Note: Whatever written here is only my opinion on reading several posts, listening to talks and also discussions on this topic. It doesn’t matter if you disagree as this is just my thoughts. Different people have different perspectives and each and every one of us have no right to impose our views on others.
In the name of Allah, the Most Merciful, the Most Gracious
Yesterday was a great day for most Muslims worldwide, the day Allah Almighty gave mankind a great gift and guide for our salvation: Our beloved Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him.
The issue here is whether to celebrate this day or not.
In my opinion, we are not really doing things the companions did not do. They were thankful to Allah Almighty all the time for sending down the Prophet pbuh to guide them. They loved the Prophet pbuh with all their hearts. They did not really need to raise awareness of being thankful to The Divine for His Gift as it is already a norm to do so in their community.
In this 21st century, many Muslims only know the Prophet pbuh by name and are not really aware of the reason of this Gift. So celebrations are held on the day the Prophet pbuh came into this world to…
1) Educate the public on this great Gift
Question: Couldn’t this be done any other time of the year?
Answer: Nobody said it couldn’t. The fact it is held on that specific day worldwide is to be consistent and for it to be annual. Having a specific day and date will make one stick to that job.
Question: Why couldn’t it be done everyday?
Answer: It should be done everyday. But majority of us have our jobs and studies and don’t have that time. So, a specific date and day is set so more people will come as they would have earlier on booked a day off for that day.
Question: Why are there big celebrations, not just simple small ones?
– To cater for thousands of guests. This will strengthen the ukhuwwah/relationship between fellow Muslims in that country.
– Most of the time, some people will donate for loads of food to be cooked. This food will be served to the guests for free. Among these guests are some needy people that may not be that well-educated on our Prophet pbuh. So the food acts like an encouragement for them to come and learn more about the Prophet pbuh, even though that was not their initial intention. Hopefully by attending, The Turner Of Hearts will renew and purify their intentions.
2) Strengthen the ukhuwwah/relationship between Muslims island/city/country/state -wide
-As with big events, lots of people will come, Muslims or not. This leads us to the next point…
3) To preach Islam to non-Muslims
I am sure there are lots more reasons of celebrating the day our Creator gave us the means to our salvation. In my opinion, it is not bid’ah as you are just choosing that day to be thankful to Allah Almighty by taking the opportunity to spread Islam.
عن أمـيـر المؤمنـين أبي حـفص عمر بن الخطاب رضي الله عنه ، قال : سمعت رسول الله صلى الله عـليه وسلم يـقـول : إنـما الأعـمـال بالنيات وإنـمـا لكـل امـرئ ما نـوى . فمن كـانت هجرته إلى الله ورسولـه فهجرتـه إلى الله ورسـوله ومن كانت هجرته لـدنيا يصـيبها أو امرأة ينكحها فهجرته إلى ما هاجر إليه
It is narrated on the authority of Amirul Mu’minin, Abu Hafs ‘Umar bin al-Khattab, radiyallahu ‘anhu, who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, say: “Actions are (judged) by motives (niyyah), so each man will have what he intended. Thus, he whose migration (hijrah) was to Allah and His Messenger, his migration is to Allah and His Messenger; but he whose migration was for some worldly thing he might gain, or for a wife he might marry, his migration is to that for which he migrated.” [Al-Bukhari & Muslim]