Islamic Voice
Shawwal/Zul-Qada 1422
January 2002
Volume 15-01 No:181

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Hajj Supplement


Hajj is obligatory (Fard)once in a life time
Ihraam Dos and Dont's
Prohibitions of Ihraam
Makruhaat of Ihraam
Umrah
Nafil Umrah
Hajj is performed in the following manner
Jamarat
Qurbani
Mina
Tawaaf-e-Ziyarat
Over to Madinah
Staying Healthy during Hajj
Tips and Reflections
Items you need during your stay in Makkah


Hajj is obligatory (Fard)once in a life time

Hajj is one of the five institutions of Islam. The performance of Hajj as an enjoined duty and its superiority is in the statement of Allah Taala: “Hajj (pilgrimage) to the House (Kaabah) is a duty that mankind owes to Allah, those who can afford the journey. And whoever disbelieves (i.e. denies Hajj) then he is a disbeliever of Allah and Allah stands not in need of any of His Creatures.” (Surah Al-Imran 3:197) Pilgrimage is a duty to be performed at least once in a lifetime by every adult Muslim, man or woman, who is free of sound mind and able to undertake it. It is highly important that every Muslim who has fulfilled the conditions which make him “ABLE” to perform pilgrimage should do so as soon as possible. If he postpones offering this duty from one year to another he may die before he has fulfilled his duty. He then meets his Lord having neglected a main pillar of Islam. It may happen that a person who slackens reaches old age, when pilgrimage becomes doubly difficult, before he has fulfilled his duty. He who denies that pilgrimage is a duty of Muslims is not a Muslim but a Kafir, for, he denies a part of the religion of Islam which is necessarily known to every Muslim.

The Holy Kaabah

Before the Journey

Besides mental preparation, the pilgrims must make the following arrangements prior to Hajj Journey

Before you partake your journey to perform your hajj, there are certain things that you should always remember to do. Always remember that while you are performing your hajj, the rest of the world still moves the way it does. Thus, it is your responsibility to make sure that others will not be in any difficulty when you are away.
* Seeking the advice of someone concerning the travelling for Hajj is one of the Prophetic etiquette of journey.
* It is also advisable to ask Allah, Glory be to Him, for proper guidance in connection with the proposed time observing Hajj, not the Hajj itself.
* Learning how to perform the rites of Hajj is an individual obligation.
* One is requested to repent of all bad deeds.
* Arrange to pay all debts, If you have monetary debts, repay and settle all debts or alternatively make arrangements for your debts to be paid.
* If you are responsible for any moral transgression,then fulfill your debt or have it waived, and have your moral violations forgiven. It is important that one settles all outstanding matters and transactions, and has his faults and shortcomings forgiven. All Amaanah (trusts) and anything borrowed must be returned.
* A detailed and final will must be made regarding all important matters.
* If certain things are left in your trust, return those items to the owners or make arrangements for them to be looked after in your absence.
* Make suitable arrangements for the maintenanceof all those for whom you are responsible (wife, children and all dependants) until the time you return to them.
* Take with you Halaal earnings which shall be sufficient to last and maintain you for the full journey to the Blessed Places, your residing there and your journey back.
* In fact you should take the precaution of having something more than the normal needs, so that you may be in a position to assist needy ones on the way and to serve those who may be in need of it.
* Before commencing the journey, perform two rakath, in which Surah Al-Kaafiroon is recommended to be recited in the first rakath and Surah Al-Ikhlaas to berecited in the second raka’ah. Take care that this salah (namaz) is not performed during the Makrooh times.
* Give something in charity before your departure and also after the departure, because Sadaqah removes calamities from you.
* Before departing you should meet all your friends and relatives. Bid them farewell and ask them to pray for you.
* Appoint a Leader when the journey begins, choose among the co-travellers the most righteous, most intelligent, experienced, humble and forbearing person and appoint him as the ameer (leader). And it is important that when one becomes appointed to that position, he should carry out his responsibility conscientiously. He should take note of the needs of his companions and see to their comfort.

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Ihraam Dos and Dont's

IhramYou must know the conditions of Ihraam and how the Ihraam garments are to be put on for men and what are the Ihraam garments for women.

