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Hajj, a Physical and Spiritual Journey

By Maulana Muhammad Mansoor Ahmad (VIewsHeadlines)

The blessed ones will embark on the journey of Hajj very soon. And it is a unique journey that one undertakes only when he is called by the Almighty, and not just when he wishes to go there himself.

Many wait for the evening of their life to perform this pious journey and wait for the silver to show in their hair before they think of it all. But one never knows when our time will be up and whether the journey will ever be undertaken at all.

It is mentioned in a hadeeth that Prophet Muhammad said, “If anyone can afford the journey of Hajj and still postpones it, then it is equal to him dying as a Jew or a Christian.” [Tirmidhi, Kitab-ul-Hajj, chapter Maja]

There are many without worldly properties, huge bank balance, profession achievements or huge earnings, but their great desire draws them to this journey and they are provided the means in ways that leaves onlookers amazed at the blessings of the Almighty.

Very fortunate are the men and women who will soon lay their eyes on the holy Kaba and enjoy walking upon the hallowed grounds of Mecca.

To perform this journey correctly it is important to first have the right and complete knowledge about the journey. And this does not just include the details of conveyance and transport. There are duties that should not be neglected and acts and behavior that need to be observed at all times.

Many people have the misconception that now that I have embarked on the journey of Hajj, I need not abstain from sins. They neglect the obligatory daily five prayers, namaz. Many women do not take adequate care about purdah and covering themselves and even during Hajj they think covering up themselves properly is optional.

These are the webs of Satan through which he defiles even a journey as pious as Hajj. Every journeyman should take extra heed to not fall into this web of sins during the journey. It is worth thinking, if an act is a sin at home, won’t it be a sin in the hallowed grounds of Mecca as well?

There is an engraving near the entrance of Masjid –e-Haraam, the Mosque of Prophet Muhammad saw, it read, “Be very aware! You are in the hallowed Masjid al-Haraam”

It is a realization with the power to make one stop in his tracks. This realization needs to be with the one performing Hajj at all times. The awareness of his location, that he is in the most hallowed ground on earth, and the guest of his Maker.

If the performers of Hajj remember this sentence at all times then it would become easy for them to abstain from sins and pay proper reverence to their location through their actions and behaviour. We do not just need to complete the physical requirements of Hajj, rather, our aim should be to reach the spiritual elevation and levels of faith that our religion demands from us in the first place.

Every obligatory action that is required in the completion of Hajj has a spiritual meaning that needs to be kept in mind. Mere physical completion of these duties does not complete a Hajj. Hajj is not the recitation of certain memorised sentences. These words need to be realised from the innermost soul of a person.

These words are the basis on which humanity was first established by Allah. Man was made to respond to the call and this is his purpose of life, to respond to his Maker’s call and submit. This is the law around which the entire universe revolves. This is the sole path to success for any man created. This is the message that our Prophet Muhammad brought to humanity and this is what the tide of humanity will respond to as it moves to the holy grounds of Mecca again this year.

‘O Allah! We are here. Our life and belongings, our property and house, our offspring, everything is before you. They are offered to elevate your Name, to follow the path shown by your Prophet, to serve your servants. O Allah, we are here.’

‘There is none but Allah. You are the Greatest of all. Your qualities are greatest and best of all. There is no one besides you in creating and maintaining the universe. We are ready to bear what You decide for us and have written in our destiny. O Allah! We are here!’

So, everyone who is embarking on the journey of Hajj should make sure he has the knowledge of his endeavour and the spiritual demands expected of him. Otherwise it will be just another waste of money and journey without purpose.

(Maulana takes a look at social and spiritual benefits of Hajj, philosophy of Hajj in Islam, benefits of Hajj in Islam, significance of Hajj and what is Hajj and why is it important.)

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