One of the most significant religious holidays celebrated by Muslims across the globe is the Eid Al-Adha, or "Festival of Sacrifice." The three-day feast commemorates the biblical prophet Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son Ishmael in submission to God. To this end, millions of animals – goats, sheep, cows and camels – are sacrificed for the occasion.
A few days before the holiday began on November 7 a Pakistani blogger, Saad Zuberi, wrote a semi-satirical, semi-serious piece for The Express Tribune newspaper titled, "10 Things I Hate About Bakra Eid."
Zuberi also noted the hypocrisy in Muslim children being scolded for watching action movies but not for watching the "brutal" slaughter of animals en masse, stating, "...some parents think that watching Jackie Chan act like a nincompoop in a movie is bad influence for their kids, but that watching four blood-soaked men brutally attack, slaughter, skin and butcher an 800-pound cow – live – is healthy entertainment."
Below is Zuberi's laundry list of the many things he hates about Eid:
"10 Things I Hate About Bakra Eid"
1. The smell of goats, blood and freshly slaughtered meat. It's everywhere!
2. Call me an infidel, but I just can't bring myself to make merry at the idea of mass-murdering a few hundred thousand cute, furry, unsuspecting farm animals in a span of 72 hours... and that too publicly, in front of a sadistically gleeful audience.
3. All the barbeque talk. Show some sensitivity, people!
4. The questions: Are you slaughtering a goat or a cow? How much will you be spending this year? Only two days left, dude, where's your animal? Seriously guys, I'll get whatever I want, whenever I want – the fact that I'll probably only be able to afford an undernourished midget cow is my business and my business alone!
5. How everyone, including some highly intelligent people, lose their marbles a week before Eid, spending every day just staring at their animals. Poor thing's bound to get the heebie-jeebies!
6. Eid morning – help me God if I have to leave the house and witness the genocide... which I always do, with unrealistic expectations of remaining all Zen at the sight of blood and gutted animals.
7. Becoming a vegetarian for a couple of weeks after freaking out at the sight of above-mentioned blood. Especially if you're the kind of person who actually looks forward to his weekly steaks and hamburgers.
8. How the true essence of the tradition is lost on most of us – people would gladly spend bundles of cash on four goats and two cows at Bakra Eid [i.e. Eid-ul-Adha] so they can feed their own greed and gluttony by stuffing their deep-freezers to full capacity, but go berserk if a truly deserving person should ask them for a little meat to feed his/her hungry children some other time during the year.
9. How some parents think that watching Jackie Chan act like a nincompoop in a movie is bad influence for their kids, but that watching four blood-soaked men brutally attack, slaughter, skin and butcher an 800 pound cow – live – is healthy entertainment.
10. Post-Bakra Eid dinner parties with red-meat dishes in great abandon. How very subtle!