Hajj, the annual Islamic pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca, is an awe-inspiring journey that holds immense spiritual significance for Muslims worldwide. It is considered one of the Five Pillars of Islam and is obligatory for every financially and physically capable Muslim at least once in their lifetime. This article delves into the rituals, preparations, and spiritual experiences associated with Hajj, highlighting the essence of unity and devotion that permeates this sacred pilgrimage.
The Significance of Hajj
Hajj is a deeply revered religious practice that symbolizes the unity of Muslims around the world. It serves as a reminder of the unity of humanity before God and the equality of all individuals, regardless of their race, nationality, or social status. It commemorates the trials and tribulations faced by Prophet Abraham and his family, emphasizing the importance of faith, sacrifice, and submission to God’s will.
Preparations for Hajj
Embarking on the Hajj journey requires meticulous preparations. Pilgrims must ensure they are physically fit and financially capable of undertaking the pilgrimage. They need to obtain the necessary travel documents, and vaccinations, and make arrangements for their accommodation in Mecca. Additionally, pilgrims engage in spiritual preparation, purifying their hearts and seeking forgiveness for their sins, as they prepare to enter the sacred state of Ihram.
Excellence of Hajj
Allah عزوجل says in the Holy Quran:
Translation: And Complete the Hajj and ‘Umrah for Allah in Part 2, Surah Al-Baqarah, Ayah 196
Two Sayings of the Most Exalted Prophet ﷺ
- The Holy Prophet ﷺ said, “The one who performed Hajj and did not commit Rafas indecent talks and transgression, returned as free of sins as he was on the day when he was born from his mother’s womb.” Bukhari Sharif
- The Haji will intercede for his 400 family members and he will be freed from sins as he was on the day when he was born from his mothers’s womb. Musnad Al-Bazzar with reference to Sayyiduna Abu Musa رضی الله عنہ
The Types of Hajj
There are three types of Hajj:
It is the greatest type of Hajj. The performer of this Hajj is called a Qarin. For this Hajj, the same Ihram has been put on for Hajj as well as Umrah. After performing the ‘Umrah, the Qarin cannot get Halq or Qasr Halq implies getting all the hair of the head shaved while Qasr means getting every hair of one-fourth part of the head shaved equal to at least an inch in length. done; rather, he will remain in the state of Ihram as usual. On the 10th, 11th, or 12th of Zul-Hajjah, after having Halq or Qasr done and making a sacrifice Qurbani, he will remove his Ihram.
The performer of this type of Hajj is called a Mutamatte’. Those coming from outside the miqat in the months of Hajj can perform this Hajj. For example, the people from Indo-Pak usually perform Tamattu’. The convenience that lies in it is that the Mutamatte’, after performing ‘Umrah, can get Halq or Qasr done and remove his Ihram. Then, on the 8th of Zul-Hajjah or before it, the Ihram of Hajj is put on.
The performer of this type of Hajj is called a Mufrid. This type of Hajj does not include ‘Umrah. Only the Ihram for Hajj is put on. The residents of Makkah and Hilli i.e. those living between the Haram area and the Miqat e.g. the people of Jeddah perform Hajj e Ifrad. Those coming from other countries may also perform Ifrad
Intention for Hajj-e-Qiran
A Qarin should make intention for both Hajj and ‘Umrah in the following words:
Translation: Ya Allah عزوجل! I make the intention of Hajj and ‘Umrah, make both of them easy for me, and accept them from me. I have made the intention of Hajj and ‘Umrah and worn the Ihram of both just for the sake of Allah.
Intention for Hajj
After putting on the Ihram of Hajj, Mufrid should make the following intention. Similarly, after putting on Ihram, Mutamatte’ should also make the following intention on 8th of Zul-Hajjah or before it.
Translation: Ya Allah عزوجل! I make the intention of Hajj, make it easy for me and accept it from me. Help me in offering it and make it blessed for me. I have made the intention for Hajj and have worn its Ihram for the sake of Allah عزوجل.
Intention means the willingness of heart. It is better to make intentions verbally. Interaction in Arabic will be valid provided the maker of intention comprehends its meaning. Otherwise, make an intention in your own language. The presence of Intention in the heart is a must in all cases.
