Islam and the Quran

Who Should Sacrifice as a Worship?

In the Qur’an, the Almighty God decrees:

And to every community (ummah) We have appointed time and place of sacrifice[1], so that they might extol the name of God over whatever heads of cattle[2] He may have provided for them.” (al-Hajj 22:34)

All worships other than sacrifice are prescribed per person. For instance, performing the Pilgrimage (Hajj) is prescribed using the command “Pilgrimage to the House is a duty owed to God by people who are able to undertake it. (Al-e Imran 3:97)”

But the duty of sacrifice is a duty prescribed to a community. So, whoever God has provided with a cattle, or the means to sacrifice a cattle, and undertakes the duty of sacrifice has performed an obligatory (fardh) duty; and whoever does not have the means and therefore can not perform it has not sinned.

According to Hanafi sect, the measurement of richness is the same as the amount of nisab that applies to zakat. It is having 85 grams of gold or equivalent money or commodities other than the basic necessities of the person (and his family). Other sects accept describe the duty of sacrifice as “sunnah”.


[1] The word “mansak = مَنسَكًا” mentioned in the verse means “time of sacrifice”, “place of sacrifice”, and “the sacrifice itself”. In this verse, the meanings “time and place of sacrifice” are pertinent.

[2] The Arabic word translated as cattle is “an’am”. An’am is listed to be sheep, goat, camel and bovine of either sex in the verses al-An’am 6:143-144.

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