Monday, 30 July 2012

Umrah





Asalam waliykum my dear sisters,

Sorry that the good news is rather late, I was meant to inform everyone last week. Anyway, as you can tell by the title, I am off on Umrah soon!! we just got our visas so I did not want to say anything until we got the go ahead.


Inshallah on Monday I will be heading off to Saudi Arabia for 22 days!! So I will be missing, or should I say MIA until September, no posts I'm afraid. I really want to focus on Umrah and the last 10 days of Ramadan and not be distracted with phones and the Internet.
Alhamdulillah super uber excited and this is a real blessing for me to go.

In preparation, I  purchased 5 books on umrah and want to make sure I do everything correctly. So that explains why no posts over the weekend about the Eid cards, I will inshallah try my best to have them up by Friday, if I don't then please understand why. I have been studying and learning more Quran and trying to do more good deeds and read loads more Quran and reflect on what I have read.

One of my University friends is also out there for a month and informed me it was close to 60'C and her eyes were actually burning from the heat. Subhanallah, what a real test to endure the heat and remain fasting. Inshallah it will be a life changing experience with an estimated 4 million Muslims expected to be there over the last 10days. That is 1 million more then Hajj!!! Subhanallah its crazy how so many people will be there, there have never been that many there before. So this will be a great test of patience and strength and will power for me. Challenge accepted!!

I really want to go and I have many reasons not just because its commanded of us by Allah to do Hajj and Umrah. Yes there is that understanding, but, more so for the enormous reward for going to visit the masjid harram and the masjid of the Prophet (PBUH). One hadith by the Prophet (PBUH) really shows the importance of going:

"One who comes to this house and avoids all lewdness and sins; he returns as he was on the day his mother gave birth to him" (Related by Muslim).


Who would wait, to have the chance to pay a visit to this place and return home like a new born, sinless? This is of course while going with correct intention and performing all the rights of Umrah/Hajj correctly with no mistakes. It is also recommended if you have the means, to perform Umrah and Hajj while still young. There are many reasons why, here are two:

1) having the strength and ability to deal with the hardships and tests that come with making this journey.

2) you never know when you will die, so do not put off such a pillar of Islam until "old age" after you have had all your "fun" and committed all your sins. This is definitely not the correct intention at all, or the right way to think about things as a Muslim.

Another beautiful thing is that if we women, make the journey Umrah/Hajj it is our jihaad. What a mercy from Allah, that doing something such as pilgrimage is equal to that of a man going for jihaad.
Aisha (RA) related that she said:

"O messenger of Allah, do the women also have to go for jihad? He replied: Yes, a jihaad is prescribed for her with no killing in it. That is Hajj and Umrah" (Related by Ibn Maajah, Ahmad and Ibn Khuzaymah).

Subhanallah, this really got me hyped up for the journey and I can not wait to pray in the harram. Just in case some of you are unaware the Masjid is called the Harram because anything which is prohibited can not happen within the masjid, it is totally forbidden to do anything haram there. Such as killing, even of insects, swearing, shouting, looking at the opposite sex, backbiting, gossip, beautification, bad behaviour of any sort... the same as any masjid but the emphasis is strong at masjid Harram and the punishment of disobeying this command is greater. So basically have sabr, be on your best behaviour and try to do only good deeds to others in the masjid.

To do umrah you need to perform certain rights, first being in the state of Ihram. Making tawaaf (circling the kaba/house of Allah 7 times). The Sa'ee walking between as-Safa and al-Marwah, completing 7 circuits.  Shaving/cutting/trimming of the hair, men it is recommended to shave the head completely, but must leave facial hair alone and other hair on the body. Women Should trim some of the hair from the head only.

Zawji informed me that this only takes 4-5hours to complete maybe a little longer in Ramadan if there are a lot more people. But it only takes half a day MAX. Therefore, with the correct understanding, intention and if you do things correctly you can reap a huge amount of rewards for half a day. Although I must stress that once in Ihram you are in a state of purity and can not do anything forbidden even kissing or touching your spouse in a intimate way. Which is permissible during Ramadan. When you in Ihram that is totally forbidden. However, some people do fall into this, because they are often in the state of Ihram for many days, even weeks before they can perform Hajj/umrah. If they do then they are told to compensate by slaughtering a sheep and this will suffice.

