Birthday parties against Islam: Saudi Grand Mufti

Posted: August 22, 2008 in Religious
Tags: , , ,

Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al al-Sheikh, Saudi Arabia’s Grand Mufti, prays at the Grand Mosque in Riyadh February 6, 2008 (Reuters).
Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al al-Sheikh, Saudi Arabia’s Grand Mufti, prays at the Grand Mosque in Riyadh February 6, 2008 (Reuters).
RIYADH: Celebrating anniversaries, birthdays or mother’s day is against Muslim ‘righteousness’, Saudi Arabia’s top cleric has said, quashing suggestions by a colleague that Islam permits personal celebrations.

Media savvy cleric Salman al-Awdah told viewers during a call-in television show last week that celebrating birthdays and wedding anniversaries was not against Islam, sparking a debate in the conservative kingdom and prompting the mufti to weigh in.

Grand Mufti Abdul-Aziz al-Shaikh said celebrating such events would make Muslims like followers of other faiths including Jews and Christians, al-Madina newspaper reported.

Women are banned from driving and mixing with unrelated men in Saudi Arabia, whose clerics issue edicts ordering Saudis not to buy red roses on Valentine’s Day on an almost annual basis.

‘A Muslim should thank Almighty Allah if his children are healthy and if his married life is stable as the years pass by,’ the paper quoted Shaikh as saying.

Two occasions call for celebration in the Muslim world, Shaikh said: Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of the fasting month of Ramadan, and Eid al-Adha, which marks the end of the annual Haj pilgrimage.

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