Website: www.ummahreflections.co.za

Quarterly: Issue No 100

Shawwal 1442 – May 2021

 

IMPORTANCE OF THE HAJJ

 

All praise is due to Allah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta’ala) and Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon His beloved Messenger Muhammad, his family and all his companions (Ashaab).

Hajj – together with the other four pillars of Islam - form the foundation of life for all Muslims.

The annual pilgrimage to the Blessed City of Makkah Makarramah for Muslims takes place during the month of Dhul Hijjah, the last month of the Islamic calendar.

Each year, millions of Muslims travel to Makkah to perform their Hajj, with many also travelling farther north to the Blessed City of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) i.e. Madinah Munawwarah.

The HAJJ, or pilgrimage to Makkah, a central duty of Islam whose origins date back to the Prophet Ibraheem (AS), brings together Muslims of all races and tongues for one of life’s most moving social and spiritual experiences.  Every Muslim – who has the means to do so - is required to take this journey to Makkah Makarramah once in their lifetime.

Here are some reasons outlining the importance of the Hajj pilgrimage.

1.  Hajj is Fard (obligatory) for Muslims who are able to undertake this journey

 

The textual proofs of this obligation are the following: 

 

a) Allah (SWT) says: And complete the Hajj and 'umrah for Allah. But if you are prevented, then [offer] what can be obtained with ease of sacrificial animals. And do not shave your heads until the sacrificial animal has reached its place of slaughter. (Surah Al-Baqarah: Verse 196)

b) Allah (SWT) says:  And [due] to Allah from the people is a pilgrimage to the House - for whoever is able to find thereto a way. But whoever disbelieves - then indeed, Allah is free from need of the worlds.   (Surah Ali Imraan: Verse 97)

c) Allah's Messenger (SAW) addressed us and said: “O people, Allah has made Hajj obligatory for you; so perform Hajj. Thereupon a person said: O Messenger of Allah, (is it to be performed) every year? He (the Holy Prophet) kept quiet, and he repeated (these words) thrice, whereupon Allah's Messenger (SAW) said: “If I were to say "Yes," it would become obligatory (for you to perform it every year) and you would not be able to do it. Then he said: Leave me with what I have left to you, for those who were before you were destroyed because of excessive questioning, and their opposition to their prophets. So, when I command you to do anything, do it as much as it lies in your power and when I forbid you to do anything, then abandon it.”  (Sahih Muslim)

d) The Messenger of Allah (SAW) once addressed us and said, “O People! Hajj has been prescribed for you." Al-Aqra’ bin Haabis stood up and asked, ‘O Prophet of Allah! Are we to perform Hajj every year?” The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: “Had I said ‘yes’, it would have become a (yearly) obligation. Hajj is obligatory only once in one’s lifetime. Whatever one does over and above this is supererogatory (a voluntary act) for him." 

(Reported in all five Books of Hadith except for at-Tirmidhi)

2. Hajj is one of the 5 pillars of Islam

The textual proofs of this fact are the following:  

The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: ‘Verily, al-Islam is founded on five (pillars): testifying the fact that there is no God but Allah, the establishment of Salaah, the payment of Zakaah, the fast of Ramadan and the Pilgrimage to the House of Allah.’  (Sahih Muslim)

The Messenger of Allah (SAW) saying upon answering Jibra’eel (AS) when he asked about the religion of Islam: ‘Al-Islam implies that you testify that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and that you establish Salaah, pay Zakaah, observe the fast of Ramadan, and perform pilgrimage to the House (the Ka' bah in Makkah), if one has the means to do so’.   (Bukhari and Muslim)

The Messenger of Allah’s (SAW) saying that reads: ‘(The superstructure of) Islam is raised on five (pillars): The Oneness of Allah, the establishment of Salaah, the payment of Zakaah, the fast of Ramadan, and the Pilgrimage (to Makkah)’.    (Bukhari and Muslim)

3. All sins are forgiven

The textual proofs of this fact are the following:  

The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: ‘Whoever performs Hajj for Allah’s pleasure and does not have sexual relations with his wife and does not commit evil or sins then he will return (after Hajj free from all sins) as if he were born anew." (Sahih al-Bukhari)

The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: ‘Umrah to Umrah atones for the sins between them, and for Al-Hajj Al-Mabroor there is no reward except Jannah.’  (Sahih at-Tirmidhi)

4. Makkah is Islam’s Holiest Site

The textual proofs of this fact are the following:  

 

Allah (SWT) says: And when We designated for Ibraheem (AS) the site of the House, [saying], ‘Do not associate anything with Me and purify My House for those who perform Tawaf and those who stand [in prayer] and those who bow and prostrate. And proclaim to the people the Hajj [pilgrimage]; they will come to you on foot and on every lean camel; they will come from every distant mountain pass.’  (Surah al-Hajj: Verse 26-27)

As well as being the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW), Makkah holds many Islamic historical sites which pilgrims visit during Hajj rituals.

 

a)     As-Safa and al-Marwah

Allah (SWT) says: Indeed, as-Safa and al-Marwah are among the symbols of Allah. So, whoever makes Hajj to the House or performs Umrah - there is no blame upon him for walking between them. And whoever volunteers good - then indeed, Allah is appreciative and Knowing. (Surah al-Baqarah: Verse 158)

 

Safa and Marwah are the two hills between which Sayyidah Hajirah (AS) ran seven times in search for water for her beloved baby son Ismail (AS), after being tested by Allah in the desert. Therein Allah had blessed her with the miracle of the Well of Zamzam. Muslims re-enact this practice of Hajirah (AS) during the Hajj by walking in between these hills.

 

b)     Mount Arafaat

Mount Arafaat is where the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) gave his farewell sermon before passing on to his Beloved Creator.

 

ask Allah for Aafiyah (well-being)

 

Abbas bin Abdul Muttalib (RA) said that he requested the Messenger of Allah (SAW) to teach him a supplication whereby he may request Allah for his needs. The Prophet (SAW) said: ‘0 Abbas, ask Allah for AAFIYAH (security and well-being).’ After some days, he again met the Prophet (SAW) and asked, ‘Teach me a supplication to beseech Allah for my want.’ He said, ‘O Abbas! O uncle of the messenger of Allah! Ask Allah for AAFIYAH (security and well-being) in this world and the next.’  (Sahih – Al-Adab Al-Mufrad)

 

AAFIYAH means to be saved from any afflictions and from sins and torments on the day of judgement.

 

O Allah, I ask You for pardon and well-being in this life and the next. O Allah, I ask You for pardon and well-being in my religious and worldly affairs, and my family and my wealth. O Allah! veil my weaknesses and set at ease my sadness. O Allah, protect and preserve me from the front and from behind and on my right and on my left and from above, and I seek refuge in Your Greatness from receiving unexpected harm from below me (being swallowed up by the earth).

O Allah! Your Forgiveness is far greater than my sins and I have more hope in Your Mercy than in my own deeds.

 

Requesting your duas!

 

Abdul Haq Abdul Kadir

Johannesburg, Gauteng

South Africa