October 15

‘Philosophy of Hajj’ by Sheikh Safdar Razi

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In Hajj Allah is calling you, it’s like death, as when the Angel of death comes, it is because Allah is calling you to Him.



When you are doing Ghusul, remember that one day you will be washed. You are washing yourself from your sins.

When you wear your ihram it’s like wearing your shroud.



In Tawaf you walk in the anticlockwise direction. Everything in the universe goes Anticlockwise, the solar system goes anticlockwise, the atoms go anticlockwise. The whole universes circulation is anticlockwise.



We are promising Allah, O God, my focal point is you, you are the centre of my life, I will always 7 days of my week for my whole life be around you, worshipping you. I will not deviate left or right I will always be in an orbit around your existence.



You then pray behind the footsteps of Prophet Ibrahim, what message do you get here? O God, Prophet Ibrahim sacrificed, he did not follow Shaitan, he did not let his ego come, so I will follow him, I will try to do my best to be your friend O God. I will try and pelt my ego with my intellectual stones, whenever anything comes I will sacrifice for your sake I will keep you above my ego.



When you are praying behind someone you are following that person you are listening to that person, so when we are praying behind Prophet Ibrahim’s footsteps that are engraved on the stone, it means we are following in HIS footsteps.



The walk between Safa and Marwa. When Prophet Ibrahim came with Hajar and Ismael, Prophet Ibrahim was order to leave by Allah. Ismael was thirsty, so Hajar started to look for water, she was walking from Mount Safa to Marwa, and again she was struggling just to take care of her child. After the 7th round at Marwa Allah brought forth a miracle – a spring of water started to gush and gush this was zam zam, which means ‘stop stop’. If Ismael hadn’t said stop stop they would drowned, when he said stop stop, the springs became slower. When water is present birds start to come, so the distant tribes saw the birds which meant water is there, so the tribes came and Makkah was established as a city. The next visit of Prophet Ibrahim, him and Ismael built the holy kaaba.



Arafat – the land of resurrection. On the Day of Judgement you will be accounted, and you will read your book. This is an opportunity to remember all the sins you have done in your life and ask forgiveness. On this day you can account yourself and seek forgiveness, but on the Day of Judgement you will be accounted but can’t ask for forgiveness, account yourself before you are accounted.



The Day of Arafat means Marifa, when you die you come into the realm of knowing Allah there is no material barrier. Whoever knows his soul will know his Lord. Contemplate.



In Muzdalifa there are no tents. There are no barriers.



When you pick your stones ask Allah to protect you from the biggest devil, which isn’t Iblis or Shaitan, it is our ego.



From Muzdalifa to Mina You see the light, you are back to the world and it is as if you are newly born. Just as a new born baby has their hair shaved, you shave your hair.



Just as you pelt the Shaitan with 7 stones, pelt your ego whenever it comes 7 days a week.



The are 3 Shaitans, the big one, medium one and small one. These places are where Shaitan came to Prophet Ibrahim, Hajar and Ismael trying to deceive them and they pelted Shaitan with stones.



So when Shaitan comes to us telling us not to obey Allah, take the stones of your will and pelt the ego and Shaitan and don’t let him distract you. The big pillar is like shirk. Rely on Allah not people. Medium Shaitan is like the sins of the rights of the people and the small Shaitan is like the Sins of yourselves. Make promises to Allah in Mina.



The sacrifice has a big meaning, imagine the sacrifice of Prophet Ibrahim. He waited for about 80 years to have a son, then he was blessed with Ismael. What a difficult test for Prophet Ibrahim, he waited 80 years for a Son, and he has to give his son back to Allah. Prophet Ibrahim controlled his desires, and said to Allah everything is for you.

When we go and sacrifice, whenever there is a conflict between Allah and your desires, Allah and your ego, Allah and your material entertainment, prefer Allah, prefer your salaat, prefer Fasting, prefer Allah in every single moment of your day and night.



There is another sacrifice which is the sacrifice of the holy Prophet with his grandson Imam Hussain. The Prophet knew before Imam Hussain was born what was going to happen in Kerbala, imagine the test of the Prophet. He told Imam Hussain about being martyred in Kerbala, he didn’t tell Imam Hussain not to go to Kerbala. Imam Hussain was be-headed there was no ram replaced there instead, the Holy Prophet and Lady Fatima and Imam Ali were all watching how difficult it was for them. Imam Hussain has to witness all his family being slaughtered in front of his eyes.



