Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam. A Muslim is expected to perform Hajj at least once in a lifetime if means allow him/her to do so. Allah revealed a Surah in the Qur’an called Surah Al-Hajj. In that chapter, Allah says the following:

Behold! We gave the site to Abraham, of the (sacred) House, (saying): “Associate not anything (in worship) with Me and sanctify My House for those who compass it round, or stand up, or bow, or prostrate themselves (therein in prayer). And proclaim the pilgrimage among people; they will come to you on foot and (mounted) on every kind of camel, lean on account of journeys through deep and distant mountain highways. (22:26-27)

To write about pilgrimage (Hajj) is good, but to perform Hajj is more important. By performing Hajj, people will get to know more about their religion, and the history of the prophets who were there. To appreciate the Qur’an and the teachings of Qur’an, one should go to Mecca and visit the places where revelations were sent by God to Prophets Ibrahim, Ismail, and Muhammad (peace be upon them).

As far as the benefits of Hajj are concerned, Allah says in the Qur’an in Surah Al-Hajj (The Pilgrimage):

And proclaim unto mankind the pilgrimage. They will come unto you on foot and on every lean camel; they will come from every deep ravine: That they may witness things that are of benefit to them, and mention the name of Allah on appointed days over the beast of cattle that He has bestowed upon them. Then eat thereof and feed therewith the unfortunate poor. (22:27-28)

Allah has explicitly mentioned the benefits of Hajj for mankind. These benefits are indefinite in number, in perspective, and in their dimensions. These benefits are not restricted to one particular area, or to a particular time of history. The benefits that people may get from the performance of Hajj are much more than to be counted. These benefits are specifically good for the individuals who perform Hajj and for the Muslim community and the Muslim society as a whole. These benefits are good for people in this world and in the Hereafter.



The following are some of the benefits for the individuals and for the Muslim society.



Renewal of the remembrance of Allah and strengthening the relation between the individual and the Creator. The chanting of the pilgrim is nothing more than a confirmation from the creature to Allah, i.e. by saying:

Labbaika Allahumma Labbaik … Labbaika La Sharika Laka Labbaik …

Remembrance of the Day of Judgment. During Hajj, the presence of few million people summoning at Arafa in one place, at one time and for one purpose, is an indication and a sign of a hereafter. Wearing two white towels reminds us of the shroud. Such type of remembrance is very important in making a person to remember death and the resurrection.

The performance of Hajj wipes out the sins of a pilgrim. This is a type of rejuvenation that helps a person not to lose hope in this world. On the contrary he would strive effectively to please Allah after his/her sins and mistakes are wiped off. It has been reported by Abu Hurairah that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever performs pilgrimage without uttering immodest speech or abusing others, he returns as though a new-born.” [Muslim]

A person sacrifices through the performance of Hajj. He leaves his family, business, and country; he spends lots of money, time effort and energy; and he bears lots of difficulties due to travelling. All of these are for the pleasure and love of Allah. This type of sacrifice helps the individual overcome other difficulties in his daily life. The person who strives and sacrifices is more spiritually successful person than one who does not.

The performance of Hajj is a theoretical and practical training course for the following habits and manners: Patience, perseverance, humility, organization, management, tolerance, being sociable, kindness, sympathy, affection, sense of belonging, sense of intimacy, concern, helpfulness, watchfulness, etc.



Bridging the gap between our present day and our history.

The first house of worship to Allah on earth was established in Mecca. Allah says in Surah (chapter) Al-Imran (The Family of ‘Imran):

Lo! The first Sanctuary appointed for mankind was that at Mecca, a blessed place, a guidance to the peoples; wherein are plain memorials (of Allah’s guidance); the place where Abraham stood up to pray; and whosoever enters it is safe. And pilgrimage to the House is a duty to Allah for mankind, for him who can find afford the journey. As for him who disbelieves, (let him know that) indeed Allah is Independent of (all) creatures. (3:96-97)



  • The first revelation from Allah to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) came down when he was in Cave Hira at Mountain of Light in the outskirts of Mecca.

Read! In the name of your Lord Who created. Created man from a clot. Read! And your Lord is the Most Bounteous, Who taught by the pen, taught man that which he knew not. (96 :1-5)

  • Remembrance of the reconstruction of the Ka’bah by Prophet Ibrahim and his son, Ismail. It reminds us also of the reconstruction of Ka’bah whereby Prophet Muhammad helped in putting the blackstone in its place.
  • Remembrance of Prophet Ibrahim trying to sacrifice his son, Ismail, for the pleasure of Allah.
  • Remembrance of the place of the birth of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) at Mecca close to the Ka’bah.
  • Remembrance of Mother Hajar running between Safa and Marwa trying to locate water for her son, Ismail. Finally water sprang up from under Ismail’s feet and now Muslims all over the world still drink from that well of Zamzam several thousand years later.
  • Remembrance of the migration of the Prophet from Mecca to Madina, the hiding in Cave Thawr, the difficulty in reaching Madina,the welcome that he received and the establishment of the first mosque in Madina called Masjid Qibaa’.
  • The remembrance of the Mosque of the Two Qibla, Mosque of the Prophet, the Seven Mosques (Battle of the Ditch), Mosque of the Cloud (Ghamamah), Mosque of Abu Bakr and the like.
  • The remembrance of the battlefields that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) had to be in; i.e., Battle of Badr, Battle of Uhud, Battle of Khandaq, Battle of Khaibar, Battle of Hunain, Battle of Tabook, etc.

