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HAJJ (Pilgrimage) 1

  1. Its Virtue

  2. Some Facts
    • When Hajj Must Be Performed
    • Prerequisites
    • Hajj on Behalf of Others
    • Doing Business
  3. Ihram
    • Fixed Time
    • Fixed Places (Mawaqit) for Ihram and Donning the Special Hajj Attire
    • Etiquette of Ihram
  4. Kinds of Ihram or Hajj
    • Qiran
    • Tamattu‘
    • Ifrad
  5. Restrictions during Ihram
    • Penalty for Violating the Sanctity of Ihram
  6. The Sacred Precincts of Makka (Haram Makka)
  7. Sacred Precincts of Madina (Haram Madina)
  8. The Necessary Acts (Wajib) of Hajj
  9. Sunna Acts
  10. Performing Tawaf
  11. Making Sa‘y between Safa and Marwa
  12. ‘Umra
  13. Hajj and ‘Umra from Beginning to End
  14. Those Prevented from Completing Hajj or ‘Umra
  15. Offering a Sacrifice
    • Sacrifice during Hajj
    • Sacrificial Animals
    • Conditions for Sacrifice
    • Time of Offering
    • Place of Offering
    • Who Must Sacrifice the Animal
    • Eating the Meat of the Sacrificial Animal
  16. Visiting the Prophet’s Mosque and Tomb
  17. Offering Prayers in the Quba Mosque

Hajj is a rehearsal of life in both this world and the next, a theater of all Islamic life based upon deep devotion to God and perception of one’s servanthood and God’s Divinity and Lordship. It consists of love, action, humility, God-consciousness, sacrifice, and dominion over the carnal self.

It has two pillars: staying at ‘Arafat for a certain length of time on Dhu’l-Hijja 9 (the last day of the Islamic lunar calendar) and circumambulating the Ka‘ba any day after staying at the ‘Arafat. Ihram is also essential to both the major (Hajj) and minor (‘Umra) pilgrimage. Ihram is the intention to perform either Hajj or ‘Umra, or both, and marks the beginning of Hajj or ‘Umra, or both if they are performed together. It also signifies making some things forbid-den. Men wear special attire while in ihram, and this is why some people call this attire ihram.

Its Virtue
Hajj mabrur (a faultless Hajj that is free of sin and graced with Divine ac-ceptance and pleasure) is one of the best, most virtuous deeds in Islam.”

Bukhari and Muslim record from God’s Messenger: “He who performs Hajj for God’s good pleasure and avoids all lewdness and sin will return after Hajj as free from all sins as he was the day his mother gave birth to him” (Zayn al-Din al-Zabidi, Tajrid al-Sarih, “Hajj,” 756) and: “Pilgrims and those performing ‘Umra are God’s guests. Their prayers are answered and their supplications for forgiveness are granted. The reward of Hajj mabrur is Paradise.” (Canan, ibid., 17:383)

Concerning the importance of Hajj, the Qur’an says:

Behold, the first House (of prayer) established for humanity is the one at Bakka (Makka), as a blessed place and a center of guidance for the whole world. Therein are clear signs (showing that it is a blessed sanctuary cho-sen by God as the center of guidance), and the Station of Abraham. Who-ever enters it is secure (against attack and fear). Pilgrimage to the House is a duty owed to God by all who can afford a way to it. Whoever rejects (this obligation) or is ungrateful to God (by not fulfilling this command), God is All-independent of all creatures. (3:96-97)

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Some Facts
Hajj is Obligatory Only Once. All Muslim scholars agree that Hajj is obligatory only once during a Muslim’s lifetime, unless someone vows to per-form an extra Hajj, in which case the vow must be fulfilled. Whatever is done over and above is supererogatory or optional.

When Hajj Must Be Performed. Although some scholars opine that Hajj may be performed at any time during one’s life, and that one who must perform it can postpone it, it is preferred that Hajj be performed as soon as one is physi-cally and financially able to do so. This is because if the person dies before per-forming the obligatory Hajj or a vowed one, one’s heirs must carry out this duty. Even if the deceased did not specify this in his or her will, if one-third of the estate is enough for an heir to make Hajj, an heir had better perform it for the deceased. All ensuing Hajj expenses, as well as any debts, must be paid from the deceased’s property.

However, the heir who wants to do this must ob-tain all of the other heirs’ agreement, or at least resignation, before departing. If such an agreement is not reached, the heir must pay all expenses out of his or her own property.

Prerequisites. All jurists agree upon the following:

  • Being an adult, free Muslim. Children can make Hajj along with their par-ents, but they have to perform it again after reaching the age of responsibil-ity (puberty).
  • Being of sound mind.
  • Being physically fit and healthy enough to perform it.
  • Finding a safe way to reach Makka, so that the pilgrim’s life and posses-sions are not in danger.
  • Having the necessary provisions, meaning that they must be able to take care of themselves while performing Hajj, meet their family’s needs back home, and be able to make the trip in an Islamically acceptable way. All of the money spent to perform Hajj must have been earned in an Islamically acceptable way.
  • A woman who performs Hajj from such a distance that she will be consid-ered a traveler must be accompanied by her husband, or a man who cannot legally marry her, or one or more reliable women.

