How do Muslims Spend Their Holy Day?
Many people are aware that Friday is a holy day in the Islamic faith. Yet, our practices and traditions are unknown to most people. Muslims come from all over the world. Therefore, the customs and observances are very diverse. However, there are three shared practices between all Muslims.
- Bathing and wearing clean clothes.
- Reading the 18th chapter of the Holy Quran.
- Going to the mosque to listen to a sermon and pray in congregation.
There are several other prophetic traditions that most Muslims follow as well. Muslims call their holy day, “jumah”; Jumah translates to Friday in Arabic. *I want to note that the Arabic language is used to refer to many religious concepts in Islam because Arabic is the language of the Quran. Yet, Muslims are very diverse and are not exclusively Middle Eastern or Arab. *As mentioned, on Fridays most Muslims bathe, wear clean clothes, and go to the mosque around noon to listen to a sermon and pray in congregation.
Most people try to read the 18th chapter of the Quran called, The Cave (Surah Al-Kahf). Additionally, many families prepare a special meal on jumah. For example, my husband is Moroccan and his family always prepares couscous on this day. Most people go back to work after attending Friday prayer. Our holy days are not a day of rest for us. They are simply a day of focusing on God( Allah) and celebrating with family.
Creating Our Own Tradition and Homeschool Fridays
The children and I have come up with our own Jumah traditions. Typically, we don’t formally homeschool on Jumah. We play Quran recitations in the morning, read books focused on religion and morals, read the Quran, perform our religious purification, go to the mosque, grab lunch and then go home and bake together. Every now and then we’ll go on special outings or homeschool field trips after the mosque. We typically bake a special treat after we come back from the mosque. We’ll also try to go outside and play some games together.
This past Friday was a lot of fun. We started off the morning listening to Quran recitations, read two wonderful books together, taught my 7 year old more about ritual purification, went to the mosque, grabbed pizza, bought ingredients to make a chocolate yogurt cake, and spent time with family. My two-year-old daughter typically stays with me in the women’s section. My sons stay with my husband in the men’s section. My daughter has done very well on our mosque trips lately. It’s become a lot easier taking all three children out. Sometimes I’ll bring markers or fidget toys for her. The sermon was very powerful; the imam (preacher) talked about how it’s our duty to help those in need. He also mentioned how our mosque has started having social gatherings for everyone in the community. We’ve really missed that after the past year in quarantine. I’ve created a short video about our day this week. Please consider watching if you are interested!