Thursday, September 27, 2012

Labbayka-Allahummma labbayk

The largest gathering on earth for the last thirteen centuries, the hajj is the only uninterrupted religious ritual in the history of man.
 Aware that the Hajj is the key to understanding Islam, and no doubt out of curiosity about the cities of Mecca and Medina which are off limits to non-Muslims, the Western world has been trying to understand the Hajj pilgrimage from as far back as the 16th century right up to our day.


A- Obligatory actions:
They are duties that if one of them is left, a sacrificial animal should be offered as a fidyah, compensation, or if it's impossible a fasting of ten days must be offered.

a- Al-Miqaat:

 Ihraam for Hajj or 'Umrah should be from the Miqaat, which is the station where a person can start the Ihraam and becomes Muhrim. As reported in the authentic hadiths, the Messenger (S) specified: Dhul-Hulaifah for the people of Madinah - Al-Juhfah - Raabigh - for the people of Shaam - Qarn Al-Manaazil for the people of Najd - Yalamlam for the people of Yemen - Dhaatu 'Irq for the people coming from Iraaq.

Anyone who comes across those areas, whether by land or by air, should make Ihraam at those stations and make the intention for Hajj or 'Umrah or for both combined. And whoever is closer to Makkah than those stations, his starting point can be his place where he lives.
b- Ihraam garment and restrictions:

A Muhrim wears two seamless sheets - towels - preferably white similar to the shroud. This is only for the male pilgrims not the female. 

Anything seamed is not allowed to be worn for men. Nothing can be put on one's head such as hats or turbans. No shoes or socks are allowed on the feet. During Ihraam State, the Muhrim cannot wear, or even touch perfume, clip nails, cut any hair including the beard and mustache, or have a sexual intercourse with the spouse. Women wear regular modest Hijaab, which is not perfumed or colorful. They are not allowed to wear the face cover and the gloves.
c- Talbiyyah:
Once the Ihram garment is worn and the Miqaat is reached, the pilgrim should make the intention for 'Umrah or Hajj. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,
"Whoever wills to enter in the state of Ihram for Hajj and `Umrah, let him do so. Whoever wills to enter in the state of Ihram for Hajj only, let him do so. Whoever wills to enter in the state of Ihram for `Umrah only, let him do so." [Agreed upon].

After making intention of what kind of Hajj the pilgrim will perform, he, or she, should recite the Talbiyyah saying:

"Labbayka-Allahummma labbayk, Labbayka laa shareeka laka labbayk. Innal-Hamda wanni'mata laka wal-Mulk, laa shareeka lak!"

"Here I am O Allah! Here I am! Here I am, there is no partner for you, here I am! Surely, all praise, blessings, and dominion are for You. There is no partner for you!"

It is also recommended to say Salaat on the Prophet (S) and to ask Allah forgiveness and Jannah and to revert to Him from His wrath and Fire.
This should be said when the pilgrim enters in the state of Ihraam in the Miqaat. It is also recommended to repeat Talbiyah occasionally on the way to Makkah especially after prayers or when meeting other pilgrims or when ascending and descending...etc.,

Moreover, the pilgrim should avoid arguing, slandering, acting without humility and decency, and harming others with the hands and the tongue. Allah, the Almighty, says,

"For Hajj are the months well-known. If any one undertakes that duty therein, let there be no obscenity, nor wickedness, nor wrangling in the Hajj and whatever good you do, (be sure) Allah knows it." (2:198)
B- Sunnahs of Ihraam:
These Sunnahs are actions, which do not require a fidyah, compensation, if they are not done. However, the Muhrim misses a lot of rewards without these deeds. That is why the more a person knows of the Sunnah the more he gets reward. And just remember that the people who perform Hajj do not all have the same reward.

1- Taking a ghusl - ritual bath - before Ihraam even for the pregnant or women having menses.
2- Wearing a white Ihraam garment.
3- Entering into the state of Ihraam right after a compulsory or supererogatory prayer.
4- Clipping the nails, trimming the mustache, shaving the hair of the armpits and the hair of the pubis.
5- Repeating the Talbiyah very often.
6- Making du'aa and Salaat on the Messenger of Allah (S).