Hajj on Behalf of Others. If people can perform Hajj but do not do so, and then are overtaken by sickness, old age, or death, they must arrange for some-one else to perform it on their behalf, for they might never have another chance to do it. If sick people recover after having sent someone in their place, some scholars say that their duty to make Hajj has been fulfilled and that they do not have to “repeat” it. However, most scholars opine that the recovered people still must perform Hajj, for a “substitutory” Hajj is not enough.

Doing Business. Pilgrims can pursue trade and business during Hajj or ‘Umra, provided that they are making Hajj solely to fulfill their responsibility for God’s sake. The Qur’an declares:

There is no blame on you if you should seek something of the bounty of your Lord (by trading during the Pilgrimage. But beware that you should not be over-occupied with trading to neglect any of its rituals). When you press on in multitude from ‘Arafat (after you have stayed there for some time,) mention God at Mash’ar al-Haram (i.e., Muzdalifa). Mention Him, conscious of how He has guided you, for formerly you were surely of those astray. (2:198)

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Ihram is the intention to perform Hajj or ‘Umra, either singly or together, and marks the beginning of either one, or both, if they are performed together. It also signifies making some things forbidden. Men wear a special attire of two white, unstitched, cloth sheets. One of these is wrapped around the body’s upper part (except the head), and the other (izar) is wrapped around the body’s lower part. There is no special Hajj attire for women.

Fixed Time. This refers to the specific time during which the rites have to be performed in order to be valid. The Qur’an states: They ask you, (O Messen-ger,) about the new moons. Answer them: “They are signs for the people to de-termine time and the period of the Pilgrimage” (2:189) and: The Pilgrimage is in the months well-known to people (2:197). Muslim scholars agree that the known months are Shawwal, Dhu’l-Qa‘da and the first ten days of Dhu’l-Hijja. Therefore, putting on the attire for Hajj is not valid outside these months, except for ‘Umra, which can be performed at any time of the year.

Fixed Places (Mawaqit) for Ihram and Donning the Special Hajj Attire. Mawaqit (plural of miqat) are the specific places where pilgrims or people intending to perform Hajj or ‘Umra must declare their intention to do so and enter the state of ihram. Men put on their special Hajj attires in these places. Anyone intending to perform Hajj or ‘Umra must not pass beyond these places without ihram.

God’s Messenger, upon him be peace and blessings, specified these places (Canan, ibid., 17:385):

For the people of Madina and those coming through Madina, the miqat is Dhu’l-Hulayfa, 450 kilometers north of Makka.

For those coming from Syria, Jordan, Palestine, and Lebanon, the miqat is al-Juhfa, 187 kilometers northwest of Makka, and close to Rabigh, 204 kilometers from Makka. Rabigh became the miqat for people coming from Syria and Egypt after the settlement of al-Juhfa disappeared completely.

  • The miqat for the people of Najd is Qarn al Manazil, a mountain 94 kilo-meters east of Makka, overlooking ‘Arafat.
  • Yalamlam, a mountain 54 kilometers south of Makka, is the miqat for those coming from Yemen.
  • For the people of Iraq, the miqat is Dhat ‘Irq, 94 kilometers northeast of Makka.
  • For those living in Makka who intend to perform Hajj, the miqat is the place where they are staying in Makka. However, if they intend to perform ‘Umra, they should go to al-Khol or at-Tan’im, for that is the proper miqat for ‘Umra.
  • Those who live between a miqat and Makka can make their ihram from their house.
  • Those whose way does not pass through any of these places must enter the state of ihram in that place which shares the same line (latitude) as they do.

Etiquette of Ihram. This involves clipping the fingernails, trimming the moustache, shaving the hair under the armpits, shaving the pubic hair, making wudu’ or (preferably) performing ghusl, and combing their beard and hair (men only). Men can put perfume on their body and Hajj attire, even if it continues to smell afterwards. After cleansing oneself in accord with these rules, one should pray two rak‘ats, intend to assume the state of ihram, and perform either Hajj or ‘Umra, or both, if one intends to perform them together.

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Kinds of Ihram or Hajj
Hajj or ihram is divided into three categories, each of which all scholars say are legitimate: Qiran (combining ‘Umra and Hajj in one state of ihram), Tamattu‘ (combining Hajj and ‘Umra with a break in between), and Ifrad (Hajj only).

Qiran. Here, pilgrims declare their intention to perform both Hajj and ‘Umra together, and say when doing talbiya: “Labbayk bil-hajj wa’l-umra (O God, I answer your call to perform Hajj and ‘Umra.”) [Talbiya is: Labbayk, Al-lahumma labbayk; labbayk la sharika laka; inna’l-hamda wa’l-minnata laka wa’l-mulk, la sharika lak. (Here I am, my God, here I am at Your service. Here I am at Your service. You have no partner. Assuredly, all praise and gratitude are for You, and all dominion. You have no partner.)] Such pilgrims must re-main in the state of ihram until they have performed all the rites of ‘Umra and Hajj.

