To perform hajj is height of blessing for any muslim. As one of the pillars of Islam, hajj is not an ordinary religious obligation. It requires certain special criteria and rules to fulfill. This article is a guide for intending pilgrims.
1. The person who intends to perform Hajj must do so with the intention of attaining Allah’s Pleasure, and to fulfill obligation, and also to diligently carry out the Commands of Allah and His Prophet (PBUH). The rewards for deeds depend greatly on the intention that is formed.
2. The worship of Hajj has the exclusive status of being obligatory only once a lifetime, for those who can afford it. The need for sincerity is vital because an obligatory Hajj can never be repeated. During your journey to Hajj a concerted effort towards developing this all important sincerity must be made.
Free of ulterior and worldly motives
3. It is important that Hajj should be free of ulterior and worldly motives. Joining worldly objectives with religious aims is like adding water to milk. Because there are three types of adulteration which are possible in the performance of Hajj;
- ruin the Hajj even before departing from home by having a desire to be called a pilgrim, and using forbidden or doubtful earnings for this worship.
- engage in improper acts while performing Hajj e.g. to commit sins during the time that one is engaged in the performance of Hajj.and to have arguments, not to make repentance.
- And complete the Hajj and then to indulge in such deeds that defile the Hajj, e.g. to neglect the obligatory prayers etc.
4. While in Hajj do not do things to display to others. Do not announce your Hajj to all and sundry. (To avoid show off and act to gain fame). On returning from Hajj do not emphasize the difficulties which may have been endured, instead turn your attention towards the eternal benefits and rewards you will receive. One must understand that the difficulties endured during this sacred journey are insignificant compared to the high position one will receive in Paradise. intending pilgrims
5. Before beginning one’s journey repent sincerely. Perform two optional units with the intention of repentance. The effect of sincerely repenting and then proceeding for hajj will be, that one will be favored by Allah and blessed with the strength to continually do good deeds.
6. Develop a relationship with the pious person for guidance. This will assist you in making a true and sincere repentance.
FULFILLMENT OF DEBT
7. If you have monetary debt or are responsible for any moral transgression, then fulfill your debt or have it waived, and have your moral violations forgiven. It is important that one settles all outstanding matters and transactions, and has his faults and shortcomings forgiven.
8. All trusts and anything borrowed must be returned. A detailed and final will must be made regarding all important matters. intending pilgrims
9. The compulsory thing for a person who wishes to perform Hajj to learn the necessary Islamic Jurisprudence well before the time of Hajj from a reliable and recognized Islamic scholar.
10. Depart with happiness from home. A Hajj which is performed with a feeling of love and keenness is conducive to religious upliftment. Inconvenience during travel should not hamper this love and keenness.
11. Give some voluntary charity to the poor before leaving home and also after commencing your journey.
12. Ask your near and dear ones, neighbors and friends to overlook and forgive your shortcomings. Make a request for their dua. Shake hands using both hands when leaving. Do not shake hands with non-mahrams (those of the opposite sex whom you can marry).
13. Be at your best behavior amongst your companions. Assist them in their needs. The person who helps his companions on this journey will be regarded as a mujaahid (one who strives to uplift Islam).
Prayer, Du‘aa, Tawaaf and Tilaawat
14. Take great care and be punctual in the performance of all prayers with assembly whilst visiting the sacred places. Do not delay any prayers at all.
15. After every prayer beseech from Allah that He grant you a Mabrur Hajj (faultless haj).
16. A pilgrim is fortunate in being present at the various sacred places where du‘aa are assured acceptance. So, repeatedly ask Allah for your needs of this world and the Hereafter. Your dua must be appropriate and made with respect and humbleness. Do not ask for meaningless and unrighteous things.
17. There are three persons whose dua are assured acceptance; the oppressed, the traveler and the father’s dua for his children.
18. The fulfillment in arrears of worship which are owing to Allah should be correctly fulfilled or compensated.
Rewards for Prayers
19. The reward for one prayer in the Masjidul Haraam (Makkah) is 100,000 fold (with jama‘at 2,700,000). The reward for prayer in the Masjid-un-Nabawi (Madeenah) is 50,000 fold. Each good deed done in Makkah is equivalent in reward to 100,000 good deeds elsewhere.
20. Whenever entering either of the two mosque or any other mosque, form a intention for optional itikaaf.
21. Your stay in the Masjidul Haraam and Masjidun Nabawi must be with utmost dignity and honor.
22. Perform as many tawaaf, umrah and optional prayer as you can. and make du‘aa that the reward of this be presented to Prophet (PBUH).
23. Complete the Qur’aan at least once in each of the two Holy Masjid, i.e. Makkah and Madeenah.
24. Try to Perform optional prayer with the intention of expressing one’s gratitude to Allah.