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Belief - Islam and Hajj

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Demonstrate how this practice expresses the beliefs of
Islam - Hajj
Belief
One God: Creator of
the universe,
sustainer and
cherisher of the
universe
Unity before God
Ritual and Meaning
-
The fundamental tenet of Islam is the belief in the one GOD, creator,
sustainer and cherisher of the universe.
•
Surrender to God
- Hajj is worshipping God in mass numbers
- tawaf - ritual of circling the Ka’bah is an expression of obedience
to the will of Allah – adherents life revolves around Allah
- “black rock” - people in touching the rock are expressing a
spiritual connection with their creator - Islamic tradition holds
that it fell from Heaven to show Adam and Eve where to build an
altar
- wuquf is the central moment of the Hajj and expresses the
pilgrim’s absolute and utter devotion to one God. Pilgrims gather
at the Mount of Mercy on the plain of Arafat near Mina on 9
Dhul-Hijjah The stand takes place from midday until sunset.
Pilgrims meditate, pray and concentrate their thoughts on Allah
during the stand.
- Talbiyah - are many prayers recited by pilgrims that demonstrate
submission to Allah. For example, the pilgrim recites this chant,
upon changing into the Ihram, and continues to recite it
frequently throughout Hajj, the individual chants their
commitment to GOD, known as the Talbiyah: ‘Here I am O God,
(in response to Your call), here I am. Here I am, You have no
partner, here I am. Verily all praise, grace and sovereignty belong
to You. You have no partner.’ The chant embodies what the
pilgrimage is about – the fulfilment of a covenant and the
declaration of the oneness and glory of God.
-
Irham - reminds Muslims that all are equal before GOD and at the
time of judgement there will be no discrimination of colour,
gender or race, only of good and bad deeds.
O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female
and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one
another. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the
most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.
(49:13)
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While at Arafat, pilgrims are still in their Ihram clothes and
everyone looks the same. For this reason, it is viewed as a rehearsal
for Judgment Day where all are equal before God.
Revelation – Makes
present the
authorative word of
God
•
Law - Attendance at the Hajj reflects the belief that the revelation of
the Qur’an is the authoritative word of Allah and must be obeyed.
-
The Hajj is commanded in the Qur’an
-
You shall observe the complete rites of Hajj and Urmah for
God (Surah 2:196)
-
The suras that follow this command detail the ethical
expectations of the believers who attend the Hajj.
-
In the chapter entitled "The Pilgrimage," the Qur'an speaks of
the divine command to perform the hajj and prophesies the
permanence of this institution:
And when We assigned for Ibrahim the place of the House, saying
"Do not associate Anything with Me, and purify My House for
those who go around it and for those who stand and bow and
prostrate themselves in worship. And proclaim the Pilgrimage
among humankind: They will come to you on foot and on every
camel made lean By traveling deep, distant ravines. (22:27)
•
Story
-
The Origin of Hajj is rooted in the Prophet Ibrahim’s life, –
mimicking Ibrahim’s footsteps.
-
The story is instructive, and illustrative, too, of the true
meaning and significance of Hajj. That story one must know
to fully understand the benefits Hajj can bring to an adherent.
-
Sai recreates the story of Hagar and Ismail as the pilgrims
move in a fast pace between the two hills known as Safa - left
in the desert as an order by GOD. Ishmael became very
thirsty so his mother ran frantically between two hills to find
water. She saw a mirage and ran seven times, back and forth,
between the Safa and Marwa hills. Finally, the angel Jibril
came down to Hagar and Ismail and with the tip of his wing
struck the ground and water began to flow from the rock.
This water was called Zamzam water and the spring remains
to this day.
Jumraat” - the rejection of the temptation of the devil is
expressed when pilgrims hurl stones at the pillars (jamaras)
at Mina - pillars represent the places where Ibrahim resisted
the temptations and stoned the devil. Muslims today carry
-
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-
Judgement – all will
face the plain of
Judgement
out a ritual stoning of the devil to symbolise their rejection of
temptation and surrender to Allah.
