Mecca was recently the scene of shocking proportions when a crane which had not been secured properly crashed through the roof of the masjid damaging it and killing many. While families and the country mourns the loss of life and loved ones, we find strength and hope in the fact that they died performing acts of worship to God Almighty. Their lives are not a loss but actually a mercy as they will be – insha’allah raised as shaheed. Here we see Hajj 2015 continuing with live streaming of Mecca Mukarima. May God accept the worship of all these people and those who worship in their homes.
Hajj literally means ‘to set out for a place’. Islamically however it refers to the annual pilgrimage that Muslims make to Makkah with the intention of performing certain religious rites in accordance with the method prescribed by the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa Sallam). Hajj and its rites were first ordained by Allaah in the time of the Prophet lbrahIm [Abraham] (AS) and he was the one who was entrusted by Allaah to build the Ka’ba – the House of Allaah – along with his son Ismaa’eel [Ishmael] at Makkah.
Allaah described the Ka’ba and its building as follows:
“And remember when We showed Ibrahim the site of the [Sacred] House [saying]: Associate not anything [in worship with Me and purify My House for those who circumambulate it [i.e. perform tawaaf] and those who stand up for prayer and those who bow down and make prostration [in prayer etc.].” [Surah Al-Hajj 22:26]
After building the Ka’ba, Ibrahim (AS) would come to Makkah to perform Hajj every year, and after his death, this practice was continued by his son. However, gradually with the passage of time, both the form and the goal of the Hajj rites were changed. As idolatry spread throughout Arabia , the Ka’ba lost its purity and idols were placed inside it. Its walls became covered with poems and paintings, including one of Jesus and his mother Maryam and eventually over 360 idols came to be placed around the Ka’ba.
During the Hajj period itself, the atmosphere around the sacred Ka’ba was like a circus. Men and women would go round the Ka’ba naked, arguing that they should present themselves before Allaah in the same condition they were born. Their prayer became devoid of all sincere remembrance of Allaah and was instead reduced to a series of hand clapping, whistling and the blowing of horns. Even the talbeeyah was distorted by them with the following additions:
‘No one is Your partner except one who is permitted by you. You are his Master and the Master of what he possesses’. Sacrifices were also made in the name of Allaah. However, the blood of the sacrificed animals was poured onto the walls of the Ka’ba and the flesh was hung from pillars around the Ka’ba, in the belief that Allaah demanded the flesh and blood of these animals.
Singing, drinking, adultery and other acts of immorality occurred amongst the pilgrims and the poetry competitions which were held were a major part of the whole Hajj event. In these competitions, poets would praise the bravery and splendor of their own tribesmen and tell exaggerated tales of the cowardice and miserliness of other tribes. Competitions in generosity were also held. Thus the people had totally abandoned the teachings of their forefather and leader Ibrahim (AS). The House that he had made pure for the worship of Allaah alone, had been totally desecrated by the pagans and they had com rites which he had established were completely distorted . This sad state of affairs continued for nearly two and a half thousand years.
What should the one who wants to offer a sacrifice refrain from doing ?
If the onset of Dhul-Hijjah has been proven and a person wants to offer a sacrifice, it is haraam for him to remove anything from the hair on his body or to cut his nails or any part of his skin. It is not forbidden for him to wear new clothes or to put on henna or perfume, or to be intimate with his wife or have intercourse with her.
This ruling applies only to the one who is going to offer the sacrifice, and not to the rest of his family, and not to the one whom he appoints to slaughter the sacrifice on his behalf. None of these things are forbidden for his wife or children, or for his deputy.
No differentiation is made between men and women with regard to this ruling. If a woman wants to offer a sacrifice on her own behalf, whether she is married or not, then she should refrain from removing any hair from her body or cutting her nails, because of the general meaning of the texts which state that that is not allowed.
These are mistakes that occur during tawaaf, and are of various types:
1 : Uttering the intention out loud when wanting to do tawaaf, so you see the pilgrim standing facing the Black Stone when he wants to do tawaaf, saying, “O Allaah, I intend to do seven circuits of tawaaf for Umrah” or “O Allaah, I intend to do seven circuits of tawaaf for Hajj,” or “O Allaah, I intend to do seven circuits of tawaaf in order to draw closer to You.”
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) did tawaaf before you and he did not speak the intention out loud when he did tawaaf. The Sahaabah (may Allaah be pleased with them) did tawaaf before you and did not speak the intention out loud when they did tawaaf, or when doing any other act of worship, so this is a mistake.
