The Saudi higher court in Riyadh announced on late Thursday that Friday is the first day of Dhu al-Hija Islamic month and that Eid al-Adha will be on Sunday November 6th, 2011.
Dhu al-Hija or “the one of pilgrimage” is the twelfth and the last month of the Islamic calendar.
The higher court decided on the eid date after an investigative session citing experts’ witness accounts that said that the crescent of the Dhu al-Hija has been observed.
Eid al-Adha or “Greater Eid” is an important religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide to commemorate the willingness of prophet Abarahm to sacrifice his son Ismail as an act of obedience to God, before God intervened.
The event of standing on Mount Arafat will be on Saturday November 5th, 2011, the higher court added.
Mount Arafat is also known as the Mount of Mercy, and is the hill that Muslims believe that prophet Muhammad stood and delivered the farewell sermon to the Muslims who had accompanied him for the pilgrimage towards the end of his life. It reaches about 70 meters in height.
Eid al-Adha celebrations start right after pilgrims descend from Mount Arafat.
During Eid al-Adha, many Muslims visit family and friends, exchange greetings and gifts, and make donations to the poor and needy.