For men it is just two pieces of unstitched cloth, one to be wrapped around the waist and one to be thrown around the shoulder, preferably of white colour. No under garments, caps or socks are to be worn. There are also other conditions prior to and after wearing of the Ihraam clothes.

You have to shave/cut the hair of your armpit and pubic region, cut your nails, have a bath, comb your hair and then put on the Ihraam clothes.

For women, after cutting of extra body hair, nails and having bath they can put on their normal clothes. The condition for them is that their head, specially the hair, should be covered fully and that only their face and hands up to the wrist are visible. They can wear undergarments and socks.

For men, there is a restriction on the type of footwear that is to be used. The slipper or shoe should be such as to make the metatarsals of the foot visible and which do not cover the ankles.

You must also be aware that you have to pray two rakaths (sunnat of Ihraam) after you have worn the Ihraam clothes and make the intention of Umrah or Hajj (as is proper) and then the recitation of the Talbiyah, (Labbaik, Allahummah Labbaik ......) at the appropriate time as instructed by your religious scholars.

Combing of hair, cutting of nails, getting angry, using abusive language, slaughtering animals, physical relations with partner, use of perfume, etc. are prohibited during the state of Ihraam.

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Prohibitions of Ihraam

Ihram

The following acts are prohibited during the state of Ihraam: Sexual intercourse as well as all sex-play and acts and talks of romance. Quarrelling and fighting. Hunting land animals.
* To inform a hunter of the whereabouts of an animal.
* To aid a hunter in anyway whatever.
* To chase a wild animal.
* To break an egg of a wild bird.
* To injure any wild animal, even removing its feathers.
* To sell wild animals.
* To purchase wild animals.
* To remove the milk of a wild animal.
* To cook the meat of eggs of wild animals.
* To kill lice.
* To throw lice in the heat of the sun.
* To wash clothing with the intention of killing lice.
* To instruct another person, directly or indirectly, to kill lice.
* To dye one’s hair.
* To use gum or any kind of hair conditioner.
* To apply perfume.
* To cut hair and nails or to ask another person to cut one’s hair and nails.
* To cover the face or any part of the face.
* To wear sewn garments, e.g. kurtah, trousers, topee, etc. 4 To wear such shoes or socks which conceal the raised bone in the front of the foot. To wear garments which have been dyed in saffron, kusum or any fragrant substances. However, if the garments so dyed have been thoroughly washed, leaving no fragrance, it will then be permissible to wear such garments.

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Makruhaat of Ihraam


* The following acts are Makruh during the state of Ihraam:
* To comb the hair or beard.
* To scratch the hair in such a way that hair or lice falls out.
* To make khilaal in the beard.
* To sew the two ends of the lower Ihraam garment when this is not occasioned by a need to conceal the aurah.
* To tie knots in the upper garment or to tie it with pins, needles, etc.
* To smell perfume.
* To touch perfume.
* To sit in the shop of a perfurne-seller so as to inhale the fragrance of the perfume.
* To unnecessarily tie a bandage on the body.
* To touch or to smell fragrant fruit and grass.
* To stand under the cloth of the Ka’abah in such a way that the cloth touches the head or face.
* To lay on one’s stomach with one’s face downwards on the pillow.
* To eat uncooked fragrant smelling food.
* To look with lust at the satar of one’s wife.
* To throw any garment, e.g. coat, over the shoulders.

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Umrah

The Umrah consists of the Tawaaf (seven circumambulation of the Kaabah) and the Sayee (seven trips between Safaa and Marwah).

Safaa and Marwah

Tawaaf : Remember that for men, in the first three rounds of the Tawaaf you are to uncover your right shoulder and walk at a brisk pace. Also remember that at the point of alignment of the Hajr-Aswad (Black Stone) you are to face the Black Stone, make your Niyat and recite the words Bismillah Allah-o-Akbar Wallillahil Hamd and then start your circumambulation of the Kaabah. At the end of each circumambulation, at this same alignment, you face the Black Stone and recite the same words. There are no required or prescribed supplications to recite during the Tawaaf. However, you can recite those from authentic books. It is best if you also know the meaning of your supplication.

Between the corner of Yemen (Rukn-e-Yemani) and the Black Stone, the Prophet (e) recited Rabbana Aatina Fid-duniya..... You should do the same.

