Not so long ago, we introduced the concept of an Islamic Tree for Eid – check these out here and here.
Why not use the same concept for Christmas also? Living in the West (and even if you don’t nowadays) the pressure to celebrate or mark Christmas with the usual tree and gifts is very strong. So why not celebrate… but in more of an Islamic way, as opposed to the Christmas tree and baubles and things very much associated with another religion?
I came across this article called The Little Known Story of the Islamic Christmas Tree which I thought was so interesting, suggesting that an Islamic tree would actually be much closer to a true marking of the birth of Jesus (no matter what date!) than the actual Christmas tree.
It says: “According to the Quran the tree is a date palm, which has both Mary and baby Jesus resting beneath it. The tree has ripe dates as it is bearing fruit at the time of Jesus’ birth. It also features spring water towards its base, which (in the story) miraculously appears for Mary to drink from.”
A date palm Eid tree was actually the original idea – but until we can get one, why not try the alternative (as suggested in the blog posts cited above)?
Happy celebrating Prophet Isa’s birthday 🙂
It’s already that time of year, would you believe?!
“On one such occasion last year I found myself telling him Eid was only 100 days away…and with that came an idea so exciting that I set to work straight away. We would have a tree – it would be a learning tree, a growing tree and with each leaf that opened we would count one less day till Eid but one more inch closer to Allah. I proposed to my then-four-year-old that we would have a “99 Names of Allah Tree.”
And here dear reader, I invite you to join us! This year on the 29th of March, it will be approximately 99 days till eid.”
Read the full article here: http://seekershub.org/blog/2016/03/countdown-to-eid/
We have previously done celebrating his birthday with a week of emulating his life here and here.
One mum did something similar, but in such an amazingly creative way! Check it out…
“Count down to the Holy Prophet’s khushali:
To make my kids learn and look forward to the Prophet’s birthday we made an advent calendar with 7 days of different activities.
We put together 7 tissue rolls and covered them with a coloured tissue. Each day had a learning activity about how the Prophet lived and how we could incorporate them in our daily lives. So in each tissue roll I put in a note of what they had to think about do.
Here’s what we did on each day:
1. We talked about the story of the Prophet and the sour grapes. How the poor man had brought the Prophet grapes and the Prophet ate them all himself and when the companions asked why he didn’t share he said they weren’t sweet and he didn’t want the poor man to feel sad if at all the companions made a face.
We learnt that we should share only what we like 🙂. I put in one tube of smarties for all to share!
2. We listed a few things that the prophet ate, eg. Dates, grapes, figs, honey,pomegranate, olive oil, etc. I put in some khajoor pak as a treat (because I didn’t have enough khajoor!)
3. Discussed how the prophet ate. I gave them a napkin each and asked them to write down how he ate so they can keep it with them at the table.
4. Talked about how the prophet slept.
I got the kids small emoji pillows and wrapped them up and kept them in their beds. On a piece of cloth I wrote down simple things that they can do before/when sleeping to remind them of the prophet. They then stitched the cloth on to the back of the pillow and keep it with them in bed! They made small tasbeehs at madressa which fit on perfectly with the pillow so it all stays together.
5. After getting all these little pressies and being excited, it was only fair to remember the sick and less fortunate. So today’s task was to do something to make someone else happy!
6. Cleanliness. The prophet was always smart and clean..
For this, I got the kids some small things to remember what the prophet carried with him to be clean at all times. I got a small towel, perfume, hairbrush with mirror and a toothbrush (in place of miswak) I didn’t put in the toothpick and scissors for safety reasons.
7. On the last day I cut up some stars and asked the kids to write down what they had learnt over the past week and then put the stars up on our tree (Shajaratul Tayyibah) :). We also hung up the ornaments from Buzz Ideazz for the Prophet and Imam Jaffer Sadiq (as)’s birthday after decorating them!”
So if you have been following Buzz, you will know that I have been advocating for an Islamic tree for a while! (See: www.buzzideazz.com/eid-tree-2/)
Recently, we released a new product of wooden ornaments to help liven up these trees and mark the important wiladat dates of the 14 Masumeen at the same time… (See: https://www.buzzideazz.com/shop/wooden-ornaments-14-masumeen)
Here is what one mum did with the ornaments/tree – receiving this picture made my heart sing (nasheeds of course ;)) as it is exactly what the vision was!
I loved the name they chose for the tree – Shajaratun Tayyibah – it is a much better fit than an ‘Eid tree’ (and reflects the many uses of the tree throughout the year also) and so I am officially adopting the name from now on!
Here is what the mum said:
“We decorated it with glittered natural pinecones. Then we got the 14 cut out wooden shapes.
We had been talking about the 5 panjetans and the 12 imams and the 14 masumeens – so to learn more about them we wrote their names birthdates ( khushali) and birthplace on one side And the death dates (wafat) and their titles on the flip side. We also added the number of the imam on it too for the imams.
Then using coloured pens and metallic pens we decorated them
My older one (8) then had to read the information out to the little one (4) They’ve had a lovely time making this and bonded and learnt so much.
Later on – one of us will hide one wooden shape and all the others in the house will try to figure out which one is missing- the youngest can participate too because he knows his numbers well so he’ll see which one is missing and will remember the imam that goes with that number. And the others (older one and adults) will have to remember most of the info on the shape to win it back, and put it back on the tree branch.”
As you know, I get a bit excited when it comes to EID TREEs! (Sorry I’m so excited I’ll probably use CAPS for that for the next few posts. Consider this an advance warning ;))
We launched the idea this year (see previous posts on this here and here), and Alhamd it has taken off! Here are some pictures sent in:
Here is what the mum said: “It holds the new moon of Ramadan 2015 and will be blossoming thoughout the month.”
And here is another beautiful home made EID TREE! The mum found a nice vase, and then actually found the twigs herself! Looks beautiful and oh-so do-able!
And here is our Ramadan and Eid tree! We have a big plant which we normally decorate and put presents around for eid, so I didn’t want something else that was big, but i did want somewhere to hang our good deed and gratitude notes.
So I went out and bought a nice vase that can stay there all year round. The hunt for twigs at shops was fruitless, but as luck would have it (in other words, Allah guided us to it!), we found a huge bunch of cut branches and twigs that were ideal! And voila 🙂
It is slowly but surely filling up – can’t wait to see what it looks like at the end of the month, Inshallah!
P.S. If you’re exchanging gifts with a group of children, how about trying this?
Each child gets a little piece of card where they write their name on one side, and a prayer on the other. Younger children can get help writing. When their name is called to get their gift, they come hang their dua up on the Eid tree – and so it also becomes a prayer tree!
Someone suggested to hold on to their duas and take it out next Eid, so they can see whether their duas were answered :). Duas each Eid can be saved to see how they’ve grown each year too!