There are many rites and rituals for Muslims to observe throughout their lives.
On the seventh day after birth, the child's head is shaved. This is called Aqiqah and is performed as part of the naming ceremony. Many Muslims view Aqiqah as desirable, but some see it as compulsory.
The baby is often named after one of the prophets or one of the great men or women of early Islam. It is also common for boys' names to follow the pattern 'servant of' plus one of the 99 names of Allah, eg Abd Allah or Abd al-Rahman.
At the Aqiqah ceremony the parents give thanks to Allah for the gift of the baby. The shaving of the head symbolises the cleansing of the baby from impurities and the start of its life afresh in the presence of Allah.
The baby is given a taste of honey to reflect the sweetness of the Qur’an. A sheep or a goat may be offered in sacrifice to mark the occasion. The shaved hair from the baby is weighed and the equivalent weight in silver or gold is given to charity. Once a child has been purified by Aqiqah, he or she should try to stay faithful to Allah and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad.