The Great Virtues Of Hajj And The Prophet’s (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) Encouragement To Perform This Mighty Pillar Of Islam: Benefits From Shaikh Al-Fawzān and Shaikh Rabee’ Al-Madkhali

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By Abu Khadeejah ʿAbul-Wāhid Alam

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In the name of Allah, Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy.

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of all creation, and may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and all his Companions.

Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam, and Allah has obligated it upon the Muslims at least once in a lifetime—and when a person has the ability to perform it, it is not allowed for him to delay it. Allah stated:

وَلِلَّهِ عَلَى ٱلنَّاسِ حِجُّ ٱلْبَيْتِ مَنِ ٱسْتَطَاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًا ۚ وَمَن كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ ٱللَّهَ غَنِىٌّ عَنِ ٱلْعَـٰلَمِينَ ٩٧

And due to Allāh from the people is a pilgrimage to the House – for whoever is able to find thereto a way. But whoever disbelieves [i.e., refuses] – then indeed, Allāh is free from need of the worlds.” (Āli ʿImrān: 97)

According to the most well-known saying, Hajj was obligated upon the Muslims in the ninth year after the Hijrah. However, the Prophet (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) did not make Hajj that year because the pagans were still performing Hajj, and they would make Tawāf of the House naked just as they did in the times of Jāhiliyyah. Then Allah (the Most High) revealed the verse:

يَـٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓا إِنَّمَا ٱلْمُشْرِكُونَ نَجَسٌ فَلَا يَقْرَبُوا ٱلْمَسْجِدَ ٱلْحَرَامَ بَعْدَ عَامِهِمْ هَـٰذَا

“O you who have believed, indeed the polytheists are unclean, so let them not approach al-Masjid al-Ḥarām after this, their [final] year.” (At-Tawbah: 28) So, based upon this verse, the Prophet (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) sent Abu Bakr (Allah be pleased with him) to lead the people in Hajj in the ninth year, and along with him, he sent ʿAli Ibn Abī Tālib (Allah be pleased with him) to announce that the polytheists will not be permitted to perform Hajj after this year, nor will anyone be permitted to make Tawāf of the House naked.

So, once the House of Allah was made ready, the mushriks were prevented from Hajj, and performing Tawāf naked was abolished, only then did Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) perform Hajj in the tenth year after the Hijrah. He performed no other Hajj since he was appointed as Prophet and Messenger except for this one Hajj—and this Hajj is referred to as the Hajjatul-Wadāʿ (the Farewell Hajj). As for ʿUmrah, then he (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) performed ʿUmrah four times after his Messengership, all of which he performed in Dhul-Qaʿdah except for the ʿUmrah of Jiʿrānah which is the place from where the Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) entered Ihram after returning from the battle of Hunayn, in the month of Shawwāl 8AH. Jiʿrānah is on the path that led him back to Makkah, it is at the limits of the Haram of Makkah—and from there he took Ihrām for ʿUmrah along with his Companions.

As for the ʿUmrah of Hudaybiyah, then he was prevented from performing that by the mushrikeen of Makkah—so, he exited the state of Ihrām along with his Companions at Hudaybiyah, they sacrificed animals as compensation and returned to Madinah. Then, the following year, they returned to Makkah to perform the ʿUmrah of atonement (ʿUmratul-Qadā) to make up for what they were prevented from in the previous year, in accordance with the treaty of Hudaybiyah.

As for his final ʿUmrah, then that was when he entered into Ihrām along with his Hajj as a Qārin wherein ʿUmrah and Hajj are performed together without coming out of Ihrām—and he performed this category of Hajj because he had brought along with him the sacrificial animal (al-hadyī)—so that made him a Qārin pilgrim gathering both ʿUmrah and Hajj. As for the rest of the Companions who did not bring with them a sacrificial animal, he commanded them to come out of Ihrām after they had performed ʿUmrah, and then enter Ihrām once again on the 8th of Dhul-Hijjah, known as the day of Tarwiyah before going out to Minā. This is the best form of Hajj, known as Al-Hajj At-Tamattuʿ.

The meaning of Hajj in the terminology of the Sharīʿah is to travel to the House of Allah to carry out the well-known rites of Pilgrimage such as the Tawāf of the Kaʿbah, Saʿī between the two hills of As-Safā and Al-Marwah, to stop at ʿArafah [on the 9th of Dhul-Hijjah] in supplication and dhikr (remembrance) of Allah, to spend the night at Muzdalifah, then the nights in Minā, to stone the three pillars (Al-Jimār), Tawāf Al-Ifādah after the night at Muzdalifah, another Saʿī for those upon whom it is obligated, sacrificing of the animal (Al-Hadyī), Tawāf Al-Wadāʿ, and so on.

So, Hajj has been obligated by Allah once in a lifetime for the one who is granted the ability:

مَنِ ٱسْتَطَاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًا

For whoever is able to find thereto a way…” And increase upon this one Hajj is considered optional and immensely rewardable. As for ʿUmrah, then there is no specified time for that, a person can make ʿUmrah whenever it is easy for him throughout the year—many times through the year if he wishes.

Abu Hurayrah (Allah be pleased with him) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) said:

اَلْعُمْرَةُ إِلَى اَلْعُمْرَةِ كَفَّارَةٌ لِمَا بَيْنَهُمَا وَالْحَجُّ اَلْمَبْرُورُ لَيْسَ لَهُ جَزَاءٌ إِلَّا اَلْجَنَّةَ

One ʿUmrah to the next ʿUmrah is an expiation for the sins committed between them, and the reward for Al-Hajj Al-Mabroor (the righteous and correctly-performed Hajj) is nothing other than Paradise.” (Bukhārī, no. 1773, Muslim, no. 1349)

Shaikh Sālih Al-Fawzān stated: “The scholars have said that Al-Hajj Al-Mabroor is the Hajj wherein a person does not commit sins and disobedience just as Allah (the Most High) said:

ٱلْحَجُّ أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَـٰتٌ ۚ فَمَن فَرَضَ فِيهِنَّ ٱلْحَجَّ فَلَا رَفَثَ وَلَا فُسُوقَ وَلَا جِدَالَ فِى ٱلْحَجِّ ۗ

“Ḥajj is during the well-known months, so whoever has made Hajj obligatory upon himself therein [by entering the state of Iḥrām], there is [to be for him] no sexual relations and no disobedience and no disputing during Hajj.” (Al-Baqarah: 197) So, Al-Mabroor is the Hajj that is free from sins and disobedience [of Allah and His Messenger (H)]. It is also said that Al-Mabroor is that which is accepted by Allah (the Most High). And it is said that Al-Mabroor is the Hajj wherein the condition of the pilgrim is better after his Hajj than it was before his Hajj. So, this is the Hajj Al-Mabroor.” (See Tas’hīlul-Ilmām of Shaikh Al-Fawzān 3/285-289)

Abu Hurayrah (Allah be pleased with him) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) said:

مَنْ حَجَّ هَذَا الْبَيْتَ فَلَمْ يَرْفُثْ وَلَمْ يَفْسُقْ رَجَعَ كَمَا وَلَدَتْهُ أُمُّهُ

“Whoever makes Hajj to this House, and he does not have relations with his wives, nor does he engage in sins, he will return back [to his home] as if it was the day his mother gave birth to him.” (Bukhari, no. 1819, Muslim, no. 1350) 

Shaikh Rabeeʿ Ibn Hādī Al-Madkhalī stated: “It is apparent that this great promise—i.e., the forgiveness of sins for the one who makes Hajj to the House of Allah—refers to the fact that Hajj wipes away whatever came before it. And this refers to whatever sins are between a person and Allah regardless of what level those sins have reached, Allah will forgive them—so long as they were between a person and Allah. And likewise, there are matters between a person and Allah that require repentance… It is must that repentance [on behalf of the pilgrim] is attached to this true promise [of forgiveness]. That is because if a person performs Hajj, yet he persists upon committing major sins, then his Hajj is not Mabroor (i.e., righteous and free from disobedience). So, the one who persistently commits major sins even if he fulfils the rites of Hajj, his Hajj is not Mabroor from what is apparent [of his outward actions].

And likewise, when it comes to the rights of the people, he may owe someone 100,000 riyals or a million riyals—these debts that are owed do not fall away, the rights of the people are not excused. So, there is a right that is not excused, and that is the right owed to the people. It is a must that debts are paid back to the people such that a person is not to embark upon Jihād or Hajj unless he seeks permission from the one he owes money to, or he pays off the debt.

The point is that this promise of Allah is for the one who performs the Hajj Al-Mabroor—and they are not those who are persistent upon major sins, nor those who are persistent upon taking the rights of the people, or those persistent upon oppressing the people—rather it is a must that the heart of the pilgrim is clean, pure and righteous, and then his Hajj will be Mabroor—then he will be deserving of this promise of Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam), and he shall return home, if Allah wills, like the day his mother gave birth to him. Allah will forgive all his sins so long as he fulfils these conditions that we have mentioned, and Allah knows best.

So, during Hajj he repents from everything. Allah’s Messenger (salallāhu ʿalaihi wasallam) said:

مَنْ حَجَّ هَذَا الْبَيْتَ فَلَمْ يَرْفُثْ وَلَمْ يَفْسُقْ رَجَعَ كَمَا وَلَدَتْهُ أُمُّهُ

“Whoever makes Hajj to this House, and he does not have relations with his wives nor does he engage in sins, he will return [home] as if it was the day his mother gave birth to him.” (Bukhari, no. 1819, Muslim, no. 1350) So he does not have sexual relations, nor does he commit sins—look at this explanation. If he engages in sexual relations or in sins during the rites of Hajj, then he is not of those deserving of this promise. Yes, Allah may accept his Hajj, but he will not have fulfilled that which makes him deserving of this promise of his sins being removed such that it is like the day his mother gave birth to him, and Allah knows best.” (See Majmooʿ Kutub was Rasā’il wa Fatāwā Fadeelah ash-Shaikh al-ʿAllāmah Rabeeʿ Ibn Hādi ʿUmayr al-Madkhali, 15/349-350. Slightly Abridged)

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of all creation, and may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and all his Companions.

Abu Khadeejah ʿAbdul-Wāhid Alam

Saturday 1st June 2024 / 24th Dhul-Qaʿdah 1445


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