By Wasif Khan
We had just completed the “chapter of I’tikaaf” in our study of Fiqh. Next up was Kitabul Hajj, and the Shaykh gave us a beautiful introduction to the book. I enjoyed the introduction, as I was able to relive some of the moments I had just experienced from Hajj, Alhamdulillah. Until the point where Shaykh mentioned, “So inshaa Allah, we will have Wasif give us an overview of the rituals of Hajj tomorrow!”
The preparations began; Mina, Arafaat, Muzadalifah, Jamaraat, Tawaaf, etc. It was great to relive the experience all over again. The following day, I was able to present the timeline of Hajj and also shared some of my own personal experiences with the class. Below, I’d like to share one of those reflections with you.
It was the 7th Day of Dhul Hijjah, the day before Hajj officially begins. We were stationed in Azizia, just a couple of miles from the Ka’bah itself. Where our group leader, Shaykh Omar had shared with us the following similarities between “Birth & Hajj”. He termed it the “Rebirth”. This reflection was based upon the Hadith of the Prophet Sal Allahu Alayhi Wa Sallam.
حَدَّثَنَا آدَمُ، حَدَّثَنَا شُعْبَةُ، حَدَّثَنَا سَيَّارٌ أَبُو الْحَكَمِ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ أَبَا حَازِمٍ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ أَبَا هُرَيْرَةَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ قَالَ سَمِعْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ
“ مَنْ حَجَّ لِلَّهِ فَلَمْ يَرْفُثْ وَلَمْ يَفْسُقْ رَجَعَ كَيَوْمِ وَلَدَتْهُ أُمُّهُ ”
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet (p.b.u.h) said, “Whoever performs Hajj for Allah’s pleasure and does not have sexual relations with his wife, and does not do evil or sins then he will return (after Hajj free from all sins) as if he were born anew.”
Sahih al-Bukhari 1521 | Book 25, Hadith 9 | Vol. 2, Book 26, Hadith 596
The Shaykh eloquently depicted the similarities between the birth of a newborn and Hajj, and how this time around it was a better “rebirth”. Of how it wasn’t the first time we were at Arafaat. Before we were born, and before we were sent to this world we had already been on the plains of Arafaat where Allah SWT took the covenant from each and every soul as it is recorded in Surah Al-A’raaf – “Am I not your Master?” And we all replied, Of course you are, and we testified”. However, this time around during Hajj as we stood on the plains of Arafaat and begged for forgiveness it was much more meaningful. This time around, it was only by special invitation. And those who made the trip, answered the call of Ibraheem A that was made centuries ago.
After Arafaat we all headed over to Muzdalifah, where all the Hujjaaj are obliged to spend the night under the sky. This resembled when all the souls gathered in the skies after taking the covenant. The next step in Hajj was to return to Mina and head over to the Jamaraat to stone the pillars that symbolize Shaytaan. This step in Hajj resembles the time of birth, where Shaytaan pokes the newborn to show his enmity. At that time, we were vulnerable to Shaytaan. However, as we walk towards Jamaraat to stone the Shaytaan as we say Allahu Akbar “Allah is greater”, Shaytan is now the vulnerable one!
After a baby is born, the parents shave the head of the newborn. Likewise, the Hujjaj make their way to the Barber shop to have their heads shaved/trimmed. Lastly, we offer the Udhiyah/Sacrifice for the newborn and this is also resembled during Hajj as one of the last rituals.
SubhanAllah, what a beautiful rebirth! Now, the wise words of our beloved Prophet Muhammad S, are so much more meaningful…”Whoever performs Hajj for Allah’s pleasure and does not have sexual relations with his wife, and does not do evil or sins then he will return (after Hajj free from all sins) as if he were born anew.”