C-Forbidden actions: 
These are restrictions that are not allowed during Ihraam. If they are committed, a fidyah should be offered to compensate for the mistake. They are as follows:

1- Covering the head for men by anything except for the umbrella provided that it does not touch the head.
2- Shaving or cutting hair from any part of the body.
3- Clipping the nails of the fingers or the toes.
4- Touching perfume.
5- Wearing seamed and perfumed clothes, socks and shoes.
6- Killing or hunting an animal of the land as mentioned in Qur'an (5:95) or cutting trees.
7- Kissing and caressing one's spouse or doing any action leading to an intercourse.
8- Marrying someone, getting married, or asking someone's hand for marriage.
9- Sexual intercourse.
How can the pilgrim compensate?
The fidyah for:
(1-2-3-4-5): To fast 3 days or to feed 6 poor people, or to slaughter a sheep. (See Qur'an: 2:197)
(6): An animal similar or equivalent in size to it after consulting some scholars (Qur'an 5:95). For the trees, we mean the ones, which were not planted by people, the pilgrim should ask Allah for forgiveness and consult a local scholar to talk about it.
(7): To slaughter a sheep.
(8): To ask Allah for forgiveness by making a lot of Istighfaar and to turn to him with sincere repentance. (We can add to this backbiting, slandering, wrangling…etc.,)
(9): It makes Hajj or 'Umrah void, but the pilgrim should continue everything to the end and slaughter a big animal such as a camel or if it's impossible fast 10 days. The pilgrim should make up Hajj the next year with a Had'y or whenever it's possible.

D-Permissible acts:
These are acts that the pilgrim can do while in the state of Ihraam.
1- Taking a bath or a shower as well as combing the hair and touching it with the hands.
2- Covering one's face when it's windy by the garb itself or wearing glasses.
3- Wearing socks for women.
4- Bloodletting, or cupping - without cutting some of the hair - or receiving any medical treatment of a wound, or one's skin, or aching teeth…etc.,
5- Looking in a mirror.
6- Wearing a belt purse around the waist.
7- Wearing a watch or a ring.
8- Using an umbrella.
9- Killing harmful insects such as lice, fleas, beetles and also ants if they stick to the body. It is better to throw them away, but if they represent a harm and disturbance they can be killed.
10- Killing harmful and dangerous animals such as snakes, scorpions, rats, desert crows and any dangerous wild animals or birds, which become definitely a threat to one's life.

Tawaaf is the action of circuiting and circumambulating seven times around the Ka'bah in an anti-clockwise direction. Allah Almighty says, "Then let them complete the rites prescribed for them, perform their vows, and (again) circumambulate the Ancient House." (22:29)
1- Intention to make Tawaaf as an act of obedience dedicated to Allah alone.
2- Cleanliness with Wudu as for prayer.
3- Covering 'Awrah - private parts - for both men and women. Anything, which is considered a 'Awrah cannot be displayed otherwise the Tawaaf becomes null.
4- Tawaaf should be inside al-Masjid al-Haraam.
5- The number of Ashwaat - pl. of Shawtt i.e., round - should be exactly seven beginning from the Black Stone and ending at it. These rounds should be continued without interruption except in the case of an extreme necessity.
B-Sunnahs of Tawaaf:
1- Ramal, or fast walking - close to jogging - in the first three Ashwaatt only for men who can do it and only during a Tawaaf, which is followed by Sa'ay.
2- Idttibaa', which is the uncovering of the right shoulder for men and during the Arrival - Qudum - Tawaaf throughout the seven Ashwaatt.
3- Kissing the Black Stone in the beginning of Tawaaf if possible. Otherwise, if it's impossible to touch it or because the pilgrim fears harming others by pushing them, it is better to raise the hands to make Istilaam - salutation - to the Black Stone starting Tawaaf by saying,

"Bismillahi w-Allahu Akbar! Allahumma Imaanan bika wa-tasdeeqan bikitaabika wa-Wafaa'an bi'ahdika wat-Tibaa'an lisunnati Nabiyyika Muhammadin Salla Allahu 'alayhe was-Sallam"

"In the Name of Allah, Allah is The Greatest! O Allah I have faith in You, I believe in Your Book, I am fulfilling the promise made to You, and following the Sunnah of Your Prophet (Peace be upon him)"

4- Once in Tawaaf, the pilgrim can make a lot of dhikr such as:

"Subhaana Allah wal-Hamdu-lillah wa-Laa ilaaha ill-Allah w-Allahu Akbar walaa Hawla walaa Quwwata illaa billaahi!"

