Channel: Bilal Philips
All praise is due to a lot, a lot of Peace and blessings
on this last messenger Mohammed
and on all the traffic
cop topic of this evening lecture,
or presentation is that of Christmas in Islam.
I chose this topic, particularly because this is around the period of time when people's
partake of this celebration in various ways
as well as
And I felt that there was some information concerning the origin
and practice of Christianity
both Muslims and non Western should
realize, should understand, in order to put the practice of Christmas in his correct perspective.
Now, by definition, Christmas is the Christian festival celebrated on the 25th of December, commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ.
And by definition, Muslims are obliged to believe in the virgin birth of Jesus Christ.
It would therefore seem logical
that Muslims should be involved in the celebration of Iraq
along with Christians who celebrate
considering the fact that
Muslims in many parts of the world celebrate the birth of Prophet Muhammad,
peace be upon him.
goal that I would try to reach in this talk
would be the understanding of this.
There seems to be something logical,
this is what I would like to
find out why that is, because I'm sure
most Christians know
and when most Muslims know that,
Muslims do not celebrate
So, this evening, I want to try to some degree
to understand Christmas,
we need to understand
what it means.
What its origins
from the point of view of Christian scholars themselves.
The term Christmas comes from the Old English word, Christie's, Massey, Christ, mass, mass being a
form of worship,
particular to the Catholic Church.
And it was first used in the 11th century
1000 years after
Jesus Christ never,
never spoke up.
disciples never spoke up.
In the romance languages, because this is old English.
The term generally use is
metallic dominance, that is, the day of our Lord, for
the day of our Lord.
that this was the day on which the Lord
in terms of origin
of the 25th of
the scholars hold
that no one knows
quote from Collier's encyclopedia,
it is impossible to determine the exact date of the birth of Christ,
either from the evidence of the gospel,
or from any sound tradition.
During the first three centuries of the Christian era, there was considerable opposition in the church, to the pagan customs, of celebrating birthdays.
During the first three centuries, after the time,
the official church, Christian church itself was opposed to the celebration of birthdays, period.
Because the celebration of birth
was a pagan practice.
never celebrate their birthday.
neither he nor his disciples, follows the practice of celebrating
Amongst the Greeks and the Romans,
were celebrated with prayer sacrifices and banquets.
And it was also the custom to offer presents to the person whose birthday
was a pagan practice
has no place in religion.
Is it showing
the origin of the celebration of diversity was not divine revelation
the new international Dictionary of the Christian church state.
There is no authoritative historical evidence
as to the day or month of Jesus's birth.
Clement of Alexandria mentioned the existence
in Egypt of the year 200.
And we have some evidence that it was observed on various dates scattered on various
you read writings of the early Christian scholars, second, third, fourth century,
each one speculated on a different date when Jesus
was no agreed upon.
And it wasn't until after the conversion of Constantine
to Christianity that the church in Rome assigned December the 25th. As the date celebration
after the time
wasn't constant Constantine is in the fourth century.
It wasn't until fourth century that 25th of December started being
used as a point of celebration.
But even by the end of the fifth century,
though it was common in much of the Christian world.
The Eastern Church, who are represented today by the Armenian
observe the birth on the sixth of January, and to this day, they still celebrate the birthday
Where did the 25th
when it was, where did they get
what we find, according to the colleagues encyclopedia,
the choice of December 25,
was probably influenced by the fact that on this day, the Romans celebrated the mystery
of the birth, Son, God,
And that Saturnalia also came at this time.
The indications are that the church in this way, grants the opportunity to turn the people away from a purely pagan observance of the winter solstice
to a day of adoration, Christ, Lord,
both St. cyprian. And St. JOHN, priceless, allude to this part in the writing
was the day
people who belong
to a cult
The God Mithra originally a Persian God
was a one God's secret.
He was identified with the sun gods
And his worship became popular amongst the Romans, especially the army leaders of the army. In fact, Constantine's father was a well known follower
celebrated the birth of God.
