When we celebrate Milad, we gather, in order to send salutations (Esal-e-Sawab) to the Prophet [pbuh], give charity to the poor (Sadaqah Khairat) and remember wilaadah (Birth) and virtues of the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace]. The Ahle Sunnah wal jamaat does not say that one must celebrate “Milad” only on 12 Rabee’-ul-Awwal, in fact it can be celebrated at anytime of the year. Generally Milad-un-Nabi is celebrated, on the 12th of Rabee’ul-Awwal, by Muslims all over the world. In every Muslim country, there is a public holiday for “Milaad-un-Nabee”, except one country, but even in that country, the people celebrate “Milaad” individually. The birth of the Anbiyaa’ has been mentioned in the Qur’an. For example, Adam, Musaa, Eesaa, and Yahyaa (May Allah bless them and grant them peace). If it is wrong to talk about the birth of the Prophet (pbuh), then why has Allah TA’ALA mentioned it in the Qur’an?
Evidence of Milad-un-Nabi from the Qur’an:
Allah Ta’ala says in the Holy Qur’anAllah Ta’ala says in the Holy Qur’an:
Say: “In the bounty of Allah, and his mercy; - Therein let them rejoice.” That is better then what they amass.
[Surah Yunus, 10: 58]
In this verse, Allah Almighty tells us that we should be happy when we receive blessings and mercy from Him. Without doubt, the Prophet [pbuh] is the greatest mercy and blessing of Allah Almighty
Allah Almighty says in the Qur’an:
And we have sent you (O Muhammad SAW) not but as a mercy for the 'Alamin (mankind, jinns and all that exists).
[Surah Anbiyaa 21: 107]
Allah Almighty says in the Qur’an:
Remind them of the day of Allah
[Surah Ibrahim 14: 05]
Hafidhh Ibn Kathir and Qadi Shawkani write that:
The day of Allah” refers to the day on which Allah Almighty has done a favour on mankind. For example, the freedom of Bani Isra’il from the slavery of Fir’awn.
[Tafsir Ibn Kathir and Qaadee Shawkaanee]
Allah’s greatest favour on mankind was the birth of the Prophet [pbuh]. This means that the Milaad of the Prophet [pbuh] is a “Day of Allah”, therefore we should remember it.
Hafidh Ibn Rajab writes:
It is recommended to fast on those days on which Allah Almighty has sent blessings on us. The greatest favour which Allah Almighty has bestowed us with is the sending down of the Prophet [pbuh]. Allah Almighty says in the Qur'an:
“I have favored among nations and sent to you a Prophet from among you”
[ltaa’if-ul-ma’rif by Hafidh Ibn Rajab]
Evidence of Milad-un-Nabi from the Hadith:
Our Prophet [pbuh] celebrated the birth of his son Ibraaheem by freeing a slave.
[Tareekh Ibn Kathir]
Imam Muslim writes:
That the Prophet [pbuh] was asked about the fast on Mondays, which he used to keep, the Prophet replied “This is the day of my birth”.
This proves that the Prophet [pbuh] kept fast on Mondays to show gratitude for his birth.
Imam Bukhari writes that:
When Abu Lahab died, someone from his household saw him in a dream, they asked him what happened in the grave he said “I am being punished severely, but on Mondays, I get water from my finger with which I am freed Thuwayba,
This proves that a kaafir, Abu Lahab, was happy on the day of the birth of the Prophet [pbuh] and was rewarded by having his punishment reduced. If this is true, then indeed Allah will bless a Muslim who rejoices the birth of the Prophet [pbuh]. This Hadith has been used by many ‘Ulamaa’, to justify the celebration of Milad.
Ibn Muhammad bin Abdul Wahhab Najdi, in his book, writes:
Thuwayba, who was the freed slave of Abu Lahab, fed RasoolAllah Sallalalhu ‘alaihi wa sallam. Abu Lahab freed Thuwayba at the time when she informed him that a son has been born at your brother’s house. After the death of Abu Lahab he was seen in a dream, in which he said ‘I am in severe punishment but this is lessened on Mondays, he showed his forefinger, and said that he would suck from it. This is so because it was with this finger that I freed Thuwayba when she informed of the birth of the Prophet, and she also fed the Prophet Sallalalhu ‘alaihi wa sallam.
Ibn Jawzi states: Abu Lahab is that kaafir who has been specially referred to, in the Qur’an. If such a person can be rewarded for celebrating the Milaad of the Prophet Sallalalhu ‘alaihi WA Sallam, then imagine how great the reward would be for a Muslim when he celebrates it.
Allama Ibn Hajr Asqalani writes:
That Sohaily said that Abbaas (raa) who was the uncle of the Prophet [pbuh] had the above dream. Apart from this, other Muhadditheen have also attributed this dream to Abbaas (raa).
A person may ask, “When did Abbaas (raa) have this dream? Was it before or after he embraced Islam?” The answer to this is that he had this dream after coming into the fold of Islam (Seerah-Ibn-Hashaam) Abu Lahab died after the battle of Badr before which Abbaas (raa) embraced Islam.