"Glory be to Allah! All Praise is due to Allah! There is no god except Allah! Allah is the Greatest! There is no Power or strength except with Allah!"

There are not specific du'aas for circumambulating. However, the best thing to say is the word of Allah; the pilgrim can recite without disturbing the others some chapters of the Qur'an he, or she, memorizes. It is also good to repeat the du'aas of Ibraaheem (A) and all the Qur'anic du'aas and to make Istighfaar.

5- When the pilgrim passes by the Rokn al-Yamaani - the fourth corner of the Ka'abah - it is good that he, or she, touches it with the hand if possible in every Shawtt.
6- Finishing every Tawaaf by saying this du'aa,

"Rabbanaa Aatinaa fid-Duniaah Hasanatan wafil-Aakhirati Hasanatan waqinaa 'adhaaban-Naar"

"Our Lord! Give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter, and protect us from the torment of the Fire!" (2:201)

7- Being in a state of Khushu'a - serenity-, concentration, and humbleness. The pilgrim should avoid harming others and should also refrain from talking to others unless it is necessary.

8- Making du'aa after finishing Tawaaf at the Multazam - the spot between the Black Stone and the Ka'bah's door. 
9- Praying 2 Rak'aas behind the Maqaam -station- of Ibraaheem (A) as mentioned in (Qur'an 2:125). It is good to say,

"Wat-takhidhoo min maqaami Ibraaheema Mossallaa"
"And take the Station of Abraham as a place of prayer

10- Drinking from Zamzam water in three sequences while having the intention to be cured with the blessing of Allah from any disease and facing Qiblah. The pilgrim can make the following du'aa,

Allahumma inni as'aluka 'ilman naafi'an wa-rizqan waasi'an was-shifaa'a min kulli dhaa'in wa saqam!"
"O Allah! I beseech You to bless me with a useful knowledge, a generous subsistence, and a cure from any ailment and disease!"

11- Going back to the Black Stone and salute it before leaving to Safa and Marwaa for Sa'y.
The pilgrim does three different Tawaafs:
Tawaaf al-Qudum: Arrival Tawaaf. For the pilgrim who is performing Hajj Tamattu', the Tawaaf of his, or her, 'Umrah is also the Qudum tawaaf.
Ifaadah Tawaaf: It is on the 10th of dhil Hijjah and it is the main Tawaaf.
It is also called Tawaaf az-Ziyaara and Tawaaf al-Hajj because it is the main Tawaaf, which is, considered also a pillar of Hajj.
Ibn `Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (S) performed the Ifaadah Circumambulating on the Day of Sacrifice, then returned and performed the Noon Prayer at Mina" [Related by Muslim, Abu Dawud and Ahmad]

'A'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said, "We performed Hajj with the Prophet (S) and we performed the Ifaadah Tawaaf on the Day of Sacrifice." [Al-Bukhari]

Tawaaf al-Wadaa'a or Farewell Tawaaf is the one performed by the pilgrim when he intends to leave Makkah immediately after finishing it.
The Prophet (S) said, "Circumambulating the House should be the last ritual a pilgrim performs before his departure." [Malek, Abu Dawud, ibn Maajah and ad-Darimi]

What to say after the Farewell Tawaaf:
Abdullah ibn Umar (r) said that the Messenger of Allah (S) at the conclusion of his Hajj or 'Umrah, he used to say after starting by Takbeer - Allahu Akbar - three times, " Laa ilaaha illa Allah wahdahu laa shareeka lah, Lahul-Mulku walahul- Hamdu wa- huwa 'alaa kulli shay'in Qadeer. Aayiboona taa'iboona 'aabidoona saajidoona li-Rabbinaa 'haamidoona. Sadaqa Allahu Wa'adahu wa nasara 'abadahu wa hazamal-Ahzaaba wahdah!" [Related by Imam Ahmad]

