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Common errors related to Hajj

First: Errors related to Ihraam:

Some pilgrims bypass the designated Meeqaat (Station of Ihraam) on their route without either being in Ihraam or entering into Ihraam there, proceeding until they reach Jeddah or some other place within the precincts of the Meeqaats, at which they enter into Ihraam.  This is against the command of Allah’s Messenger sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam, which stipulates that every pilgrim should enter into Ihraam at the Meeqaat which lies on his route.  

If this happens to someone, he must either go back to the Meeqaat lying on his route and there enter into Ihraam, or he must make expiation by sacrificing a sheep in Makkah and feeding all its meat to the poor.

This applies to all pilgrims regardless of whether one passes the Meeqaat by air, by sea or by land.  

If one did not pass through one of the five designated Meeqaat he should enter into Ihraam at a point which is nearest to the Meeqaat on his route.

Second:  Errors related to Tawaaf:  

1.   Starting the Tawaaf at some point other than the site of the Black Stone, while it is obligatory to begin Tawaaf from the Black Stone.  

2.    Doing one’s Tawaaf inside the Hijr of Ismaa’eel, which means going around a portion of the Ka'bah rather than the whole of it since the Hijr of Ismaa’eel is a part of the Ka'bah which would then be left out of Tawaaf.  Such Tawaaf is invalid.  

3.   Doing Ramal (i.e., taking quick short steps) during all seven circuits while Ramal is to be done only during the first three of the Tawaaf of arrival (Tawaaf Al-Qudoom).

4.      Struggling vehemently to kiss the Black Stone hitting or pushing people.  Such acts, which are injurious to Muslims, are not permissible.

·         It should be noted that the Tawaaf remains perfectly valid without kissing the Black Stone.  If one does not or cannot kiss the Black Stone, it is sufficient simply to point to it, saying “Allahu Akbar” when one comes parallel to it, although one may be at a distance from it.

 5.   Wiping one’s hand over the Black Stone, seeking “blessings” thereby is a Bid’ah (innovation) with no basis in the Sharee’ah.  The Sunnah is to touch it or kiss it only when it can be done easily.  

6.  Touching the Four Corners of Ka'bah or its walls, and wiping one’s hands against them.  The Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam did not touch any part of Ka'bah except the Black Stone and the Yemeni Corner.  

7.  Saying specific formulas of supplications reserved for each circuit.  The Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam did not specify any supplications except to say “Allahu Akbar” when he reached  the Black Stone and, at the end of each circuit between the Yamani Corner and the Black Stone, he sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam said (the verse which means):

“Rabbana, aatina’ fid-duniya hasanatan wa fil-aakhirati hasanatan wa qina athaaban-naar.”

"Our Lord, give us in this world [that which is] good and in the Hereafter [that which is] good and protect us from the punishment of the Fire"&; [Quran 2:201]

8.   Raising one’s voice above the voices of others: whether in following or leading the Tawaaf as it causes confusion among the worshippers.

9.    Struggling to pray at Maqaam Ibraaheem (Station of Ibraaheem).  This is contrary to the Sunnah besides being injurious to other worshipers.  It is sufficient to pray the two Rak’ahs of Tawaaf after completing one’s Tawaaf anywhere within the Sacred Mosque.

Third: Errors related to Sa'y:  

1.   When climbing upon As-Safa and Al-Marwah, some pilgrims face the Ka'bah and gesticulate toward it with their hands while saying “Allahu Akbar” as if they were saying Takbeer for prayer.  This gesticulating is an error because the Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam raised his hands only for supplication.  Here you may glorify and magnify Allah, The Most High, supplicating Him in any words you wish while facing the Ka'bah.  It is preferable to recite the Thikr which the Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam recited at As-Safa and Al-Marwah.

2.  Accelerating one’s pace throughout the entire distance between the two hills.  The Sunnah is to accelerate one’s pace only between the two green posts, while walking at normal pace the remainder of the way.

Fourth: Errors related to ‘Arafaat:

1.   Some pilgrims camp outside the boundaries of ‘Arafaat and remain there until the sun has set; then they depart for Muzdalifah without standing at ‘Arafaat properly.  This is a serious error which invalidates their Hajj since standing in 'Arafaat is the essence of Hajj, and it is obligatory to be within its boundaries and not outside them, if it is not easy to do that, they may enter before sunset and remain there until sunset.  It is quite acceptable to stand in 'Arafaat during the night of sacrifice in particular.

