Tag Archives: obligation

The Obligation of Hajj

When we are asked the meaning of Hajj, pilgrimage is usually the first word that pops up in our mind, but we need to recognize the difference between meanings/definitions and translations

Pilgrimage is the translation of Hajj in English, but Hajj in itself is defined as intention

Yes surprisingly enough Hajj also means intention, so the meaning of the words of Allah, the Most High in Surah Al’ Imran (97) is the intention to visit the House of Allah.

فِيهِ آيَاتٌ بَيِّنَاتٌ مَّقَامُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ ۖ وَمَن دَخَلَهُ كَانَ آمِنًا ۗ وَلِلَّهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الْبَيْتِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًا ۚ وَمَن كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ عَنِ الْعَالَمِينَ

(Aal Imran, 3:97)

“In it are clear signs [such as] the standing place of Abraham. And whoever enters it shall be safe. And [due] to Allah from the people is a pilgrimage to the House – for whoever is able to find thereto a way. But whoever disbelieves – then indeed, Allah is free from need of the worlds.”

It has been said that Hajj is an obligatory act but as a species who claim to have intelligence, we require proofs and evidences for any statement made, so here are the proofs that mandate Hajj obligatory:

1.

فِيهِ آيَاتٌ بَيِّنَاتٌ مَّقَامُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ ۖ وَمَن دَخَلَهُ كَانَ آمِنًا ۗ وَلِلَّهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الْبَيْتِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًا ۚ وَمَن كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ عَنِ الْعَالَمِينَ 

(Aal-Imran, 3:97)

In it are clear signs [such as] the standing place of Abraham. And whoever enters it shall be safe. And [due] to Allah from the people is a pilgrimage to the House – for whoever is able to find thereto a way. But whoever disbelieves – then indeed, Allah is free from need of the worlds

وَأَتِمُّوا الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلَّهِ ۚ     

(Al-Baqarah, 2:196)

And perform properly (i.e. all the ceremonies according to the ways of the Prophet) The Hajj and ‘Umrah (i.e.the pilgrimage to Makkah)

  1. It was narrated from Ibn ‘Abbas that the Messenger of Allah stood up and said:

Allah, Most High, has decreed Hajj for you. Al-Aqra’ bin Habis At-Tamimi said: “Every year, O Messenger of Allah?” But he remained silent, then he said: “If I said yes, it would become obligatory, then you would not hear and obey. Rather it is just one Hajj.”

  1. Hajj is one of the pillars of Islam

Narrated Ibn ‘Umar:

Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: Islam is based on (the following) five (principles):

  1. To testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and Muhammad is Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ).
  2. To offer the (compulsory congregational) prayers dutifully and perfectly.
  3. To pay Zakat (i.e. obligatory charity).
  4. To perform Hajj. (i.e. Pilgrimage to Mecca)
  5. To observe fast during the month of Ramadan

All these evidences indicate to the fact that Hajj is indeed obligatory. It is obligatory to perform it once, anything more is voluntary

Now that we have established the fact that Hajj is an obligation, let us now see on whom is it obligatory, is it obligatory for all the Muslims or are there some specifics that need to be highlighted.

There are five conditions that make Hajj obligatory on a person:

1 – Being Muslim

This applies to all acts of worship, because worship done by a kaafir is not valid.

2 and 3 – being of sound mind and being an adult

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said:

“The pen is lifted from three [and does not record their deeds]: from one who is sleeping, until he wakes up; from a child until he reaches puberty, and from one who is insane until he comes to his senses.”

Narrated by Abu Dawood, 4403; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.

So a child is not obliged to perform Hajj, but if his parents take him for Hajj, his Hajj is valid; the child will have the reward of Hajj and his parents will also have a reward, because when a woman lifted up a child and asked, “Is there Hajj for this one?” the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Yes, and you will have the reward.” Narrated by Muslim

4 – Being free

Hajj is not obligatory for a slave, because he is distracted by his duties towards his master.

5 – Being able to do it

This includes being able both physically and financially.

What is meant by being physically able is that one is sound in body and can bear the hardship of travelling to the sacred House of Allah.

What is meant by being financially able is that a person should have surplus funds that are sufficient for doing Hajj after paying off debts and taking care of shar’i obligations and basic needs

If a person is physically and financially able to do Hajj, then he is obliged to hasten to do Hajj.

  • If he is not physically and financially able, or if he is physically able but he is poor and has no wealth, then he is not obliged to do Hajj.
  • If a person is financially able but he is not physically able, then we look at the matter further.
  • If his problem is something that he hopes will disappear, such as a sickness from which he hopes to recover, then he should wait until Allah heals him, then do Hajj.
  • If his problem is one for which there is no hope that it will disappear, such as a person with cancer or an old person who cannot do Hajj, then he has to appoint someone to do Hajj on his behalf, and the duty to perform Hajj is not waived because of his physical inability if he is financially able.

The evidence for that is the report narrated by Bukhari (1513) according to which a woman said:

“O Messenger of Allah, Allah’s command to the people to perform Hajj has come when my father is an old man and cannot sit firmly in the saddle. Can I perform Hajj on his behalf?” He said: “Yes.”

Therefore, in this article we have now learnt that Hajj is obligatory and then have learnt on whom it is obligatory. In Sha Allah in our next article we shall look into the benefits and virtues of Hajj.

Refer to https://islamqa.info/en/41957 for more insight on those whom Hajj is obligatory on
Click on the ahadith to know their references

Dawah And Me

Praise be to Allah, The Almighty, The Supreme

mongols

One of the worst calamities faced by the Muslim ummah was in 1258, when Genghis Khan’s grandson, Hulagu Khan and his people ravaged through the city of Baghdad, committing numerous atrocities and massacring the Muslims, where they made the Muslim blood lawful, until they drenched the city in it.

A horrible carnage and catastrophe that history has borne witness to. A crime so heinous, that it has left an indelible mark in our hearts, a time when the Muslim world was ransacked and decimated. An era which witnessed 800 000 Muslims butchered mercilessly.
Reading all this, a question arises in our minds, the fact that, how then in only 80 years did these barbaric Mongols convert to Islam?

By the mercy of Allah, it were those remaining Muslims who even in those tragic moments continued to work for Islam, enjoining good and forbidding evil, as a result ,the Mongolians took a complete turnover, now raising the banner of Islam as their religion. It was at this time where women were at the forefront of Da’wah. If the Mongolians who massacred muslims could find the truth in Islam, then so to can our many enemies today, Muslims continue to be massacred, in Syria, in Burma, in Palestine and across the globe.

This gives rise to a very important question, a question in need of comprehension, a question we need to ask ourselves indeed, What have we done for Islam? Have we served this ummah, for is it not mentioned in the Quran?….

“Let there arise out of you a group of people inviting to all that is good, enjoining Al-Maroof (Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do) and forbidding Al-Munkar(polytheism and disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden ). And it is they who are successful.” (Al-Imran: 104)

And then what about the famous hadeeth, where Prophet (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said: “Convey from me, even one verse.” (Bukhari)

It’s not a voluntary deed, dear friends but in fact an obligatory one. The obligation is further emphasized by the following verse which explains that not conveying the message – hiding knowledge – is disobedience to Allah that causes Allah’s curse to descend upon such people, which shows that such a sin leads to the Hellfire.

 “Verily, those who conceal the clear proofs, evidences and the guidance, which We have sent down, after We have made it clear for the people in the Book, they are the ones cursed by Allah and cursed by the cursers.” (Quran, al-Baqarah: 159)

People have died for the cause of Da’wah. The sahabah sacrificed their lives to promote and propagate this deen in hopes of attaining Allah’s pleasure alone. The question remains what about me and you? Have we fulfilled our duty in this regard?

The barbaric Mongolians converted to Islam, the flag of Islam raises itself high in several countries, and even now Muslims occupy an extremely large portion of the globe, would such have been the situation if Muslims hadn’t adhered to the commands of Allah and propagated our deen. All these undoubtedly shows the extreme importance of Da’wah in our lives. We definitely need to imbibe Da’wah in our everyday routine. We have ample opportunities to give Da’wah, at our workplace, colleges, on the bus, at the airport etc. It’s our duty to make the best of these moments.
It is essential that contribute to this developing Ummah, we need to motivate ourselves by remembering our ancestors, after all giving Da’wah is obligatory and we will be questioned, so let’s prepare ourselves by realizing the importance of Da’wah and then implement in it our lives.

Allâhumma zayyinnâ bi-zînati-l-îmâni, wa ja’alnâ hudâtan muhtadîn

O Allah, beautify us with the adornment of faith and make us of those who guide and are rightly guided.”

Ameen ya Rabbil Alameen

Bint Hasan

Writer, AAT

Actions Speak Louder Than Words!

actions speak louder than words

Dawah is obligatory on every muslim, we are obliged to call people towards the good and forbid what is evil. Those who hold Islam to be correct, should surely call to it, and invite others to share in the truth. Enjoining what is good and forbidding what is evil is an important mission, hence those who undertake this mission must be of good character and must understand the objectives of shariah; they must call people with wisdom and fair preaching and deal with them in a kind and gentle manner.

“Actions speak louder than words,” a strong saying indeed! Throughout history there are countless examples of empty words and inaction, which have lead to the masses losing trust in the leader or speaker. Such situations can only escalate, as people lose hope in that individual, and refuse to trust them anymore. When one embarks on a Da’wah mission, not only must they convey the truth, but they should also pair their message with correct action.

“Look at Islam and not the Muslims,” is yet another coined phrase. Though Muslims are supposed to be an embodiment of Islam and its principles, sadly this phrase has become an all too common sight. Our Prophet peace and blessing be upon him, won the hearts of people through his exceptional standard of character, to the extent that his enemies could not speak about him in regard to it!

Muslims need to be exemplary so that non-Muslims begin to judge Islam by the people who adhere to it, as the media has already engraved a very negative and hostile image of Islam, especially for those who have little contact with Muslims. People are thirsty, thirsty for the truth, and as the saying explains, your actions often leave a bigger impact and more lasting effect in people’s minds. You will be judged as a Muslim, and some may receive guidance from the way you talk, walk, deal with others overall how you carry yourself.  Plant a seed of interest and curiosity in the person’s heart by your excellent character, and the person will be inquisitive to find out more.

The Prophet was sent as an example for us to follow.  When asked about the Prophet’s manners, Aishah, the Mother of the believers said: “He was a walking Qur’an”.

He (peace and blessing be upon him) applied the Qu’ran in his life so much so that it was as though he was the Qur’an! A muslim, who truly believes that the Qur’an was the final guidance, should adhere to its guidance! Allah says in the Qur’an,

“O you who believe! Why do you say that which you do not do? Most hateful it is with Allah that you say that which you do not do” [Surah Al-Saff  61:2-3]  

When we say we believe in the Quran then we must adhere to its every word and letter.

Let us now try to focus on some points that will help us to be a positive impact while giving dawah and also be a better Muslim:

  1. Gentleness goes a long way:

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Verily, gentleness is not in anything except that it beautifies it, and it is not removed from anything except that it disgraces it.”(Sahih Muslim)

Be gentle in your approach and your speech. Effective da’wah is done in a gentle and loving manner. Everyone loves to be addressed in a gentle tone. A simple smile is a curve that sets everything straight. Smile at those around you, as it is an act of charity, the Prophet was always seen smiling; it is amazing how a smile can brighten a person’s day up.

Quick tip to remember: First Impression is a lasting impression.

  1. Dress the part:

Decent dressing makes a good impression on the mad’oo. Dressing appropriately, neatly and with clean clothes will alter other’s perspective of you. People are more accepting of one whose clothes are tidy and who has well-kept outlook. Wearing clothes that are within the limits of Islam will also show dedication and devotion to your faith.

  1. Empathise with theMad’oo:

One needs to first understand where the madoo is coming from, what is his level of understanding and knowledge, his background etc. This will provide insight as to how best to introduce Islam, and what aspects of Islam will touch a senstive chord with the mad’oo.

One should try to open the conversation with friendliness, perhaps by touching up on similar interests and activities. By doing so, the madoo will find you an interesting person and not think of you as muslim and a potential threat.

Imam Ibn Qayyim said in his Fawa’id: “The smart one calls the people to Allah from their dunya, and this makes it easier for them to respond to him. The zahid (ascetic) calls them to Allah by way of abandoning the dunya, and this makes it hard for them to respond, since it is very hard to pull someone away from the breast that he has developed his mind while suckling on…”

  1. Inviting neighbours and giving presents:

Allah says in the Qur’an: “Serve Allah and join not any partners with Him: Show kindness unto parents, and unto near kindred, and orphans, and the needy, and to the neighbour who is of kin (unto you) and the neighbour who is not of kin and the fellow traveller and what your right hands possess: for Allah loves not the arrogant the vainglorious.”  [Surah An-Nisa,04:36]

Our neighbours are the first rightful owners of our da’wah. One should be kind to them, help them in every way and keep good contact with them. Taking time to visit them, saying hello to each other in the morning, all will do wonders.

The neighbour has so many rights upon us, and are so special that the sahaba thought that they could be ordered to make their neighbours inheritors of their property, due to their numerous rights.

  1. Help those with greater needs than yourself.

It is considered a cliché to hold doors for others, but it never fails to attract appreciation. Giving up a seat for the elderly or the pregnant or those with little children may come as a natural response to some; Muslims however should always be the first to use initiatives that brings comfort to others. Aid anyone who may need assistance, help them as best as you can, give them the right of way and show patience instead of irritation. Whatever ensures the comfort of people should always be preferable to the Muslims. Turn every situation into an opportunity for da’wah.

  1. Do not over-exert yourself

Enthusiasm is good, however we must always remembers the Prophetic advice that the best form of charity is that which is done regularly. Da’wah is also a form of charity, where the Muslim spends time and makes effort for the benefit of others. Do not over-exert yourself and take time-out when you need it. Make sure you always spend time to learn and grow with Islamic knowledge. Take enough time to refresh and revitalise the senses as is needed. Take a break to boost your iman and personal growth every now and then.

  1. Wear Islam Responsibly.

The Qur’an and the Sunnah are the ‘blueprints’ of Islam; when Muslims start to follow them, they will become positive examples to those around them. Whether we like it or not, people will judge Islam by what they see, if people see hypocrisy, internal fighting, cheating, continuous brash debating etc. they will likely dismiss Islam out of hand. They will equate such behaviour with Islam and won’t understand that Muslims, who are humans after all, may not always be “Islamic”. The fundamental principle of ‘practicing what you preach’ must always be at the forefront of our minds.

The most important task for the daa’ee is that he must have a righteous lifestyle, he must be righteous in his actions and possess a righteous character so that he can be emulated in his words and actions.

As for the successful believers they call to the truth, act upon it, eagerly seek it, and hasten towards it. They also keep away from those things that they themselves forbid. We must remember that a bad word travels faster, much more than a good word.

So Don’t tell the People, show them…..

actions-speak-louder

Fatima Damad

Writer, AAT