"There is no god but Allah. He is One and has no partner, to Him is the dominion and all praise is due to Him. We are returning, repenting, worshipping, prostrating, and to Allah we are very grateful. Allah is true to His promise, He gave victory to His servant and defeated the confederates all by Himself."
3-Sa'y between as-Safaa and al-Marwa:
Sa'y is to walk between as-Safaa and al-Marwa hills back and forth with the intention of dedicating this act of obedience to Allah. Allah (swt) says,

"Behold! As-Safaa and al-Marwa are among the Symbols of Allah. So if those who visit the House in the Season or at other times, should compass them round, it is no sin in them. And if any one obeys his own impulse to Good, be sure that Allah is He Who recognizes and knows." (2:158)
Describing the Hajj performed by the Prophet (S), Jabir (r) narrated, "Then, he - the Prophet (S) - got out from the door heading for As-Safaa, then, recited the above Qur'anic aayah:
"Innas-Safaa wal-Marwata min Sha'aa'iril-Laah. Faman hajjal-Bayta awi'atamara falaa junaaha 'alayhi an yattawwafa bihimaa. Waman tattawwa'a khayran fa'inna Allaha Shaakirun 'Aleem."(2:158)
Then, he (S) said, "We begin with what Allah began." Then, he mounted as--Safaa until he faced the House and there he glorified Allah (i.e. raised his voice) saying "Allahu Akbar!" three times then" Laa ilaaha illa Allah wahdahu laa shareeka lah. Lahul-Mulku walahul- Hamdu wa huwa 'alaa kulli shay'in Qadeer. Laa ilaaha illa Allahu wahdahu, Sadaqa Wa'adahu, wa nasara 'abadahu wa hazamal-Ahzaaba wahdah!."
"There is no god but Allah. He is One and has no partner, to Him is the dominion and all praise is due to Him. We are returning, repenting, worshipping, prostrating, and to Allah we are very grateful. Allah is true to His promise, He gave victory to His servant and defeated the confederates all by Himself."

Habibah bint Abi Taghrah (r) heard the Prophet (S) saying to his companions,

"Perform Sa`ay for Allah Almighty has ordained it upon you." [Ahmad]

1- Intention
2- Being after Tawaaf not before. Usually after the Arrival Tawaaf or the Ifaadah Tawaaf or the 'Umrah Tawaaf.
3- Continuation without interruption except when it is extremely necessary.
4- Standing on as-Safaa and al-Marwa by going back and forth seven times- 4 stops at each hill - and make the above-mentioned du'aa facing Qiblah.

B-Sunnahs of Sa'y:
1- Khabab, which is fast walking that is closer to running, between the two green signs on the sides of the way as Haajar (A) did and as it is recorded about the Prophet (S).
2- Making dhikr and du'aa or reading Qur'an.
3- To be clean (Wudu is recommended but not compulsory as in Tawaaf. A person can make Sa'y even if he, or she, does not have wudu unlike Tawaaf it is one of its requirements).
4- To walk unless the pilgrim is weak.
5- To lower the gaze and abstain from talking to others.
6- To avoid harming others with the hands or the tongue.
7- To be humble and serene and to remember the Day of Judgement.

4- Arafah:

Allah (swt) says,

"It is no crime in you if you seek of the bounty of your Lord (during pilgrimage). Then when you pour down from (Mount) Arafaat, celebrate the praises of Allah at the Sacred Monument, and celebrate His praises as He has directed you, even though, before this, you went astray. Then pass on at a quick pace from the place whence it is usual for the multitude so to do, and ask for Allah's forgiveness. For Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. So when you have accomplished your holy rites, celebrate the praises of Allah, as you used to celebrate the praises of your fathers, yea, with far more heart and soul. There are men who say: "Our Lord! Give us (Thy bounties) in this world!" But they will have no portion in the Hereafter. And there are men who say: "Our Lord! Give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter, and defend us from the torment of the Fire!" To these will be allotted what they have earned; and Allah is quick in account. Celebrate the praises of Allah during the Appointed Days. But if anyone hastens to leave in two days, there is no blame on him, and if anyone stays on, there is no blame on him, if his aim is to do right. Then fear Allah, and know that you will surely be gathered unto Him." (2:198-203)

The Prophet (S) said, 

"Hajj is 'Arafah." [Ahmad and at-Tirmidhi]. 