Establishment of equality among people of the world. Every one is considered to be of the same origin and of the same physical nature. They are equal in the sight of Allah, and no one is better than the other except through piety, sincerity and righteousness. However, no one knows who is better than the other except Allah; and no one has been appointed to judge who is better than the other. Allah says in Surah (chapter) Al-Hujurat (The Private Apartments):

0 mankind! Beware! We have created you male and female, and have made you nations and tribes that you may know one another …. (49 :13)

During Hajj the concept of equality is put into action and into practice. The performance of the religious activities at the same time and at the same place, shoulder to shoulder is symbolic of everyone being equals. No one is recognized as a president or as a servant, but everyone is recognized as a humble human being submitting himself/herself to the same and the Only One God. No one is recognized on the basis of his color, sex, social or political position. All of them are recognized as Muslims submitting their will to the will of Allah. No one is to face the East or the West, but each one is facing Allah Almighty. While everyone is directing himself/ herself physically towards Ka’bah in Mecca, their intentions, their totality, their entirety and their wholeness are all towards Allah and for Allah.

Establishment of Muslim Unity: During Hajj Muslims conduct a series of seminars, lectures, and workshops in different languages. Such educational talks are aimed at unifying Islamic thoughts among Muslims. During Hajj Muslims get to know one another, discuss their problems and come to some type of solution. The Hajj is a symbol of an international convention where a few million Muslims come from every corner of the world for the pleasure of Allah.

Economic Benefits: If one were to count the number of economic benefits of Hajj, he/she would not be able to do so as they are numerous. The benefits reach various segments of the Muslim Ummah. These benefits start with visas, travel agents, airlines, steamships, cars, buses, trains, customs, immigration, supermarkets, department stores, clinics, drug stores, hospitals, scouts, hotels, schools, universities, governments, and every department of the local country in Arabia. An endless number of benefits are included under this category and other categories. This proves the beauty of the meaning of the Qur’anic verse in Surah Al-Hajj (The Pilgrimage).

That they may witness things that are benefits to them… (22:28)

The Concept of Unity of Muslims is based on the concept of (Tawheed) Oneness of God, (Taqwa) fear and obedience to Allah, and (‘Amal Saleh) good deeds in life with (Niyyah Sadiqa) good intention. In Surah Al-Imran (The Family of Imran) Allah says:

0 you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam. And hold fast, all together, by the Rope which Allah (stretches out for you), and be not divided among yourselves; and remember with gratitude Allah’s Javor on you; for you were enemies and He joined your hearts in love, so that by His Grace, you became brethen; and you were on the brink of the pit of Fire, and He saved you from it. Thus does Allah make His Signs clear to you: That you may be guided. (3:102-103)

We hope and pray that every Muslim makes an effort to perform Hajj, that he/she will attain the benefits that Allah mentioned in the Qur’an.



Throughout history, Muslim scholars have written thousands of articles, books, and booklets about Hajj. Moreover, films, movies, video tapes and audio cassettes were prepared by governments, organizations, and individuals about Hajj. Different community centers conducted workshops for those who wish to perform Hajj. Here are some suggestions and tips to “Prepare Yourself for Hajj”.

Many Muslims performed Hajj without knowing enough about its rules and regulations. With good intention, and without planning or preparation, they have made a series of mistakes in their performance of the Hajj. For every mistake, they should have made the compensation (Kaffarah). Similarly, when we pray five times a day, and we make a mistake, we have to make Sujood Al-Sahw (prostration for making a mistake). If we break our Wudoo’ (ritual ablutions), we have to repeat the prayer, and so on.

Many of us do not know how to prepare ourselves properly for Hajj – spiritually, psychologically, socially, culturally, economically, etc. We did not have enough time to learn all what is needed to go and perform Hajj. A large number of Muslims were shocked when they arrived there. Even those who went with their own groups have been shocked at what they have seen and experienced.

Their worldly expectations were not met. The real problem is that we should prepare ourselves long in advance for the once-in-a-lifetime journey to the Holy Places that Allah has selected to be visited, to fulfill, and complete our Faith as Muslims.


Practical Considerations & Requirements

  1. Intention
  2. Halal money
  3. Ihram dress
  4. Valid passport, Visa issued from the country of origin.
  5. Air ticket: it should be a round-trip ticket
  6. Vaccination
  7. If you are a female, you have to have a Mahram who is usually a male member of your immediate family such as father, husband, son or brother.



Try to go with a group who make arrangements with a Mu’allim (teacher). He will guide you spiritually throughout the trip.

Try to attend a workshop by a local community center to understand the rules and regulations about the day-to-day activities and rituals of Hajj.

Make sure you make a will, documented and left with an authorized person. You never know, you might die there and the family left behind should know how to handle themselves without you.

