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- As far as Eid Salah is concerned, there are different ways of how Muslims pray; and there are many different opinions. But according to the authentic sources of the Quran and Saheeh Ahadeeth, you have one common method. And, according to all the authentic sources- whether it be Eid-ul-Fitr, or Eid-ul-Adha- we have to offer two Rakats of Salah (two units of Salah).
It is mentioned in the Hadeeth of Sunan Al-Baihiqi: “Umar (ra) said that the traveler’s prayer is two Rakats, the Adha prayer is two Rakats (talking about Eid-ul-Adha) and the Jummah Prayer is two Rakats. This is a full-length of all these prayers as it came from Prophet (sa) that the Eid Salah should be two Rakats.”
- Before Eid Salah, there is no Adhan, and there is no Iqamah. It’s mentioned in Saheeh Muslim that Jabir ibn Samurah said that he prayed along with the Messenger of Allah (sa) on both the Eids for more than one or two occasions and there was no Adhan, and no Iqamah. Hence, before Eid Salah, there should be no Adhan, and no Iqamah- it’s different than the normal congregation Salah.
- There is no Salah before the Eid Salah, and after the Eid Salah. There is no two Rakat Sunnah before or after that; it is mentioned in the Hadeeth of Sunan Abu Dawood where Ibn Abbas (ra) says that the Prophet (sa) came out to pray the Eid Salah on Eid-ul-Fitr, and he offered two Rakats; and before that and after that, he did not pray.
- When a person starts the Eid Salah, he should say the Takbeer Al-Ihram, Allahu Akbar, and then say the opening supplication. This is followed by the seven Takabeer in the first Rakat; and in the second Rakat, he should say five Takabeer. This will come from the authentic sources of, Sunan Abu Dawood where Hazrat Aisha (ra) says that when the Prophet (sa) used to offer the Eid-ul-Fitr Salah, and the Eid-ul-Adha Salah (that means the Salah of both the Eids), he used to say seven Takabeer in the first Rakat, and five Takabeer in the second Rakat. This is the authentic way of offering Eid Salah.
After that, a person should say (Tauz: “I seek refuge in Allah (swt) from satan the accursed.” and Tasmiyah: “In the name of Allah (swt), The most Gracious, The most Merciful”), and then, he should recite Surah Fatihah; and after Surah Fatihah, in the first Rakat, recite Surah Qaf, chapter number 50; followed by in the second Rakat, chapter number 54. Or, he can recite Surah Aala, chapter number 87; and second Rakat, Surah Ghashiyah, chapter number 88. Both types of first and second Rakats have been proven by authentic Hadeeth. But if a person, recites any other Surah, any other verses of the Quran, he can recite, Allah (swt) will accept it. Former is the Sunnah of the Prophet (sa).
After Salah comes the Khutbah
Furthermore, after the Eid Salah, there is a Khutbah of the Eid Salah. It is mentioned in Saheeh Al-Bukhari, where Ibn Abbas (ra) said that he has offered Eid Salah with the Messenger of Allah (sa), with Abu Bakr, with Umar, with Uthman (ra), and all of them offered the Eid Salah first, and then it was followed by the Khutbah. All of them gave Khutbah after the Eid Salah.
It is further mentioned in Sunan Abu Dawood, Prophet Muhammad (sa) after he offered Eid Salah, and before starting the Khutbah of Eid, he said that all those who want to listen to the Khutbah, they can listen to the Khutbah. All those who want to go, they can go. Now here, there is an important point, most of the times you find, in the Khutbah, most of the Imam say: “Don’t get up! It is wrong!” And they prevent people from going away; and they say that it is a sin, and they say many things like its Haram. Imagine the Prophet (sa), when he gave the Khutbah, he said, if you want to listen, you can listen, if you can’t, you can go. Does this mean that the Imam who give Khutbah today is wiser than the Prophet Muhammad (sa) – it’s a pity!
The Saheeh Hadeeth says that the Prophet Muhammad (sa) said: “If you want to hear Khutbah, you can hear; if you want to go, you can go.” It is preferable to hear the Khutbah, but Prophet (sa) gave the permission to go. And further, its mentioned in Sunan Abu Dawood that the Prophet (sa) said that if both the Eids have synchronized that is- the Eid-ul-Fitr, and the Friday (Friday is called the weekly Eid) prayer, then those who do not want to offer the Jummah Salah, may not do it because the Eid Salah in congregation is sufficient; but we will offer the Jummah Salah, that means, the Eid prayer is so important in congregation, if it was on the same day. The Eid Salah is sufficient, Jummah prayer may not be prayed; but if you pray, then it is beneficial. But, those who do not pray Jummah Salah, it becomes compulsory that they pray Duhr Salah.
This was in short an authentic way of offering the Eid Salah.