بسم اﷲالرّحمٰن الرّحیم

Sighting Possibility : Astronomical or Shar'ee? 
Shar’ee Acceptance or Stubbornness?
Sighting Testimonies that support Prophet (SAW)’s Divine Methodology:
Does This Increase The Light of Imaan Or Diminish It?


Dear Readers                                   Assalamu-Alaikum

You may have read the recently published detailed and accurate testimony for sighting of the new Moon of Ramadan 1431 on the evening of Tuesday 10th August 2010 in Birmingham.  It conclusively proved beyond doubt that the first fast of Ramadan was indeed on Wednesday 11th August, and for those who are interested, the Ei’tikaaf of last Ashram of Ramadan will begin from sunset on Monday 30th August 2010. The Hilal sighting in Birmingham has once again proved that moon sighting news from Saudi Arabia is completely authentic, trustworthy, and reliable.  Imdadul Fatawa + Mufti Mahmood R.A. + Brief fatawa. It also proved that observatorial calculations cannot be relied upon for moon sighting purposes.

Some people express surprise that this Hilal sighting contradicts observatorial calculations and global moon visibility charts.  However, this is not the first incident where the moon sighting goes against observatorial predictions.  Below are some of these examples which are also recorded on our website. (See our book ``Hilal Judgement on moon sighting  pg.96 at www.hizbululama.org)

  1. Over two decades ago, the Hilal of Shawaal was observed by 17 Muslims in Batley and Blackburn when it was purported to be just four and a half hours old.  Mufti Ahmed Dewlavi Sahib accepted their testimony and declared Eid-ul-Fitr in a meeting held at Tawheed-ul-Islam Mosque, Bicknell Street, Blackburn.  This was made in the presence of the congregation and visiting Scholars (see ;above book`s p.96).  Upon this announcement, the committee members of the old Markaz in Dewsbury also declared Eid-ul-Fitr, even though they were on their 28th fast, and had to perform Qadha of one fast later on Click Here + Meeting of Europian Ulama WITH Gov.of Madinah + Sighting of the Moon by Islamic Law or Calculated Observatorial Law!

  2. Scholars at Darul-Uloom Bury saw the new Moon 19 minutes before its purported birth was predicted by observatory calculations which follow the Metonic theory (Click to see: Maulana Ayyub Kholvadia SA., Maktaba Hashmi Batley, Darul Uloom Bury).

  3. In Egypt, Hilal of Shaaban was sighted TWO HOURS BEFORE ITS PURPORTED BIRTH by three Muslims including an Imaan.  This was disclosed by at a Joint Conference of Islamic Societies for establishing Hilal Sighting held at the Islamic Cultural Centre, Regents Park, London, by Director Sheikh Jamal-Manna, who said “I spoke over the telephone with Sheikh-al-Azhar Sheikh Jaad-al-Haq Ali-Jaad-al-Haq about sighting of the Hilal of Shaaban1409h/7th March 1989.  The Sheikh replied that the Hilal was observed in Aswan by three brothers including the Imam of the Masjid.  Their testimony was declared as trustworthy and reliable by the Regional Judge.  So we accepted the judgement of the Regional Judge and announced the beginning of Shaaban in Egypt from that evening.”  Upon this, Sheikh Jamal-Manna told Sheikh-al-Azhar, “When those brothers that saw the new Moon, it had remained visible two hours before its theoretical birth.  How could they see it?”  The Sheikh al Azhar replied    “In Shar’ee establishment of Hilal sighting, astronomical calculations are never to be relied upon.  And this testimony is Shar’ee'. (See; Minute of ICC,Regent Park, London) The Joint Conference was attended by local and national 0rganisations including Hizbul-Ulama UK, Jamiat-e-Ulama Britain, Marhum Khwaja Qamaruddin of UK Islamic Mission, and many others.

  4. Two brothers sighted the 6hr.old Hilal of Dhul-Haj 1413 on the evening of 21st May 1993 in between slowly moving clouds in Birmingham's Central Mosque's car park(click; to see scatch sent by them to us).

  5. A similar incident occurred when three Students of Darul Uloom Leicester observed the new Moon of Rabius-Thani on 25th April 2009 (Click Here). 

  6. Similarly, many workers and Haramain visitors have reported sighting the Hilal in Saudi Arabia on many, many occasions.  For example, outside a Mosque in Aziziah, soon after Maghrib Salat, three people including a Scholar, observed the Hilal of Muharram when it was purported to be just three hours old (Click; Maulana Ali Khanpuri ,Principale Darul Uloomul Banat, Manubar).

