MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, YOGYAKARTA—Muhammadiyah uses hisab hakiki of wujudul hilal to determine a hijr calendar. The new moon begins when (1) ijtima’ (conjunction) occurs, (2) the sun sets and the moon hasn’t set yet, (3) the first visible crescent of the moon in the western sky after sunset.
Chair of the Muhammadiyah Council for Tarjih and Tajdid Prof. Syamsul Anwar said Muhammadiyah’s hijr calendar is a local calendar, which is only applicable in Indonesia and cannot be used by Muslims outside the country.
One of the results of the 47th Congress of Muhammadiyah in Makasar was creating a global Islamic calendar. The Muhammadiyah Council for Tarjih and Tajdid has conducted an annual meeting to discuss the hisab method since 2015. Indeed, the council invited other organizations to the 2018 meeting.
“We are still trying. We have to promote it first. People should understand it. We cannot apply the global calendar if the people haven’t had understanding yet because it will emerge many differences and commotions,” Prof. Syamsul said in the 136th tarjih preaching on Wednesday (18/8).
Even though the Muhammadiyah Council for Tarjih and Tajdid has published a global Islamic calendar to promote it to the public, for certain interest, Muhammadiyah remains using the hijr calendar using the wujudul hilal.
The global Islamic calendar and hijr calendar are principally similar, created based on the new moon. However, the scope of the global Islamic calendar is the entire surface of the earth. For example, the new moon in Buenos Aires is similar to the new moon in New Delhi or areas where the first visible crescent of the moon in the western sky is before the sunset. Meanwhile, the hijr calendar used by Muhammadiyah for Indonesia shows that the new moon rises in Riau Islands similar to the one in Ambon and eastern areas of Indonesia.
“We’re still using the wujudul hilal calendar, and we’re trying to use the global Islamic calendar. Thus, we have to promote the calendar to the public first and tell them the criteria, reasons, and principles of the calendar-making,” Prof. Syamsul said.
This Professor of Islamic Law at UIN Sunan Kalijaga mentioned it’s necessary to use the global Islamic calendar because it will unite Muslims around the world to commemorate Islamic moments such as Eid al-Fitr, Ramadan, and most importantly Arafah fasting.