Praise be to Allaah.
The difference among the
Muslims with regard to determining the first day of Ramadaan and the time
for Eid al-Fitr stems from the differences of opinion among the fuqaha’
concerning the well known issue, which is whether sighting of the new moon
in one country becomes binding for all other countries, or should each
country have its own sighting. This also applies to determining the date for
This is a matter that is
subject to ijtihaad, and each group of scholars has produced its evidence,
and both groups may even quote the same text as evidence. This has already
been discussed in the answer to question no.
The view that sighting of
the moon in one country becomes binding for all other countries is the view
of the majority of scholars, and was the view favoured by Shaykh Ibn Baaz
(may Allaah have mercy on him), as is stated in Majmoo’ al-Fataawa
The view that there may be
differences in sighting between different countries is the more correct view
according to the Shaafa’is, and was the view favoured by Shaykh al-Islam Ibn
Taymiyah, and by Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen among contemporary scholars. We have
quoted his fatwa in the answer to question no.
The differences among
Muslims with regard to Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha is based on this
difference of scholarly opinion, and it is the same for both Eids. Shaykh
Ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him) said, after mentioning the
difference of opinion among the scholars about different moon sighting in
different countries at the beginning and end of the
It seems to me that the
differences in moon sightings do not matter, and that what must be done is
to follow the sighting of the moon with regard to starting and ending the
fast and offering the sacrifice when it is proven according to sharee’ah
that the moon has been sighted in any land.
Then he said: Whether or
not we say that differences in sighting are valid, it seems that the ruling
is the same for both Ramadaan and Eid al-Adha, and there is no difference
between them according to what I know of sharee’ah. End quote.
Majmoo’ Fataawa Ibn Baaz
In the fatwa of Shaykh Ibn
‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) referred to above, it says that
differences in moon sighting should be followed with regard to Eid al-Adha
just as they are followed with regard to the beginning and end of Ramadaan.
Based on this, there is no
problem if Eid al-Adha is on Friday in one country and on Saturday in
another, and so on, based on the differences in moon sighting.
The same may be said with
regard to the fast of Ramadaan, fasting the day of ‘Arafah and fasting
‘Ashoora’, because these are things that have to do with the sighting of the
moon, and the ruling on whether the month has begun or not.
And Allaah knows best.