  7. A family on Hajj in 1989 observed the crescent Moon of Dhul-Hajj 1409 on the Evening of 3rd Jlay after Salatul Maghrib with Hundreds of Hujjaj .  The moon was observed when it was just 11 hrs and 15 mins old.  We reported the sighting to a leading scholar of astronomy, Dr. Bernard Yallop at Royal Greenwich Observatory, asking for his thoughts with regard to this sighting and their calculation theory.  He refused to believe that a new moon at such a young age can be observed by the naked eye or by the use of a telescope!  Astonishingly,later, another scholar in astronomy Dr. Khalid Shokat used the same calculation theory to demonstrate that it was actually possible to observe that new moon of Dhull Hajj 1409 at Madinah (Click; Astronomic culculater-when open please go furher down it will be appear after Urdoo).  It is a real sense of shame that some of our Muslim scholars, prefer to disregard testing these witnesses in light of Qur'an and A’haadith, and choose to dismiss these observations using the calculation theory first invented by the pagan-worshipper Meton in 431 BC and further developed by the Jewish Rabbi Helal II in 358CE. The Majlis of S. Africa oppose The Calculations!

There are many such incidents when naked eye new-Moon sightings have been observed around the world when astronomy claims it is not possible to do so. (Hizbul Ulama UK world  record + RGW)  These incidents only prove why Prophet Muhammad (SAW) taught us, rely only upon the original source of Qur'an and Hadith when practising Islam.  He had himself rejected the pre-Islamic research of experts who studied movements of the Moon, Sun, Earth, and stars and rejected the philosophy of Meton that was used by the Jewish Rabbi Hilel II who introduced a change (Tahreef) in the Deen of Prophet Musa AS and developed Meton’s calculations to establish lunar phases and demarcation of the beginning and end of lunar months for Jewish + Christian  religious practice.  In Islam it is contrary to our teachings and for moon sighting we can only use naked eye testimonies without any Metonic pre-conditions.  This rejection of calculations is mentioned by the verse in the Qur'an, “They asking you about the new-Moon, say they are time periods for men and for Hajj” (2-189).  Furthermore, the Hadith of Prophet SAW says, “we are an un-lettered nation: we neither write nor calculate ...' the significance of the Hadith was to specifically prohibit reliance upon Jewish calculations in establishing Hilal sightings (see more explanation in Our books & Articles at www.hizbululama.org.uk + Shaikhul Islam-Sauth AFrica).

However, that is not to say we should remain un-lettered generally.  We are instructed by Prophet Muhammed SAW to learn and expand our knowledge and as an example he demonstrated this by freeing the polytheist prisoners of Badr on the condition that they taught Muslims how to read and write, even ordering his companion Zaid RA to learn the Jewish language. 

Prophet Mohammed SAW knew that Jewish Scholars of Medina were experts in the field of astronomy and used their knowledge of astronomical calculations for Hilal to determine the Jewish religious calendar.  Despite this he refused to follow them and forbade his companions from relying on calculations for establishing Islamic months, or authenticating sightings.  During the period of Khulafa-e-Raashidin (after Prophet SAW), everybody followed this same Sunnah of Prophet SAW.  The vast Islamic empire reached Rome and Persia which in those days were international centres of philosophy and astronomy.  Even then the Khulafa-e-Raashidin never asked for help in determining Islamic months from these experts.  In fact it wasn’t until the advent of the Shea Fatimid King of Egypt, Hakim Bi Amrillah who forced the Sunni majority of Egypt to use astronomical calculations for establishing the Islamic calendar.

We find it deeply disturbing that some people on the one hand claim to be propagators of the Deen yet on the other only have Imaan' in the Pagan/Jewish/Shia moon-sighting methodology.  They promote their fanciful ideas with such vigour and fury that they freely use slander, innuendo and personal abuse against anyone who they feel is against them.  Indeed those who truly follow the orders of Islam, and practice the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammed SAW would use wisdom when dealing with such matters but alas that it beyond even the religious amongst them. (Shaikh Musa Bazi R.A. + Mufti A.Rahim Lajpuri R.A.). Furthermore, their attempts at sowing confusion amongst the ordinary Muslims put them in the unenviable position of being propaganda agents for the ideas of the pagan worshipper Meton, and the Jewish Rabbi Hilel II.  The sad fact is that they do trying to conceal the full knowledge of the facts from the people and instead try to mesmerise them with global visibility charts, partial quotes, and redacted fatwas.