After seven circumambulations are over, you have to say two rakaths of prayer (wajib), preferably (if there is space) behind the station of Ibrahim (Muqaam-e-Ibrahim). The Prophet (e) in the first rakath recited Surah Fatiha followed by Surah Kafirun and in the second rakath recited Surah Fatiha followed by Surah Ikhlas. If there is no space behind the station of Ibrahim, the two rakaths of prayers can be said anywhere in the Haram Sharief.

Zam Zam : After this, you must drink zam-zam water. The zam-zam well is there in the Haram Sharief itself. Also, there are zam-zam cans all over in the Haram Sharief with plastic glasses. The fresh glasses are kept on the right side of the zam-zam container from where you can pick up one glass and after pouring your drink and drinking you must put the used glass on the left side of the container. In case your throat is bad you must use the zam-zam water that is not cold. This is identifiable on the container in green or blue letters which says that this is the normal temperature zam-zam water. All other cans have cold zam-zam inside them.

Sayee : After Tawaaf, two rakaths prayer and drinking zam-zam water you have to perform the Sayee which is the walk between Safaa and Marwah seven times. One trip between Safa and Marwah is counted as one, the trip between Marwah and Safa is counted as two, and so on, till the 7th trip when you end up at Marwah. When you are at Safa and Marwah you are supposed to stand, face the Kaabah each time and praise Allah, say your duas and supplicate. For men, they have to walk fast or run between the two green lights indicated on the ceiling of the Safa-Marwah walk way on each trip. There are no special supplications to recite during the Sayee. However, you may use those that are available in authentic books. As mentioned above, there are no prescribed duas or supplications for the Tawaaf or Sayee and you can pray whatever you like praise Allah and ask Allah for His forgiveness, blessings, and mercy, recite portions of the Quran and whatever else you want. There are good duas in some of the books that you may be having. You must understand their meaning and you may recite those which you like during the Tawaaf and Sayee.

After the Sayee is over at Marwah you have to get a hair cut or a head shave; women have to have only their hair cut from at least three place the length of one phalange of her finger, approximately 1 or 1.5 inches. Many people say that it is preferable for men to have a head shave rather than a hair cut in your first Umrah. There are some other school of thought which says that if you are very close to the Hajj then during your Umrah you have to only have your hair cut and during the Hajj you should have your head shaved. For women it is only the hair cut. Follow your religious guide on these aspects.

This completes your Umrah and if you have time you can pray two rakaths of Nafil prayer to thank Allah that your Umrah has been performed and pray Allah that He accepts your Ibaadat.

After this you can take off the Ihraam clothes and get into normal clothes. This you can do when you go back to your room.

If you are doing Hajj in the Qiran from, you cannot cut or shave your hair. You have to continue in Ihraam till the Hajj. Remember that in the Haram Sharief of Makkah, the Tahayat of the Masjid is the Tawaaf. In case you are not able to do this you may do your two rakaths of Tahayat.

In the Haram Sharief you must always carry a plastic bag to keep your slippers near you. Also carry a prayer mat in case there is too much rush and you have to say prayers in the open. The semi-circular structure next to the Kaabah is the Hateem. It is part of the Kaabah and prayers can be offered there except obligatory prayers.

After each Farz [obligatory] prayer in the Haram Sharief you must wait for at least one minute because on most occasions after the Farz prayers there is a Namaze-Janaza [Salaatul Janaaza]. On all religious aspects consult your religious guide or book. the rituals mentioned here are those that are generally practised.

In the Haram Sharief there is a special dispensation that if it is very crowded you can walk in front of other people who are praying. So, in case it is unavoidable you can do this.

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Nafil Umrah

Ask your religious guide or your companions about the performance of extra (Nafil) Umrah and Umrah on behalf of your near and dear ones who are no longer in this world. Try and do as many Tawaafs as possible and spend most of your time in Ibaadat. Refrain from idle gossip or anger or any loose talk. Try to be accommodative to everyone. Remember that during the whole period of Hajj your conduct has to be such that Allah is pleased with you and accepts your Ibaadat. You have to be on your best behaviour and at all times you must sincerely repent any sin that you may have committed during your life time. Always bear in mind that even after you take off your Ihraam a number of conditions still apply to the Hajj pilgrim and these conditions entail truthfulness, compassion to fellow beings, good conduct, good thoughts, exemplary behaviour, desisting from anger and outburst, desisting from physical violence and so on.