And Constantine himself
used to follow this prior version.
So what we have here is a circumstance where
most popular enrollment time
that a worship of
as a means by which the leaders of the church gained support in follow in order to make the entity attractive, more attractive to the Romans.
the 25th of December was chosen.
There's also another point which is referred to here it's called the Saturnalia. Now this doctrine Alia,
which used to be held around the 25th of December.
a feast in celebration of the gods factory
pattern. We know it is a planet that was the name of one of the Roman gods. He was the God of sowing or a seed.
And his festival, the Saturnalia became the most popular of Roman
was originally set celebrated between the 17th and the 24th of December.
And the 25th being the primary when it wasn't the Nazis.
Again, we see between the mithraic called
Saturnalia, the worship of the Roman gods, Christianity sought in the followers from among these
forms of worship religions which are in existence
by choosing the 25th of December to attract and it's interesting to note,
that is according to the Encyclopedia of religion, and
it's such an alien role provided the model for most of the Mary custom of Christmas.
This old woman sees was celebrated on 17th December, the time was one of general joy and mercy. during the festival schools were closed. No punishment was insisted in place of the toga the government
base of this toga
and undress grommets is worn distinction, distinctions of rank or lane aside,
gambling with dice,
which are other times were illegal was permitted in practice.
And all classes of the society exchange gifts,
the most common being
These dolls are especially given
when you think back.
those lessons come from this
idea of toys and children's origins right here in the
In Northern Europe, the Teutonic tribes celebrated the winter solstice
and it has developed many customs and traditions that became part of Christmas when they were converted to Christianity. And we find the peoples of Northern Europe as they came into Christianity they had their own
practices festival rituals, which were associated with the winter solstice Winter Solstice meaning the 25th of December is like the peak of winter time when the day is the shortlist. From presidents onwards, the day starts to increase and
so the ancient people respond like as the rebirth of the sun.
Darkness was receding. So you find in many, many different cultures.
practice celebrating the birth of the sun, the birth of light, etc, being concentrated around the 21st of December. So the Northern European Teutonic tribes, they also had the celebration. And, as I said, they brought a number of them in with them as they became Christians.
In the Middle Ages, the festival became the most popular one the year celebrated in church and home with a blend of pagan usages and Christian devotion.
It should be noted, however, that
this did not go without any resistance from some people within the church. Because Collier's encyclopedia states, the suppression of the mass during the reformation, led to a sharp change and observation.
In England, the Puritans condemned the celebration,
and from 1642 to 16,
issued a series of ordinances for bidding all church services.
This feeling was carried over to America, by the pilgrims. And it was not until the 19th century wave of Irish and German immigrant immigration, that enthusiasm for the peace began to spread throughout the country. objections were swept aside, and the old traditions revived among Protestants as well as
so the church we find in 17th century
in England, and in Europe, oppose Christmas. They tried to stop it,
band celebration and initiative, those who went to America that was their attitude, but because of the fact that Christianity does not have a found our sound basis in Revelation
that is used as a means of determining right and wrong in terms of its practice.
Then it becomes a question of what is most convenient, who has the most say, What idea is most popular? And you find the religion changing, you know,
the time and the place and the people. This is how it has been traditionally. That's why any efforts to try to go back to the sources of Christianity, purity fails, because the various sources of Christianity
in Revelation have been
the Christmas tree decorations are the common practice
to make a Christmas tree
summer parties considered it
Christmas tree a survival of pagan tree worship, and traces back to ancient Rome. And
the use of evergreens to decorate homes at Christmas time, has an unmistakable pre Christian origins.
During the celebration of the Roman Saturnalia, Laurel and other greens and flowers we use extensively for professions and home decorations.
In Northern Europe, evergreen because they did not die in the wintertime became symbolic of eternal life. We're almost object worship. mistletoe was sacred amongst British Druids, and were believed to have miraculous powers. So, we see usually the decorations, you see these green
Polly controls and different green
plants which are used to decorate the home section, this is coming from early pagan belief
in these various plants,
either as gods or close to God, or as having miraculous or supernatural powers.
