contributed so much to American culture.
As President Obama said in Cairo, the United States seeks a new beginning with Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect. We know there is more that unites peoples of faith than divides us. So as Ramadan draws to a close, let us hold on to that spirit of community throughout the year to achieve our common goals of peace, prosperity, and stability. And I wish all of you a very happy year as well. Thank you.”
Did You Know?
Facts, Figures & Folklore
About Fall / Autumn Sept 19 : 03 days to Fall
Did you know that Autumn’s association with the harvest is rooted in a number of world religions?
The autumn Jewish holiday of Sukkot, for example, has its roots in the full moon harvest; native American tribes have a number of festivals associated with the harvest; and in China, there is a mid-autumn Moon Festival.
Even the secular American holiday of Thanksgiving is an autumnal celebration, which originally marked the conclusion of the harvest and the preparation for winter’s imminent arrival.
Do you feel that? The crisp morning air is a sure sign that the Fall season is right around the corner. As the days get shorter and the temperatures fall, Autumn heralds its coming with fiery red leaves and bright orange pumpkins. Get yourself ready to fall back into Fall with Holidays on the Net’s fun-filled Autumn trivia. Join us for a new “Did You Know?” fact each day as we countdown to Autumn! So stop by again tomorrow.
Rosh Hashanah (Jewish)
Shana Tova! Today is Rosh Hashanah, the first day of the Jewish New Year, and Jews worldwide are celebrating.
While Rosh Hashanah is widely known and celebrated as the New Years Day of the Jewish calendar, Rosh Hashanah actually has a fourfold meaning – It is the Jewish New Year, the Day of Judgement, the Day of Remembrance, and the Day of Shofar Blowing.
It is the Day of Judgement
As Jews worldwide examine their past deeds and asks for forgiveness for their sins
It is the Day of Shofar Blowing
As the Shofar (the rams horn) is blown in temple to herald the beginning of the 10 day period known as the High Holy Days
It is the Day of Remembrance
As Jews review the history of their people and pray for Israel
And of course it is New Year’s Day
Celebrated with it’s holiday greeting cards, special prayers, and festive and sweet foods (to ensure sweetness in the New Year)
The White House has released a Rosh Hashanah video message from President Barack Obama.
Rosh Hashanah, 5770 (2009)
President Obama extends his warm wishes for Rosh Hashanah. Rosh Hashanah marks the start of a new year – a time of humble prayer, joyful celebration, and hope for a new beginning. September 18, 2009
As members of the Jewish faith here in America and around the world gather to celebrate the High Holidays, I want to extend my warmest wishes for this New Year. L’Shanah Tovah Tikatevu – may you have a good year, and may you be inscribed for blessing in the Book of Life…
…Michelle and I wish all who celebrate Rosh Hashanah a healthy, peaceful and sweet New Year.
Visit our High Holy Days on the Net website for full transcript, as well as transcript translations in French, Hebrew, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, Arabic, and Persian.