Hajj is one of the five essential pillars of Islam. The importance of Hajj is revealed through Qur’an and Hadith. It is an annual pilgrimage to Mecca of every Muslim. Adult Muslims must go on Hajj at least once in their life. Hajj is the only worship on the earth where huge masses come together and show unity and discipline.
In the month of Dhu al Hijja, people around the world come to one place and perform the rituals of Hajj from the 8th to the 12th of Dhu al Hijja.
Hajj is a spiritual, physical, and emotional challenge that gives us the opportunity to refresh our spiritual thoughts and clean our sins. It is the only prayer that renews our faith in Allah and brings us closer to Allah. The challenges we faced on Hajj made us stronger and humbler in our daily lives.
Muslims follow the Holy Prophet’s footsteps to show their deep connections with the teaching of the Holy Prophet. The importance of Hajj is clearly defined in Qur’an and Hadith.
What is Hajj?
The literal meaning of Hajj is to intend to do, and the technical meaning of Hajj is for every adult Muslim to perform Hajj at least once in his life. In Qur’an, Allah says:
ؕ وَلِلّٰهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الۡبَيۡتِ مَنِ اسۡتَطَاعَ اِلَيۡهِ سَبِيۡلًا ؕ وَمَنۡ كَفَرَ فَاِنَّ اللّٰهَ غَنِىٌّ عَنِ الۡعٰلَمِيۡن
“Pilgrimage to the House is a duty owed to Allah by all who can make their way to it. As for those who refuse to follow His command, surely Allah does not stand in need of anything.”
Hajj is an annual pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca by the Muslims of the whole world. There are some rituals of the Hajj pilgrimage. Muslims are bound to perform all the rituals properly to clean themselves spiritually.
First of all, pilgrims reached Mecca and entered the state of Ihram and did not open it until the end. Then another ritual is Tawaf, Safa Marwa and Mount Arafat. Stoning the devil and Qurbani after the Eid ul Adha is also part of the rituals of Hajj. Pilgrims repeatedly invoked the dua called Tarbiyah during the Hajj. Tarbiyah is:
لَبَّيْكَ ٱللَّٰهُمَّ لَبَّيْكَ، لَبَّيْكَ لَا شَرِيكَ لَكَ لَبَّيْكَ، إِنَّ ٱلْحَمْدَ وَٱلنِّعْمَةَ لَكَ وَٱلْمُلْكَ لَا شَرِيكَ لَكَ
“I respond to Your call O Allah! I respond to Your call. You have no partner. I respond to Your call. All praise, thanks, and blessings are for You. All sovereignty is for You. And You have no partners with You).’”
There are some conditions of performing Hajj. Some of them are following:
- He must be a Muslim.
- He is independent.
- He must be mentally and physically fit.
- He must have all the financial resources and other essentials of the journey.
- For women, there must be someone with them called Mehram.
Obligatory duties of Hajj:
Allah has made Hajj compulsory for all Muslims at least once in their life. Just like Salat, Sawn, and Zakat, Hajj is also a compulsory pillar of Islam. Every Muslim who has the finances to perform Hajj must embark on this journey. The three obligatory duties of Hajj are following:
It is obligatory for the pilgrims to enter the state of Ihram from Meeqat. Pilgrims traveling by air enter the state of Ihram during flight or before the flight. Ihram is obligatory during the whole rulings of Hajj.
It is essential for the pilgrims to stop at Arafat for a moment or till the decline of the sun of 9th Dhul Hijja. This stay is called Wuquf-e-Arafat.
It is also an obligatory duty and it can be performed any time from the morning of the 10th Dhul Hijja to the end of the 12th after completing the ritual of Qasr. Qasr is shaving or clipping of hair. It is performed after leaving the state of Ihram and just before returning from Mina to perform Rami al Jamarat. If Tawafuz Ziyarah is delayed, the sacrifice of an animal becomes essential.
These are the obligatory duties of Hajj and must be performed with sheer attention. Some essential acts of worship during the Hajj but these are considered necessary after these three obligatory duties.