2 : Some of those who do tawaaf push and shove too much when they touch the Black Stone and the Yemeni Corner, and they are disturbed by the overcrowding and disturb others. They may be pushing and shoving a woman, and the Shaytaan may tempt him and fill his heart with desire when he is crowding this woman in this narrow place. People are only human and may be overwhelmed by their souls that prompt them to do evil, so an evil action may take place in the shadow of the House of Allaah. This is a matter that becomes even worse in light of where it takes place, although it is a fitnah in any place it happens.
It is not prescribed to push and shove when touching the Black Stone or the Yemeni Corner, rather if it is easy for you to do so in a calm and dignified manner, then you must do it, and if it is not easy for you to do it, then you should just point to the Black Stone.
With regard to the Yemeni Corner, there is no report from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) that he pointed to it, and we cannot compare it to the Black Stone, because the Black Stone is greater than it, and it was proven that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) pointed to the Black Stone.
Just as crowding is not prescribed in this situation and there is the fear that it may cause fitnah when one is crowded together with women, so too it may also cause annoyance, because in crowded situations a person will inevitably hear words that he dislikes and he will feel annoyed and angry when he leaves this place.
What the person who is doing tawaaf should do is always remain calm and dignified, so that he will have the proper presence of mind for worshipping Allaah.
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Tawaaf around the House and (Saai) between al-Safa and al-Marwah and the stoning of the Jamaar have only been prescribed so that remembrance of Allaah (dhikr) will be established.”
3 : Some people think that tawaaf is not valid unless one kisses the Black Stone, and that kissing the Black Stone is one of the conditions of tawaaf being valid, and of Hajj and Umrah being valid too. This is a mistaken notion. Read the rest of this entry »
Islamic Guidelines for Visitors to the Prophet Mosque
O you who come to the City of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), you have come to a good place and you are going to earn great reward. May Allaah accept your righteous deeds and fulfil your greatest hopes. Welcome to the land of Hijrah and victory, the land of the Chosen Prophet, the land to which the righteous Sahaabah migrated and the home of the Ansaar.
There follow a few words of advice to those who want to visit the Mosque of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him):
1 : O you who come to Madeenah, you are in a place which, after Makkah, is the best and noblest of all places, so respect it as it should be respected; honour its sanctity and holiness and observe the best etiquette therein. Know that Allaah has warned of the severest punishment for those who commit evil therein.
It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Madeenah is a Haram (sanctuary), so whoever commits evil therein or gives protection to an evildoer, the curse of Allaah, the angels and all of mankind may be upon him. Allaah will not accept any obligatory or naafil deed from him on the Day of Resurrection.”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1867; Muslim, 1370.
So whoever commits any evil action or offers protection to any evildoer who seeks his help is exposing himself to a humiliating punishment and the wrath of the Lord of the Worlds.
One of the most serious of evil deeds that violate its purity is openly doing acts of bidah and spoiling its atmosphere with myths and false ideas, and contaminating its pure land with the spread of articles which promote bidah, books which contain shirk, and all kinds of reprehensible and haraam actions which go against Islamic shareeah. The evildoer and the one who gives him protection are equally guilty of sin. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: 06 Dec 2008 09:39 AM CST
“O Son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O Son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. O Son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins as great as the earth, and were you then to face Me ascribing no partners to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great as it.” (Hadith Qudsi)
“Pardon them and overlook – Allah loves those who do good” (Qur’an 5:13)
“Those who control their anger and are forgiving towards people; Allah loves the good.” (Qur’an, 3: 134)
“The Messenger of Allah was seated in a gathering with the Sahabah when he looked towards the entrance and said, “A man of Paradise is coming.” At that instance someone who seemed to be very ordinary entered the mosque where they were seated. A Sahabi was curious as to why the Prophet .‘ said this, so he followed the man to his house. This Sahabi told the man that he was a traveler and stayed as a guest. For three days the Sahabi saw nothing unusual, so he finally told the man what the Prophet had said and asked him what was so special. The man thought for a long time and said, ‘There might be one thing — before going to sleep every night I forgive everyone and sleep with a clean heart.’ Focus on your worship. How merciful ALLAH is, that one day of sincere worship and repentance can absolve a lifetime of sins! What have we done- what are we doing- to deserve this immeasurable gift? Here’s a link to a beautiful post by Hesham Hassaballah about the Day of Arafat. It is very much worth the read.
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