Tamattu‘. In this case, pilgrims perform ‘Umra during the Hajj season and then perform Hajj. It is called tamattu‘ (enjoyment) because these pilgrims have the added advantage of performing Hajj and ‘Umra together without having to go back home, and also because after performing ‘Umra they can wear their usual clothes, apply perfume, and do other things until they have to put on their attire for Hajj.

Anyone intending to do tamattu‘ should, on approaching the miqat, make the intention for ‘Umra. While uttering talbiya, they should say: Labbayk bil ‘Umra (O God, I answer Your call to perform ‘Umra). They should wear their Hajj attire (women have no special Hajj attire) until they circumambulate the Ka‘ba, walk between Safa and Marwa to perform sa‘y, and then cut off a little of their hair or shave it off altogether (men only). After that, they may wear their usual clothes and do all that is permissible but that is prohibited while in the state of ihram. On Dhu’l-Hijja 8, they must declare their intention to per-form Hajj, re-enter the state of ihram, and put on their special attire from Makka.

Ifrad. Ifrad means that pilgrims intending to perform Hajj only should only make the intention for Hajj while at the miqat. While saying talbiya, they should say: Labbayk bi-hajj (O God, I answer your call to perform Hajj) and wear their Hajj attire until all the rites of Hajj are completed. After that, they can make ‘Umra if they so desire

Restrictions during Ihram
These are as follows:

  • Sexual intercourse and all matters leading to it (e.g., kissing, touching, or talking to one’s wife about intercourse or related matters).
  • Committing sins that cause deviation from the path of obeying God.
  • Disputing, arguing, or fighting with companions, servants, and other peo-ple. God declares:
  • The Pilgrimage is in the months well-known to people. Whoever under-takes the duty of Pilgrimage in them, there is no sensual indulgence, wicked conduct, or disputing during the Pilgrimage. (In addition to obey-ing this command,) whatever good you do (and help others), God knows it. Take your provisions for the Pilgrimage (and do not be a burden upon others). In truth, the best provision is piety, so be provided with piety to guard against My chastisement, O people of discernment. (2:197)
  • Wearing any sewn clothes (e.g., a shirt, hooded robes, cloak, underpants), wrapping anything around the head (e.g., a cap or a fez), wearing clothes dyed with a nice fragrant dye, or wearing shoes or sewn slippers.
  • Killing any animal or game or showing it to someone else so that he or she may kill it, or cutting any green grass or trees (whether within or outside the sacred precincts of Makka).

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Penalty for Violating the Sanctity of Ihram
The following violations must be paid for by sacrificing a sheep or a goat:

  • Wearing perfume or similar things on any part of the body or henna on the head; wearing a stitched garment or covering one’s head (for men) for a day; shaving at least one-fourth of one’s head; clipping one’s fingernails; omitting one of the necessary things of Hajj; performing the arrival or farewell circumambulation while menstruating; or being in a state of major impurity or doing the obligatory circumambulation of visiting without having wudu’.
  • If one does such things while in the ihram for qiran, two sheep or goats must be sacrificed. If one does such things because of coercion or absolute necessity, one either sacrifices within Makka’s sacred precincts or fasts for 3 days wherever he or she pleases, or gives charity in an amount equivalent to the fitra (that which provides a person with two average-sized meals) to a poor person.
  • Having sexual intercourse while in the state of ihram before or while at ‘Arafat nullifies Hajj. If one has sexual intercourse before shaving oneself or cutting some hair after staying in ‘Arafat, or performs the obligatory cir-cumambulation of visiting in the state of major ritual impurity or menstruation or post-childbirth bleeding, one must sacrifice a cow, an ox, or a camel. If, however, one repeats the circumambulation after being purified, this sacrifice is cancelled. If one has sexual intercourse after shaving one-self or cutting some hair, but before the circumambulation, one must sacrifice a sheep or a goat.
  • If one wears perfume or something similar on some part of the body, wears a stitched garment or covers one’s head for some part of the day, shaves less than one-fourth of one’s head, clips only a fingernail or another person’s fingernails, shaves someone else, or performs the arrival and farewell circumambulation without having performed wudu’, one must give a fitra amount of charity. Plucking a broken fingernail entails no penalty.
  • If one kills one to three grasshoppers, a lice, or fleas on one’s own body or on that of somebody else, he or she must pay charity less than a fitra. If one kills more than three of these vermin, one must pay a fitra amount of charity.
  • If one in the state of ihram kills an animal whose meat is not edible or a game animal, an assessment should be made and then one should make compensation. For an animal whose meat is not edible, this cannot be more than a sheep or a goat. If one has an animal of equivalent value for the animal or game animal killed, one must sacrifice it and give its meat in charity. If one does not have such an animal, its value should be assessed by two just persons, and the person must give that amount of food to the poor. If one does not have enough money for this, he or she must fast according to how many poor people could be fed with that money. For example, if it is estimated that that money could feed 10 needy people, the per-son has to fast for 10 days. The food given to the needy must be enough to satisfy their hunger.
  • If one in the state of ihram cuts off or plucks green grass or trees within Makka’s sacred precincts, and these are not privately owned, their value is given away as charity. If they are privately owned, the compensation doubles, for the owner is indemnified and its value is given to the poor as charity.

