Muslims around the world are celebrating the Eid al-Adha religious holiday, which, in Arabic, means the “festival of the sacrifice” and marks the end of Hajj, the five-day pilgrimage Muslims undertake to cleanse the soul of sins and instil a sense of equality and brotherhood among them.
Eid al-Adha commemorates the story of the Muslim Prophet Ibrahim’s test of faith when he was commanded by God to sacrifice his son, Ismail. The belief holds that God stayed his hand, sparing the boy, and placing a ram in his place.
Although the majority of Muslims will celebrate the four-day holiday starting Sunday, for many, including those living in India and Pakistan, Eid al-Adha will not begin until Monday.
The day is marked with the sacrifice of an animal, usually a goat, sheep or cow, and the distribution of the meat among neighbours, family members, and the poor.