Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam. Allah Almighty has ordained some physical worship and some religious observances that are financial, physical worships include Prayer and Fast. While Zakat is a financial, religious observance. Hajj, which is the last pillar of Islam, is a combination of both physical and financial observances. The significance of Hajj is quite evident in Islam.
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Islam has five pillars as a religion. These include:
When is Hajj 2023?
Hajj rituals will initiate from the evening of Sunday, 25th of June 2023 and will last till the evening of Friday 30th June, 2023. This is an estimated date as the exact date will be announced on the sighting of moon.
Obligations and Requirements of Hajj 2023:
As stated earlier, Hajj is a physical and financial religious observance at the same time.
- Financial in the sense that the believers have to visit Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj from every corner of the world. International traveling needs a lot of financial resources. Similarly, Allah Almighty has ordained for the pilgrim to arrange sustenance for his family before setting off to perform Hajj.
- Hajj has a physical aspect too. It includes Tawaaf, Sa’i, Rami e Jimaar and Waqoof e Arafaat. All these obligations of Hajj need physical exertion. Because of these requirements, Hajj is a challenging religious observance both physically and financially.
Historical Context of Hajj:
Ka’ba tu llah is as important for the believers as a nucleus for an Atom is. It is the center of worship for the Muslims. Ka’ba is our Qibla. We pray to face towards Ka’ba. Historically, Prophet Ibrahim AS and his son, Prophet Ismael AS built this house to worship Allah SWT. Ka’ba is the center for the believer till today. Hajj e Baitullah has always been the center of worship for believers. Even the pagan Arabs used to perform Hajj before the revelation of Islam.
The Spiritual Significance of Hajj:
Hajj has both physical and financial aspects, but we cannot neglect its spiritual importance.
- The believers spend a huge amount on their travel for Hajj and bear too much physical toil only to ask forgiveness from Allah SWT. They visit Ka’ba tullah to register the repentance of their sins and to ask pardon from Almighty Allah. That repentance connects him with his master.
- Hajj gives the believers a chance to strengthen their relationship with Allah SWT. Constant worshiping, duas, supplications, and performance of the obligation of Hajj bring him closer to Allah Almighty.
- Hajj provides an opportunity for Muslims around the globe to come closer to each other. It gives a chance to the believers to share a single place for worship. They Share the love and affection of Ka’ba tullah and Masjid e Nabwi.
- The most beautiful thing related to Hajj is the Muslims is to reenact the rituals of Hajj performed by Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. That is a dream come true for a believer. This is the most beautiful spiritual experience for a believer.
7 Steps of Hajj: The Journey of a Lifetime
Hajj is not a single religious offering like prayer. It is a combination of many religious rituals. We can enlist the religious rituals of Hajj as follows;
The first step of performing Hajj is to put on Ihraam. Ihraam is the special dress code for performing Hajj. It contains two unstitched white shawls for men. For women, their dress is considered being Ihraam. This special dress is a symbol of entering the believer into a state of ritual consecration.
The second important religious ritual of Hajj is Tawaf e Ka’ba. Twaf is the process of circumambulation of the Ka’ba. This ritual remained continued 24/7 in Bait Ullah.
The third religious ritual of Hajj is Sa’i. Sa’i is a symbolic reenactment of Bibi Hajrah’s water search when Prophet Ibrahim AS left her all alone in the desert of Makkah, along with baby Ismail in her lap. He did that with Allah’s will.
WAQOOF E ARAFAT:
is called the “Rukn e Aazam” On the 9th day of the Islamic month of Dhul-Hijjah, pilgrims gather in the plain of Arafat, which is considered the most important ritual of Hajj. They spend the day in supplication, contemplation, and seeking forgiveness from Allah. It is believed that the standing at Arafat is a reenactment of the final sermon delivered by Prophet Muhammad SAW..
After sunset on the day of Arafat, pilgrims proceed to Muzdalifah, where they spend the night under the open sky. They collect pebbles to be used in the next ritual and engage in prayers and remembrance of Allah.
STONING OF DEVIL:
Stoning of the Jamrat, which is called Rami e Jimaar, is still another religious ritual of Hajj. This ritual symbolizes the rejection of evil.
The last religious ritual of Hajj is to perform the sacrifice. This ritual is to commemorate the obedience of Prophet Ibrahim AS.