And this has become a standard practice.
addition, so now
after we've read all this, and this is without even going into
and that's a whole nother story in itself.
it is then
incumbent on those people who consider themselves to be
followers of Christ.
Those who like to quote john, verse 14, verse six,
I am the way the truth lies, no one coming unto the Father, but by me.
Jesus is Wait, wait, we follow
those who consider themselves Christians?
This celebration of Christmas
has nothing to do with the way
he needs to celebrate his birthday. Nor did his disciples verses
and all the pagan
practices which have been added to the celebration of Christmas can in no way
be pleasing to Jesus
can in no way be considered a part of his way?
I'm not allowed
to join in the celebration of Christmas
or to offer
Christmas greeting that is like saying Merry Christmas.
such an act of celebrating Christmas or even giving the greeting very.
This would be
an open support of pagan.
Some people say well, Christian
when he comes, you know when we have our principles?
Why should we wish them?
the two things are not the same.
A practicing Christian if you were to ask him
to join in the celebration, or to give the greeting to atheists, Satan worshipping
Satan worship. They worship Satan.
They have the rites and rituals.
might be or maybe there are witches or Warlock
Celebrations get together we
were practicing systems they were asked to join
In the celebration
or offer people
something which is obviously pleasing
How can we share in offer the greetings to
Whereas, if a Christian offers a
the other half
this is a time when Muslims sacrifice an animal
of the sacrifice of Abraham, Prophet Abraham, who is believed in by both Muslims
that sacrifice which she made something which is highly admired and honored.
This is what is being honored.
This is what is being commemorate. So for a Christian to offer
Greetings, they're not doing anything which is against the religion in the sense of the teachings of
that sacrifice, something confirming part of the
similarly, the eat the end of fasting
the period of fasting. This was a practice of Jesus.
When he broke the frosty eight
This is what Muslims do at the end of the factory. And food is shared with both people around
giving thanks to God for the food that he is given.
for Christians who say, eat Mubarak have nothing against the religious, no paganism, no nothing in there, which which could be said to be against the teachings
for Christians to say even
though they're religious, but for a Muslim to say Merry Christmas,
this is in direct opposition to what they did. If they did, so they would be doing
Islam. And it is not like
we believe in one God.
We believe in
the practice of religion, based on revelation.
we clear when we say that in that in the law,
that there is no God but Allah and Mohammed
was the Messenger of Allah who brought the way based on revelation and religion.
an obligation on every Muslim to uphold that,
because of that, it is not allowed for them to offer such greetings.
I know some make wants to say, Well,
you know, we Christians are
very accommodating and flexible. We get along with people so we can offer these kind of meetings with you will send your very extreme and
Well, it might seem.
However, if we look at it, from the point of view of
beliefs, and practices, what we really see I mean, what is being expressed here is that
principles in Christianity don't have too much value.
They can be bent and twisted and whatever, according to
this is why if you went back 100 years ago,
follow or follow
what is the position of Christianity
one of the greatest of evil. However, today, you will find
ministers, people in churches, defending homosexuals.
excuses. You know, I read when in California one to one minister there he was explaining that it's really about what he calls just love. You know, as long as your love is just justice,
it doesn't matter who it is you love, whether it's male or female or
making up his own religion.
This is a term now, which I've heard, actually, he was not the first one to say it a number of people
And this is sort of becoming part of the foundation for the legal approach towards homosexuality or
what they call consenting adults.
That is, the approach of
it will change as time.
you go back to the time of price.
And you look at the women who are around price, you know, as they're portrayed in the church today, when they paint pictures of Marian, even though
clear, in the
Old Testament, 10 commandments, that it's prohibited to make any graven images, but then it is very common now, in the churches, you'll find in Beijing pictures of Mary's mother, Mary, Mother, Jesus,
but always when they're painted their faces, having these far,
loose, flowing long clothing, not exposing the body.
And when we look at the first early generation, none
coming out of
the way they were dressed.
