Can I Join My Non-Muslim Family During Easter?

24 March, 2018
Q Salam Alaykom. Thank you very much for the answers that you always give. I would like to know something: I am a Muslim who is married to a European convert. My husband still wants to celebrate Christmas and Easter in his country because it belongs to his tradition and he wants to celebrate it always with his family. Is it forbidden to go with him to his family and join them and celebrate with them just because I don't want to leave my husband alone? What about Easter? They said that Easter belongs to spring time and not a religious holiday. I don't believe is non-Muslim holidays, but I just want to be with them during their celebration, so is it OK? Thank you very much for the answers, I'm always pleased to contact this site.

Answer

Wa Alaikum Assalam Fatma,

Thank you for your question, your kind comments, and for contacting Ask About Islam.

To begin with, we must agree that Christmas and Easter celebrations and customs have little to do with religion.

These customs began way before Christianity was born and the traditions and figures around it have no relation with Christianity whatsoever, such as Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny.

Having said that, there are so many customs that are celebrated in the Muslim world that have nothing or little to do with Islam as well; and Muslims often exchange gifts and share food on those occasions.

Not Black and White

In general, doing so are good practices since it keeps people’s relationships healthy regardless of the occasion. 

Nowadays, we must look separately at each situation we face regarding celebrations and it all has to do with our intentions.

So, the matter is not as narrow as we perceive it to be; it is not black or white.

Yes, as Muslims we shouldn’t go out of our ways to celebrate Christmas and Easter with zeal, but we must have common sense to know what is beneficial for our faith and our relationships with others as Muslims.

Otherwise, we turn ourselves into inapproachable individuals.

Therefore, there is nothing wrong from visiting and exchanging food with family on Christmas or Easter.

You usually eat their food on other occasions and Christmas or Easter is not any different. Also Allah has specifically allowed us to eat the food of the People of the Book as long as it is not unlawful to us such as pork or wine.

You don’t have to believe or contribute in the traditions of their festivity even when present in the same place but it is your duty to keep up good relations with your in-laws.

Good Family Relations

You will be doing the right thing by keeping the good relationship with your husband’s family.

You are not the one celebrating those holidays, it is your non-Muslim family and there is no better occasion than that to keep up the kind relationship and strengthen love among yourselves.

It is your opportunity to show them that Islam is a moderate and sensible religion.

You might have the opportunity to convey the message of Islam to your husband’s family directly or indirectly since they won’t listen to your opinion if you don’t keep in touch when they are all assembled for an occasion.

As Muslims, we have to be approachable individuals so that people always feel comfortable with us. 

Through your kindness and good behavior, you might influence one of your husband’s family members and at least, give a good impression about Islam and Muslims.

Through our good conduct and behavior, we will be able to reach many people and demonstrate to them the true meaning of Islam.

I hope this helps answer your question.

Salam and please keep in touch.

Please continue feeding your curiosity, and find more info in the following links:

Reverts’ Marriage & the Culture Clash

https://aboutislam.net/reading-islam/living-islam/new-muslims-challenges-family/

New Muslims – All You Need in Your New Life

https://aboutislam.net/reading-islam/understanding-islam/pagan-origins-easter-traditions/