Covid-19 pandemic changed a lot of things. From putting the whole globe under a lockdown to economic crises, Covid-19 did not surely come slow. For the Hajj as well, this is the first time since the pandemic that international hajjis or pilgrims have been allowed to perform Hajj. If reports are to be believed more than one million people are on the journey to perform Hajj this year.
Hajj is one of the most important and significant religious event in Islam. Muslims from all over the globe travel to Makkah to visit the magnificent Holy Kaaba, which is located inside the city’s main mosque, Masjid al-Haram.
Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam. It means going to the sacred house of Allah in Makkah to perform pilgrimage in a specific manner clarified in the Qur’an and the Sunnah. It is an obligation upon each Muslim male or female who is financially capable of, to perform Hajj once in their life time.
There are almost four pre-conditions of Hajj, which are enlisted below:-
- Islaam:- It will never be accepted from a disbeliever. The performer of the Hajj has to be a Muslim.
- Sanity:- It is not obligated upon a mentally challenged or insane person.
- Puberty:- It is not obligatory upon a child a person until he or she reaches the age of puberty.
- Freedom:- It is not important or obligatory on a slave.
Besides these four points one other important thing that is to be kept in mind is that, financial capability is a must. Hajj can be performed even by physically challenged people. Other important thing is to have a Mahram for the women, for the unannounced Mahram here for women is a male who is Islamically allowed to accompany her during travel, like father, son, brother, uncle, father-in-law, husband etc.
Muslims have the chance to refresh their faith, become closer to God, and ask for forgiveness of their sins throughout the trip. Men are required to wear two pieces of white clothing called the ihraam when they arrive for the trip, while women are required to wear clothing that reaches their ankles and a hijab to cover their hair. The uncomplicated attire represents a condition of purity before to beginning the spiritual journey as well as the equality of all persons before God.
Hajj has four pillars, if any of these is forgotten the Hajj can be nullified. The pillars are:-
- Articulating ones intention then assuming Ihraam, a state in which one is prohibited to practice certain deeds that are lawful at other times, while performing the ceremonies of Umrah or Hajj.
- Standing within the boundaries of ‘Arafaat’ on the designated day.
- Tawaaf Al-Ifaadha which is circumambulating the Ka’bah after staying in Muzdalifah.
- Sa’i which means going to and fro seven times between the mountains of Safaa and Marwah.
Hajj consists of seven related mandatory acts; skipping any one of them will not invalidate one’s Hajj but will require atonement through the sacrifice of an animal and distribution of its meat to the needy and impoverished in Makkah’s holy city. They are:
Assuming Ihraam from Meeqaat, the places where Ihraam is assumed during specific times.
Standing around “Arafaat” until dusk.
On the eve of Eid, staying the night at the Muzdalifah.
- Spending the night at Minaa on the 11th and 12th of Zillhajj for those who hasten, and the night of the 13th for those who delays, during the days of Tashreeq.
- On the days of Tashreeq, the Jamaraat (pebbles) are stomped.
- Men may shave or cut their hair; women may only shorten their hair.
- The final tawaaf is called Tawaaf Al-Wadaa.
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