The fifth act of Islamic worship is the performing of the Hajj or the pilgrimage to Mecca. It was commanded in 9A.HA. Hajj or Pilgrimage means the evolution of human towards the Almighty Allah. It is also known as the”show” of history, the “Show” of creation of man, a “show” of unity, a “show” of the Islamic ideology. The players of this show are YOU and this “show” reminds of Adam, Ibrahim, Hajra, and Satan.
Every year millions of Muslims from all over the world participate in this great “show” (Hajj/Pilgrimage). Everyone is considered equal. So, No discrimination on the basis of race, sex, or social status is made. In accordance to the teachings of Islam, ALL ARE ONE AND ONE IS ALL.
Nowadays we are living on a day to day basis.The person lacks direction in his life. Life today is very hap hazard. We have no goal of our lives. Our aim is only to live. What exists is a dead spirit in a living body. However, the Hajj experience alters this unhealthy condition as pilgrimage is antithesis of aimless life. It is a stage in which man can develop himself spiritually.
Muslim must perform the pilgrimage at least once in his lifetime if conditions are favorable for him. The focal point of pilgrimage is the Ka’ba,(Qibla) which was rebuilt by Prophet Abraham some 4,000 years ago. So, the Ka’ba (Qibla) stands in the middle of a large courtyard of Masjid al Haram or the Sacred Mosque. The courtyard of Masjid al Haram contains, besides ka‘bah, the Maqam a Ibrahim and the fountain of Zamzam.
What a great experience it is. You depart from your home to visit the “Allah’s house”, or the “house of the people”. You are a son of Adam and a reprehensible of Allah on this earth. You are a trustee of Allah on this earth. Indeed you are the relative of Allah.
Prophet (PBUH) said
“Allah is in the hearts of the believers.”
Every Muslim should perform Hajj as quickly as possible. One does not know if he is to become ill, or if any necessities will arise. Therefore, when someone has the intention and the means are also available do not delay it. If a person completes his pilgrimage in the right manner and completes it only for the sake of Allah then the Hajj can compensate for his every sin. This is shown in the following hadith related by Hazrat Abu Hurairah (RA) that Holy Prophet (SAW) said:
“Whoever performs the Hajj and commits no lustful act during it nor disobeys God (in any other way) shall return from it as pure and sinless as he was at the time of his birth.” Bukhari & Muslim
Similarly paradise is mentioned in a different Hadith related by Abdullah Ibn Masud that the Apostle of God said:
“Perform the Hajj and Umra again and again for both the Hajj and the Umra remove poverty and sins in the same way as the furnace removes the impurities of gold, silver and iron and there is no lesser recompense on a pure and sincere Hajj than paradise”. Tirmizi & Nasai
Queries and conditions concerning female pilgrims
- A female should travel with her husband or Mahram (to whom marriage is absolutely prohibited
e.g. father, son, grandfather, grandson, maternal uncle, paternal uncle nephew).
- A woman can wear any kind of clothing that can easily cover her body and head for Ihram with no restriction regarding color; however it is wajib to cover the head.
- It is very important that no clothing should touch face. The hijab should be worn so that it is slightly raised from the face however still concealing it.
- The recitation of the Talbiyah (labbaik) of a female pilgrim must not be audible by other pilgrims and therefore it should be recited quietly.
- If menstruation occurs before the Ihraam stage, it is preferable to bath and then carry out the obligatory ‘Ihraam’. Due to menstruation, the tawaf and the saee are not to be carried out. All other procedures regarding Hajj must be observed and then after menstruation is over the tawaf and saee must be recovered.
- In case if Periods continues over the period in which ‘Tawaaf-e-Wida’ is to be carried out, the ‘Tawaaf-e-Wida’ becomes omitted.
- After Ihraam, the cutting of hair is often cut in the presence of a ‘Ghair Mahram’, however this is forbidden and should be refrained from.
- When visiting the sacred grave at Madinah, all pilgrims should ensure that they do not fight or quarrel. Females should pray in a quite tone so as not to be dis-respectable.
- Performing one obligatory salaah at Masjid-e-Haraam reaps the reward of 100,000 salaah. However, this applies only for men.
- Thus for women it is preferable to perform salaah within the privacy of one’s compartment/home.