Today is an important day in Islamic culture. Ashura, a holy day for Muslims worldwide, falls this year on August 8, according to the Gregorian calendar.
On this day, Shia Muslims mourn and hold a day of remembrance of the martyrdom of Prophet Muhammad’s grandson, Hussain Ibn Ali, in Karbala.
Sunni Muslims celebrate Ashura as the day Allah parted the Red Sea, allowing Moses (Musa) and his followers to flee from the Pharaoh.
Traditionally, fasting was a part of Ashura; however, a sacred revelation came to Prophet Muhammad, prompting him to change the Islamic calendar and make Ramadan the month of fasting.
Muslims celebrate Ashura each year on the tenth day of Muharram, the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar.
Muharram means “not permitted.” Traditionally, it was one of the four sacred months when fighting was not allowed. It is one of the four holy months in Islam.
According to Hindustan Times, the Islamic Hijri calendar is based on the lunar cycle, consists of 12 months, and has 354 days. A lunar month lasts 29 or 30 days. The new month starts at the sight of the new moon.
This way of tracking months differs from the Gregorian calendar, which follows the sun and consists of 365 days a year.
The first day of the holy month of Muharram and the start of the New Year corresponds this year to Saturday, July 30, 2022, on the Gregorian calendar. Ashura will be observed ten days later, which falls on August 8, 2022.
The Hijri calendar began its count from the Islamic New Year in which Muhammed and his followers migrated from Mecca to Medina, an event known as the Hijra.