Q: What is Qurbani ?
A: It is the act of slaughtering An specific animal-sheep, goat, ox or camel – during specific days with the sole objective of pleasing Allah Ta’ala.
Q: What are the specific days for Qurbani ?
A: The days of Qurbani are: the 10th, 11th and 12th day of Zil Hijjah. The tenth day is the best day for Qurbani. The time for Qurbani ends with the sunset on the 12th day.
Q: On whom is Qurbani wajib?
A: Qurbani is wajib on a baaligh(attained age of puberty) and resident Muslim who has the means of nisaab either in cash or any luxurious items. If he or she has these during the days of Qurbani, then it is obligatory and incumbent on him or her to take a share of Qurbani. Thus, those who own jewellery, stocks of trading goods, shares or a second car must perform Qubani. If the wife and the child of baaligh age have the means, they will also be required to perform Qurbani each one separately. Hence one person`s qurbani is not counted for all members of the family that qurbani is wajib on them. The beloved prophet SAW did qurbani for his wives, daughter and for himself(Muslim, Hakim and Bukhari).
Note: The nisaab here is the nisaab of Zakaat or the value of 612.33 gram of silver. One should note that the yard stick is any luxurious item found in his possession to this value, although not in cash.
Q: Where is the proof that Qurbani is wajib?
A: We find the obligation of qurbani from the Qur-aan- Sourah Kawsar: ‘’Read the salaah for your Lord and slaughter.’’(Sourah Kawsar) The mufassirs describe the salaah as the Eid ul Adhaa salaah and then to perform the slaughtering of the Qurbani animal.(Ibn Katheer, Bahr, Tabari, etc). And also a sahih hadith(hassan) of Ibn Majah whereby the beloved prophet SAW said: ‘’Whoever had the means to perform qurbani and he did not do so, then he should not come near our musalla(let he not come to Eid salaah!)’’.
عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ مَنْ كَانَ لَهُ سَعَةٌ وَلَمْ يُضَحِّ فَلَا يَقْرَبَنَّ مُصَلَّانَا
Hence Qurbani is wajib and obligatory as Eid Salaah is.
Q: Why do we perform Qurbani?
A: It is to recall the spirit of sacrifice of Ibrahim (A.S.) that every year we are required to slaughter animals during the days of Eid ul Adha. Beloved prophet Muhammad (SAW) has stated: – It is the practice (sunnah) of Ibrahim (A.S). It is to remind us that divine pleasure lies behind veils of sacrifice and patience.
Q: What are the virtues of Qurbani?
A: Our mother Aisha (RA) has reported that the prophet (SAW) has stated: On the day of Eid ul Adha, no deed pleases Allah Ta’ala more than the shedding of the blood (of an animal). (Tirmizi). For every hair (of the slaughtered animal) there is a reward (sawaab). (Ibn Majah). And the person offering the sacrifice obtains forgiveness for his sins. (Mustadrak hakim).
Q: Which animal is best for Qurbani?
A: The beloved prophet (SAW) said: The best animal for Qurbani is the sheep with horns(Abu Dawood). For Ibrahim (A.S)’s first Qurbani, Allah Ta’ala had sent two sheep from Paradise. The Prophet (SAW) did perform Qurbani continuously during the ten years of his life in Madinah Munnawwarah. (Tirmizi). And it has been reported by Ahmad that, for every Qurbani, the prophet (SAW) used to purchase two fat sheep with horns and having a white coat with black spots. As a matter of fact, the sheep is a docile animal and is easier to slaughter. It is sunnah to stay without food until we slaughter and then eat first the grilled liver of the animal. This sunnah possible and is easier with sheep.
Q: Are there any recommendations for the slaughter?
A: Yes. It is recommended to place the neck of the animal towards the Qibla. And, hence, to shed the blood towards the Qibla. It is also advisable to sharpen the knife well and to recite Bismillahi Allahu Akbar before the slaughter. Sunnah for the one slaughtering to read this when slaughtering: Inni wajjahtou wajhiya lillazi fataras samawati wal arda hanifan wama ana minal moushrikeen. Inna swaalati wa nusuki wa wahyaya wa mawati lillahi rabbil alameen.Laa sharikalahou wa bizalika oumirto wa ana awaloul mouslimeen, BISMILLAHI ALLAHOU AKBAR.(Ibn Khuzeimah, Ahmad)
إِنِّي وَجَّهْتُ وَجْهِيَ لِلَّذِي فَطَرَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ حَنِيفًا وَمَا أَنَا مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ إِنَّ صَلاَتِي وَنُسُكِي وَمَحْيَايَ وَمَمَاتِي لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ لاَ شَرِيكَ لَهُ وَبِذَلِكَ أُمِرْتُ وَأَنَا أَوَّلُ الْمُسْلِمِينَ بِسْمِ اللهِ اللَّهُ أَكْبَرُ
Q: Which parts /organs of the animal are prohibited for consumption?
A: It is not permitted to consume the following seven parts/organs: blood, sexual organs (both male and female), testicles, gall-bladder(vesicule biliaire), bladder(la vessie) and glands.