The Sacred Precincts of Makka (Haram Makka)
The Sacred Precincts of Makka include the area around Makka, which are marked by stones a meter high, on all roads leading to or from the city. In this area, killing game animals and cutting green trees are prohibited. On the northern side, Haram Makka extends to Tan’im, 6 kilometers from the Sacred Mosque; on the southern side to Adah, 12 kilometers from Makka; on the eastern side to al-Ji’rana, 16 kilometers away; on its northeastern side to the valley of Nakhla (14 kilometers away); and on the western side 15 kilometers away (al-Hudaybiya).

Sacred Precincts of Madina (Haram Madina)
In the Sacred Precincts of Madina, killing game animals and cutting trees also are prohibited, with the exception that Madina’s residents can use trees and grass for their animals. The sacred precincts of Madina extend from Eer to Thawr. Eer is a mountain at the miqat for Madina, and Thawr is a mountain to the north near Uhud.

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The Necessary Acts (Wajib) of Hajj
The obligatory acts consist of staying for some time in ‘Arafat after noon on the eve of ‘Iyd al-Adha (Dhu’l-Hijja 9), and performing the obligatory cir-cumambulation (tawaf) of visiting. Ihram is also essential for Hajj.

The necessary acts for Hajj are as follows:

  • Getting into the state of ihram in any of the miqat places.
  • Doing nothing forbidden while in ihram.
  • Staying in ‘Arafat until sunset on Dhu’l-Hijja 9, the eve of ‘Iyd al-Adha.
  • Staying in Muzdalifa between dawn and sunrise on the ‘Iyd al-Adha for some time. Muzdalifa is located about 20 kilometers from Makka and 10 kilometers from ‘Arafat.
  • Performing the last three turns of the obligatory circumambulation (tawaf al-ifada or ziyara) around the Ka‘ba. (The first four turns are obligatory.)
  • Doing the obligatory circumambulation of visiting during the first 3 days of ‘Iyd al-Adha, during which sacrifice is offered.
  • Performing the farewell circumambulation. (This is necessary for pilgrims coming from outside of Makka.)
  • Performing the circumambulation in the state of ritual purity and covering all parts of the body that must be covered.
  • Beginning the circumambulation from a point on line with the Black Stone and with the Ka‘ba on one’s left.
  • Offering two rak‘ats of prayer after every circumambulation.
  • While performing the circumambulation, turning outside and around Hijr Isma‘il, a place to the north of Ka‘ba and surrounded by a semicircular wall.
  • Performing sa‘y (slightly running seven times between the hills of Safa and Marwa, going from Safa to Marwa four times, and the other way three times).
  • Throwing seven pebbles at each of three stone columns (jamarat) standing in Mina with some distance between them. These are called Jamrat al-Ula, Jamrat al-Wusta, and Jamrat al-‘Aqaba. On the first day of ‘Iyd al-Adha, one throws pebbles at Jamrat al-‘Aqaba, and at all of them on the follow-ing two days.
  • Those coming from outside of Makka and performing Hajj al-Tamattu‘ or Hajj al-Qiran should sacrifice a sheep or a goat any time within 3 days af-ter throwing pebbles on the first day of ‘Iyd al-Adha, and shave or cut some of their hair within Makka’s sacred precincts. Women only clip a lit-tle of their hair.

If one of these necessary acts is omitted, a sacrifice must be offered.

