Eid Al Adha 2016

Party time, it's Eid!

Eid Al Adha or the "festival of sacrifice" is the second Muslim holiday in the lunar calendar. It commemorates Prophet Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son Ismael as an act of obedience and celebrates God's mercy as He replaced Ismael with a lamb.

Eid Al Adha is also marked by the end of the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. I've never really given much thought to Hajj beyond "I'll go when I'm older." This year for some reason though I thought about the difficult journey almost 2 million Muslims make every year. Reading more about the Hajj experience of others this year, made me feel the grueling nature of the trip; the sweltering sun, swollen feet from miles of walking, sleepless nights in the tent city. However, reading about the spiritual facelift that people experience was too inspiring to pass up. Maybe it's because I'm older and maybe it's because these days my worries seem greater, but a spiritual cleanse sounded like just what I need in my life. Alas, my time will come! Until then, here are some photos from Eid day when I learned to truly appreciated the gift of family (as we were all separated this year) and friends (who fill life's empty voids anytime you need them with food, laughs and good times). 

Rawan Elbaba