Friday is a special day for Muslims because this is the day that Allah created Adam [A.S]
Fatwa of Scholars for Milad
Hafidhh Ibn Taymiyyah writes:
Those people, who celebrate Milaad through the love and respect of the Prophet [pbuh], will be rewarded by Allah.
He also writes that:
If someone celebrates Milaad with the love and respect of Prophet [pbuh], he will have a “big reward”. He says that in Muslim communities, Milaad-un-Nabi gatherings are only done with the respect and love of the Muslims for the Prophet [pbuh]
[Iqtidaa’ as-siraat-il-Mustaqeem, by Hafidhh Ibn Taymiyyah]
Hafidhh Ibn Kathir wrote that:
There was once a King, Abu Sa’eed Malik Muzaffar - a man of good deeds. In his kingdom, wherever he saw a lack of water, he would build a well. He also established many Islamic study centers. Every year, he would spend half a million dinars on hosting a gathering of his people to celebrate the birthday of the Prophet [pbuh]
[Tareekh Ibn Kathir, Volume 13]
The above is evidence that celebrating the birthday of the Prophet [pbuh] in the form of a gathering is permissible. Otherwise Hafidhh Ibn Kathir would not have referred to it as a good deed & Hafidhh Ibn Taymiyyah would not have said that there would be a big reward for doing so.
Some people have the opinion that King Abu Sa’eed introduced the celebrating of this occasion. This is not true because Hafidh Ibn Kathir states that in the 5th Century hijree, a King named Malik Shah celebrated it also with a gathering
[Tareekh Ibn Katheer biography of Malik Shah]
Some people even argue that the Holy Prophet was not even born on the 12th Rabbi Awwal. This argument is baseless, as Hafidh Ibn Kathir has discussed this in Sirat-un-nabi. He states that the majority of the scholars agree that the Prophet was born on the 12th of Rabee’ul-Aawal. The evidence of the people who do not accept this is weak.
The Alhe Sunnah celebrates the Milaad of the Prophet [pbuh] with love and respect. If someone does not celebrate it, we do not call them a kaafir because the matter of Milaad does not affect the ‘Aqeedah of a person. The celebrating of this should not cause any divisions among Muslims.
Hafidhh Salaahuddeen Yoosuf [A great follower of Hafidhh Ibn Taymiyyah] writes:
On the birth date of the Prophet [pbuh], to give charity to the poor or to build a Masjid. We agree in this type of celebration of Milaad.
[Milaad-un-nabi, by Hafidhh.Yoosuf]
Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes:
On the day of the birth of Prophet [pbuh] Shaytaan cried a lot.
[Sirat-un-nabi, by Hafidh Ibn Kathir]
From Ibn Kathirs narration we can see that to feel unhappy on the Birthday of the Prophet [pbuh] is the way of shaytaan not the way of a Muslim!
Some questions raised concerning the Milaad
Although the Prophet [pbuh] was born on the 12th of Rabee’ul-awwal he also died on the same date. How then can the 12th of Rabee’ul-awwal be a happy day?
Mourning for someone’s death should not be more than three days, except for a woman, who has lost her husband. The Prophet’s [pbuh] death was over 1400 years ago, so the period of mourning has passed. But, after someone dies, his death is remembered by reciting the Qur'an, remembering his merits, giving alms, and making Du’a for him. Even if the period of mourning for the Prophet’s [pbuh] death exists; all the actions mentioned above are included when people gather for Milaad-un-nabee. For this reason, there is not need to separate the celebration of the Prophet’s [pbuh] birth and the mourning of his death.
How can there be an Eid Milaad-un-nabi when there are only two Eids (Al-Fitr and Al-Adha)?
Allah Almighty says in the Qur’an:
Prophet Isa [pbuh] prayed to Allah Almighty “Oh Allah, our Lord, send down to us a tray of food from the Heavens so that it may be an occasion of Eid for us for the first and the last of us.”
[Surah Maa’idah, 5:114]
Imam Hakim writes:
That the Prophet [pbuh] said “Friday is also an Eid day”. Once, in the Prophet [pbuh] time Eid came on Friday and the Prophet [pbuh] said “Allah has given you two Eids today”.
Imam Tirmidhi writes:
Abdullah-bin-Abbaas was reciting verse 3 of surah Maa’idah, from the Qur’an. A Jew, sitting close-by heard it and said to Abdullah “If that verse, which you recited, was revealed to us, we would make that day an Eid day”. Abdullah-bin-Abbas replied “When this verse was revealed, there were two Eids on that day. One of them was the Hajj day and the other Friday”.
[Tirmidhi Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Surah Maa’idah 5: 3]
From the references above, it is proved that the term “Eid day” does not specifically apply to the two Eid days (Al-Fitr and Al-Adha), but instead, it could be used for any Islamic holy day. This means that we can refer to “Milaad-un-Nabi” as “Eid-Milaad-un-nabi”
Allah knows the best