Whereas when we look around today,
we see the average female, to be wearing clothes, this can expose as much as possible.
Even the nuns have shortened addresses and
the thing is, cover, you know, the habits they call the cover that maybe just a little thing on the top of their head,
as modified and change with the time.
So the truth what is right and what was good in the time of Jesus is no longer
whereas, the Muslim view
is that what is right and good
in the time of any profits is right.
the truth is
not something which varies from time to time, place to place,
everything is relative
secular, civilization strives to promote now, everything is relative, one man needs another man's poison,
you know, what Hitler was good, we all look at as being bad, you know,
this is playing with people's minds.
Because in fact, what is really evil, what is wrong has been defined by the prophet
and unless the truth is maintained, the way of life that was brought by the processes maintained, then people's easy and when they deviate, they go on the path of status.
This is why you will find coming out of those who have deviated the worst of
Suicide America, which is you know, considered like the top in technology with the rate of suicide.
And you have millions of people who live and die on the streets,
people, millions, and they're talking about also a number of million people like 30 something million people who are impoverished who are in a state of perpetual starvation. Why number of people in the states are saying, what are we doing sending all this food out aid and our people in our own country are not receiving this aid.
You have people who are dying of malnutrition.
They're having food but it's not sufficient for them to develop themselves.
This is the peak of technology
and religion follows behind them.
When we come back to the issue,
as I raised in the very beginning, why it is
Muslims who believe in the miraculous virgin birth
would not celebrate the birth.
I explained because of the pagan hearts,
but I mentioned considering also that
Muslims in many parts of the world celebrate the birthday of
Now, I just mentioned that the celebration of birthdays is of pagan origins.
So, the question now arises
should be celebrating
and based on what I present it is obvious that it is not correct,
no one knows exactly
though people have commonly chosen the 12
This is most definitely the day on which he died.
But the day on which he was born,
historians, Western scholars or not.
So, the idea of celebrating diversity
becomes wrong from the point that we don't even know if the exact date
becomes wrong again from the point as I mentioned that the celebration of birthdays is of pagan origin. The Prophet Muhammad Maalox, peace and blessings be upon him like Prophet Jesus
molars peace and blessings be upon him did not celebrate.
Nor did his followers, his disciples his immediate companions celebrate.
And the Islamic teaching which should be fine,
what is acceptable, and what is not acceptable in the form of the Quran is pure revelation without any kind of distortions.
It has no foundation for the celebration of the birth.
And the sooner or the way of Prophet Muhammad,
peace and blessings be upon him.
There is nothing in his way with support.
based on his own statements,
such a practice
a lot of said,
when I lost it
the prophet Mohammed
himself says, matter of
I've not left aside anything which would bring you closer to Allah, except that I have commanded to do
anything because when we do any of this, of this nature,
the act of celebration of the prophets birthday. This is an act of worship. It isn't a religious act. It's an act which we believe is pleasing to God.
For us to be pleasing to God has been sanctioned by the prophet himself.
And he also says men are the umbrella Malays for water, whoever brings something new, this a fear of hours of Islam
which is not a part of it as no foundation in the Quran and the Sunnah.
It is rejected,
So from that
we can conclude
Christmas has no place
It is not allowable, for Muslims, to celebrate
Christmas, to join in those celebrations to give the greetings
We celebrate the birthday of the Prophet, Mohammed,
Salah they are doing themselves
because they're doing something
innovation, and Islam are very strict about innovation. This is why if you were to go back 1400 years,
back to the time of Prophet Muhammad,
Allah, you would find that
the general practice that he followed he and his companions, same practices followed by
the more closely they follow it,
the better off they are,
the less they follow it, the worse off they are, both spiritually and materially.
I didn't want this to be
an especially long talk, because the property is not really that complicated. I just wanted to give you some insights into the origins of Christmas,
from a Christian point of view,
so that, for those of you who are Muslim,
as this time draws near, if you are invited to some celebrations,
you're asked to do
that you'll be able to give an informed answer as to why you cannot take part in
and for those thinking Christians, who wants to find the
Then I've also provided some information, which is accessible, it's not very complicated. I just went to some encyclopedias.