Try to take traveler checks. Limit the amount of cash you wish to take. If you lose your checks, you can recover your money.

You should have safety pockets and safety belt to keep your money with you. Never leave your money in any hotel. Keep them with you.

Do not take food, water, or any cooking utensils with you. The Holy Places have every facility you need for living easily.

Although there is plenty of medicine there, and the pharmacists usually give medicine without physician’s prescription, make sure you take your medicines with you.

If this trip is the first time for you, please do not take any of your children with you. It would be tough for them and for you too.

Children should be taken for ‘Umrah first during December vacation. They will enjoy the trip and they will have good memories about the Holy Places.

Read guide books on Hajj and ‘Umrah. Ask your guide to explain anything you do not understand.

Take your Qur’an. Keep yourself busy reading from it. Enjoy talking to Allah while reading the Qur’an.

Read a book entitled: Al-Du’a’ Al-Mustajab (The Accepted Du’a’). Read all varieties of Du’a’.

Recite the Takbeer (Allahu Akbar); Tahleel (La Ilaha Illa Allah); Tahmeed (Al-Hamdu Lillah); Tassbeeh (Subhan Allah)…etc.

Recite the Talbiyah (Labbaika Allahumma Labbaik).

Remember, this is a spiritual journey. Do not worry about what you see wrong in other Muslims. You should be worried about yourself and whether Allah will accept your Hajj or not.

The celebration marking the end of the Hajj is called Eid-ul Adha (Feast of Sacrifice). During the Hajj you sacrifice your time, your effort, your money and your knowledge in helping other Muslims who are in Hajj.

Try to be patient as much as possible. The place in Mecca is over crowded especially by the Ka’bah during Tawaf and in Sa’iy. You move with a wave of others. There will be some Muslims who are ignorant and who do not respect Sha’aa-irr (rituals) of Hajj. They may push without any respect to others. Take it easy…say: La Hawla wala Quwata Illa Billah.

When you arrive at Jeddah Airport, you are tired and exhausted. You want immediately to go to the hotel or to go in a hurry to Mecca to perform ‘Umrah before Hajj. The authorities have to process visas for few hundred thousand individuals like yourself in one day. It will take time, as you may expect. Meanwhile, sit, relax, read Qur’an, make Zikr, Tassbeeh, Istighfar, and Talbiyah. Also try to extend your help to others within and outside your own group.

The weather may be too hot for you. Try to drink water regularly. You may need to use salt-tablets as well due to perspiration without noticing it. Try to be in the shade as much as possible. The heat of the sun may not be felt, but one may get sun stroke and meningitis which may lead to sudden death.

Try to be away from any heavy crowd. You may not know when a crowd of such a nature may push people over one another. At that time it would be difficult to stand up on you feet. Someone might step over you, and it would be difficult to stand up.

If your wife is with you, you may throw the pebbles in the Jamarat (throwing pebbles) on the three Shaitans on your her behalf during your stay of three days in Mina.

You might be confronted with situations where many individuals don’t know how to handle themselves. They need someone to help them, to guide them, and to advise them. Try to be number ONE to render your services. They may not be able to speak English, Arabic or Urdu, so be their translator.

When you are in Mina living in tents, try to identify the location of tents and the direction so as to know how to come back to your tent. Everything looks alike. It is easy to get confused and end up lost. There is no way then to get back to your tent easily.

If you cannot do the animal sacrifice on the Eid day, give the money to someone to do it on your behalf. The Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) which represents the Muslim sovereign states assumes this responsibility. The meat is then frozen and distributed later to the different parts of the Muslim world.


Final Remarks

Allah demanded that Muslims perform Hajj if means allowed them to do so. In Surah (chapter) Al-Imran, Allah says the following:

The first House (worship) appointed for men was that at Mecca: full of blessing and guidance for all the worlds. In it are signs manifest; the Station of Abraham whoever enters it attains security; pilgrimage thereto is a duty people owe to Allah (if they can afford the journey), but if anyone denies faith, Allah stands not in need of any of His creatures. (3:96-97)

Muslims should recognize that they are going on a spiritual journey that necessitates hardship and sacrifice. It demands that they be patient. They should expect the least relaxation and the most rewards from Allah. They should expect less sleeping, less comfort, less eating, less riding and more walking on foot. They should expect too many people that over-crowd the streets, the hotels, the tents and every other place. They should transcend all these barriers, and remember the Day of Judgment when every human being is to be assembled and to be judged by Allah. Therefore, Muslims have to take it easy; and it is Allah Who will inspire, motivate, and reward us to live in peace and harmony.

Muslims should be grateful to Allah that He allowed them to perform Hajj before they die. Millions of Muslims all over the world are yearning to perform Hajj. Some don’t have money and others are too sick to take this journey. Still there are a good number of Muslims who have good health and extra money to perform Hajj, but due to the quota system their names are not selected, and therefore, they were prevented to perform Hajj due to the great demands of millions and millions of Muslims who want to perform Hajj.

Therefore, Muslims should be grateful to Allah for all the favors that He has bestowed upon them in performing Hajj. As it is known the more a person is thankful and grateful to Allah, the more Allah will bestow upon them His Blessings. Ameen