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Sunna Acts

  • Performing wudu’ or ghusl before putting on the Hajj attire to enter the state of ihram.
  • Before wearing the Hajj attire, wearing permitted perfume.
  • Offering two rak‘ats of prayer as a sunna act of ihram, and reciting Surat al-Kafirun and Surat al-Ikhlas in each rak‘at after Surat al-Fatiha.
  • Uttering talbiya loudly as soon as one enters the state of ihram, and doing so whenever one climbs a hill, descends into a valley, meets one or more people, early in the morning, and after every prescribed prayer until throw-ing stones at Jamrat al-‘Aqaba on the first day of ‘Iyd al-Adha. (Women do not raise their voices while uttering talbiya.)
  • Calling God’s blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings, and upon his Family many times after each talbiya.
  • Praying after calling God’s blessings and peace upon the Messenger and his Family.
  • Performing ghusl before entering Makka, praying upon seeing the Ka‘ba, and exalting and glorifying God and declaring His Oneness in front of the Sacred Mosque.
  • Those coming from outside of Makka perform the arrival circumambulation.
  • Making voluntary circumambulations while staying in Makka.
  • Walking fast, moving the shoulders vigorously, and taking small steps in order to give a sense of strength and energy during the first three turns of the obligatory tawaf of visiting.
  • Being quicker between the green markers while doing sa‘y (between Safa and Marwa).
  • Leaving for Mina on Dhu’l-Hijja 8 after sunrise, and spending that day and night there.
  • Leaving for ‘Arafat on Dhu’l-Hijja 9 after sunrise.
  • Leaving for Muzdalifa after sunset and spending that night there, and pro-ceeding to al-Mash’ar al-Haram (near the hill of Quzah in Muzdalifa) at dawn.
  • Praying sincerely and in utmost humility, especially after the daily prayers performed in ‘Arafat and Muzdalifa.
  • Leaving for Mina before sunrise on the first day of ‘Iyd al-Adha, and staying in Mina for 3 consecutive days.
  • While throwing pebbles at the Jamarat, standing so that Mina will be on one’s right and Makka on one’s left, and throwing in turn beginning with Jamrat al-Ula and proceeding to Jamrat al-Wusta and Jamrat al-‘Aqaba.
  • If possible, throwing the pebbles between sunrise and noon on the first day of throwing, and between noon and sunset on the other days.
  • Going quickly from Mina to Makka. If leaving Mina on Dhu’l-Hijja 12 or the third day of ‘Iyd al-Adha, leave before sunset.
  • While going to Makka, staying in Muhatab and Abtah for a short time.
  • Drinking Zamzam water to one’s full satiation after making the farewell circumambulation and offering two rak‘ats of prayer.
  • Rubbing one’s face and chest against Multazam, a part of the Ka‘ba between the Black Stone and its gate.
  • Holding onto the curtain covering the Ka‘ba and praying without bothering and troubling anyone.
  • Visiting the tomb of God’s Messenger in Madina.

Performing these sunna acts increases the reward for Hajj, and omitting any of them incurs no penalty.

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Performing Tawaf
One must begin tawaf (circumambulation) with one’s right shoulder un-covered, the Ka‘ba on the left, and, while facing the Black Stone, kissing it (if possible), or touching it with one’s hand, or pointing in its direction. Jogging lightly through the first three circumambulations is encouraged. One should walk fast, keep as close to the Ka‘ba as possible, and take short steps. In the next four rounds, one should walk at a normal pace. Touching the Yemeni corner (ar-Ruknu’l-Yemeni) is encouraged, and so is kissing or touching the Black Stone in each of the seven rounds of tawaf, if possible. Remembering God and supplicating as much as possible is also encouraged.

There are several kinds of tawaf, as follows:

  • Tawaf al-Qudum (Arrival Circumambulation). This is sunna for those com-ing from outside of Makka.
  • Tawaf al-Ifada or Ziyara (Obligatory Circumambulation of Visiting). This is one of the three pillars of Hajj, and should be done during the first 3 days of the ‘Iyd al-Adha. If this is not possible, one can do it at any time during one’s life, but must offer a sacrifice as penalty.
  • Tawaf al-Wada’ (Farewell Circumambulation). This is necessary for all pilgrims coming from outside of Makka.
  • Tawaf al-Tatawwu’ (Supererogatory Circumambulation). Pilgrims can perform this as often as they want to during their stay in Makka.

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Making Sa‘y between Safa and Marwa
Pilgrims, whether they are performing Hajj or ‘Umra perform sa‘y after tawaf. Sa‘y means running from Safa to Marwa four times and the other way three times. The Qur’an stresses that each person meets that for whatever one strives or endeavors (53:39). Sa‘y means endeavoring or making effort. For Hajj, this is held to commemorate Hagar’s running between Safa and Marwa seven times in order to find water for her son, Ishmael, whom she was still breast-feeding. Gold told Abraham to leave Hagar and Ishmael, upon him be peace, in Makka, which was then an uninhabited barren valley. Both Abraham and Hagar submitted to God’s order wholeheartedly. However, their submission did not prevent Hagar from trying to find water for her son, for both of them needed it and she also needed it to produce breast-milk.

Islam is the harmonious combination of submission and endeavor. Hagar did not wait for a miracle, but tried to find water in a desolate desert without losing hope. The water came miraculously from an unexpected place: under Ishmael’s feet. That water, known as Zamzam, continues to meet the needs of millions of pilgrims every year, even after so many centuries. This miracle was the result of sincere belief, confidence in and submission to God, endeavor (humanity’s duty), and never being desperate. People act, and God creates the result. This is why it has unanimously been said: “God is not found by looking for Him, but those who have found Him are those who have looked for Him.”

Pilgrims begin sa‘y from Safa and end in Marwa. They walk from Safa to Marwa four times, and the other way three times. They jog between the two green markers along the way. They supplicate and recite the Qur’an while walking and upon reaching either hill, and face the Ka‘ba while supplicating.

