of togetherness in submission to Allah
Hajj Festival falls on Wednesday
By Aysha Yusuf
As Muslims from around the world gather to perform the annual pilgrimage
of Hajj (the fifth pillar of Islam) in answer to Allah's call, the
unity of Muslims is evident. The rich and poor, the ruler and ruled,
the king and slave, stand side by side, shoulder to shoulder, in
submission to the Lord our creator and sustainer.
the largest number from all over gather at one place in the world
to remember their Lord in submission to Him. Pilgrimage to the House
is a duty to Allah by all who can find the way and means to perform
it. Allah says in the Holy Quaran; 'Perform Hajj and Umrah for Allah.'
most important fact, those who go for Hajj should keep in mind,
is to hold on to patience. It is here that patience and sacrifice
have to be cultivated.
The intention that Prophet Ibrahim made to sacrifice his son was
in accordance with Allah's decree. Prophet Ibrahim's faith was so
strong that he wanted to comply with Allah's command.
the Kaabah seven times is the first act the pilgrim performs, after
which he prays two rakats behind Makam Ibrahim, and then drinks
water of Zam Zam. He then proceeds to perform Saee. This is running
to and fro between Safa and Marwa. This is in keeping with how Hajara
ran between the two hills in search of water when her child was
left with her by Prophet Ibrahim. After she ran seven times between
the two hills, she found the water, bubbling at the feet of little
Ishmael. That was the fountain of Zam Zam that Hajara discovered.
She said 'Zam Zam' meaning stop, as it was spouting water, more
than they needed. But even today that stream still spouts water
and pilgrims satisfy their thirst with it.
the rituals have to be performed in keeping with Quaran and Sunnah.
On the eighth day, the pilgrims proceed to Mina where they stay
till sunrise next day, the ninth of Dhul Hajj.
they spend the day in prayer (Dua) and repentance. On the ninth
day they proceed to Arafat. When proceeding from Mina to Arafat,
they recite Talbiya. 'Labbaik Allahumma Labbaik. - Labbaik la Sharika
laka Labbaik' Innalhamd wanni Mata Laka wal mulk' La sharika lak.
Arafat the pilgrims remain in prayer and repentance, glorifying
Allah. They will listen to the sermon at Masjid Namira and then
pray Dhuhr and Asr, repent and ask forgiveness. After sunset they
leave for Musthalifah, combining Magrib and Isha prayers with two
rakats each and stays the night there.
combining Magribh and Isha prayers with two rakats each, the pilgrims
stay the night there and leave Musdalifah for Mina. At Mina, the
pilgrims throw seven pebbles. They will proceed to slaughter a sheep,
or cow (one seventh share) as sacrifice.
the tenth day, they will once again circumambulate the Kaabah and
pray at Makaam Ibrahim. After the tenth day, and completion of all
the rituals, the pilgrims will proceed to perform the farewell Tawaaf,
before they leave Mecca.
may then visit Madinah. This is neither obligatory, nor part of
Hajj, but a sunnah. At Madinah he may visit Masjid Quba, the Prophet's
mosque, and pray there, though this is optional.