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Dated: Thursday, April 18, 2013

by Afshan

The Islamic Calendar, which is purely based on lunar cycle was introduced first time in 638 A.D. by the famous companion of Holy Prophet Muhammad (Sallalaho alaihi wasallam) and the second Caliph of Islam, Hadhrat Umar bin Khattab (R.A).

The last Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (Sallalaho alaihi wasallam) migrated from Makkah to Madinah in the year 622 A.D. The migration of Madinah is the historical event and turning point in the foundation of the first Muslim state and after the death of Prophet (Sallalaho alaihi wasallam), Umar Ibn-al-Khattab (R.A) thought that there should be one way of counting dates all over the Muslim World. He consulted about this with his companions and took their views about the starting date of the new Muslim Calendar. Finally, it was decided that the day in which the Hijrah took place should be considered the first day of Islamic calendar i.e. “1st Muharram”. Since then, we Muslims, date our calendar from the day of Prophet (Sallalaho alaihi wasallam) migration – the Hijrah to Madinah. The Islamic year is designated as A.H (Anno Hegirae – in the year of Hijrah).

The Islamic calendar consists of twelve months. They are Muharram, Safar, Rabi-ul-Awwal, Rabi-uth-Thani, Jumada-ul-Awwal, Jumada-uth-Thani, Rajab, Shaban, Ramadhan, Shawwal, Dhul Qa’dah, and Dhul Hijjah.

Some important Islamic events:

  • 1st Muharram (New Islamic year)
  • 1st Ramadhan (First day of Fasting, one of the Pillars of Islam)
  • 1st Shawwal (Eid-ul-Fitr)
  • 9th Zil-Hijjah (The Yaum-e-Arafa)
  • 10th Zil-Hijjah (Eid-ul-Adha)