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NU's Decision on Lebaran Date Sparks Debate among Indonesian Muslims

The announcement made by the Nahdlatul Ulama (NU), the largest Muslim organization in Indonesia, regarding the date for Eid al-Fitr, also known as Lebaran, has sparked a heated debate among Indonesian Muslims.

Eid al-Fitr is an important religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide as it marks the end of the fasting month of Ramadan. The determination of the Lebaran date relies on the sighting of the new moon, which is a crucial step in the Islamic lunar calendar.

This year, Ramadan began on April 13th, and many Indonesians were eagerly waiting for NU’s decision on the Lebaran date, which would decide the end of the fasting month. On May 11, NU announced that Ramadan would end on May 12, and Lebaran would be celebrated on May 13, 2021.

The announcement, however, caused mixed reactions among Indonesian Muslims, with some supporting the decision and others opposing it.

Those who supported the decision argued that NU’s decision is based on the observation of the moon, which follows the Islamic lunar calendar. As such, they believe that NU’s decision is based on religious principles and is therefore valid.

On the other hand, those who oppose the decision argued that it would create confusion and division among Indonesian Muslims as other Islamic organizations, such as Muhammadiyah and the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI), have already announced that Lebaran would be on May 13th.

Additionally, the government had announced that Eid al-Fitr would fall on May 13th, with a public holiday declared from May 11th to 15th.

Furthermore, some Indonesian Muslims argue that NU’s earlier announcement of the date for the beginning of Ramadan was different from MUI’s announcement, which had caused confusion among the Muslim community.

The discordance in the announcement of important Islamic holidays has been a long-standing issue in Indonesia. Besides NU, other Islamic organizations make their own declarations about the date of Lebaran, which can lead to confusion and division among Indonesian Muslims.

In response to the debate, NU and other Islamic organizations have called for unity and togetherness among Indonesian Muslims, stating that the most important aspect of the holiday is its religious significance and its ability to bring people together in a spirit of community.

Meanwhile, the Indonesian government has urged NU and MUI to unify and follow the government’s decision on the date for Lebaran to avoid confusion and maintain public order.

In conclusion, NU’s decision on the date for Lebaran has sparked a debate among Indonesian Muslims, highlighting the challenges in unifying pronouncements on important Islamic holidays. Ultimately, the significance of the holiday lies in unity and togetherness, and it is essential for all Islamic organizations to work together to achieve this.