Their shameful denunciation of the Saudi moon-sighting testimony for Ramadan 1431, in which they insulted the witnesses in Saudi Arabia as ‘Bedouin folk’ and implied that they could not possibly have seen the new-moon cresecent, succinctly illustrates the level of their arguments and wisdom.  The simple reply to such vile is to ask whether they also regard the Prophet and his companions as such who by all accounts came from similar bedoiun backgrounds. Allamah Shami RA cried who mesmerised the people at murtad. Islam had never been a religion for just the educated urban city people, but came amongst poor people and is kept alive by them.  Most importantly, our Prophet Muhammed SAW accepted moon sighting testimony from Bedoiuns and it is a source of great strength that in this day and age that Sunnah is adhered to.  See below:

عن رجل من اصحاب النبى صلى الله عليه وسلم قال اختلف الناس فى آخر يوم من شهر رمضان فقدم اعرابيان فشهدا عند النبى صلى الله عليه وسلم
 بالله لأهلا الهلال أمس عشية فأمر رسول الله للناس أن يفطروا وزاد فى رواية وأن يغدوا إلى مصليهم

During the era of Rasoolullah صلى الله عليه وسلم the people were divided with regards to the last day of Ramadhaan. Then two Bedouins arrived and testified that they had both sighted the moon on the previous evening thus Rasoolullah صلى الله عليه وسلم instructed the Sahaabah to terminate their fast and proceed to the Musallaa (Eid Ghaah) the next day.  (Abu Dawood, Ibn Maajah, Nasaai, Ahmad).

This had also occurred at an instance of Eidul Fitr when none of the residents of Madinah had sighted the moon due to which Rasoolullah صلى الله عليه وسلم , the Sahaabah and the residents of Madinah had engaged in fasting on the 30th day. When the day had almost passed and it was close to sunset two unknown members of a certain caravan that was passing-by came in to the city and expressed to Rasoolullah صلى الله عليه وسلم that they had both sighted the moon on the previous evening upon which Rasoolullah صلى الله عليه وسلم had personally terminated his fast and instructed his companions to do the same. In another narration it states that he ordered that Eid Salaah should be performed the next day.

Acoording to this Hadith Rasoolullah صلى الله عليه وسلم accepted the testimony of Bedouin strangers who had travelled from a far place.

These incidents amply demonstrate that Prophet SAW accepted the testimony of Bedouin people.  In fact in one instance testimony was accepted after the time had lapsed for Eid-ul-Fitr!  In Shar’iah late testimony can be accepted and as with the Birmingham testimony for Ramadan 1431 (2010) such late testimony’s are completely legitimate + Kifayatul Mufti. Arguments regarding Moon-set before Sun-set are spurious and have no basis in Shar-iah.  The countless testimonies from around the World we have collected over the course of the past 30 years will demonstrate to any sane, rational and fair-minded person that observatory theory’s are unreliable, indeed one of the leading international astronomers Dr Martin Elsasser attested to this fact, whom we quote in this instance only to satisfy those who just  believe these people in this matter, for us the sayings of our Prophet is enough!
See more there in our web site (Ref. Hilal Judgment on Moon sighting)   

It is a pre-requisite of 'Belief in Allah SWT and Prophet SAW that we whole-heartedly follow religious instructions whether we fully understand them or not, and even if they are against the prevalent philosophy and reasoning of the age.  We must not allow ourselves to be intoxicated by the allure of becoming the modern day Khawarij and Mo'tazila communities. Nothing has superiority over the Deen, and this is the reason why none of the great Ulama and Fuqahaa, including those of Deobandi & Barelvi Darul Ifta (Darul Ifta Deoband ,Darul Ifta Jameah Farooqiyah Karachi, Darul Ifta Bareli & Fazil Bareli Maulana Ahmed Razakhan) ever favoured using theories and astronomical conditions to reject  Shar’ee Moon sighting Testimonies.  They rejected such rules in their books and Fataawa and were not given the status accorded to the Qur'an and Hadith. Click; New Topic of Fatawa  and other English /Urdoo books in our web site with Ahle Sunnah Waljamaah Deobandi & Barelvi + Imdadul Fatawa.

We all know that Iblis was expelled by Allah SWT from Jannah for his haughtiness and intellectual pride and no amount of intellect can free one from disobeying the commandments of the Deen. The evidence of the recent Hilal sighting in Birmingham and elsewhere, in Saudi Arabia, and around the world (including Yemen by 5 Ulama, in Algeria, in Indonesia at in 2 places, in Nigeria at in 10 places, in Ghana by 3 people and in Mozambique on the evening of Tuesday 10th August 2010 with the first fast being Wednesday 11th August 2010) is not surprising but rather enforces the fight against innovators in the Deen. It is also an invitation of Hida’yah for us all to follow the true path and repent before illness and death take hold. We pray Allah SWT guide us on the straight path, the path of those whom you favoured, and not the path of those upon whom your anger came, or those who were misguided. Wasalam and Ameen. 


The Committee
Central Moon-sighting Committee of Great Britain
(Jamiatul Ulama Britain Darul Uloom Bury, Hizbul Ulama UK