After making the intention Whether it is the intention of ‘Umrah or that of Hajj it is essential to utter Labbaik at least once; uttering it thrice is preferable. Labbaik is as follows:
Leaving for Mina on 8th Zul-Hajjah
- If possible, go on the journey of Mina, ‘Arafat and Muzdalifah, etc. on foot as 70 million good deeds will be written for your every step till you return to Makkah-e-Mukarramah.
- Utter Talbiyah and Durud Sharif abundantly all the way. As soon as Mina Sharif appears, recite Durud Sharif and then the following Dua:اَللّٰھُمَّ ھَذَا مِنیً فَامْنُنْ عَلَیَّ بِمَا مَنَنْتَ بِہٖ عَلٰی اَوْلِیَائِکَ ط
- You have to offer five Salah from Sala-tul-Zuhr of 8th Zul-Hajjah to Sala-tul-Fajr of 9th Zul-Hajjah in Mina Sharif as the Holy Prophet ﷺ also did the same.
Du’a of the Night of Arafah
Leaving for ‘Arafat on 9th Zul-Hajjah
On 9th Zul-Hajjah, after offering Fajr Salah in its Mustahab time, keep reciting Talbiyah, Zikr, and Du’a until the sun rises and appears on mount Sabir which is situated opposite Masjid Khaif Sharif. Now, proceed towards ‘Arafat Sharif with a thudding heart. Further, leaving Mina Sharif, recite the following Dua once.
Dua of the Way to Arafat
In ‘Arafat Sharif, the Salah of Zuhr and ‘Asr are offered in combination during Zuhr timings but there are certain conditions for it. You have to offer Zuhr Salah in Zuhr timings and ‘Salah in ‘Asr timings with the congregation in your camp.
Supplications of ‘Arafat Sharif
According to Hadis, the one reciting the following Kalimah of Tawhid Oneness, Surah-e-Ikhlas, and the below-mentioned Durud Sharif 100 times each, in the afternoon, in his mawqif the lodging area, he is forgiven. In addition, if the intercedes for all those present in ‘Arafat Sharif, his intercession will be recognized.
1. Recite this Kalimah of Tawhid Oneness 100 times:
2. Recite Surah-e-Ikhlas 100 times.
3. Recite this Durud Sharif 100 times:
Recite the following three times:
Recite Kalimah of Tawhid once and then recite following Dua three times:
It is Sunnah to Make Dua in Arafat Whilst Standing
Remember! The Haji does not have to offer Maghrib Salah in the field of Arafat; instead, Salah of Maghrib and ‘Isha will be offered in combination in Muzadalifah in the timing of ‘Isha Salah.
Departure for Muzdalifah
When it is sure that the sun has set completely, move from ‘Arafat Sharif to Muzdalifah. Keep reciting Zikr, Durud, and Labbaid all the way. Yesterday, the rights of Allah عزوجل were forgiven, forgiveness for the rights of people is promised here, in Muzdalifah
Method of Offering Maghrib Salah and ‘Isha Salah in Combination
Here in Muzdalifah, you have to offer both salah with a single Azan and a single Iqamat. Therefore, after Azan and Iqamat, they first offer three Fard Rakat of Maghrib Salah, then, immediately after performing the Salam of Maghrib Salah, offer Fard of Isha Salah. Thereafter, offer Sunan of Maghrib and then offer Sunan and Witr of ‘Isha.
Stay in Mudalifah
Spending a night in Muzadalifah is a Sunnat-e-Muakkadah but staying over there is Wajib. The stipulated time for a stay at Muzdalifah is from Subh-e-Sadiq dawn up to the sunrise. If one spends even a single moment in Muzdalifah within the described duration, his stay in Muzdalifah will be valid. Obviously, the one who offers Fajr Salah within Fajr timings in Muzdalifah, his stay is valid.
Rami; First Rite of 10th Zul-Hajjah
Sacrifice (Qurbani) of Hajj
- After hurling grits at the big Satan on 10th Zul-Hajjah, come to the slaughter area and perform Qurbani sacrifice of animal. This Qurbani is Wajib for a Qarin and Mutamatte’ in gratefulness to Hajj even if he is Faqir poor.