Haram Sharief : It is easy to get lost in the Haram Sharief which is very big. Therefore, when you enter the Haram Sharief go inside and look around from inside the courtyard. There are five coloured gates leading outside. You must remember the colour of the gate which leads to your house in Makkah. This is the easiest way to remember. All the gates of the Haram Sharief are numbered, for your convenience. After this, you must look and see the way and familiarise yourself with the topography of the area in which you are staying and the topography and lay-out of the Haram Sharief. If you get lost and cannot find the way, ask some one to guide you to any Indian Hajj office or dispensary. Many shopkeepers and people that you find in and around the Haram Sharief and Makkah speak a little bit of Urdu and English. So, even if you just say “India” or “Al-Hind” to any one they should be able to guide you. The Arabic word for office is ‘Maktab’. So, ‘Maktab Al-Hind’ would signify that you want to find out the Indian office. Do not panic. It might be one or two or three hours but some one will tell you the way to an Indian branch or main office and from there you will be guided to your building. The idea is that if you get lost, you must first find your way to the Haram Sharief and in and around the Haram Sharief try and get your bearings. If that is not possible then start asking people if they can direct you to any Indian Hajj office.

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Hajj is performed in the following manner

Mount Arafath

1. On the 8th of Zill Hajj

Pilgrims would get into the state of Ihraam after following the prescribed procedure and observing the conditions and then will be transported to Mina. Here you should pray your Zuhar, Asar, Magrib and Isha prayers and stay there for the night. This is the Sunnah of the Prophet (e).

2. On the 9th of Zill Hajj

After the Fajr prayers you will leave Mina for Arafat. At Arafat you say your Zuhar and Asar prayers. This is the main ritual of Hajj. Being in the state of Ihraam and praying on the plains of Arafat partly during the day and partly during evening is the Hajj. After the Magrib Azaan, pilgrims have to move to Muzdalifa which is between Arafat and Mina. At Muzdalifa pilgrims have to camp for the night and at whatever late hour they reach Muzdalifa they have to say their Magrib and Isha prayers together. You can also pick up small stone pebbles for stoning the Jamarat (Satan) at Mina on the following days.

3. On the 10th of Zill Hajj

After Fajr prayers pilgrims will move from Muzdalifa to Mina. Here they will stone the big Jamarat only (Ramy), do their sacrifice (Qurbani of Hajj), have their hair cut (Qasr) or head shaved (Halq). They can now get out of the state of Ihraam.On the 10th of Zill Hajj or on the subsequent two days pilgrims have to perform the Tawaaf (Tawaaf-e-Ziyarah) and Sayee at Makkah. This can be done in normal clothes. (If Sayee was performed on 8th Zill Hajj, then Sayee need not be performed now).

4. On the 11th of Zill Hajj and 12th of Zill Hajj

Pilgrims have to stone all the three Jamarats starting from the small to the middle to the big. Normally, pilgrims depart from Mina before Magrib time for Makkah. Very few pilgrims stay on till the 13th of Zill Hajj wherein they stone the three Jamarats again and depart from Mina. Remember that your journey from Makkah to Mina, from Mina to Arafat, from Arafat to Muzdalifa, from Muzdalifa to Mina and from Mina to Makkah may be very disorganised as the buses have to do two or three trips and many pilgrims do not have the patience to wait for the buses that the Moallim arranges for them. The buses used during these days are not air-conditioned. Some pilgrims prefer to walk from Makkah to Mina which is 6-7 kms. through the covered walk-way. From Mina to Arafat there is no covered walk-way. Mina ends where Muzdalifa begins. A little after Muzdalifa ends, Arafat begins. All are in a straight direction. It has been noticed that from Makkah to Mina pilgrims are moved by and large smoothly by the Moallims. Similarly, movement from Mina to Arafat, even though confused, still delivers. The problem is in the return journey. You must not panic if you are delayed in your movement from Arafat to Muzdalifa. Remember that you are to leave Arafat only after the Magrib Azaan but have to say Magrib prayers combined with Isha only on reaching Muzdalifa, however long it takes. It might take 6-8 hours to cover the very short distance of 5-6 kms. from Arafat to Muzdalifa by the buses. At Muzdalifa, lines at the toilet can extend upto two hours. You have to plan your toilet accordingly. Muzdalifa and Mina are contiguous and hence it may be advisable that pilgrims who are in a good state of health, after the dawn (Fajr) prayers on 10th D.H., walk over to Mina to their camp and then do the rituals without waiting for the buses to transport them. You must give the first benefit of the buses to older pilgrims and women. Please note that Saudi authorities have decided that unused bus coupons will not be refunded.