To appreciate the blood of Imam Hussain, avoid committing sins, avoid your ego, just remember did Imam Hussain give his life for us commit sins? Keep the values of Imam Hussain alive.



This is like the journey of the dead, you die when you go from Makkah to Arafat, you are basically in your grave. Then you are resurrected in Arafat the land of resurrection. After accounting and seeking forgiveness you come back to life as you have been given another opportunity of life.



Reference: http://www.awaitedone.org/resources/videos/hajj-lessons-sh.-safdar-razi.html

September 16

Hajj Spirituality At Its Best

An Ever Green Conversation of our 4th Imam, Imam Zaynul Abidin (A.S.), with his companion Shibli



When the Fourth Imam Zaynul Abidin (as) returned from Hajj, Shibli came to meet him. They engaged in the following conversation:



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you go for Hajj O Shibli?

Shibli: Yes O son of the Messenger of Allah.



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you stop at the Miqat (Miqat are the stations at which pilgrims on the Hajj, the pilgrimage to Makkah, put on ihram, the pilgrim’s garment) and put away the sewn clothes and perform the sacred bath?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you stopped at Miqat did you make the intention that you are taking off the clothes of disobedience and putting on the clothes of obedience?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you had taken off your sewn clothes did you make the intention that you had taken off hypocrisy and entering dubious acts?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you took the bath did you have the intention that you are washing yourself from all sins and errors?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not stop at Miqat, nor did you take off sewn clothes nor did you perform the sacred bath.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you cleanse yourself and put on Ihram and fulfil your covenant of Hajj?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you did this did you have the intention that you are cleaning yourself with the nurah of the sincere repentance to Almighty Allah the most high?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you put on the Ihram did you have the intention that you are forbidding yourself everything that Almighty Allah has forbidden?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you fulfilled the covenant of Hajj did you have the intention that you have nullified all other covenants with other than Allah?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not cleanse yourself nor did you put on the Ihram nor did you fulfil the covenant of hajj.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you enter the Miqat and pray the two Rakats of the Ihram and did you chant Talbiyah?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you entered the Miqat, did you make the intention of entering as a visitor?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you prayed the two Rakats did you make the intention that you are trying to get closer to Allah (SWT) with the best of acts from the prayers and the biggest of good deeds from the acts of worship?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you chanted the Talbiyah did you have the intention that you were talking to almighty Allah with all obedience and keeping quiet from all disobedience?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not enter Miqat nor did you pray nor did you chant the Talbiyah.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you enter the Haram and did you see the Kaaba and did you pray there?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you entered the Haram did you have the intention that you were prohibiting on yourself all backbiting of all the Muslims from the Nations of Islam?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you reached Makka did you make the intention with your heart that you had come to Almighty Allah (SWT)?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You have neither entered Haram nor seen the Kaaba nor prayed.

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you go round the house and did you touch the Rukn and did you make Saee?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you did the Saee did you have the intention that you were running towards Almighty Allah and did Allah the knower of all secrets know this?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not go round the house nor did you touch Rukn nor did you make Saee.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you touch the Hajar al-Aswad (The Black Stone) and did you stand at the Maqam Ibrahim (Station of Abraham) and did you pray two Rakats on it?

Shibli: Yes



Here the Imam Zaynul Abidin (as) gave a scream as if he was about to leave this world saying Ah! Ah! Whoever touches the black stone it is as if he has shaken hands with Almighty Allah (SWT). So Look O poor chap that you do not destroy the reward of something whose sacredness has been made very great and you do not spoil your Handshake by disobedience and by grasping evil like the sinners.