The word ‘umra is derived from al-i‘timar, which means “to visit.” In this context, it means visiting the Ka‘ba, performing tawaf, walking between Safa and Marwa seven times, and then shaving one’s head or cutting one’s hair short. It is a sunna act of worship.

The Time. Most scholars have ruled that ‘Umra may be performed any time during the year. Abu Hanifa, however, opines that it is disliked to perform ‘Umra on five days: the Day of ‘Arafat (eve), the Day of Nahr (Dhu’l-Hijja 10, the first day of ‘Iyd al-Adha), and the 3 days of Tashriq (Dhu’l-Hijja 11, 12, and 13).

The Miqat. If people who are intending to perform ‘Umra are outside the miqat fixed for Hajj, they must not cross these miqats (places fixed for ihram) without declaring ihram. Those people who are already well within the miqat area, even within Makka’s Sacred Precincts, must go out to the miqat and de-clare ihram there.

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Hajj and ‘Umra from Beginning to End

  • People who intend to perform Hajj must ensure that all of the money to be spent during Hajj was earned in Islamically lawful ways. Debts must be paid off, and everyone who has rights upon the intending pilgrim must be asked to suspend those rights. In addition, the intending pilgrims must seek forgiveness from those whom they have wronged and forgive any wrongs done to them. They seek God’s forgiveness, and offer two rak‘ats of prayer without leaving home.
  • While journeying, they must occupy themselves with reflecting upon God’s works, reciting the Qur’an, supplicating, and avoiding sin, speaking in vain, and harming any living creature.
  • On arriving at the miqat (the place fixed for entering the state of ihram), pilgrims should shave themselves, clip their fingernails, perform ghusl or wudu’, and wear some perfume. Men don their special Hajj attire, which is also called ihram, as it is the beginning and symbol of entering the state of ihram. There is no special attire for women. Pilgrim candidates should offer a two-rak‘at prayer and declare their intention (to perform Hajj, Hajj and ‘Umra together, or ‘Umra). It is recommendable to perform Hajj Tamattu‘ (Hajj and Umra together, with a break in between,) for pilgrims who come from far away. If one performs Hajj Tamattu‘, one makes the inten-tion for ‘Umra at the miqat. Wearing ihram and declaring the intention for Hajj or ‘Umra is an essential part of both, and neither will be correct without ihram and intention.
    As soon as they enter the state of ihram, they must utter the talbiya loudly (women do not raise their voices) and continue saying it whenever climbing a hill, descending into a valley, meeting one or more people, early in the morning, and after every prescribed prayer until one throws pebbles at the Jamrat al-‘Aqaba on the first day of ‘Iyd al-Adha.
    While in the state of ihram, pilgrims must avoid sexual intercourse and whatever leads to it, wrangling and useless bickering, marriage or joining others in marriage, wearing any sewn clothes or shoes that cover the feet above the ankles, covering their heads (men) or faces (women), wearing perfume, cutting their hair or nails, engaging in hunting game animals, or cutting trees or grass within Makka’s Sacred Precincts.
  • When entering Makka, pilgrims perform ghusl; hasten to the Sacred Mosque, and, upon reaching it, say the talbiya; ask God for forgiveness and pray to Him; call His blessings and peace on our master Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings, and his Family and Companions; and recite words of God’s Oneness, glorification, praise, and exaltation. As soon as they see the Ka‘ba, they should pray for themselves, their parents, rela-tives, and all Muslims. In addition, they must always be humble. After this, they should proceed directly to the Black Stone and kiss it quietly or touch it with their hand. If this is not possible or doing so will harm others, one may just point toward it.
  • After this, one should begin circumambulating the Ka‘ba and repeating the Prophet’s supplications, upon him be peace and blessings. In the first three turns, men should uncover their right shoulder and jog slowly. In the remaining rounds, they may walk at a normal pace. It is sunna to touch the Yemeni Corner and to kiss the Black Stone in every round. After complet-ing this rite’s seven rounds, the pilgrims should go to the Station of Abraham, for God said:
  • Remember, again, that We made the House (the Ka‘ba in Makka) a sign showing people to the truth, a resort and place of rewarding visit for them, and a center and means of safety. (As in older times,) you too (O believers), stand in prayer in the Station of Abraham. We imposed a duty on Abraham and Ishmael: Purify My House for those who go around It as an act of devotion, for those who abide in devotion, and for those who bow and prostrate (in prayer). (2.125)
There, they should pray two rak‘ats of tawaf, if possible. If not, they can pray anywhere in the Mosque.
  • Then they should approach Safa to begin sa‘y in compliance with God’s words:
  • (The hills of) Safa and Marwa are among the emblems that God has ap-pointed (to represent some aspects of Islam and the Muslim community). Hence, whoever performs Hajj to the House (of God – the Ka‘ba) or does ‘Umra, there is no blame on him to run between them (and let them run after they go round the Ka‘ba as an obligatory Pilgrimage rite). (2:158)
