The holiday season has a certain something that brings joy to people of all ages. The excitement of gifts and gift giving, great food and delicacies that only appear once a year, family gatherings, shopping, decorating; the list goes on and on.
It’s many people’s favorite time of year. It used to be mine too.
I know most people are really living it up and enjoying themselves this time of year. Some may be wondering, “Don’t you miss Christmas?”
My sister said to me recently, while she was in the midst of decorating bliss, “I don’t know how you don’t do this, it’s so much fun!”
If you take a look at the things that really give meaning to Christmas, we can find similarities in Islam, but 365 days out of the year.
Here are just a few examples:
1. Gift giving. Giving, sharing and showing care are all great things. The prophet Muhammad said, “Give gifts.” Because they increase the love between people. No special occasion needed.
2. Charity. Charity is an integral part of Islam. Once every year Muslims must pay an amount from their saved wealth, and charity is encouraged every day, by both the Quran and the sayings of the prophet Muhammad. We should always try give something, even if it as little as a smile. We are taught that we are not truly believers, if we do not love for our fellow human being what we love for ourselves. That throws covetousness out the window and makes us want to raise others up, as we would like to be helped, especially in times of need.
3. Family. Family is the most important structure in society. Islam has all sorts of ways of helping families stay together and encourages giving your company primarily to your family, especially parents. Eating together, consulting one another, and being there for each other in all circumstances, are all values we are taught in the Quran and by the prophet Muhammad.
4. Jesus. Muslims love Jesus. In the Quran, the story of Jesus begins even before his mother Mary was born. We see God’s wisdom in choosing the best of women, Mary, who was utterly devoted to the worship of the Creator, and who was a perfect vessel to carry and rear the very special Jesus Christ. We believe in Jesus’ virgin birth and in the many miracles Jesus did by God’s will. His story and the story of his mother in the Quran, bring tears to our eyes and move our hearts every time we read them. The chapter named Mary in the Quran, is beyond beautiful. Whenever I read it, I just wish I could share it with my Christian friends and family. We love Jesus so much, but we don’t worship him, we follow him: Jesus did not decorate trees, nor did he teach children about an omnipotent man with flying reindeer who lives in the North Pole. He did not tell anyone to celebrate his birthday. He did not celebrate Christmas, so neither do we.
5. Fun. To some of you, Muslims might seem a bit boring. Most of us are not found out and about, seeking thrills all too often. The reason for that though, is that we feel very satisfied. We know what our purpose is and strive to stay on track towards successfully completing our goal. So on the one hand, we are already quite content and don’t feel the need to go out seeking pleasure and happiness. (Although, there is nothing wrong with having some good clean fun!) And on the other hand, we are busy trying to please our Maker. We’d rather not waste time away from remembering Him. Worshipping Him. In Islam, worship is very comprehensive, so everything that God is pleased with, can be an act of worship. A smile can be an act of worship. Intimacy with one’s spouse is also an act of worship in Islam, because it is enjoying that pleasure in the right way, in a marriage, as opposed to in extramarital relationships. So, for Muslims, worship is also fun!
Islam has all the best parts of life built in.
That’s why, I never miss Christmas.
6 thoughts on “I’m a Muslim, but I Never Miss Christmas”
Totally love this post. I’d like to ask a question as a Muslim to a Muslim: in your opinion, is it alright to wish a Christian “Merry Christmas”? Does it mean that I celebrate it when I only meant for Christians to enjoy the day with their families/getting closer to Christ? Is it okay to wish someone else Merry Christmas? I’ve been getting a lot of mixed reactions and opinions about this….
as-Salam alaikum. I want to point out first that this important question is deserving of an Alim, not of various opinions of rank and file Muslims. If the question was posed to any scholar, they would rather unanimously explain that this isn’t allowed, nor is it good. To wish anyone in our brotherhood of humanity enjoyment of celebrating Jesus Christ as God, and God’s birth in human form (which is what Xmas is btw) is at odds with the core of our faith. The practice is Shirk, the only sin unforgivable by Allah on Qiyamah. They are of course generally unaware of this. A Muslim should feel saddened, and compassion for Christians. We shouldn’t initiate such greetings, but it is Sunnah to respond to any such greetings with ‘wa alaikum,’ or ‘and you too.’ This is simple, inline with our faith, and conveys respect..the question might be – do we should love and respect to our Christian neighbors throughout the years? Do we feed them? Do we invite them? Do we give them gifts on Eid? If not, we should. This is also a Sunnah, and something sadly missing from our Ummah..
Allah knows best..
Salamun alaykum Nachira! Thanks! I understand there are a lot of opinions on this but one side is not based on knowledge. If we look into Islam, we find that the most important tenet of faith is, that the only one worthy of worship is our Creator, who has absolutely no partners and is free from all deficiencies. This is the message and guidance all of God’s prophets were sent with, it is the single most important covenant, one we must not breach. I know sometimes you could get into a sticky situation where you feel obliged to say merry christmas or the like, but I just try to say something else like you usually would, by wishing them well in a general way. For me, when I read in the Quran the true meaning of saying God has a son, that the heavens are about to split and that the rest of creation can hardly hold itself together at the uttering of this huge accusation against our perfect Lord who is free of any needs, then I’d rather pray for their guidance then telling them to enjoy degrading their Maker and earning His displeasure. Hope that helps. Ma Salam ( with peace)
I have a question for you. What if you were a president (of non-muslim country and your country has numerous people with numerous religions, like Islam, Christian, Buddha, Hindu)? Well, I take example what if you were president of Indonesia?
In Indonesia, there are many religions and it will be chaos if you (as a president) do not give any utterance for the religious holiday (moreover all of predecessor president did it). All president of Indonesia are muslim and they say “happy celebrate Christmas for those people who celebrate it”.
Do you have an alternative way as a replacement not saying that? If you have, please give me some examples. Or you choose to not say anything about any religion days unless Islam and choose to give away your place as president?
Hello! Thanks for visiting and joining the conversation. 🙂
Interesting question! I’ve never imagined myself as president of a country before!
As I explained, as a Muslim who cares about others and their success, I wish to see everyone fulfill their purpose. I want good for everyone. Saying God has a son is so abhorrent to God and the rest of His creation, the heavens nearly split over this saying. It is belittling our Creator and Sustainer, who is free of need, free of deficiencies. He has no need of a son and is the Most forgiving and merciful, He forgives sins and dues not need to kill anything or anyone to atone for them. He wipes away sin and rewards abundantly for Goodness. There is nothing worthy of worship except Him.
Wishing someone to have a happy day defiling God, would be similar to telling someone to enjoy committing suicide.
Would you do that?
I would not.
Since you put this into a sort of political context, I’ll explain to you that in a true Islamic state, people are free to practice their respective religions, they are free to celebrate their holidays and even follow their own religious laws, complete with courts. So Jews in an Islamic state can live by Jewish law etc. they are to be treated well and with respect. Governing in this fashion does not require the leader who is allowing them that freedom, to also wish them Merry Christmas. Those are just words, and clearly actions speak louder.