Then Imam Zaynul Abidin (as) asked: Did you have the intention when you were standing on Maqam Ibrahim (Station of Abraham) that you were are standing on every obedience and that you have put behind you all disobedience?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you prayed two Rakats there did you make the intention that you are praying the prayers of Ibrahim and that you are humiliating Shaitan with your prayers?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not stand on Maqam Ibrahim (Station of Abraham) nor did you pray two Rakats on it.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you look over the well of Zamzam and did you drink from its water?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you have the intention when you were looking over the well that you looking at obedience to Almighty Allah and closing your eyes from all disobedience?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not look over it nor did you drink from its water.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you run between Safa and Marwa and did you walk between it repeatedly?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you have the intention that you were between hope and fear?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not run between Safa and Marwa.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you go out to Mina?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you have the intention that every Muslim was safe from your tongue, your heart and you?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): You did not go out to Mina.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you stay a short time at Arafa and did you climb Jabal al-Rahma and did you recognize the wadi of Namira and did to supplicate to Almighty Allah near al-Mil and al-Jamaraat?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you conceive by your stay in Arafa the gnosis (Irfan) of Almighty Allah (SWT) and the knowledge of good things and acts; and did you conceive that your book of deeds was in the hands of Allah and that Allah had full knowledge of your secrets and what is in your heart?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you climbed the Jabal al-Rahma did you have the intention that Almighty Allah may have mercy on all believing men and all believing women and that He will help all Muslim men and women?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you have the intention at wadi of Namira that you would not enjoin good until you practice it yourself and you would not forbid evil until you leave it yourself?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you stopped at al-Mil and al-Jamaraat did you have the intention that they were witnessing all your acts of worship and that they were guarding you together with guardian angels by the order of Almighty Allah?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Then you did not stay at Arafat nor did you go up the Mountain of Mercy nor did you recognize the wadi of Namirah nor did you supplicate to Almighty Allah.

Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you pass between the two columns pray two Rakats before crossing; go to Muzdalifah pick up pebbles and cross the Mash’arul Haram?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you prayed the two Rakats, did you have the intention that you were praying the prayer of thanksgiving within the ten nights which removes every hardship and facilitates every ease?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): At the time of passing between the two columns without deviating to the right or the left did you have the intention that you would never deviate from the true religion to the right or the left neither with your heart, tongue nor with your limbs?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you walked through Muzdalifah and picked up the pebbles did you have the intention that you have plucked all acts of disobedience and ignorance and that you had affirmed knowledge and action?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Then when you walked in the Mash’arul Haram did you have the intention that you had embossed your heart with the identification of those who have Taqwa and fear of Almighty Allah the Most High?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Then you did not pass between the two columns nor did you pray the two Rakats, nor walked into Muzdalifah, nor picked up the pebbles nor walked in the Mash’arul Haram.



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Did you arrive at Mina, throw stones at the Jamarah and did you shave your head and slaughter the sacrifice and did you pray in Masjid al-Kheef and did you return to Makkah and perform the Tawaf of Ifadha (return) to Makkah?

Shibli: Yes



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): When you reached Mina and pelted the Jamarah did you have the intention that you have attained your goal and your Lord has fulfilled all your needs?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you pelted the Jamarah did you have the intention that you had pelted your enemy Iblees and by completing this precious Hajj you had disobeyed him?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you shaved your head did you have the intention that you had cleansed yourself from all filth and from all the injustice of the children of Adam and that you had purified yourself from sin just like a new born baby.

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you slaughtered your hadiya did you have the intention that you are cutting the artery of greed by holding fast to the reality of piety and that you are following the tradition of Ibrahim (A.S.) when he was prepared to slighter his son, the fruit of his heart, through which he established the Sunna of gaining nearness to Almighty Allah for those who came after him?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): And when you returned to Makka and did the Tawaaf of Ifadha did you have the intention that you had come back with the Mercy of Almighty Allah to His obedience and that you had clasped His love that you had performed your duty to Him and had gained nearness to him?

Shibli: No



Imam Zaynul Abidin (as): Then you did not reach Mina nor did you pelt the Jamaraat nor did you shave your head nor did you slaughter the hadiya nor did you pray in the Masjid Al-Kheef nor did you return to Makkah and perform the Tawaaf of Ifadha. Go back because you have not performed Hajj!



Having heard all this Shibli started to cry because of what he had missed in his Hajj and he continued to learn the secrets of Hajj until he could perform the Hajj through knowledge and understanding.



Reference: http://www.qul.org.au/islamic-occasions/hajj-the-pilgrimage/1200-conversation-between-imam-zain-ul-abideen-and-shibli