Catholic dictionary and such took from the basic sources.
And we can find out what is the origin of things, find out whether it's in fact, is an acceptable practice. Because religion is not something which is man made.
The offense that human beings are the ones and put it together as
if it is to be the religion of God,
then it must be based on
everything that is done based on revelation. And you will find that truly only
as whatever is ascribed to Islam, necessarily ascribed to Muslims. Because you may find all kinds of things.
Much of it, not related to revelations, but in terms of the religion itself,
which has remained pure in the sense that anyone who wants to know what is Islam, they can find out. And you will find that each and every practice, each and every principle has its foundation in reputation.
I would like to give you all an opportunity
to express any questions
raise on the topic of Christmas,
or the celebration of profits birthday,
which is called moelis and levy.
It's also called,
the practice of its celebration began in the 11th century.
A century that is
500 years after the time
the dynasty known as the document diamonds, they're the ones
of the concelebrated.
we also find another central nature,
the brother in law,
by the name of Malik
the first record
is called orthodox
five 600 years.
So if you have any questions, or any
because not a part of religion, from what I understand, it's not
Ramadan, or if you don't celebrate it,
it's not an innovation.
Secondly, what you're voting about, started by Putin
was I, from what I understand it was
part of my
considered a heretic
was not started by them. But
I don't want to start a debate about this. But I just want to make it very clear that
the better word would be
commemorate or something, there's nothing celebration.
what is done is to read Quran
in Arabic, and translate translation, because in most of the world, people read Quran, but don't understand it. And it is not at all considered as a part of religion.
Well, let me beg to differ with my brother
on all three points.
that it is not considered a part of religion.
I would say that in most parts of the Muslim world, if you express to them that you do not believe that
celebrated, you will find people looking at you very negatively.
hold to it quite strongly.
And when they do it, they do it believing that it is pleasing to God,
they're not going to do something which they don't believe God, they're doing this whether it's reading the Quran in that circumstance. And as I said, you mentioned that what is done in the molad
is just reading the Quran, that may be in your small circle. But when we go around the Muslim world, we find something else. We find celebrations looking like Christmas, people singing songs, and you know, even dancing and music and you know, all kinds of stuff going on.
And much of these songs they call Qawwali, and all these different types of, you know, asides and things which are used, when you look into the meanings of words. That being said in these various verses of fortune, they're attributing to Prophet Mohammed Vilas peace and blessings be upon him attributes which belong only to Allah. So you'll find schicke, in much of what is recited.
And as I said, the practices go far beyond what you speak up, maybe some people a few
people have reflected more into religion realizing these other practices are extremely, they tried to bring it down to something simpler, you know, just reading,
but I will question them, why do you pick that date?
Because you believe that the day on which the Prophet was born, so you are celebrating his birthday. And as I pointed out, the celebration of a birthday is prohibited.
It is pagan origin, Muslims did not celebrate birthdays.
Nor did you
follow is a
celebration of birthday was known amongst the Romans, the Greeks, Egyptians, Persian, these are the people who are not following Egyptian,
Please don't take
any personal attack or anything, okay.
The people, you know, peoples of the past the pagan peoples, these are those who celebrated birthdays. So for us to start that celebration. And as I said, when a person does that act, they do it, believing that it is pleasing.
And whatever act, this is the Islamic definition of worship,
whatever act that you do, which is pleasing to God, is an act of worship.
This is why the whole of the Muslims life becomes an act of worship.
Because if you don't separate, you know, and how about the secular kind of our actions that we have, you know, these secular acts that we do, which is separate from our religion.
The religion encompasses everything about Islam that is unique that it has there's no separation between the mundane and the secular, and the religious note is all one. It's all encompassing. And whatever we do, we are supposed to do it, believing that this is pleasing to God, and how can we know what is pleasing to God enough to use our minds to think Well, I think the Prophet would like to celebrate his birthday.