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Jamarat

Jamarat

Each Jamarat at Mina is to be stoned seven times. On the 10th of Zill Hajj it is only the big Jamarat, however on the next 2-3 days, all the three Jamarats from small to medium to big in that order. If you are picking pebbles at Muzdalifa, be sure to carry a plastic bag with you to keep the pebbles. Pick some extra pebbles just in case you drop some when pelting the Jamarat. For 10th D.H. you need 7 pebbles, for 11th D.H. 21 pebbles, for 12th D.H. 21 pebbles, and (if necessary) for 13th D.H. another 21. Pick an extra 10 pebbles.

While pelting the Jamarat, you pick up one pebble at a time between your forefinger and thumb, and say Bismillah Allah-o-Akbar and throw it inside the receptacle around the pillar. Repeat that each time till you pelt 7 pebbles. Take care not to hurt anyone during pelting. Do not throw anything other than small pebbles. Do not abuse.

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Qurbani

If you are unable to do the sacrifice (Hajj Qurbani) yourself, as there is great rush at the slaughter houses, you can buy the coupons of the Islamic Development Bank. There are bank branches and counters at Makkah/Madinah/Mina for this purpose. Do not let confidence tricksters take your money for sacrifice.

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Mina

Mina

Fire-proof tents would be housing Indian pilgrims at Mina. However, small fires cannot be ruled out. You have to be very careful during your stay in Mina. See and find out where are the exit points in your camp, where are the fire extinguishers and in case of emergency how you could easily get out of the camp to a safe place. Do this inspection as soon as you reach Mina. You can never be over cautious. You must also teach your fellow pilgrims about emergency evacuation procedure. The idea is to evacuate without creating panic or stampede. Some smart and young people can be given the job of supervising evacuation in case of emergency and also of trying to put out the fire through the fire extinguishers. Read the instructions on the fire extinguishers as soon as you arrive in your camp, so that you are familiar with its use from before.

Every year invariably there is a stampede or stampede condition at the site of stoning of the Jamarat. There are two levels from which you can stone the Jamarat (Ramy) and you must chose a time where you find that the crowd is not too much and that the stoning can be done with ease. Never get stuck in a crowd that is not moving or which you can see is stationary. Choose the ground or the top level for stoning as per the assessment of the crowd. You have to be always very careful about this procedure. Remember that old, infirm, children and women who are not able to withstand the strain can depute someone else to stone on their behalf. If you find that near the stoning site there is too much overcrowding or that movement is very slow, you must immediately turn and go back to your camp. Get out of the crowd immediately. Come back at a better time. You must also be very alert to the fact that some pilgrims of certain nationalities come in batches and push their way through. Do not get into their way or try to stop them. You would get harmed in the process. It is best to avoid their path and wait till they get out. Do not try to go against the direction of the crowd. Move with the crowd. Do not lose your temper and do not fight with others. If required, retrace your steps after the rush has passed. You have to take care of yourself and your group. Find out the best time when you can stone. If you drop something or lose your slippers, do not stoop to pick it up. You may be trampled. After stoning of the small and middle Jamarats (on 11th/12th D.H) you have to go to the side and supplicate, facing the Kaabah, standing up. This should be a very short supplication as there might be rush. Choose a place or corner away from the Jamarat to stand and supplicate. You do not supplicate after stoning the big Jamarat.

On the last day after stoning of the Jamarats, you have the option of walking out of Mina into Makkah and taking a private vehicle to take you to your building. However, you should do this only if you are very confident that you can reach your building. Otherwise, you should ask to be taken to the Haram Sharief. Go inside the Haram Sharief and get your bearings and then walk to your building. Always remember that there is no need to hurry in any situation. Islam does not entail that you suffer bodily harm or risk your life. There are always options available and hence there is no need for you to hurry and in the process get harmed. After the Hajj is over and when you are back in Makkah you must pray and thank Allah.

