Those planning for HAJJ / UMRAH must have a glimpse of pre-requisites and formalities. Get yourself accustomed to the rituals prior taking a plunge as objective should not be ostentation and lust to be cherished among the masses or to be called Hajji.
And perform Hajj (greater pilgrimage) and Umrah (lesser pilgrimage) for Allah [Baqarah 2:196]
Succinctly, mandatory steps needed for the UMRAH are NIYYAH, TAWAF, SA’Y and finally Hair Cut.
“NIYYAH” involves (1) trimming nails, removing pubic and under arm hair followed by (2) ablution (GHUSAL) and then (3) putting on IHRAM which is simply a white two piece clothe. Women wear ABBAYA that covers their head and the body complete except hands, feet and face.
The place from where UMRAH starts and one enters the state of IHRAM is MEEQAT however if transit is not possible then it is better to do steps while departing from home or at airport and recite the following DUA;
comprises seven circumambulations around the KAABA in counter clock wise direction that starts from kissing (ISTILAM) of the Black Stone (HAJRE ASWAD). If kissing not possible then touching or pointing towards with palms facing Black Stone are also permitted. Men should leave their right shoulder uncovered only while performing TAWAF. While doing ISTILAM following DUA should be uttered loudly and be repeated at the start of every round.
“Bismi’Llah Allahu akbar wa li’Lah al-hamad”
While performing first three circumambulations, men should move loftily and at quick pace (which is called RAMAL). The rest of the four circumambulations shall be performed at normal walking pace.
DUA during TAWAF
No specific DUA or ZIKAR is prescribed during TAWAF therefore it permissible to recite any DUA even in Non Arabic language. Upon reaching fourth corner of KAABA (called RUKN YAMANI i.e. towards YAMAN) touch it with both hands and while walking between RUKN YAMANI and Black Stone recite the following DUA:
On completion of the TAWAF proceed towards MAQAM IBRAHIM and offer short prayers (two RAKAT SALAH). MAQAM IBRAHIM is the place standing where Prophet IBRAHIM (AS) erected the walls of KAABA. Foot prints of Prophet (AS) are preserved in metallic case.
Shuttling between the two hills of SAFA and MARWA is called SA‘Y that comprise seven trips in total, starting from SAFA and ending on MARWAH. It is in essence in commemoration of the seven trips of Hazrat Hajirah (AS) – wife of Ibrahim (AS), which she took between SAFA and MARWAH while searching for water for her son Ismail (AS), as he cried of thirst.
Recite the following verse of Quran;
(Verily, As-Safa and Al-Marwah are from the symbols of Allah. So it is not a sin on him who performs Hajj or ‘Umrah of the house (ka ‘bah) to perform the going (tawaaf) between them. And whoever does good voluntarily, then verily, Allah is the All-Recognizer, All-Knower. [Quran; 2:158])
While ascending to SAFA, facing towards KABAA, recite
as evident from the book of HADEES – “SAHE BUKHARI” that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) used to recite these words, although other supplications are also permitted.
Hair Cut is the last and mandatory part of the UMRAH. Upon completion of the SA’Y men perform head sahve or shorten their hair while women clip their hair by a fingertip. With that prohibitions on Pilgrims due to IHRAM come to end.
MASJID E NABVI
Is also considered AL HARAM; Sacred place. Offering prayer in MASJID E NABVI is recommended after performance of HAJJ or UMRAH, although not mandatory.
Inside the mosque is ROZA E RASOOL; where lies the resting place of Prophet (PBUH), Hazrat ABU BAKAR (RA) and Hazrat UMAR (RA). Outside the vicinity of the mosque JANAT UL BAQEE is located where most of the companions of Prophet (SA) are buried.
Expenditure and Travel Information
Travel agent chosen is also crucial in determining the service level expected and comfort during stay and travelling. Enquire your travel agent about the type, location and distance of hotel from Masjid UL Haram (KABAA). Don’t forget to obtain contact numbers of those who will be available for assistance in MAKAH & MADINA. It is better to do a little bit of research yourself about the hotel standard and other nitty-gritties you need to know.
On average, UMRAH costs around PKR 0.1 million, perp person for a 15 day trip. Likely expenditure may escalate depending on the number of days of visit, hotel accomodation (3, 5 or 7 star), airline chosen, and travel agents fee. No fee charged for visa.
Estimated number of travel agents approved by Ministry of Hajj KSA is around 221, 67, 59 and 31 in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and UK respectively. Approximate per night price of the standard room is SR 250 and SR 325 for single occupancy and double occupancy, respectively. However, under seasonal tariff, which runs from the month of Ramadan to the end of Zil Hijjah, charges may rise up to SR 500 / 650.
Detailed guidelines related to the visa application, rituals and approved travel agents can be found at the website of Ministry of Hajj Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)
Prohibitions which are applicable in IHRAM are;
(1) applying perfumes
(2) anointing hair with oil
(3) removing nails or hair
Use of perfumes prior wearing IHRAM is SUNNAH
(4) for men to cover head
(5) for women to cover her face
(6) hunting animals (7) intecourse
There are few acts of pilgrims which shall be averted as those acts have no relevance and attachment to the religion.
(1) Kissing MAQAM IBRAHIM; no proof that Prophet (PBUH) did the same.
(2) Pushing, forcing or fighting other pilgrims to get to the Black Stone
(3) Obeisance to ROZA E RASOOL (SA)
One must be pre-planned to reap maximum benefit not only out of the UMRAH but also from visiting other places that may serve as a source to strengthen ones belief.
JABLE REHMAT: HAZRAT ADAM (AS) and HAZRAT HAWA (AS) first met at this place after being descended to earth from Heaven
QIBLATAIN MOSQUE: The mosque where while praying, revelation came upon Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) to change direction of prayer towards KABAA. Prior that AQSA MOSQUE in JURASELUM was considered “QIBLA” for Muslims.
UHAD GRAVEYARD: Graves of companions of Prophet (PBUH) including HAZRAT HAMZA (RA) near JABLE UHAD.
MAKKAH LIBRARY: Birth place of Hazrat Muhammad PBUH now turned into library. However, no authentic proof that Prophet PBUH was born here.