Islamic Religion: Fruits of Hajj? (2/3)

Islamic Religion: Fruits of Hajj? (2/3)

By Editorial Staff

Islamic Religion Fruits of Hajj (23)

 Hajjthe fifth pillar of Islam, is one of the best deeds. The Prophet (peace be upon him) was once asked, “Which deed is best?” He said, “Belief in Allah and His Messenger.” He was asked, “Then what?” He said, “Jihad for the sake of Allah.” He was asked, “Then what?” He said, “An accepted Hajj.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

We talked in a previous article about four messages that one catches from visiting the sacred House of Allah, the Kabah, for Hajj. We are going to continue this interesting topic as we find it is useful for the pilgrims to take these messages into consideration, having returned from Hajj.

Fifth: Message of Belonging to Islam

When one puts the first foot in Makkah, one is get amazed not only by the enormous numbers of people but also by the diversity of their colors, genders, ages and languages.

One sees the Arab and the non-Arab, the males and the females, the old and the young, and people with different colors, nationalities, cultures, histories, jobs and life conditions.

The common factor between all of those is one thing, namely belonging to Islam. If you want to describe all of them with one word, you can simply say “Muslims”, a designation given to them long ago by the Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham, peace be upon him). The Qur’an says:

And strive for Allah with the striving due to Him. He has chosen you and has not placed upon you in the religion any difficulty. [It is] the religion of your father, Abraham. Allah named you “Muslims”. (Al-Hajj 22:78)

They follow this religion because it knows no discrimination on any basis. The only thing with which a human being excels another human being according to Islam is attaining taqwa, a word that means piousness, fear of Allah and obedience to Him.

In his Hajj, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) stood on the Arafat mountain speaking to the masses of people who offered Hajj with him, in his Final Sermon, “No Arab is superior to a non-Arab and no white man is superior to a black man, except in terms of taqwa.”

Affiliation to Islam means to submit to Allah as your God, Muhammad as your Messenger and Islam as your way of life.

Have you got the message!!

Sixth: Message of Humbleness

When commencing Hajj, a pilgrim enters in a state of Ihram (ritual state for Hajj or Umrah). Every male pilgrim wears a specific dress consisting of two white garments that have no pockets or decoration. It is so simple and reminds of the hereafter.

In Prayer, you stand side by side with someone who may be less than you in rank or position, but still he may wear expensive clothes, watch and fragrant perfume, and with his nails and beard trimmed. Yet in Hajj, once you enter in the state of Ihram, you have to wear only two white garments wrapped around your body, and you are forbidden to wear any sewn clothes, apply perfume or trim your nails or hair. All pilgrims looks the same, with same dress and look, does not this teach you humbleness?

Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Wealth does not decrease because of charity, and Allah increases His slave in honor when he forgives others. And no one humbles himself before Allah but Allah will raise him (in status).” (Muslim)

Have you got the message!!

Seventh: The Message of Forbearance

The great masses of people bring unbearable crowd, annoyance and harassment as well as the calls of help from others. In this atmosphere you offer you Hajj rites with utmost hope that Allah accepts your deeds, and fear that your Hajj may not be accepted. Yet, forbearance is what makes this easy for you. You are commanded to keep patient and endure the difficulties and annoyance from others, and do not react to others harassment except in good way and with toleration. Actually, this is another message of Hajj.

There are three kinds of forbearance: forbearance on performing worship, forbearance on keeping away from sins and forbearance on the decrees of fate. In Hajj, you are experienced to a lot of hardship and fatigue and stay a long time in waiting and you are commanded to endure and tolerate. Almighty Allah says:

O you who have believed, persevere and endure and remain stationed and fear Allah that you may be successful. (Aal `Imran 3:200)

Indeed, the patient will be given their reward without account. (Al-Zumar 39:10)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever performs Hajj and does not commit any obscenity or commit any evil will go back (free of) sin as on the day his mother bore him.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Have you got the Message!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                To be continued…..

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Islamic Religion: Fruits of Hajj (3/3)

Islamic Religion: Fruits of Hajj (3/3)

By Editorial Staff

Islamic Religion Fruits of Hajj (Part 3)


Allah, the Almighty, has made sublime purposes for the legislation of the acts of worship. For example, regarding Prayer, Almighty Allah says,

And establish prayer. Indeed, prayer prohibits immorality and wrongdoing. (Al-`Ankabut 29:45)

Concerning fasting, Allah (glory be to Him) says,

O you who have believed, decreed upon you is fasting as it was decreed upon those before you that you may become righteous. (Al-Baqarah 2:183)

As regards Hajj, Almighty Allah says,

And proclaim to the people the Hajj [pilgrimage]; they will come to you on foot and on every lean camel; they will come from every distant pass. That they may witness benefits for themselves and mention the name of Allah…(Al-Hajj 22:27-28)

These verses indicate that the acts of worship have been enacted for certain goal, which is only attainable through performing the worship in conformity with the commands of the Qur’an and Sunnah. Notably, these goals are focusing on the enrichment of morals and ethics and enhancing faith.

In previous articles, we touched on a number of the lessons and messages taken from Hajj. Click here to read Part 1 and Part 2. We are going to complete this topic in this article.

Eighth: The Message of Facilitation

While performing his only one time of Hajj, the Prophet (peace be upon him) taught his companions the right way to perform the rituals of Hajj. Yet, some companions would mistake the right order of performing these rituals. The Prophet (peace be upon him) responded to this confusion with utmost easiness and facilitation. It is reported that when the Prophet (peace be upon him) was asked on the day of Eid Al-Adha about anything that has been advanced or deferred he would say, “Do, there is no harm.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) He did not approve negligence at all, but, in forgiven matters, there should be facilitation and pardoning.

It is the message of facilitation and moderation confirmed by the Qur’an and Sunnah.

Almighty Allah says,

Allah intends for you ease and does not intend for you hardship. (Al-Baqarah 2:185)

`A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said, “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) was never given the choice between two things but he would choose the easier of the two, so long as it was not a sin; if it was a sin he would be the furthest of the people from it. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Extremism and intolerance are abhorred by Islam. Keep as much as you can to the orders of Allah and do not overburden yourself because you may lose your enthusiasm and fall short to perform even the basic acts. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Religion is very easy and whoever overburdens himself in his religion will not be able to continue in that way. So you should not be extremists, but try to be near to perfection and receive the good tidings that you will be rewarded.” (Al-Bukhari)

Have you got the message!!

Ninth: The Message of Abandoning Erroneous Customs

We all know that the Ka`bah was rebuilt by the Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham) and his son Isma`il (Ishmael) (peace be upon them). Since its foundation, people would come to visit and make pilgrimage to it. However, they would make a plenty of acts of disbelief and repugnant acts while performing Hajj. Among the rites of Hajj during the pre-Islamic period of ignorance was to circulate around the Kabah fully naked. Also, they surrounded the Ka`bah with the idols they worshipped. When the Prophet (peace be upon him) came, he eliminated all the censured customs of disbelievers and all the forms of disbelief from Hajj and Kabah and admitted the only good things, such as providing water to the pilgrims.

It is reported that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “Allah has taken away from you the arrogance of Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic period of ignorance) and its pride in forefathers.” He (peace be upon him) refused and disdained the bad habits of the Jahiliyyah, such as pride in forefathers, riba (interest-based dealings) and revenge. He taught us that Islam corrects the Muslim’s way of life, sets his principles aright, improves his good morals, admits the good things with the other even if he is a dissenter and builds the independent Muslim personality.

Have you got the message!!

Tenth: Message of Man’s Enmity with Satan

Stoning the Jamarah is one of the obligatory rituals of Hajj. It was narrated from Ibn `Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace be upon him) seated Al-Fadl behind him on his mount, and Al-Fadl said that he did not stop reciting the Talbiyah until he stoned the Jamrah. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Abu Hamid Al-Ghazali (may Allah have mercy on him) said:  “As for the stoning of the Jamarat, the purpose behind it is to follow the command and manifest submission and servitude to Allah… The aim is also to imitate Ibrahim (peace be upon him), when Iblis (may Allah curse him) appeared to him in that place to instill confusion in his mind or tempt him to sin, and Allah commanded him to throw stones at
Satan so as to drive him away and dash his hopes.” (islamqa.com)

So, the pilgrim inspires this fact while throwing the pebbles. They remember the action of the Prophet Ibrahim against the cursed Satan, when he attempted to cast doubts in the heart of Ibrahim (peace be upon him). Actually, the enmity and deceit of Satan never end as he always tries to tempt the human beings to take them away of Allah’s way. So, always remember that Satan is your greatest enemy.

Have you got the message!!

 

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Hajj: Any Lessons to Learn?

Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam. It wipes out the sins and renews one’s relation with God. Moreover, it is a manifestation of the Islamic equity and unity, as all Muslims wear the same dress, repeat the same dhikr (remembrance of Allah), perform the same rites, and supplicate the same God following the same Prophet (peace be upon him).

However, after preforming Hajj, visiting the most sacred places on the earth –for us as Muslims-, standing at Arafat, circumambulating the Kabah, and visiting the mosque and grave of the Prophet (peace be upon him), the question now is: What are the lessons to be learned from Hajj? What do you get from your Hajj? What are the rites that touched your heart? What are the concepts that add to your faith? How do you feel Hajj?

In this video, the speaker talks about the lessons to be learned from Hajj, the wisdom behind the rituals of Hajj and other interesting issues.

Enjoy watching this video to have a comprehensive understanding of the Islamic worship as represented in Hajj.

 

Source: All About Islam 100 Youtube Chanel

 

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What Are the Virtues of the First Ten Days of Dhul-Hijjah?

Ten Days of Dhul-Hijjah

Among the great seasons of worship are the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, which Allah has favored over other days.

By the Editorial Staff

Among the great seasons of worship are the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, which Allah has favored over other days.

There are numerous hadiths indicating that these ten days are better than all other days of the year, with no exception.

The Muslim should hasten to utilize this opportunity by offering sincere repentance to Allah, and multiplying the good deeds in these blessed days.

Regarding the superiority of these days of Dhul-Hijjah, Sheikh Ibn `Uthaymin said,

“Indeed it is a great favor and blessing from Allah that He has made for His righteous servants periods of time within which they can increase in good deeds to attain great rewards. One of these opportunistic periods is the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

The excellence of these ten days has been mentioned in the Qur’an and the Sunnah. Allah says in the Qur’an:

By the dawn and by the ten nights… (Al-Fajr 89:1-2)

Ibn Kathir said that “the ten nights” referred to here are the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, and this opinion was also held by Ibn `Abbas, Ibn Az-Zubair, Mujahid and others.

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “There are no deeds as excellent as those done in these ten days.” They (the companions) said, “Not even Jihad?” He (peace be upon him) said, “No, not even Jihad except a man who goes forth endangering his life and wealth and does not return with anything.” (Al-Bukhari)

Also, Allah says:

…and remember the name of Allah in the appointed days. (Al-Baqarah 2:203)

Ibn `Abbas and Ibn Kathir said: this means in the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “There are no other days that are as great as these in the sight of Allah, the Most Sublime. Nor are there any deeds more beloved to Allah then those that are done in these ten days. So increase in tahlil (to say la ilaha ill Allah “No one worthy of worship but Allah), takbir (to say allahu akbar “Allah is the Greatest”) and tahmid (to say alhumdulillah “praise be to Allah”).” (At-Tabarani)

It is reported that the noble companion Sa`id ibn Jubayr, when the days of Dhul-Hijjah began he would strive to increase in good actions with great intensity to the extent that no one can do like that. (Ad-Darimi)

Ibn Hajar says in Fat-h Al-Bari: “The most apparent reason for the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah being distinguished in excellence is due to the assembly of the greatest acts of worship in this period, i.e. salawat (prayers), siyam (fasting), sadaqah (charity) and the hajj (pilgrimage). In no other periods do these great deeds combine.”

What are the Recommended Acts in These Days?

The Prayer

It is highly recommended to perform the obligatory acts at their prescribed times and to increase oneself in the supererogatory (nawafil) acts, for indeed, this is what brings a person closer to their Lord.

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Upon you is to increase in your prostration to Allah, for verily you do not prostrate to Allah with even one prostration, except that He raises you in degrees and decreases your sins because of it.” (Muslim)

Fasting

This has been mentioned as one of the acts of righteousness where Handabah ibn Khalid reports on the authority of his wife who reports that some of the wives of the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “The Prophet (peace be upon him) would fast on the ninth of Dhul-Hijjah, the day of `Ashura and three days in every month.” (Abu Dawud)

Imam An-Nawawi said that fasting in these ten days is extremely recommended.

Takbir, Tahlil and Tahmid

In the aforementioned narration of Ibn ‘Umar, the Prophet said: “So increase yourselves in saying la ilaha ill Allah, Allahu akbar and alhamdulillah.”

Imam Al-Bukhari (may confer mercy on him) said: “Ibn `Umar and Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with them both) used to go out to the markets in the ten days saying the takbir causing the people to follow them in this action.”

He also said: “`Umar ibn Al-Khattab used to say the takbir in his minaret in Mina, whereupon the people of the mosque hearing `Umar, would start to say the takbir as would the people in the markets until the whole of Mina was locked in glorifying Allah.”

Ibn `Umar used to say the takbir in Mina during these ten days and after prayers, whilst on his bed, in his tent, in his gathering and whilst walking. What is recommended is to say the takbir aloud due to the fact that `Umar ibn Al-Khattab, his son and Abu Hurayrah used to do likewise, may Allah be pleased with them all.

Muslims has to strive with in reviving this sunnah that has become lost in these times and it was almost forgotten, even amongst the people of righteousness and goodness all of which is unfortunately in opposition to what the best of generations were upon (preserving and maintaining the supererogatory acts).

Fasting on the day of Arafah

Fasting has been affirmed on the day of Arafah, where it has been authentically reported from the Prophet (peace be upon him) that he said regarding fasting on the day of Arafah: “I hope that Allah will expiate for you your sins for the year before (the day of Arafah) and the year after (the day of Arafah).” (Muslim)

However, whoever is at Arafah as a pilgrim then fasting is not expected of him, as it is reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) stopped at Arafah to eat.

What Should Be Avoided during Them?

Sheikh `Abudl-`Aziz ibn Baz (may Allah confer mercy on him) said:

“If anyone wants to offer an udhiyah, and the month of Dhul-Hijjah has begun, then it is haram for him to remove anything of his hair or nails or skin until he has slaughtered the udhiyah, because of the hadith of Umm Salamah (may Allah be pleased with her) that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “When you see the new moon of Dhul-Hijjah – according to another version, When the ten days (of Dhul-Hijjah) begin – and any one of you wants to offer an Ud-hiyah, let him refrain (from cutting) his hair and nails.” (Muslim)

According to another version, “Let him not remove anything from his hair and nails until he offers the udhiyah.”

The reason for this prohibition is that when the person who wants to offer the udhiyah joins the pilgrims in some of the rituals of Hajj – namely drawing closer to Allah by slaughtering the udhiyah – he also joins him in some of the features of ihram, namely refraining from cutting his hair etc.

This ruling applies only to the one who is going to slaughter the udhiyah. It does not apply to the one on whose behalf an udhiyah is offered.

Based on this, it is permissible for the family of the person who is going to offer the udhiyah to remove things from their hair, nails and skin during the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

If one has to remove them because of necessity, there is no blame on him, such as if a nail breaks and it annoys him, so he cuts it, or if a hair gets in his eye and he removes it, or he needs to cut his hair in order to treat a wound and the like.” (Fatawa Islamiyyah, 2/316)

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Source:

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Excellence of the Day of Arafah

Excellence of the Day of Arafah

By Sheikh Sayyed Sabiq

The ten days of the month of Dhul-Hijjah are the best days in the sight of Allah.

Jabir ibn `Abd Allah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “The ten days of the month of Dhul-Hijjah are the best days in the sight of Allah.” A man asked, “Are these days better than an equivalent number of days that are spent fighting for the cause of Allah?” The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) answered, “They are better than an equivalent number of days spent fighting in the cause of Allah. And there is no day better in the sight of Allah than the Day of Arafah. On this day Allah, the Almighty and the Exalted One, descends to the nearest heaven, and He is proud of His slaves on the earth and says to those in heaven, ‘Look at My servants. They have come from far and near, with hair disheveled and faces covered with dust, to seek My mercy, even though they have not seen My chastisement. Far more people are freed from the Hellfire on the Day of Arafah than on any other day. ’” (Ibn Hibban)

Ibn Al-Mubarak reported from Sufyan Ath-Thawri, from Az-Zubayr ibn `Ali, from Anas ibn Malik that he said: The Prophet spent the day at Arafah until almost sunset. Then he said, “O Bilal, ask the people to be quiet and listen to me.” Bilal stood up and asked the people to be quiet and listen to the Prophet. When the people were quiet, the Prophet said, “O people, a little while ago Gabriel (peace be upon him) came to me. Gave me salutations from Allah and informed me that Allah has forgiven those who spend the Day at Arafah and those who stop at Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram, and that He has guaranteed their debts.”

At this `Umar ibn Al-Khattab stood up and asked, “O Allah’s Messenger, is this for us only?” The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “This is for you and for all those who will come after you until the Day of Judgment.” `Umar exclaimed, “How plentiful and blissful Allah’s bounties are!”