The pilgrim must be at 'Arafaat on the ninth of dhil Hijjah after Dhuhr time. Anyone, who misses Arafaat day, his, or her, Hajj is void. All the scholars said in consensus that this pillar is the most important one.
The Prophet said, "Hajj is only valid by attending `Arafah." [At-Tirmidhi, an-Nassaa'i, Abu Dawud, Malek and ad-Daarimi]

There are many authentic hadiths, which talk about the virtues of observing the day of 'Arafah as well as the days before it (1st to 9th of dhil-Hijjah). Aishah (r) reported that the Messenger (S) said:

"There is no day on which Allah (swt) frees people from the Fire as He does on the Day of 'Arafah. He comes close and then He boasts to His angels: 'What are these people seeking?'" [Muslim, an-Nasaa'i, Ibn Maajah] 

Going to Mina before Arafaat: In his report describing the Hajj of the Prophet (S), Jabir said: "Then, the Prophet (S) rode for Mina where he performed the Noon, Afternoon, Sunset, Night and Dawn prayers. " [Muslim]
On the 8th of dhil-Hijjah - Yawm at-Tarwiyah - the pilgrim heads for Mina where he can pray Dhuhr, 'Asr, Maghrib, 'Isha, and Fajr of the 9th. It is very well recommended that the pilgrim makes Talbiyah and du'aa on the way to Mina.

The pilgrim should not waste his, or her, time during these great days of Dhul Hijjah. Ibn Abbas (r) reported that the Messenger (S) said:

"There are no other days on which good deeds are more beloved to Allah than on these (Ten) Days." Somebody asked: "O Messenger of Allah! Not even Jihaad in Allah's way?" He replied: "Not even Jihaad in Allah's way; except for a person who went out (for Jihaad) with his self and wealth and came back with none." [Al-Bukhaari, Abu Dawud, at-Tirmidhi, ibn Maajah, Ahmad and ad-Daarimi]

The Messenger (S) also said:
"There are no other days that are greater before Allah (swt), or that good deeds are more beloved to Him in them, than these Ten Days, so say in plenty Tahleel (laa ilaaha ill-Allah), Takbeer (Allahu Akbar), and Tahmeed (al-Hamdu lillaah)." [Ahmad & at-Tabarani; authentic] 

 The Big Day: 
On the 9th of dhil-Hijjah, the pilgrim goes to 'Arafaat and prays Dhuhr and 'Asr with the Imam.
A- Obligatory actions:
1- Going to Arafaat on the 9th of dhul-Hijjah:
After Sunrise on the 9th, the pilgrim can head for 'Arafaat through the road of Dabb making Talbiyah and dhikr. Once the pilgrim prays at Masjid Namirah Dhuhr and 'Asr combined and shortened with the Imam - if possible - he, or she, goes to the Mawqif where the standing is valid because Namirah mosque is not fully a part of 'Arafaat. Standing means to be present there and it does not mean that the pilgrim is not allowed to sit down and rest.
2- The presence in Arafaat on the 9th of dhul-Hijjah between Dhuhr and Maghrib is essential.
3- Sleeping in Muzdalifah after spending the day in 'Arafaat.
4- Throwing pebbles at Jamrat al-'Aqabah on the 10th day of dhil-Hijjah.
5- Shaving off the hair of the head or cutting some of it after the stoning at Jamrat al-'Aqabah. After this, the pilgrim ends his state of Ihraam and can wear regular clothes and put perfume and clip the nails…etc, but intimate intercourse is not allowed until the Ifaadah Tawaaf is performed.
6- Sleeping on the eve of the 11th, the eve of the 12th, and the eve of the 13th. If the pilgrim has to leave, the eves of the 11th and the 12th would be enough.
7- Throwing pebbles at the three Jamaraats after Dhuhr of every day of Tashreeq: 11-12-13.
B- Some Sunnahs:
1- Making ghusl before standing in 'Arafaat even for the person who has menses or post- childbirth bleeding.
2- Standing up if possible where the Prophet (S) stood at the big rock adjacent to the Mount of Mercy - Jabal ar-Rahmah.
3- Making a lot of dhikr and du'aa while facing Qiblah until sunset. The best thing to say is: "Laa Ilaaha ill-Allah wahdahu laa Shareeka lah!" The Prophet (S) said,

