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Moon Sighting

'They ask thee concerning the New Moons. Say: They are but signs to mark fixed periods of time in (the affairs of) men, and for Pilgrimage.'
[Surah Baqarah, ayah 189]

Chapter 5: THERE IS A SIGHTING OF THE MOON FOR EVERY TOWN; THE SIGHTING AT ONE TOWN CANNOT BE HELD VALID FOR THE OTHER TOWN SITUATED AT A CONSIDERABLE DISTANCE FROM IT

Kuraib reported that Umm Fadl, daughter of Harith, sent him (Fadl, i. e. her son) to Mu'awiya in Syria. I (Fadl) arrived in Syria, and did the needful for her. It was there in Syria that the month of Ramadan commenced. I saw the new moon (of Ramadan) on Friday. Then came back to Medina at the end of the month.

Abdullah b. 'Abbas (Allah be pleased with him) asked me (about the new moon of Ramadan) and said: When did
you see it?

I said: We saw it on the night of Friday.
 
He said: (Did) you see it yourself?

I said: Yes, and the people also saw it and they observed fast and Mu'awiya also observed fast, whereupon he said: But we saw it on Saturday night. So we would continue to observe fast till we complete thirty (fasts) or we see it (the new moon of Shawwal).


I said: Is the sighting of the moon by Mu'awiya not valid for you?

He said: No; this is how the Messenger of Allah (SallAllah-u-Alaihi-wa-Sallam) has commanded us.
[Sahih Muslim: Book 006, Number 2391]

Alhamdulillah this is the practice of Jamaat-ul-Muslimeen that it practices moon sightings according to the above mentioned hadith and even though Muslimeen may be living in the same country but still efforts are made by everyone to sight the moon and it may happen that Muslimeen in one country observe Ramadan separately. This is what the above hadith teaches us. We do not follow the observance of the government as it considers sighting of the moon in different places as valid for the whole country which is against this hadith.

 

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