Preparing for Hajj?
By Imam Idris Oni
In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Merciful.
All praises and adorations belong to Allah, blessings and salutations upon His Messenger, Muhammad son of Abdullah. May Allah continue to shower His blessings upon him, his household and all believers in Allah's monotheism. Amin.
You are welcome to Mobile Mosjid, every Friday on this Platform, may Allah accept it from me and from you. Amin.
Many of our brothers and sisters are preparing for Hajj, may Allah make it easy and accept it as Ibadah from them. Amin. So, let’s talk about Hajj this week.
Allah teaches us the best way to prepare for the sacred duty of Hajj. He says: "....and prepare (make provisions) and the best preparation (provision) is Taqwa". Qur'an 2:197.
Hajj is the last pillar of Islam. Allah has made it compulsory for Muslims who have the wherewithal to embark on the religious sojourn. A Muslim who is a slave and a kid who is yet to attain maturity (Al-Bulugh) are exempted from Hajj. So also is a Muslim who is indebted or bankrupt or financially incapable, sick, insane or mentally unstable is excused from Hajj. When security cannot be ascertained, Hajj may also be jettisoned. This implies that the conditions of Hajj include:
a. True faith in Allah (Iman);
b. Sanity (Sihha al-'Aqliy);
c. Maturity (al-Bulugh);
d. Freedom from debt (Huriyyah 'ani dayn);
e. Physical and Mental Health Stability (Sihhatul Jismiyyah wa 'aqliyyah);
f. Security (Al-Amnu).
g. Financial Capability (Rizq).
It is a common practise in this era for people to borrow money for the purpose of performing this sacred duty i.e. Hajj. This act of borrowing for Hajj is not only an act of extravagance (Israf) but also contradicts the basis and fundamentals of Islam.
Hajj is a means to have a direct communion with Allah, familiarize with the birthplace of Islam and fraternize with fellow Muslims from across the world. To do this therefore, a Muslim must not over burden himself because Allah only wants EASE for us.
In addition, Hajj like Zakat becomes compulsory only when you have fulfilled all its conditions. Its therefore must be noted that to make something compulsory when Allah and His Rasul (saw) hasn't make it compulsory for you in Islam is a bad innovation and extreme.
While preparing for Hajj, Allah admonishes us to make the 'best preparation' - khayr al-zad. The best preparation is none other than Taqwa - Righteousness and Consciousness of Allah.
How do we prepare for Hajj with Taqwa? Here are the key guides:
1. Pay up all your debts;
2. Make adequate provisions for your family;
3. Be sincere i.e. be prepared to do Hajj ONLY for the pleasure of Allah;
4. Avoid distractions as much as possible;
5. Make up your mind that you shall observe it as if it is your last;
6. Be ready and willing to maximize the benefits of Hajj by doing as many voluntary acts of worship as possible;
7. At hajj, try to observe all your Salat in Jama'ah at either of the two holiest mosques (Ka'bah and the Prophet's mosque at Madinah);
8. Observe all the Sunnah that are attached to Hajj. If you do not know, ask your Amir al-Hajj;
9. Be determined to repent and remain righteous during and after Hajj so that you are not denied the benefits of Hajj.
Allah described this Ummah as the best that ever evolved from amongst mankind. This lofty position that Allah has granted unto us will be maintained only if we continue to teach goodness and righteousness and forbid evil and unrighteousness. Thus, kindly share this message with others so that the benefits contained therein can go round.
Allah has commanded goodness and justice. He admonished us to care for those who are close to us and forbid shamelessness and detested characters and hypocrisy. He has admonished us so that we may be successful here on earth and in the hereafter.
Allahumma Salli 'ala Muhammadin wa alihi wasallim. Amin.