Respond to greeting wishes pagan festival.

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)


One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

Bother  Burhan the  festivals like valentine day Non Muslims wish us for the day how should we respond to them. Kindly bring light  on this so that we know about such occasations.


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Respond to greeting wishes pagan festival

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.


Every people have their own civilization, their culture and days of celebration.  Allah and His Messenger (saws) have appointed the two Eids for celebration in Islam, and have made every Friday a day of Eid and celebration for the believers.   For a true believer,  every day that dawns is a Sign from our Merciful Lord,  and every day that Allah gives us life,  can be a day of celebration for us.


There is absolutely no harm if one celebrates or congratulates one’s non-muslim friends on their personal accomplishments and happy occasions like their marriage, the birth of their baby, or their children’s graduation, or a promotion in their job, etc.  But it would neither behove nor befit a believer who believes in Allah and the Last Day to greet or celebrate any of their religious occasions with them like Christmas, Easter, Diwali, Holi, etc……for that then would be to intentionally witness a falsehood.


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 25 Surah Furqaan verse 72:

72      (The true slave-servants of Allah are) Those who witness no falsehood (intentionally), and if they pass by futility they pass by it with honorable (avoidance)


In light of the guidance of the Quran and the Sunnah, the jurors in Islam have listed four categories which would make any celebration or gathering forbidden:

  1. The celebration should not be a pagan religious festival.
  2. The celebration should not involve any ‘shirk’.
  3. The celebration should not involve or encourage ‘fahisha’ or indecency or any of the things absolute forbidden in Islam (alcohol, gambling, etc.)
  4. The celebration should not indulge in excess spending.


The pagan beliefs and religions and thus their religious festivals are based on absolute falsehoods, and it does not behove one who sincerely believes in Allah and the Last Day as Truth to indulge in celebrations of falsehood.  To greet or celebrate pagans on their pagan and religious days of festivals would be to justify their false beliefs.


Ref: the origin of St. Valentine’s Day

There are varying opinions as to the origin of Valentine's Day. Some reports state that it originated from St. Valentine, a Roman who was martyred for refusing to give up Christianity.  He died on February 14, 269 A.D., the same day that had been devoted to love lotteries.  Legend also says that St. Valentine left a farewell note for the jailer's daughter, who had become his friend, and signed it "From Your Valentine".  Other aspects of the story say that Saint Valentine served as a priest at the temple during the reign of Emperor Claudius. Claudius then had Valentine jailed for defying him. In 496 A.D. Pope Gelasius set aside February 14 to honor St. Valentine.


Gradually, February 14 became the date for exchanging love messages and St. Valentine became the patron saint of lovers. The date was marked by sending poems and simple gifts such as flowers. There was often a social gathering or a ball.

In the United States, Miss Esther Howland is given credit for sending the first Valentine cards. Commercial valentines were introduced in the 1800's and now the date is very commercialised.


Some other reports on the origin of Valentine’s Day state that it started in the time of the Roman Empire.  In ancient Rome, February 14th was a holiday to honor Juno. the Queen of the Roman Gods and Goddesses. The Romans also knew her as the Goddess of women and marriage. The following day, February 15th, began the Feast of Lupercalia.


Under the rule of Emperor Claudius II Rome was involved in many bloody and unpopular campaigns. Claudius the Cruel was having a difficult time getting soldiers to join his military leagues. He believed that the reason was that Roman men did not want to leave their loves or families. As a result, Claudius cancelled all marriages and engagements in Rome. Saint Valentine was a priest at Rome in the days of Claudius II.  He and Saint Marius aided the Christian martyrs and secretly married couples, and for this deed Saint Valentine was apprehended and dragged before the Prefect of Rome, who condemned him to be beaten to death with clubs and to have his head cut off.  He suffered martyrdom on the 14th day of February, about the year 270.  At that time it was the custom in Rome, a very ancient custom, indeed, to celebrate in the month of February the Lupercalia, feasts in honor of a heathen god. On these occasions, amidst a variety of pagan ceremonies, the names of young women were placed in a box, from which they were drawn by the men as chance directed.

The pastors of the early Christian Church in Rome endeavored to do away with the pagan element in these feasts by substituting the names of saints for those of maidens. And as the Lupercalia began about the middle of February, the pastors appear to have chosen Saint Valentine's Day for the celebration of this new feast. So it seems that the custom of young men choosing maidens for valentines, or saints as patrons for the coming year, arose in this way.


Thus regardless of which story is accurate or which legend one wishes to accept, it is certain that Valentine’s Day has its origin based on a pagan culture, and paganism has absolutely no basis in Islam.  It does not behove a believer, who sincerely believes in Allah and the Last Day to celebrate or commemorate pagan rites and rituals and festivals, thus it would be best and purest if the believers feared Allah and absolutely rejected this pagan celebration and abstained from commemorating or celebrating it.


Sunan of Abu-Dawood Hadith 4020  Narrated by Abdullah ibn Umar

The Prophet (saws) said: ‘He who copies any people is one of them.’


Your Question: Bother  Burhan the  festivals like valentine day Non Muslims wish us for the day how should we respond to them

If one is greeted or wished by their disbelieving brethren on their pagan occasions like St. Valentine’s Day, or Christmas, or Easter, or Diwali, or Holi, etc…..the best response a believer can give in return is make a supplication for them by saying ‘Allah Yah-deek’ or ‘Hadaak-Allah’, meaning ‘May Allah Guide you (to the Truth)’.


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone.  Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.


Your brother and well wisher in Islam,








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