From the time I am in the state of Ihram until I complete umrah it will be 3 days. You must begin Ihram by performing Ghusul ritual shower, then you put on clean clothes (for women) that is modest and not at all your normal clothes. Women usually wear khimar and jilbab which is what I will do inshallah. Men can only wear what can only be described as two large white sheets. They must not have any stitching in them, such as hem etc. Plain pieces of cloth. They are not allowed to wear underwear or items which are stitched such as shoes, so often more then not men wear plastic sandals or flip flops.  

Women have to be modest and covered at all times! No forearms showing, no hair, no neck etc. Properly covered according to Quran and Hadith. Those who wear niqab must remove it while in the state of ihram, and no gloves either. No make up, no perfume, no attractive clothing etc and this is good practise for everyday life too when we as women should dress this way in front on non mahrams not just on pilgrimage. I will admit, yes I am a concealer type of girl, I need it!!! Being of Arab ethnicity naturally I have dark circles around my eyes. So I have been preparing for not using my concealer, by not using it at all since Ramadan started. It has been tough and I look dead most days. However, it just reminds me I only need to look good for Allah, and He created all humans beautiful and without makeup! 

I actually bought some scent free goodies online, to use before I get into the state Ihram and while in the state of ihram, no alcohol and no perfume. Inshallah I will do a quick post on that tomorow, but a proper review when I get back after having used the products.

There is so much to write about, But I can not include it all. Learning about the rights, and regulations to perform umrah is amazing, I learnt so much Alhamdulillah.
Inshallah I will do my best to share my journey with you once I return inshallah, with photos to. I also bought some very nice overhead jilbabs to wear which are modest and loose and super cool. I hope to inshallah do a post about them and where I got them from once I return.

I can only ask my sisters that you keep me and and other pilgrims in your duas that we arrive safely, perform our umrah correctly and return safely that is all I can ask for.

The Prophet (PBUH) said:

"Umrah in Ramadan has the same reward as performing Hajj with me" (al-Bukhaaree & Muslim)

Subhanallah is that not amazing, and such a motivation for everyone to go in Ramadan?!!

One last thing, I have a tiny book which I will begin to write peoples duas in, I wont be able to memories them all, so I thought that be a good idea. So please do email me or comment any duas you would like me to take to the House of Allah, as many as you wish and no limit. If it is something rather private just email me it if you prefer.

jazakallah khier

Wasalam-x-

23 comments:

  1. Alhamdhulillah, I am happy for you. This is a wonderful opportunity for you and your husband. May Allah SWT make the journey easy for you. Ameen.
    I've performed Hajj Alhamdhulillah. Take the good advise that people will give you before you depart for Umrah. And disregard any odd advise. I was told lots of things about what to watch out for in the "other cultures", but are we not all Muslims? Yes, Hajj and Umrah must be performed correctly, both mentally and physically, but part of performing it correctly also pertains to our attitudes and tolerance towards others. So Alhamdhulillah, our Hajj was not difficult. My memories of all the Muslimahs that I met from the different nations and what I learnt from them, even when we could not speak english, well, they are in my heart, always.
    Travel safely Inshallah x

    ReplyDelete
  2. Asalam waliykum sis,

    Aw barakallahu feek. I am super happy too :D Ameen sis

    Subhanallah thats amazing sis, thats my next stop inshallah hajj when i can save a bit more :D
    Yes you are right i have heard lots of odd things. Someone said you can not go to visit the grave of prophet SAW. No woman can. But they allow women to go there. I heard so much but alhamdulillah i knew what was legitimate and what needed further investigation.

    Exactly if you have no sabr towards the muslims there and are rude and intolerant should you actually be there in the first place? Lets just make dua, May Allah guide there hearts, ameen.

    Mashallah sis, you lucky i can not waut to go and see all the sisters from around the world :D
    Jazakallah khier sis :D

    wasalam -x-

    ReplyDelete
  3. I pray you had a safe journey and return. May Allah accept all your deeds and wipe out your sins, and make us amongst the visitors to the Holy Masjid in Makkah & Madinah, ameen.

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