It is permissible to consume anything from the animal besides these 7 mentionned.
Q: Which physical defects in the animal rule out its slaughter for Qurbani?
A: One is not allow to slaughter a blind, one-eyed or lame animal. If injured to such an extent that it cannot walk on its four legs, then the animal is not suitable for qurbani. Those animals that has no ears or have had their ears slit completely are unsuitable for qurbani. Those who have small ears can be slaughtered. Whereas those which has more than one third of its tail or nose cut, then it would not be suitable for qurbani. Less than that would be suitable. Nor those who lost all their teeth or most of them or even have had their horns completely torn off. But if horns visibly broken above its roots or it never had any horn from birth, then it is permissible to perform qurbani with it. Nor a sick scabies animal nor a bisexual nor an animal nourished mostly by impurities. But permissible to have an animal whose ear or nose have been torn partly or even castrated. Still if the animal has been injured or paralysed at the time of slaughtering, then it will still be permissible to do qurbani with it.
Q: Is the age of the animal important as regards Qurbani?
A: Yes. An ox must be two-year old. The goat and the sheep should be one year old. A six-month old sheep that is of physical calibre of a one year old one can be slaughtered exceptionally as a qurbani. (Muslim)
Q: What are the sunnahs of Qurbani?
A: It is sunnah to slaughter the animal oneself (Bukhari) .The prophet (SAW) used to lay his foot on the breast of the animal and Bismillahi Allahou Akbar before slaughtering it. If one is not slaughtering the animal, then one should at least witness the Qurbani by one’s presence (Mustarak Hakim). Then, it would be sunnah to recite:-
“Inna swaalati wa nusuki wa wahyaya wa mawati lillahi rabbil alameen.Laa sharikalahou wa bizalika oumirto wa ana minal mouslimeen.”(Musnad Ahmad).
إن صلاتي ونسكي ومحياي ومماتي لله رب العالمين لا شريك له وبذلك أمرت وأنا من المسلمين
Q: Is the Qurbani performed locally better, or is the one done abroad better?
A: The Qurbani done locally is better than the one done abroad for several reasons:-
1. According to the jurists, the most valued Qurbani is the most costly one. Having said that, it is recommended to choose, according to one’s means, the most costly animals. (Shami)
2. It is to be noted that, when Qurbani is done overseas, one is deprived of its sunnahs and recommendations of Eid ul Adhaa like slaughtering the animal oneself or at least witnessing the slaughter by one’s presence.
3. It is recommended to consume and distribute the meat to close relatives and the poor of the region.
Q: Is it permissible to purchase a share of the Qurbani for a deceased relative?
A: If you have taken first for yourself a share, then it is permissible to offer qurbani in the name of a deceased person. One may mention several deceased in that surplus share.
A sahih hadith of Mustadrak Hakim shows that hazrat Ali r.a. used to perform the qurbani two sheep. The first sheep was done on behalf of Nabi SAW and then the second one for himself:
فمنها ما حدثنا الشيخ أبو بكر بن إسحاق ، أنبأ بشر بن موسى الأسدي ، وعلي بن عبد العزيز البغوي ، قالا : ثنا محمد بن سعيد بن الأصبهاني ، ثنا شريك ، عن أبي الحسناء ، عن الحكم ، عن حنش ، قال : ضحى علي ، رضي الله عنه بكبشين كبش عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم وكبش عن نفسه وقال : « أمرني رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم أن أضحي عنه » فأنا أضحي أبدا « هذا حديث صحيح الإسناد ولم يخرجاه ، وأبو الحسناء هذا هو : الحسن بن الحكم النخعي »
Q: Is it permissible for two persons to share one sheep or one share in a cow?
A: No. The minimum share for qurbani is one share. Be it the person is rich or poor. But one may take one share and a fraction of another share. For example, 6 persons take the share in a cow and they are collectively buy the 7th share for the prophet SAW.
Q: Can we take half of a cow as my share of Qurbani?
A: Yes, permissible. Permissible to share a cow between a maximum of 7 persons. But permissible to have 6 shares,5,4,3,2 and even wholly to one person.
Q: How much can we share a cow and how much for a sheep?
A: According to the riwayah of muslim shareef, a camel or an ox can be shared to maximum of 7 shares. And the sheep or goat has only one share.
Q: How should we distribute the meat?
A: One is authorized to keep that share of the qurbani, or even to consume it or to give it to poor. The beloved prophet (SAW) has stated: Eat of the qurbani meat, give to others and also keep it for your use. (Muslim).
فَشَكَوْا إِلَى رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَنَّ لَهُمْ عِيَالًا وَحَشَمًا وَخَدَمًا فَقَالَ كُلُوا وَأَطْعِمُوا وَاحْبِسُوا أَوْ ادَّخِرُوا
That is why it is recommended to distribute one-third of it to the poor, to keep one-third of it for oneself, and to apportion one-third of it to the near relatives. However, one is allowed to keep the whole of it for oneself or even to distribute the whole of it to the poor.