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Tawaaf-e-Ziyarat

Remember that the Tawaaf-e-Ziyarat after Hajj at Makkah is the second most important ritual of Hajj. You will have to arrange your own transport from Mina to Makkah and back for this purpose. However, you may do this in a convenient manner by seeing the crowd in the Haram Sharief and then deciding whether to do the Tawaaf near the Kaabah or do it on the first floor or the terrace. Doing the Tawaaf from the first floor or the terrace means covering a larger distance but may be easier and convenient. After the Tawaaf you have to do the Sayee which you can do even in normal clothes. If you have done the Sayee after a Tawaaf before going to Mina on the 8th of Zill Hajj then you need not do the Sayee again. Remember to consult knowledgeable people or authentic books to find out about the details of Hajj rituals and the manner in which you have to perform them. Menstruating or post-partum women have to postpone the Tawaaf till they can perform ghusl.

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Over to Madinah

Madinah Munawwara

If you are coming to Saudi Arabia by 20th or 21st of Dhul Qada you will be able to move to Madinah between 36-48 hours of your arrival at Makkah. Otherwise your Madinah movement will be after the Hajj. The Moallim will announce the time the buses would arrive at your house, but be prepared for delays in the arrival of buses. Do not get upset or angry.

When the buses arrive you must load your luggage on the same bus that you are travelling in and if you have to go to the toilet you must go to the toilet before boarding the bus. In many cases, the buses stop mid way between Makkah and Madinah after a two or three hour run. Keep this in mind before boarding the bus.

Be sure that you are back in the bus at the appointed time. If you are left behind you will have problems. Always carry your identification card and if you are left behind you may have to take a ride from people coming in cars and buses. You have to tell them to drop you at the pilgrim reception centre (PRC) in Madinah where you will have to find out when the bus reaches Madinah it halts at the pilgrim reception centre outside Madinah where pilgrims are checked by the PRC staff. The Consulate staff is also present to help pilgrims. The bus then goes to the house in Madinah where you will be put up. Normally, three or four contractors in Madinah are given contract for housing Indian pilgrims by the Hajj Committee, Mumbai, and you will go to one of these contractor’s buildings. In Madinah, there is only one category of accommodation, and all pilgrims have to be accommodated within 750 meters of the Haram Sharief. It is your luck if the contractor houses you in closer buildings and/or in better buildings. In Madinah you must be careful to note down and know which building you are in and you must get the exact name, address and telephone number (if available) of that building.

Do not leave your luggage or your family members to take care of your luggage while you rush off to the Masjid-e-Nabvi for prayers. First ensure that you are accommodated in a room and that your luggage is in the room. Only then after getting the name and address of the building and your room number should you go for prayers, this is important.

Indians believe that saying 40 prayers in succession in Madinah has great rewards. However, there are various schools of thought on this and you must follow whatever you feel is correct or good for you. As you know, for women during their menstruation, Allah has dispensed with their prayers for this period. You must know how Salaam is said at the Prophet’s (e) Rouzah (grave). The Prophet’s two companions, Hazrat Abubaker Siddiqui and Hazrat ‘Umar, are also laid to rest there and you must know what to recite when you are there. The arrangements for men is very simple in the Masjid-e-Nabvi. For women, the authorities have specified certain timings when they are allowed near the Rouzah. Please find out these timings for women.You should also say some prayers in the area known as‘Riyazul Jannah” in the Masjid-e-Nabvi if there is not too much crowding.

There are restrictions on entrance to the Jannatul-Baqui graveyard. Women are sometimes restricted from even approaching it. Both in Makkah and Madinah if you have women members in your group you must tell them to wait for you at a specified place. They should not go looking for you while you go looking for them. In this case, there are chances that both of you get lost (and upset). One member or group must stay at a fixed place while others are looking for them. You must settle this within your group. Get acquainted with the lay-out of the Masjid-e-Nabvi and topography of Madinah. Visually mark out the landmarks and your route. The Masjid-e-Nabvi has gates with numbers and names. Remember the gate number and the name of the gate through which you enter and come out.

