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HomeIslamic Faith PrinciplesWhat is the Importance of Qurban (Islamic Ritual Sacrifice) in Islam?

What is the Importance of Qurban (Islamic Ritual Sacrifice) in Islam?

Qurban means closeness and approach. In Islam its meaning as a form of worship is to slaughter an animal that meets certain conditions at a certain time to get closer to Allah. With the verse, “So pray to your Lord and offer sacrifice [to Him alone]” [1], all Muslims who are financially dependent are ordered.

Since prophet Adam (Peace and blessing be upon him) who is the first human being and the first prophet in the Quran reported that the worship of sacrifice has existed [2] and that sacrifice is ordered in all divine religions.[3] Although the ways of application are different, it is understood from this that the history of sacrifice is as old as humanity.

Regarding the sacrifice, the incident experienced by prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) and his son prophet Ismail (PBUH) is described in detail in the Quran.[4] The practice of sacrifice, which continued from prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) to the pre-Islamic Arab society, has drifted away from its essence over time. With the advent of Islam, the worship of sacrifice, which was purified from false beliefs and returned to its essence, was continued in accordance with the custom of prophet Ibrahim (PBUH).

According to Islam, qurbans are made only for Allah. Apart from this, sacrificial meat slaughtered for the purpose of worshiping other than Allah or for idols cannot be eaten. It has been deemed haram.[5]

Qurban (Islamic ritual sacrifice) is a symbol of surrender. It is an example of the necessity of sacrificing one’s life, property, children and loved ones for the sake of Allah. In every sacrifice, prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) and prophet Ismail’s (PBUH) submission to Allah is also commemorated. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) also commemorated prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) saying, ” Offer a sacrifice, because the sacrifice is the the Sunnah of your father Ibrahim ” [6]

It is stated in the chapter of Al-Hajj verses 36 and 37 that Allah does not need sacrificial meat or blood, and that man needs this worship to be a servant as Allah wishes. In addition, in the same verses, cooperation is also encouraged, apart from the purpose of bringing closer to Allah, and it is ordered to feed the needy and relatives from the meat of the sacrifice. The person can perform this worship by slaughtering himself, or he can have someone else slaughter by giving a power of attorney. In this way he fulfills his worship.

Some societies regard slaughtering animals and eating their meat as brutal. However, the prophet Muhammad (PBUH); ““The son of Adam does not do any deed on the Day of Sacrifice that is dearer to Allah than shedding blood. It will come on the Day of Resurrection with its horns and cloven hoofs and hair. Its blood is accepted by Allah before it reaches the ground. So be content when you do it.” [7] He stated that this job is beneficial and good , and there is nothing to worry about. In Islam, halal and haram are determined by verses. [8] It is forbidden to withdraw oneself from what is halal by accepting it as haram. [9]

There are some important details to pay attention to when slaughtering the victim. It is aimed that the worship performed in this way is in accordance with the procedure. These are;

  • Not to cause suffering to the animal, to act quickly without being tortured and to be done by competent people,
  • First, cutting his throat (windpipe, esophagus, artery, etc.), thus ensuring that he dies immediately so that he does not feel the other procedures,
  • Waiting for it to die completely, proceeding to other processes after making sure of this,
  • Taking the necessary measures for environmental cleaning,
  • If there is another animal waiting for slaughter, these are the rules applied with precision such as not showing the slaughtering process of the slaughtered animal [10].

While sacrifice is ordered to Muslims as it is mentioned in the Quran, there are other types of sacrifices that are not required in Islam. These are the aqiqah sacrifice for the newborn baby to thank Allah, the votive sacrifice sacrificed with the intention of prayer for the fulfillment of a wish, the offering of gratitude sacrifice only for the purpose of gratitude, the hady sacrifice (animal sacrifice carried out by pilgrims) sacrificed while performing the pilgrimage. As it can be seen, the basis of sacrifice worship is to teach human sacrifice and hospitality. Because in Islam, sacrifice is based on “sharing”.


[1] Al-Kawthar, 2

[2] Al-Mai’dah, 27

[3] Al-Hajj, 34

[4] As- Saffat, 100-111

[5] An-Nahl, 115; Al- Anam, 145

[6] Sunan Ibn Majah, Chapter on sacrifice, 3

[7] Sunan Ibn Majah, Chapter on sacrifice, 3

[8] Al-Mai’dah, 3-5

[9] Al-Mai’dah, 87

[10] Decision of the Religious Affairs High Council of the Presidency of Religious Affairs of Turkey, Look at kul.diyanet.gov.tr ​​(what should be considered when slaughtering a sacrifice)