Udhiyah is one of the great rituals of Islaam, in which we remember the Tawheed (unity) of Allaah, His blessings upon us and the obedience of our father Ibraaheem to his Lord, and in this act of udhiyah there is much goodness and blessing. So the Muslim must pay attention to its great importance.
Udhiyah refers to the animal (camel, cattle or sheep) that is sacrificed as an act of worship to Allaah during the period from after the 3Eid prayer on the Day of Nahr (3Eid al-Adhaa) until the last of the Days of Tashreeq (the 13th day of Dhu’l-Hijjah), with the intention of offering sacrifice. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
فَصَلِّ لِرَبِّكَ وَانْحَرْ
“Therefore turn in prayer to your Lord anf sacrifice (to Him only).” [sooah al-Kawthar, v:2]
“Say (O Muhammad): ‘Verily, my prayer, my sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allaah, the Lord of the 3Aalameen (mankind, jinns and all that exists).” [soorah Al-An3aam, v:162]
Muslims are unanimously agreed that it is prescribed in Islaam, as was narrated by more than one of the scholars. But they differed as to whether it is Sunnah mu’akkadah (a confirmed Sunnah) or it is obligatory & it is not permissible to omit it.
The majority of scholars are of the view that it is Sunnah mu’akkadah (a confirmed Sunnah).
This is the view of al-Shaafa3ee, Maalik and Ahmad according to his most well-known view. Others were of the view that it is obligatory. This is the view of Abu Haneefah and one of the views narrated from Ahmad. This was also the view favoured by Ibn Taymiyyah who said: “This is one of the views narrated in the madhhab of Maalik, or it appears to be the view of Maalik.”
Shaykh Muhammad ibn 3Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: “Udhiyah is Sunnah mu’akkadah (a confirmed Sunnah) for the one who is able to do it, so a person should offer the sacrifice on behalf of himself and the members of his household.” (1)
3Abd-Allaah ibn 3Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) narrates that the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam stayed in Madeenah for ten years, offering sacrifice (every year on 3Eid).” (3)
1). The best kinds of animals for Udhiyah:
The best type of animals for udhiyah are: camels, then cows – if sacrificed on behalf of one person; then sheep; then goats; then one-seventh of a camel; then one-seventh of a cow.
The best type of animals are those which are fat and have more meat, and are physically complete and good looking. (4)
2). Slaughtering the sacrifice is better than giving its price in charity:
The scholars stated that slaughtering the sacrifice is better than giving its price in charity. (5)
3). One sacrifice is sufficient on behalf of the members of a household
One sacrifice is sufficient on behalf of all the members of a household, no matter how many of them there are.
3Ataa’ ibn Yassaar said: I asked Abu Ayyoob: How was the sacrifice done at the time of the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam?
He said: “A man would offer a sheep on behalf of himself and the members of his family, and they would eat some and feed others with some.” (6).
Shaykh Ibn 3Uthaymeen said in al-Sharh al-Mumti’ (5/275): “There is no limit to how many people may share in the reward. The Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam offered a sacrifice on behalf of his entire ummah, and a man may offer a single sheep on behalf of himself and the members of his household, even if they are one hundred strong.
4). Slaughtering the sacrifice in the land where one is, or to send a sum of money:
Shaykh Ibn 3Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked: Is it permissible to slaughter the sacrifice in the land where one is, or to send a sum of money for that to your own country or to another Muslim country?
He replied: “It is better to offer the sacrifice in your own country if your family are with you. If your family are elsewhere, and they do not have anyone with them who can offer the sacrifice for them, then send money to them to offer the sacrifice there. (7)
5). The time for udhiyah (sacrifice):
The time for offering the sacrifice begins after the 3Eid prayer on 3Eid al-Adhaa and ends when the sun sets on the thirteenth of Dhul-Hijjah.
So there are four days of sacrifice: the day of 3Eid al-Adhaa and the three days after it.
It is better to hasten to offer the sacrifice after the 3Eid prayer, as the Messenger sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam used to do, then the first thing he would eat on the day of 3Eid would be meat from his sacrifice. (8)
6). Udhiyah – What should be eaten and what should be given away?
It is prescribed for the person who offers the sacrifice to eat some of the meat, to give some as gifts and to give some in charity, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Then eat thereof and feed therewith the poor having a hard time” [soorah Al-Hajj, v:28]
Salamah ibn al-Akwa3 (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam said: “Eat some, give some to others and store some.” (9)
Giving some to others includes both giving gifts to the rich and giving charity to the poor.
It was narrated from 3Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) that the Prophet sallAllaahu 3Alayhi wa sallam said:“Eat some, store some and give some in charity.” (10).
And Allaah knows best.
Rulings on Udhiyah (download as pdf)
==========================================================References: (1) Fataawa Ibn 3Uthaymeen, 2/661 (2) Narrated by al-Bukhaaree, 5545. (3) Narrated by Ahmad, 4935; al-Tirmidhi, 1507; classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Mishkaat al-Masaabeeh, 1475. (4) http://www.islamqa.com/en/ref/36663 (5) http://www.islamqa.com/en/ref/96816 (6) Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi (7) Majmoo3 Fataawa al-Shaykh Ibn 3Uthaymeen (24/207) Read more here (8) http://www.islamqa.com/en/ref/36651 (9) Bukhaaree (10) Muslim (Read more http://www.islamqa.com/en/ref/36532)