Necessary acts of worship during Hajj:
There are some acts of worship or Wajib acts during the Hajj. These acts are also kept in mind and must be performed after the three obligatory duties. The important Wajib acts of worship during Hajj are:
- Wuquf in Muzdalifah
- Safah and Marwa
- Qurbani or sacrifice of an animal
- Overnight stay at Mina
- Shaving or cutting of hair
The important act during Hajj is the dress code of the pilgrims. Men wear drape seamless unstitch cloth, and women dress in plain white dresses and headscarves. These are the essential acts of worship during the Hajj and must be performed. There are some Sunnah and acts of respect during the Hajj. These acts are following:
- Always in Wudu
- Do not hurt anyone with tongue or with hand
- Be patient and soft-hearted
- Do not talk unnecessarily
- To seek forgiveness from Allah
- Be humble in your acts
- Seek forgiveness of your sins
- Refrain from any pride during the journey
These are the acts to remember during the remarkable journey of Hajj. Because of the important pillar of Islam, the rituals of Hajj must be performed very well.
Prohibited acts during Hajj:
During the Hajj, there are prohibited acts with some obligatory acts and acts of worship or Wajib. These acts must be avoided and kept in mind during the journey of Hajj. These acts are:
- Do not shave or clipping of hairs at the state of Ihram
- Do not cut nails or use any kind of perfume
- Do not wear anything stich
- Refrain yourself from hunting
- Prohibition of sex
Importance of Hajj under the light of the Qur’an:
Hajj is the most sacred and divine journey towards the house of Allah. It is considered the most significant religious practice in Islam. So, Muslims focus on the rituals of Hajj to perform them comprehensively. The importance of Hajj is wholly explained in Qur’an and Hadith. In Qur’an, Allah Almighty says that:
” وَاَتِمُّوا الۡحَجَّ وَالۡعُمۡرَةَ لِلّٰهِؕ “
“complete the Hajj and Umrah in the service of Allah.”
In another place in Qur’an Allah Almighty says:
وَأَذِّن فِى ٱلنَّاسِ بِٱلْحَجِّ يَأْتُوكَ رِجَالًا وَعَلَىٰ كُلِّ ضَامِرٍ يَأْتِينَ مِن كُلِّ فَجٍّ عَمِيقٍ
“publicly proclaim Pilgrimage for all mankind so that they come to you on foot and mounted on lean camels from every distant point.”
The Qur’an explains the importance of Hajj and tells us the reward and benefits of it. It is an unforgettable journey for all Muslims to visit the home of Allah Almighty.
Importance of Hajj in the light of Hadith:
The Holy Prophet (SAW) acknowledged it as one of the pillars of Islam. He (SAW) performed one Hajj in his life and explained all the rituals and Wajibs of Hajj. He, in his sayings, explains the importance of Hajj. He says that:
بُنِيَ الْإِسْلَامُ عَلَى خَمْسٍ ، شَهَادَةِ أَنْ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللَّهُ وَأَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ، وَإِقَامِ الصَّلَاةِ ، وَإِيتَاءِ الزَّكَاةِ ، وَالْحَجِّ ، وَصَوْمِ رَمَضَانَ
“Islam is based on five fundamentals: to proclaim that there is no god but Allah and Muhammad (saw’s) is the Messenger of Allah, and to establish the prayer, and pay Zakat, to offer pilgrimage of the House [of God] and to fast during Ramadan.” (Bukhari, No: 7)
In another Hadith, the Holy Prophet (SAW) says that:
“One who comes to this House for Hajj and avoids all lewdness and sins, he returns as he was on the day his mother gave birth to him.” (Bukhari & Muslim).
It is now clear that Hajj is an obligatory pillar of Islam, and its importance is proved through the Qur’an and Hadith.
Rewards and benefits of Performing Hajj:
The importance of Hajj can be calculated through its rewards and benefits. Some of the rewards and benefits are:
1.Love and Closeness to Allah:
A person who performs Hajj with his heart and feeling will be blessed with Allah’s closeness and love.
2.Humbleness in personality:
Rituals of Hajj make you humble and down to earth because by performing these rituals, you are now well known the reality of life.
3.Unity among the Ummah:
Hajj is the only worship in the world where millions of pilgrims come together and give a message of unity and discipline to the whole world.
The importance of Hajj is proved through Qur’an, Hadith, and its other benefits and rewards. So it would be best if you embarked on this incredible journey in your life when you have enough finances for it. It brings changes not only to your daily life but also benefits you on the day of judgment. May Allah give all the Muslims a chance to visit the Holy Kaaba and perform the Hajj with heat and Feelings.