By Yohannes Zewde August 08, 2012
First Month: Muharram
Meaning: The word "Muharram" means "Forbidden." Even before Islam, this month was always known as a scared month in which all unlawful acts were forbidden, prominently the shedding of blood.
Second Month: Safar
Meaning: This word means "whistling of the wind". When this name was assigned to this month, it was probably a windy time of the year. As mentioned earlier, most of the months were named according to weather conditions at the time. However, since they are based on the moon, the months shift about 11 days every year. So, the seasons do not necessarily correspond to the name of the month anymore.
Third Month: Rabi-Al-Awwal
Meaning: First month of spring. It seems it was spring time when the name was given.
Fourth Month: Rabi-Al-Thani is fourth month of the Islamic Calendar
Meaning: The second month of spring.
Fifth Month: Jumada-Al-Awwal
Meaning: The first month of summer. "Jumada" means dry.
Sixth Month: Jumada-Al-Thani
Meaning: Second month of summer.
Seventh Month: Rajab
Meaning: From Rajaba "to respect". Another one of the sacred months in which fighting was forbidden prior to Islam. This was one of the most respected months for the Arabs. It is also called Rajab al Fard. Fard means alone; because the other three sacred months come one after another, except this month. It comes alone not like the other 3 consecutive sacred months.
Eighth Month: Shaban
Meaning: Consecutively escalating. It is derived from the word "shu'ba", which means branch. The Arabs used to branch out during this month to look for water.
Ninth Month: Ramadan
Meaning: Derived from "RAMADHA", literally means "intense heat". The possible reasons for this meaning:
1. When the Islamic months were enforced the month of fasting coincided with the summer months of intense heat.
2. The second reason which has been mentioned is that due to fasting the temperature within the stomach increases, again the element of heat is a factor behind the actual naming of RAMADAN.
3. It has also been said that "RAMADHAA" is one of the names of Allah Ta'aalaa. If that is the case then the month has acquired the name due to the fact that Allah Ta'aalaa burns away accumulated sins and eliminates then from the list of unlawful deeds. Once again the burning sins cannonades "HEAT". However. it should be acknowledged that this reasoning is not wholly reliable.
Tenth Month: Shawwal
Meaning: Uplift/breakage, as before Islam, Arabs believed that any marriage held in Shawwal would always turn out to be unsuccessful. Taken from the word "shala" which means "when the female camel gets pregnant". When this name was given, the female camels used to get pregnant during this time of the year.
Eleventh Month: Zul-Qa'dah
Meaning: Taken from the word "qa'ada" which means to sit. This is the third sacred month in which fighting was forbidden. The people also used to stop their business activities during this month and sit and prepare for the Hajj (Pilgrimage). This is also a sacred month.
Twelfth Month: Zul-Hijjah
Meaning: The month of "Hajj" (Pilgrimage). This is the last sacred month in which fighting was forbidden.