"The best du'aa is the du'aa in the day of 'Arafah and the best thing I and the Prophets before me have ever said is: Laa Ilaaha ill-Allah wahdahu laa Shareeka lah!" [Malek and at-Tirmidhi].
4- Avoiding useless talk, wrangling, pushing or harming others.
5- Leaving 'Arafaat to Muzdalifah from a different road other than Dabb road after sunset.
6- Walking with tranquility, patience and avoiding rush.
Making a lot of Talbiyah from Mina to 'Arafaat and From 'Arafaat to Muzdalifah and from Muzdalifah to Mina.

7- Picking up 7 pebbles from Muzdalifah
8- Delaying Maghrib prayer until reaching Muzdalifah and praying it with 'Isha (Jam' ta'akheer) without naafilah in between.
9- Leaving Muzdalifah after Fajr and before sunrise on the 10th.
10- Making du'aa while standing and facing Qiblah at the Mash'ar al-Haraam - Mount of Quzah.
11- Moving fast at Battn Muhassir and avoiding standing there as much as possible.
12- Throwing pebbles at Jamrat al-'Aqabah after sunrise.
13- Saying "Allahu Akbar" while throwing the pebbles.
14- On the 10th - Yawm an- Nahr - it is better to do the following rituals respectively in this order: 1- Going to Jamrat al-'Aqaba. 2- Sacrificing an animal. 3- Shaving or cutting hair. 4- Making Tawaaf al-Ifaadah. However, it is permissible to do one of them before the other.

15- Killing the animal with one's hands if possible or at least witnessing it. Otherwise, if it's arranged by a trustworthy person it is enough. Eating from it is a Sunnah.
16- Making Tawaaf al-Ifaadah on the 10th before sunset.
17- Throwing pebbles at the 3 Jamaraat during the days of Tashreek: 11th -12th -13th. However, the pilgrim is allowed to leave in the 12th if it's necessary, but before Maghrib time.
18- Making du'aa while facing Qiblah after throwing pebbles at the 1st and the 2nd Jamaraat, but not after the 3rd one.
19- Facing Jamrat al-'Aqabah while having Mina on the right hand-side direction and Ka'bah on the left direction.

N.B: Some people fast during the day of 'Arafaat while being in Hajj, but this is against the Sunnah. In fact, the Prophet (S) forbade people from fasting for the day of 'Arafah in 'Arafaat as reported in the hadith related by Imam Ahmad. The pilgrim should be well prepared and physically fit in order to make a lot of du'aa and dhikr. Observing fast in this day is very well recommended for those who are not in Hajj. The Prophet (S) said,

"Fasting the Day of 'Arafah expiates the sins of the past year and the subsequent one. And fasting the Day of 'Aashooraa' expiates the sins of the past year." [Muslim and others]

  Before the Kaaba I Stand
They walk, they walk, watch them walk
Some shove, some push, some idly talk
But they walk, they walk, watch them walk
Some run, some crawl, some get trampled upon

They move, they move, watch them move
They circle, they circle, watch them move
Around and around, around they go
Some run, some jump, some drag in the sun

Tawāf they make, they circle the House
Around and around, around the House
Most are good, some foolish or ignorant
But around they go, around the House

God watches them, His mercy bestowed
The Gates open, the light shines down
The people cry tears, they walk, they walk
They look to the skies, and God they’ve found

 There it stands, so mighty, so proud
There it stands, there it stands
How long they’ve waited, how real it is
Stands the same as it did in the sands

Once between nothing, then just land
Then between hills, of dirt and sand
Followed by buildings built by hand
Now luxury marble, lights and gold bands

Mecca, Mecca, Mecca is here
Medinah, Medinah, Medinah is there
Abraham and Muhammad were here

Isaac and Ishmael were here
They walk, they walk, watch them walk
They stare, they stare, watch them stare
They point, they point, watch them point
No longer dreams, they’re actually there.

By Adam Yosef

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