Who are you to think
Did you ask him
now, if it was something good, something pleasing to Allah. The Prophet Muhammad wa sallam already said that he did not leave anything which would bring us closer to Allah that is pleasing to Allah because it was pleasing to Allah when we do it become closer to Allah, he did not leave anything which would bring us closer to a loss, except that he told us to do it finish, it means there is nothing new we can add to the religion, which will bring us closer, which will be pleasing to Allah, which the Prophet Mohammed Salah did not already.
Not necessarily explicitly, because this is why we have what we call
the application of the Sharia, the divine revelation when we apply it from place to place, depending on circumstances, we may apply it in slightly different manners.
This is the fifth.
And this we believe when the person does apply the law, although it is a human being applying it, we believe this is pleasing to God. Its foundation is based on revelation, the actual ruling that we may take for example, when wisdom say it is prohibited to smoke hashish.
Now hashish was not around at the time.
But the foundations of intoxicants were already prohibited in the Quran and the Sunnah. So we find anything which functions in a similar manner weekend
using our understanding and the application of the law, but the foundation of what we're doing is there in
the center, but now we come to celebrating the profits, where is the foundation?
What is the foundation on which we are going to face
the celebration, our sisters asking for celebration of birthdays, I already pointed out. This is pagan in its origin.
as Muslims, we do not partake of pagan celebrations.
The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him and said, mentorship is a woman whom whoever imitates the ways of a people is all of them.
You take part in the pagan rituals, then you're like a pagan.
So, we avoid practices, which are specifically related back to paganism. It doesn't mean for example, that
came from America, these people weren't Muslim.
Because this is not got any kind of religious significance is not linked to if it were for example, in the form of a robe which is worn by Catholic
for example, they had a particular role.
They were certain ceremonies, etc. For a Muslim to take on that particular dress.
the practice of celebration,
though, celebration of birthdays in love themselves and not considered a religious act in and of themselves. Because when people are celebrating the birthday of their children, they're not thinking that this is something pleasing to Allah.
This is just something custom which people do or they're looking at. So, though it may not be looked at from a point of innovation in the religion here, it is looked at as prohibited from the point that it is of pagan origin.
This was the practice of the pagans, those worship idols, this is what they used to do celebrate birthdays, give gifts on these birthdays. So for Muslim, it would be prohibited for them to be involved in such practice.
The National Day
from an Islamic perspective is also prohibited
the birth of the nation.
This is prohibited because the Prophet Muhammad mela, peace and blessings be upon him. When he left Mecca and came to Medina, he found the people of Medina having a number of different celebrations.
And he asked them what they told me we did this for this. They said well
we have only two celebration.
celebration at the end of the process.
This is a celebration of Prophet Abraham.
It means any other celebration, which is done on a yearly basis is called he
called it because comes from either your own thing which comes back every time every year.
Got any of those kind of celebrations?
Whether it's New Year's Day,
National Day, whatever.
According to what I'm saying know, what you do is you try to sit them down and say, do you know where Christmas came from?
You try to educate them,
rather than leave them in a state of ignorance
and encourage them in their ignorance.
We know that Christmas celebration is very important in the Christian
point of view. Now you will notice that they have a strong invitation to their religion. Now re emphasizing or you are emphasizing that this priest must have no foundational basis at all, in the Old Testament or in the New Testament.
Yes, this is what I'm saying. That's not what I'm saying. Actually, this is what I quoted from you, scholars, Western scholars of Christianity have said that themselves. Christmas has no basis in the gospels
or in the
practice of Jesus, Old Testament or Newton
has no foundation.
This was the whole point that what I expressed the 25th of December where it came
celebration of the birth where it is.
The church prohibited it at one point, the early generation the early few first few 100 years they prohibited it. They banned it later on those who are in favor of its were pushing paganism. It became popular and again back in the 17th century that bounded again. So if it were something which had a foundation in the gospels, historically, then
the church would never have banded