Significance of Hajj (Pilgrimage) in Quran & Sunnah- The Fifth Pillar of Islam
Hajj is an Arabic word which means “to intend a journey”. Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam, which every Muslim must perform at least once in his or her lifetime provided, they are financially and physically able to do so. All Muslim’s willingly visit this sacred place because ALLAH has given this place a priority over any other place in the world. In the Holy Quran, Allah Almighty says: “It is on people for the sake of Allah to perform Hajj of his house, anyone who is able to undertake the journey to him.” (Quran, 2:196)
The Hajj is a chance to wipe clean past sins and start fresh or new life with deepens faith. As we all know that the season of Hajj is approaching. Millions of Muslims are preparing to gather in Makah and the sacred places to respond to Allah’s invitation to visit His House. The invitation of Hajj first announced by Prophet Ibrahim (AS) and then renewed by last Prophet Muhammad (SAW). Allah (SWT) says this in the Quran about Hajj: “and publicly proclaim Pilgrimage for all mankind so that they come to you on foot and mounted on lean camels from every distant point” (Quran, 22: 27)
On hajj the Pilgrims wear plain, white cloths. Men wears drape seamless, un-stitched clothing and women dress in plain white dresses and headscarves. The idea behind dressing simply is to mask any differences in wealth and status. The Hajj makes Muslims feel the real importance of life here on earth, and the afterlife, by stripping away all markers of social status, wealth, and pride. Hajj is a chance to wipe clean the slate of one’s mistakes and shortcomings of the past. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “One who comes to this House for Hajj and avoids all lewdness and sins, he returns as he was on the day his mother gave birth to him.” (Bukhari & Muslim)
The Hajj (pilgrimage) unites the Muslims of the world into international kinship. More than two million Muslims around the world perform the Hajj each year, and the rite serves as a unifying force in Islam by bringing followers of diverse backgrounds together in worship. The Hajj (pilgrimage) is a manifestation of the belief in the unity of Allah Almighty in which all the pilgrim’s worship and obey the commands of the One Lord included.
Hajj also gives a strong message of Brotherhood and Unity that makes the importance of Hajj in Islam stronger. The journey of Hajj is the easiest way to attain the satisfaction of ALLAH as the pilgrims are considered to be guests of Allah. Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that one day the Prophet (PBUH) addressed people saying: “O people! Allah has prescribed Hajj upon you, so perform it. “
May Allah guide us all and give us an opportunity to perform Hajj. Ameen!