Al-Udhiyah/Al-Qurbaani (الأضحية)
Islamic Eid Ul Adha Slaughter

Eid al-Adha or Eid Qurban, Qurban Bayrami, Tafaska tameqrant, also called the "Festival of the Sacrifice", is the second of two Islamic holidays celebrated worldwide each year, and considered the holier of the two. It honors the willingness of Ibrahim to sacrifice his son as an act of obedience to God's command.


Al-Udhiyah is simply a name for something slaughtered.  Therefore, it refers to a livestock animal (i.e. camels, cows, goats, sheep) which is to be offered as slaughter in order to get closer to Allah SWT during the “Days of Slaughter” (the 10th-12th of the month of Dhil Hijjah).

A cow looking outside, waiting to be Halal and humanely slaughtered

Some of the virtues & wisdoms behind al-Udhiyah:

The Prophet SWAS said, “The child of Adam does not do any action more beloved to Allah on the day of slaughter than the spilling of blood (sacrifice).  It will surely come (back) on the Day of Judgment with its horns, fur, and hooves (completely intact).  Verily the blood falls to Allah in a place before it even falls to the ground, so be happy and pleased with your offering (i.e. knowing there is immense reward in it).”
*Therefore, slaughtering is better than giving the price of an animal away in charity. 

  • To participate with the Hujjaj (pilgrims of Makkah) with their slaughter in getting closer to Allah.
  • To be generous to people on the day of Eid.  When a Muslim slaughters, he is being generous on himself, his family, his friends, neighbors, his relatives, and community members when he gifts them from his slaughter.  He is also being generous to the poor when he donates some or all of his slaughter to them and relieves them of their need to beg

A man taking care of Udhiya animals before Halal slaughter takes place.

Islamic Ruling for al-Udhiyah:

According to a majority of scholars, slaughtering on the day of Eid is highly recommended but not mandatory.

Conditions for al-Udhiyah to be accepted:

  • The slaughter has to be from livestock; a camel, cow, sheep or goat. 
  • It has to be free of any major defect which would affect its price and meat quality.
  • The animal has to be of minimum age; a camel which has completed 6 years, a cow which has completed 2 years, a goat which has completed 1 year, and a sheep which has completed 6 months
  • The slaughterman's expression of intention brings them closer to Allah
  • To give at least a small amount of meat from the sacrifice away in charity

Udhiya animals eating grass near mountain.

When MUST the slaughter be performed?

The jurists agreed that: 

  •  City dwelling people where Eid prayer is performed must wait until the Eid prayer is completed before slaughtering on the 10th day of Dhil Hijjah.  

The majority of jurists add that the slaughterer: 

  •  Must also wait until the Eid sermon is also completed.  
  •  As for people who live in remote areas where no Eid prayer is performed, they should wait until sunrise and then the estimated time of an Eid prayer and sermon.
  • A person must perform the slaughter within 3 days, the day of Eid on the 10th of Dhil Hijjah and the two days after it (i.e. just before Maghrib on the 12th of Dhil Hijjah).  It is best to be performed during the day hours.

Can a person sacrifice on someone else’s behalf (i.e. such as a parent who has passed away)?

Yes, but all of it must be given away in charity.  As for slaughtering on behalf of someone alive, they must give permission to do so as well as permission to eat from it. 

Moroccan lamps for Muslim Eid festival.

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