- This Qurbani is Mustahab for Mufrid even if he is wealthy.
- After performing Qurbani, get Halq or QasrHalq implies getting all the hair of the head shaved while Qasr means getting every hair of one fourth part of head shaved equal to at least an inch in length done.
- Remember! Performing these three acts in order is Wajib. 1. First: 2. Then: Qurbani 3. Then: Halq or Qasr
- As Qurbani is not Wajib for Mufrid, he may get Halq or Qasr done after Rami.
Rami of 11th and 12th of Zul-Hajjah
On 11th and 12th of Zul-Hajjah, grits small stones are to be hurled at all the three Satans after the commencement of Zuhr timings; first, hurl grits at Jamra-tul-Oula Small Satan, then Jamra-tul-Wusta Middle Satan and then Jamra-tul-‘Aqabah Big Satan.
- Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah is the second pillar of Hajj.
- It is preferable to perform Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah on the 10th of Zul-Hajjah. If it cannot be performed on the 10th, it can be performed on the 11th or 12th as well but it must be performed before the sunset of the 12th.
- If the sunset of 12th Zul-Hajjah takes place before the completion of four rounds of Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah, Dama type of expiation will become Wajib.
- However, if a woman undergoing menses or post-natal bleeding becomes pure after the 12th of Zul-Hajjah, she should perform it now; Dam will not be Wajib out of delay for these reasons.
- If a woman going through her menstrual period has a seat reserved on a plane etc. for return and she has not yet performed Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah, she should get the reservation of her seat canceled, if possible, and perform Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah after attaining purity. If the cancellation of the reservation causes difficulty for her or her traveling companions, she can perform Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah in the same state because of compulsion, but Badanah the sacrifice of a cow or camel will be due to her. Further, it is also necessary for her to repent as entering the Masjid in a state of impurity is a sin. If she succeeds in repeating Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah after attaining expiation will lapse, i.e. Badanah will no longer remain due to her. If she manages to repeat Tawaf-uz-Ziyarah after purity after 12th Zul-Hajjah, the expiation of Bahanah will lapse but that of Dam will still be due to her.
Tawaf-e-Rukhsat (Farewell Tawaf)
After performing Hajj, when an Afaqi Haji intends to return back to his country, Tawaf-e-Rukhsat becomes Wajib for him. If he does not perform it, Dam will become Wajib for him. [An Afaqi Haji is one who comes from beyond the Miqat e.g. from Pakistan, India, etc.
Hajj is a remarkable journey that brings together millions of Muslims from all corners of the world, transcending geographical, cultural, and linguistic boundaries. It is a testament to the unity, devotion, and shared humanity of the global Muslim community. Through the rituals of Hajj, pilgrims strengthen their faith, purify their souls, and forge a deep connection with God and their fellow believers. It is a transformative experience that leaves a lasting impact on lives.
|↑1||in Part 2, Surah Al-Baqarah, Ayah 196|
|↑4||Musnad Al-Bazzar with reference to Sayyiduna Abu Musa رضی الله عنہ|
|↑5||Halq implies getting all the hair of the head shaved while Qasr means getting every hair of one-fourth part of the head shaved equal to at least an inch in length.|
|↑7||e.g. the people of Jeddah|
|↑8||Those coming from other countries may also perform Ifrad|
|↑9||Whether it is the intention of ‘Umrah or that of Hajj|
|↑10||from Sala-tul-Zuhr of 8th Zul-Hajjah to Sala-tul-Fajr of 9th Zul-Hajjah|
|↑12||the lodging area|
|↑14, ↑15||in Muzdalifah|
|↑17, ↑27||Big Satan|
|↑18||i.e., 10th Zul-Hajjah|
|↑19, ↑24||small stones|
|↑20||the big one|
|↑21||sacrifice of animal|
|↑23||Halq implies getting all the hair of the head shaved while Qasr means getting every hair of one fourth part of head shaved equal to at least an inch in length|
|↑28||a type of expiation|
|↑29||the sacrifice of a cow or camel|