Muslim and others have reported from `A’ishah that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Allah frees far more people from Hellfire on the Day of `Arafah than on any other day, and Allah comes closer this day and proudly says to the angels, ‘What do these people want and seek?’”Abu Ad-Darda reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “On no other day does the Satan feel so belittled, humiliated, and angry as he does on the Day of `Arafah.” The reason for this is the mercy of Allah that descends (this day) and the forgiveness that He grants to people for major sins, except the day of the Battle of Badr, which witnessed a far greater mercy of Allah descending upon people, which caused great sadness to Satan.

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was asked, “O Prophet of Allah, what did Satan see on the day of the Battle of Badr?” “He saw Gabriel leading the troops of angels,” he replied. (Malik and Al-Hakim)

 _________________

Source: Extracted from the author’s book: Fiqh al-Sunnah.

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On the Blessed Days of Dhul-Hijjah

On the Blessed Days of Dhul-Hijjah

Hajj tents

The excellence of first 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah is closely related to the concept of worship of God and monotheism.

By Editorial Staff

As one heads his way to God, it is most probably that one is overtaken by impediments and sins.

The lack of one’s faith and following ill desires and Satan take one away from the straight path of God.

Therefore, Allah has specified certain times and places with extra honor and reward so as to motivate those misled persons to be back.

These times are occasions of goodness for everyone to compete in pleasing Allah and enriching their record of good deeds with multiplied rewards. Actually, at the top of the most preferable and beloved days throughout the year are the first 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah.

In a hadith narrated by Ibn `Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) the Prophet said: “There are no days on which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days.” They said: “Not even jihad for the sake of Allah?” He said: “Not even jihad for the sake of Allah, unless a man goes out himself for jihad taking his wealth with him and does not come back with anything.” (Al-Bukhari)

The above hadith stresses the excellence and preference of these days over all other days. One may ask “even over the days of Ramadan?” The answer is that the hadith does not exclude any days from this statement whether Ramadan, Fridays, or any other days. Allah, the All-Generous and Openhanded wants people to vie in good doing and pleasant deeds. Hence, He singles out specific places and times with additional honor and reward as a kind of His Generosity. The reward of prayers, fasting, charity and all good deeds are multiplied and augmented during certain times and in certain places. For example, prayer in the Holy Mosque of Mecca is doubled 100.000 times in reward more than praying elsewhere, fasting the day of `Arafah entitles forgiveness of 2 years.

The differentiation and preference of such places or times over the others serve to wake up people’s energy and resolutions towards the pleasure of God. Moreover, this prevents boredom, and revives one’s activity to utilize these occasions to get closer to God and increase their rewards.

The excellence of such times or places is closely related to the concept of worship of God and monotheism. In other words, this preference is not embedded in those times or places themselves as much as it is clung to their encompassment of supreme acts of worship.

When we scrutinize some of the preferred times or places in Islam we come to know this fact easily. For example, Friday is preferred upon all the days of the week because it contains the Friday prayer which represents the most congregating prayer in the week as well as the obligatory Friday sermon. The month of Ramadan is the most blessed month of the year owing to its involvement of one of the pillars of Islam, namely fasting.

The first 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah are also preferred because they include one of the pillars of Islam, which is Hajj. The sacred House of Kabah is favored upon other places because it is the direction of prayer and the place around which Muslims make the worship of Tawaf.

Thus, the point is that the glorification of certain things in Islam is contingent basically on the relation between them and the obedience of God, worship and monotheism.

In fact, the aforementioned hadith conveys to us a commandment from the Prophet (peace be upon him) to increase good deeds during these blessed days. And the good deeds are numerous; they include prayer, fasting, charity, remembrance of God, night prayer, reciting the Quran, seclusion in the mosque, fasting the day of Arafah etc. A good Muslim should not deprive themselves from the greatest rewards of these good deeds during these days.

Moreover, among the most desirable deeds one may offer in these days is udhiyah (sacrifice) on the tenth day, the first day of Eid. Udhiyah is highly recommended.

It is narrated by Ibn Majah that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever can afford it (i.e. udhiyah) but does not offer it, let him not approach our prayer-place.”

Also, it was narrated in Sahih Al-Bukhari and Muslim that Anas ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “The Prophet sacrificed two white rams speckled with black. He slaughtered them with his own hand, said ‘Allahu akbar’ and put his foot on their necks.” So, if a Muslim is able to offer a sacrifice, he should not neglect it.

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