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Staying Healthy during Hajj

“Verily, the first House of worship appointed for mankind was that at Makkah, full of blessings, and a guidance for mankind and jinn. In it are manifest signs, the Maqam of Abraham; whosoever enters it, he attains security. And Hajj to the Ka’bah is a duty that mankind owes to Allah, those who can afford the expenses; and whoever disbelieves, then Allah stands not in need of any of the mankind, jinn and all that exists.” Qur’an 3:96-97

Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam, required of every Muslim, who is sane and can afford it, once during their lifetime. Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) stated: “The one who intends performing Hajj, then verily he must hasten.”

The Hajj is a physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually demanding experience. Many people postpone or decline an invitation from Allah (SWT) to perform Hajj or Umrah due to concerns about illness or injury while on Hajj or Umrah. Our purpose is to encourage Muslims with medical problems to perform Hajj and Umrah, address the concerns of all Muslims as to illness and injury, and give practical medical advice for various conditions that may be encountered during Hajj or Umrah. In addition, this information, will provide the pilgrims with the confidence and knowledge needed to complete their Hajj and Umrah with minimal to no distraction from their medical condition.

Proper preparation is essential to prevent illness, hospitalization and death while in Saudi Arabia. We highly recommend a physical examination and review of your medications and any known medical conditions. These things along with strengthening your spiritual belief in Allah and his last and final messenger Prophet Muhammad will enable you to stay focused on pleasing and glorifying Allah and bring you closer to Allah without distraction from illness or injury.

After receiving and accepting Allah’s invitation to visit His House, a Muslim should begin to prepare himself spiritually, emotionally, and physically for the most important journey of his or her life. Learn all you can about the things a pilgrim is obligated to do on Hajj and Umrah. Attend Hajj classes, watch videos and read more about Hajj and Umrah.

Obtain clearance from your health care provider to begin an exercise program, especially if you are over 40 years of age. Three to six mile walks two to four times a day can occur during Hajj and Umrah. Start walking a mile four times a week and increase the distance by a half-mile each week until you are comfortable with a six mile walk. If you are overweight, lose 10% of your weight. Loss of as little as 6 pounds will help. Diabetes and hypertension must be under control. Food in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are high in calories and sodium and bottled water is higher in sodium than in other parts of the world. Increase water intake gradually to 6-8 glasses a day. Obtain travel and emergency evacuation insurance. Initial care to pilgrims is free at emergency rooms and the Ministry of Hajj Health Centers in the Holy precincts. Proper footwear and a good pair of sandals with exposed toes, but no heel strap, is recommended. Women should wear comfortable shoes with good ankle support.

For further information on management of specific diseases and health problems while on Hajj or Umrah, visit www.healthyhajj.com to obtain “The Hajj Health Guide” by Abdul Hakim Luqman, MD and Aletha Luqman, MSN, CRNP.

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Tips and Reflections

Hajj is the most important and dramatic event in a Muslim’s life. Accordingly, you must prepare yourself for this holy journey.

Start preparing yourself after the month of Ramadan.

Read the story of the life of the Prophet Muhammed, Ibrahim and his son Ismael (peace be upon them all). Try to put yourself through that experience. Get up at least once a week during the last hour of the night to pray asking God to facilitate your intention to perform the Hajj.

Coming out of the month of Ramadan and into Hajj, you need to quickly get your body in shape. No matter how young you are, your perseverance will be tested.

Memorize few Duas. Capitalize on the spiritual transformation you went through in Ramadan and sustain your momentum by preparing yourself physically and spiritually for Hajj.

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Items you need during your stay in Makkah

Fragrance-free soap and deodorant. Use the fragrance free during Ihram.
White umbrella Toothbrush and Toothpaste
Nail-cutter and scissors
Brush, comb and Towel
Plastic slippers for the rest rooms
Alarm clock
Koran and Dua pocket books
A phone calling card
A facemask to cover the mouth and nose especially during Tawaf and Sayi
A cassette player as you will spend a long time in transit especially when en route to and from Mina and Mt Arafat. With the slow moving traffic, this could become useful to ease some of the tension by listening to Quran recitations.
Insulated water bottle. Fill it with Zamzam water before going to Mina and Mt Arafat.

Arrive at least one hour before the Friday noon prayer at Al Masjid Al Haram to get a position close to the Kabah.

This Hajj Supplement is sponsored by Altaf Associates, Real Estate Agent / AL-MAMOOR HAJ SERVICE/ Mrs. Shaheen Taj. Ph: 5533123 \ 5537788. Mobile: 98450-05678.

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