They should climb Safa, look toward the Ka‘ba, and supplicate using one of the Messenger’s supplications. After this, they should climb down and start walking toward Marwa as the first of seven rounds between the two hills, while remembering God and supplicating.On approaching one of the two green markers, pilgrims should jog to the second green marker and, after passing it, resume one’s normal walking speed toward Marwa. Upon reaching Marwa, one should climb it, turn to-ward the Ka‘ba, and supplicate and glorify God. This marks one complete round. They should perform the remaining six rounds in the same manner, thereby completing all seven rounds.
  • If pilgrims are performing Hajj Tamattu‘, they should shave their head or cut their hair short, for this ends all ihram-related restrictions. After this, all things that were forbidden are allowed, including sexual intercourse with one’s spouse. Those who intend to perform Hajj Ifrad (Hajj only) or Hajj Qiran (Hajj and ‘Umra together without a break) must continue in the state of ihram.
  • On Dhu’l-Hijja 8, those intending to perform Hajj Tamattu‘ must resume ihram, make the intention to perform Hajj from their residences, proceed to Mina with those who have remained in ihram, and spend the night there.
  • At sunrise on Dhu’l-Hijja 9, the pilgrims leave for ‘Arafat. Staying at ‘Arafat begins only after the sun has passed its zenith. During this time, they should stand by its rocks (Jabal al-Rahma) or as close as possible, be-cause this is where the Prophet used to stand. Staying at ‘Arafat is the Hajj’s principal rite. During it, they should face the qibla, glorify and re-member God, and supplicate as much as possible until nightfall.
  • After nightfall, the pilgrims must leave for Muzdalifa. Upon arriving there, they must offer the maghrib (evening) and ‘isha’ (night) prayers, combining them after an imam, and spend the night there.
  • At dawn, the pilgrims stand by al-Mash’ar al-Haram, and perform waqfa there. That is, they must stay there for some time and remember and glorify God until it is almost sunrise, as God declares:
  • When you press on in multitude from ‘Arafat (after you have stayed there for some time,) mention God at Mash’ar al-Haram (in Muzdalifa). Men-tion Him, conscious of how He has guided you, for formerly you were surely of those astray. (In vainglory, do not choose to remain in Muz-dalifa without climbing ‘Arafat and staying there for some time. Instead,) press on in multitude from where all the (other) people press on, and im-plore God for forgiveness (for your opposition until now and the errors you have done during the Pilgrimage). God is All-Forgiving, All-Compassionate (especially toward His believing servants). (2:198-99)
  • Before sunrise, they should return to Mina after collecting pebbles at Muzdalifa. After sunrise, the pilgrims must throw seven pebbles at Jamrat al-‘Aqaba. Then they offer their sacrifice, have their hair cut, remove their ihram, and lead their normal life – with the exception of having sexual intercourse with their spouse.
  • Then they go to Makka to perform the obligatory tawaf of visiting, an essential part of Hajj. Performing this tawaf on the first day of ‘Iyd al-Adha is recommended, but one can perform it during the following two days. Af-ter this tawaf, sexual intercourse with one’s spouse becomes permissible. If the pilgrims are performing Hajj Tamattu‘, they must perform a sa‘y after this tawaf. Those who are performing Hajj Qiran or Ifrad do not have to make this second sa‘y if they had performed the Arrival Tawaf and sa‘y upon their arrival in Makka
  • The pilgrims must now return to Mina and spend the 3 days of ‘Iyd al-Adha there. After midday on the second and third day (Dhu’l-Hijja 11 and 12), they throw seven pebbles at each of three Jamras, beginning with Jamrat al-Ula and then Jamrat al-Wusta and Jamrat al-‘Aqaba. They exalt God at each throwing and, after finishing their throwing at the first two Jamras, pray for themselves, their parents and relatives, and for all Muslims. If they want to stay in Mina on the fourth day of ‘Iyd al-Adha, they throw pebbles at the Jamras before noon.
  • After returning to Makka, those pilgrims who will be returning to their native lands must perform the Farewell Tawaf. Afterwards, they should go to the Zamzam well and drink as much of its water as possible. Then they go to al-Multazim, rub their face and chest against it, hold the curtain covering the Ka‘ba, pray, and supplicate.

Those Prevented from Completing Hajj or ‘Umra

  • If the pilgrims intended to perform either Hajj or ‘Umra but were prevented from approaching the House of God, they must sacrifice whatever animal they can afford (e.g., a sheep or a larger animal) within Makka’s sacred precincts. After this, they can leave the state of ihram and remove their special Hajj attire.
  • If the reason why they cannot complete this duty is removed before staying in ‘Arafat, they must complete their Hajj. If they are prevented (from doing so) after staying in ‘Arafat, they are not regarded as being prevented from completing their Hajj, for they can perform the obligatory tawaf anytime during their life, provided that they offer a sacrifice.
  • If they are prevented from staying in ‘Arafat but can perform the obligatory tawaf, they do not have to sacrifice, but must make up their Hajj later.
  • If they intended to perform the obligatory Hajj and were prevented from doing so, they must make it up later.