2.    Departing from ‘Arafaat before the sun has set is not permissible, because the messenger of Allah sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam stayed at ‘Arafaat’ until the sun had set completely.  

3.   Struggling through crowds in order to climb Mount ‘Arafaat is not permissible, because it causes much harm and injury to others.  The entire Plain of ‘Arafaat is a place of standing and neither climbing Mount ‘Arafaat nor performing prayer there has been recommended.  

4.    Making supplications facing Mount ‘Arafaat’ is incorrect because the Sunnah is to face Qiblah while making supplication.

5.    Making heaps of earth or pebbles during the day of ‘Arafaat at particular places by some people has no base in the Sharee'ah

Fifth: Errors related to Muzdalifah:

1.   Some pilgrims start collecting pebbles to throw at the Stone Pillars in Mina as soon as they arrive in Muzdalifah prior to praying the Maghrib and Ishaa' prayers. 

The correct position is that the pebbles can be collected anywhere within the boundaries of Al-Haram (the territory or precincts of Makkah).  It is known that the Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam did not ask that the pebbles for Jamrat-'Aqabah be picked up for him from Muzdalifah.  They were picked up for him in the morning after leaving Muzdalifah and on entering Mina.  The rest of the pebbles were picked up for him from Mina too.

2.   Some pilgrims wash the pebbles, but this is not recommended.  

Sixth: Error related to throwing the pebbles:

 Some pilgrims are under the impression that when they are throwing pebbles at the Stone Pillars, they are actually throwing them at devils; hence they hurl them with rage and force.  However, the throwing of the pebbles has been merely: 

1.    Prescribed as a means of remembering Allah the Most High. 

2.    Some people throw big stones, shoes or pieces of wood.  This is an excess in matters of religion which the Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam prohibited, what is allowed is to throw pebbles the size of good beans.  

3.    Crowding and fighting with others at the Pillars while throwing the pebbles is not permissible.  What is prescribed is to be gentle and to throw the pebbles without hurting anyone as much as possible.  

4.     Throwing all the pebbles at one time is an error.  Scholars have said that this would be counted as only one throw.  The Sharee’ah prescribes throwing the pebbles one by one, saying “Allahu Akbar” at each separate throw.  

5.   Appointing a proxy to throw the pebbles, simply due to fear of the crowds or of hardship, while one is capable of doing it himself.  Only sick or weak individuals are permitted to have a proxy for this act.  

Eight: Errors related to the visit of the Prophet’s Mosque:

1.      Touching and wiping one’s hands on the walls and iron grilles, tying threads to the gratings, and other acts of this sort while visiting the grave of the Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam in order to receive blessing are innovations. Blessings come from following what Allah and His Messenger sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam have prescribed, and not from following innovations.  
2.     Going to the caves of Mount Uhud or to the caves of Hiraa' or Thawr near Makkah and hanging pieces of cloth or making supplications there have not been prescribed by Allah. All these are unnecessary hardships, innovations in the religion, and are without any basis in the Sharee'ah.

3.     Likewise, visiting certain sites under the impression that these constitute “relics” of the Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam as for example the place where his camel sat, the Well of ‘Uthmaan or the Well of the Ring, and gathering soil from these places to obtain “blessings” are all innovations.

4. Calling upon the dead while visiting the graves at the Baqee' Cemetery or the graves of the martyrs of Uhud, and throwing coins in order to seek the blessings of the place or of the people buried there is a grievous error. Indeed, it is Shirk (ascribing partners to Allah, The Most High), as has been pointed out by scholars. It is clear from the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Messenger sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam that all forms of worship are for Allah alone. It is not permissible to call upon or to offer sacrifice, give vow or any other form of worship except for Allah alone. Allah, The Most High, Says (what means): “And they were not commanded except to worship Allah, [being] sincere to Him (alone) in religion." [Quran 98:5]    

And (what means):  
“And [He (Allah) revealed] that the Masjids are for Allah, so do not invoke with Allah anyone." [Quran 72:18]

We ask Allah, The Most High, to improve the condition of the Muslims and to give them understanding of the religion, and to turn all of us away from errors and deviations. Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Responding.  

 

Monday 06/09/2010

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