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Hijri Calendar and the Seasons

Answered according to Shafi'i Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org

Question: Was the Hijri calendar originally in synchrony with the four seasons? Is Ramadan supposed to be fasted in the Spring?

Answer:

Wa alaykum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

Dear questioner,

Thank you for your important question.

While there is evidence that certain pre-Islamic Arab communities adjusted and aligned the lunar calendar with the four seasons utilizing a system of intercalation, it is not fair to state that all pre-Islamic Arab communities did that.

Furthermore, to assume that this practice happened during the Medinan period of the  Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) when all the details of Islamic law and Islamic rituals were established is incorrect. This is clearly evinced by comparing clear and well-documented historical dates such as the Covenant with the Christians of the World and the Covenant with the Jews of Khaybar and Maqna with Jewish and Christian calendars.

For a full discussion on this topic, please see:
On the Origins of the Hijrī Calendar, Ibrahim Zein and Ahmed El-Wakil
Mémoire sur le calendrier arabe avant l’islamisme, Mahmoud Effendi

We have to understand that Allah has preserved this religion. Allah has made sure that scholars have been there to preserve the religion in its pristine form and solve new confusions that the Muslims face in every generation. When all the scholars of jurisprudence agree that the lunar calendar is the basis of the Islamic calendar, despite their very desperate and variegated research methods and conclusions, we know as a fact that this is what Allah wants us to do. Revisionist ideas on issues that are agreed upon are not welcome.

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, ‘There will always be a group of my nation who will keep to the way of Allah unharmed by those who try to trick them or work against them until Allah’s command comes while they are in power.’ (Muslim)

Revisionists posit that the Sunna was lost a long time ago and that everyone has been wrong for centuries. This is completely against the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunna.

Please also see:
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/islamic-belief/is-it-necessary-to-act-upon-the-consensus-of-the-sahaba/

I pray this helps.

[Ustadh] Farid

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Farid Dingle has completed extensive years of study in the sciences of the Arabic language and the various Islamic Sciences. During his studies, he also earned a CIFE Certificate in Islamic Finance. Over the years, he has developed a masterful ability to craft lessons that help non-Arabic speakers gain a deep understanding of the language. He currently teaches courses in the Arabic Language.

 

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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