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Offering a Sacrifice
Offering a sacrifice (a sheep, a goat, and for seven people a camel, a cow, or an ox) is incumbent (wajib) upon every adult Muslim who has the nisab amount of wealth. The difference between having to pay zakat and sacrificing is that zakat must be paid on it if the person has had it for one year, while a sacrifice must be offered if the person has had it for only one day. The sacrifice must be made on any of the first 3 days of ‘Iyd al-Adha.

Sacrifice during Hajj. Pilgrims performing Hajj Qiran and Hajj Tamattu‘, who miss any necessary act (e.g., throwing pebbles, putting on ihram from a miqat, or performing sa‘y), or violate any ihram restriction or the sanctity of Haram Makka, must sacrifice.

Sacrificial Animals. The most common sacrificial animal is a sheep or a goat. Cattle and camels also can be offered as sacrifice. Pilgrims must sacrifice a camel if they perform tawaf in a state of major ritual impurity (junub), are still menstruating or having post-childbirth bleeding, have sexual intercourse with their spouse after spending Dhu’l-Hijja 9 (eve) in ‘Arafat but before shaving or clipping the hair, or have vowed to sacrifice a camel.

Conditions for Sacrifice. A sacrificial animal should satisfy the following conditions:

  • If it is a sheep, it must be 1 year old, or as fat and healthy as a 1-year-old sheep if it is more than 6 months old. A camel must be at least 5 years old, a cow 2 years old, and a goat 1 year old.
  • The animal should be healthy and without defect (i.e., it must not be one-eyed, have a limp, be mangy, very thin, or weak).

Time of Offering. The sacrifice must be made at a specific time, as follows:

  • Whether one is performing Hajj or not, a sacrifice must be offered on any of the first 3 days of ‘Iyd al-Adha.
  • A sacrifice made to fulfill a vow, atone for sins, or perform a supereroga-tory act of worship may be offered any time during the year.

Place of Offering. A sacrifice that will be offered during Hajj, whether it is necessary (wajib) or voluntary, must be offered within Makka’s Sacred Precincts.

Who Must Sacrifice the Animal. The one who kills the animal must be a Muslim or belong to the People of the Book (a Christian or a Jew). He must say Bismillah before sacrificing, for the meat of an animal slaughtered by an atheist, an agnostic, an apostate, or one who intentionally does not say Bismillah cannot be eaten.

Eating the Meat of the Sacrificial Animal. God commands Muslims to eat the meat of sacrificed animals: eat thereof and feed the poor such as (beg not but) live in contentment and such as beg with due humility (22:36). It is advis-able to eat one-third, give one-third to the poor, and one-third to one’s friends and relatives. Apparently, this command applies to both the obligatory and su-pererogatory sacrifice. However, one cannot eat the meat of any animal sacri-ficed in fulfillment of a vow, for all of the meat must be distributed among the poor and needy.

The sacrificed animal’s skin can be used as a rug or in another way, after it is tanned, or given away as charity. One cannot sell it.

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Visiting the Prophet’s Mosque and Tomb
Going to Madina and visiting the Prophet’s Mosque and tomb is sunna and brings great reward. God’s Messenger gave the glad tiding that visiting him af-ter his death is like visiting him while he was alive. This visit may be made be-fore or after Hajj. He also said: “The space between my house (where he died and was buried) and my pulpit is one of the gardens of Paradise (Rawda), and my pulpit is at my Fountain in Paradise.” (Bukhari, “Fazl al-Salawat,” 5)

It is recommended that one calls God’s blessings and peace upon the Mes-senger as many times as possible and approaches his mosque calmly and with composure. One should wear perfume, nice clean clothes, and enter the mosque with the right foot. It is recommended that pilgrims first go to the Rawda and offer two rak‘ats, with calmness and humility, to “greet” the mosque.

After this one should move toward the Prophet’s grave, face it, give greet-ings of peace to him, and call God’s blessings and peace upon him. Then, moving about a yard to the right, one should offer one’s greetings to Abu Bakr and, moving another yard in the same direction, offer greetings to ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab. Then, facing the qibla, they should supplicate for themselves, their family, friends, relatives, and all Muslims, and then leave.
One should also visit the Jannat al-Baqi cemetery, where many Companions and members of the Prophet’s Family are buried. During the visit, people should talk only loudly enough to hear themselves, and behave with utmost humility and sincerity.

Offering Prayers in the Quba Mosque
God’s Messenger, upon him be peace and blessings, used to go to Quba, riding or on foot, every Saturday and offer a two-rak‘at prayer. He advised others to do the same: “Whoever makes ablutions at home and then goes and prays in the Quba Mosque will have a reward like that of an ‘Umra.” (Asim Köksal, Islam Tarihi [The History of Islam], Ist., 1:12) Thus, pilgrims who visit Madina should also visit the Quba Mosque and pray there.

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1. Abu'l-Fazl Ezzati, An Introduction to the History of the Spread of Islam, London 1978, 199-200

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