on moonsighting for ramadan...

our masjid here announced the dates for ramadan and 3eid being this saturday (9/23) and monday (10/23) respectively. this is based on the fiqh council of north america’s decision to use calculation to determine the dates for ramadan and 3eid.

something about this struck me as odd, determining the dates of both ramadan and 3eid this far in advance. i used to think that basing the moonsighting off of calculations was a good thing, until i found out that calculations could be wrong. i found this out when i read sheikh isam’s excellent answer to this question on islamicnetwork (link courtesy of OK, jazahAllah khair).

in my personal and non-scholarly opinion, i would figure that since the world is so small today and news can travel from one part of the world to another within seconds, that if any trustworthy people say they saw the moon, then we should all fast, and if no one sees it, then we should wait. but of course there is difference of opinion on all of this, and its from the mercy of Allah on us, and of course as always, Allah knows best.

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