Monday, 21 November 2011

Important Advice for pilgrims

mportant Advice for pilgrims

Dear pilgrims, we praise Allah for having guided you to the Hajj of His House. May He accept from all of us our good deeds, and increase His reward for us and for you. The following advice is being offered to you in the hope that Allah will accept from all of us our Hajj and our striving:

1. Remember that you are on a blessed journey, a journey that is based on belief in Allah’s Unity (Tawheed), sincerity to Him, responding to His call, and on obedience to His commands - hoping to gain the reward of the Almighty - and in obedience to His Messenger Muhammad (peace be upon him). Do not forget that the reward for a Hajj that is accepted by Allah, the Most High, is nothing less than the Garden of Paradise.

2. Be on your guard against the mischief of Satan who intends to cause dissention among you, because he in-deed is an enemy lying in ambush. Love each other as brothers and sisters and avoid disputes and disobedience to Allah. Know that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said:
«لاَ يُؤْمِنُ أَحَدُكُمْ حَتَّى يَحِبُّ لأِخِيْهِ مَا يُحِّبُ لِنَفْسِهِ»
“None of you has truly believed unless he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.” [Narrated by Al-Bukhari].

3. Whenever you have a question concerning religious matters or concerning the Hajj, you ought to ask those who know until you receive a satisfactory answer. This is in accordance with what Allah has said: {فَاسْأَلُواْ أَهْلَ الذِّكْرِ إِن كُنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ}
“Ask the people of the Reminder if you do not know.” [Surah al-Anbiyaa´ (21):7]

It is also in accordance with what the Prophet (peace be upon him) has said: «مَنْ يُرِدِ اللهُ بِهِ خَيْرًا يُفَقَّهُ فيِ الدِّيْنِ»
«When Allah intends good for someone, He gives him understanding of the religion» [Narrated by Al-Bukhari].

4. Know that Allah has made certain acts Fard (obligatory) and other acts Sunnah (supererogatory), and Allah does not accept the Sunnah from him who violates the Fard. Some pilgrims ignore this fact, and you see them harming believers, men and women, by violently jostling in their zeal to kiss the Black Stone, in their circuits around the Ka’bah, in performing Salaah (prayer) behind the Station of Ibraheem, in drinking Zamzam, and other rites. These rites are Sunnah, while harming the believers is haraam (prohibited). How can you do an act of Sunnah while committing an act that is haraam? Therefore, O pilgrims, avoid hurting one another. May Allah have mercy on you and grant you an immense reward.

We would also like to emphasize the following:
(a) It is not fitting that a Muslim man performs his Salaah (prayers) next to or behind a woman, whether it be in the Sacred Masjid or in any other place, for whatever reason, as long as he is able to avoid it. Women are supposed to pray behind men.

(b) It is not proper to pray in the pathways which lead to the Haram or in the doorways, because doing so is harmful and obstructive to those entering.

(c) It is also not permissible to block the free flow of people doing Tawaaf around the Ka’bah, whether it be by sitting near the Ka’bah or praying near it, or by standing near the Black Stone, near the al-Hijr, or at the Station of Ibraheem when the place is crowded. This is a source of harm to other people.

(d) While safeguarding the dignity of Muslims is Fard, kissing the Black Stone is Sunnah. A Fard cannot be sacrificed for a Sunnah. When the area is crowded, it is sufficient to merely point to the Black Stone and say:
"اللهُ أَكْبَرْ"
“Allahu Akbar.”
“Allah is the Greatest.”

When leaving the Tawaaf area, leave calmly.

(e) The Sunnah for when you reach the Yemeni Comer, or ‘Rukn-ul-Yamani’ is for you to touch it with your right hand and say:
"بِسْمِ اللهِ, اللهُ أَكْبَرْ"
“Allahu Akbar.”
“Bismillahi, Wallahu Akbar.”

Kissing it is not prescribed. If the person doing the Tawaaf is unable to touch it, he should continue with his Tawaaf. He is not supposed to point to it with his hand or say the Takbeer, for this has not been re-ported from the authority of the Prophet (peace be upon him). It is mustahab (recommended) to recite the following supplication between the Rukn-ul-Yamani and the Black Stone:
{رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ}
“Rabanaa aatinaa fid-dunyaa hasanatah, wa fil-Aakhirati hasanah, wa qinaa ‘athaab an-Naar.”
“Our Lord give us good in this world, and good in the Hereafter, and save us from the torment of the Fire.”
[Surah al-Baqarah (2):201]

Finally, the best advice we can give is that you follow the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Messenger (peace be upon him) in all that you do. Allah says:
{وَأَطِيعُواْ اللهَ وَالرَّسُولَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُونَ}
“And obey Allah and the Messenger so that you may receive mercy” [Surah Aali ‘Imraan (3):132]

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