Hajj Day is a public holiday in the Maldives to mark the Muslim Eid al Adha observance, which is also known as the “Feast of Sacrifice”. As the Maldives is overwhelmingly Muslim, it is not surprising that the Islamic holiday of Hajj is a major event here.
|2020||30 Jul||Thu||Hajj Day|
|2021||19 Jul||Mon||Hajj Day|
|2022||8 Jul||Fri||Hajj Day|
|2023||27 Jun||Tue||Hajj Day|
|2024||15 Jun||Sat||Hajj Day|
Hajj Day is a time when Muslims remember the “almost sacrifice,” according to Islamic Scriptures, of Ishmael by Ibrahim on Mount Moriah in the vicinity of Mecca. Muslims believe that God commanded Ibrahim to sacrifice Ismael to test him, and he passed the test by being willing to obey even such an extreme command. But then, according to two stories believed by Muslims, God either changed Ishmael with a sheep or commanded Ibrahim to stop and replace Ishmael with a healthy sheep.
Hajj is a period of time that lasts from the eighth till the thirteenth day of the Islamic month of Dhu Al Hijjah. This is the time when many make a pilgrimage to Mecca to take part in special Hajj ceremonies there. As one of the five pillars of Islam, every adult male is supposed to make this journey at least once in their lifetime if they are financially capable of doing so.
Hajj’s timing varies on the Gregorian Calendar. Those who stay home for Hajj, which is the vast majority of the population, may take extra time for prayer, mosque attendance, alms, and good deeds. A goat or sheep may also be sacrificed, some of the meat or an equivalent amount of money being given to the poor so they can celebrate the Feast of Sacrifice as well.