The Unity of the Ummah: Gathering of Muslims from around the World:
Hajj is the greatest event of the unity of Ummah. It enhances the unity of Muslims by,
- Experiencing the diversity of culture and language, Muslims from all over the world join the congregation of Hajj. That gathering provides an opportunity for Muslims to experience diverse cultures and languages.
- During Hajj, it is a routine matter for believers to build lifelong friendships among Muslims of different cultures.
- Hajj allows believers to embrace the global Muslim community.
Spiritual Reflection and Personal Growth during Hajj:
Hajj provides a perfect chance for believers to reflect spiritually and enhance their personal growth.
A believer detaches from worldly possessions and desires. That detachment connects him with Allah SWT spiritually.
The spiritual experience gained during Hajj gives the believers a new perspective on life and different priorities.
Hajj and Social Responsibilities:
- Hajj is the best chance for believers to do acts of charity and humanitarian efforts.
- Muslims should promote unity, equality, and justice among Muslims.
- Muslims should address social and environmental challenges during Hajj.
The challenges and rewards of Hajj:
Hajj is a journey of seeking Allah’s forgiveness. But it is a fact that the journey is full of challenges and trials.
- Overcoming the physical and logistical challenges is a real challenge in performing Hajj. Going for Hajj has become even more difficult with the elevation of the dollar rate and devaluation of the Pakistani rupee.
- But when a believer overcomes these challenges, there are several spiritual rewards and blessings of Allah SWT for performing Hajj.
- Another blessing of Allah that we often observe is the transformation of the pilgrims into pious men. This indeed is a blessing of Allah SWT.
Hajj in the Modern Age: Technology and Safety Measures:
Hajj in the age of science and technology has become too much easier than the pilgrimage in the past. Nowaday.
- The Saudi Government is utilizing technology for improved logistics.
Crowd management is quite easier with the increasing usage of science and technology. The safety and security of pilgrims are ensured with the help of modern technology.
- The Saudi government has changed the landscape of Hajj. The distance between Safa and Marwa Mountains is covered and has air conditioners installed. Thus Sa’i has become quite easier.
The Economic Impact of Hajj:
Hajj has many worldly as well as spiritual benefits. It boosts the local economy and causes the infrastructure to develop infrastructure day by day.
- Hajj supports local businesses and creates job opportunities throughout the world.
- Hajj gives a prospect of managing a balance between economic benefits and spiritual focus.
Post Hajj: Carrying the Spirit and Lessons Forward:
The impact of Hajj is long-lasting, if you sustain your spiritual connection with Allah Almighty after Hajj.
- Muslims share their experiences and spread the message of peace around the globe.
- Muslims who perform Hajj commit to sticking to positive changes in their personal and communal lives.
Reflections and Testimonials: Personal Stories of Hajj 2023:
Hajj provides every believer with an individual experience and personal lessons. Everyone has a different spiritual experience during Hajj. We come across many inspiring narratives of faith and devotion during Hajj.
FAQ’s About Hajj?
What is Hajj?
Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam. It is a highly significant religious obligation of the Wealthy Muslims.
What is the significance of Hajj?
Hajj is a highly rewarding religious obligation for believers. Allah Almighty has made it compulsory for every Muslim who has worldly resources to perform Hajj.
What is not allowed during Hajj?
Hajj is a religious observance that lasts for many days. Certain things are forbidden during Hajj. It includes cutting nails, cutting hair, hunting, shooting, capturing, abusing, or confining any animal.
On which dates Hajj is performed?
Hajj is performed during the 12th month of the lunar Islamic calendar, i.e. Dhul-Hajj. It takes place for 3 to 5 days in the first Ashra of Dhul’Hajj. Hajj rituals start with 8 Dhul-Hajj, Its climax i.e. Waqoof e Arafaat takes place on the 9th Dhul-Hajj and it is completed on the 12th of Dhul-Hajj with sacrificing an animal and Halaq.
Which is the greatest ritual of Hajj?
Waqoof e Arafat is the greatest Hajj ritual. It is called the Rukn e Azam. It is performed on the 9th of Dhul-Hajj.
Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam. It is one of the most significant religious observances that is compulsory for every Muslim with strong financial status. Muslims perform rituals of Hajj from the 8th Dhul-Hajj to the 12th Dhul-Hajj. Hajj has a great impact on pilgrims’ personal and communal lives. It leaves a deep spiritual impact on the pilgrims. Quranhost has brought an opportunity for every believer to learn everything about Hajj and other teachings of Islam. Come and get a free trial class to join QuranHost.