Id-ul-Adha commemorates when Ibrahim was called to
sacrifice Ismail and overcame the temptations of the devil. extreme nature of the call to sacrifice Ismail is a reminder
that the requirement of surrender is absolute.
Forgiveness and Restoration
God is a most merciful God – essentially the Hajj is about seeking
forgiveness and restoration at the site of Allah
-
Wuquf - According to the tradition, the Mount of Mercy is the
place where Adam and Eve, realising their sin of
disobedience, sought restoration and forgiveness - Muslims
believe that just as Adam and Eve received the forgiveness of
Allah at Arafat, so they too can enjoy the forgiveness of their
sins and experience the beginning of a new life.
Analyse the significance of the Hajj for both the individual and the
Muslim community
Each religious tradition has a central belief system that presents the religion’s view of
reality. For Islam, that view of reality can be summarised as “There is no god but Allah and
Muhammad is his prophet. The object of life is to live in a way that is pleasing to Allah so
that one may gain Paradise.”
This is the connection between the belief system Islam and the significant practices. By
supplicating Allah in ritual Muslims are gaining Paradise.
This is an example of the influence Islam has in the lives of adherents and the Muslim
community. They believe that ritualistic practices are important steps in preparing for
judgement.
Within the tradition there are practices of worship and supplication that enable an adherent
to seek forgiveness and gain Paradise on the day of decision. Hajj is one such practice.
Through participating in Hajj Islam is able to impact on lives. It makes the person a
better person, it strengthens the pilgrim’s relationship with God, it witnesses to the
essence of Islam and it connects the pilgrim with the community at home.
Above all else for adherents the practice is a way to holiness.
The purpose of the Hajj is to prepare the pilgrim for judgement: it an opportunity to
seek forgiveness of sins accumulated throughout life.
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Affirms individual relationship with God (God)
-
Islam has a significant spiritual impact on the individual during Hajj as it allows the
pilgrim to strengthen their relationship with God
-
When the pilgrims change into ihram they recite the chant, the Talbiyah, ‘Here I am O
God…You have no partner, here I am. Verily all praise, grace and sovereignty belong to
You.’ The chant embodies what the pilgrimage is about – the belief in the oneness and
glory of God.
-
The practice of circling the Ka’bah’, the tawaf, is a symbol of a person’s whole life
revolving around God.
-
The stand before Allah known as wuquf is the central moment of the Hajj and expresses
the pilgrim’s utter turning to God for help. Being in Arafat allows pilgrims to devote
themselves to God - "Hajj is Arafat" (Muhammad Hadith). The individual makes constant
prayer to God and surrenders themselves
Teaches the story of God in History (Revelation)
Much of the Hajj connects the individual pilgrim with the stories of the action of GOD in
history. It brings the relationship between GOD and the significant believers of history alive.
Sai - recreates the story of Hagar and Ismail as the pilgrims move in a fast pace between the two
hills known as Safa - left in the desert as an order by God. Ishmael became very thirsty so his
mother ran frantically between two hills to find water. saw a mirage and ran seven times, back
and forth, between the Safa and Marwa hills. Finally, the angel Jibril came down to Hagar and
Ismail and with the tip of his wing struck the ground and water began to flow from the rock. This
water was called Zamzam water and the spring remains to this day.
Id-ul-Adha commemorates when Ibrahim was called to sacrifice Ismail and overcame the
temptations of the devil. - extreme nature of the call to sacrifice Ismail is a reminder that the
requirement of surrender is absolute.
Provides forgiveness (Judgement)
-
GOD is merciful – Islam provides rituals of forgiveness. Hajj is one such ritual.
As a pillar of Islam Hajj is a duty and as such assists the individual in their personal jihad.
Hajj provides forgiveness.
-
The wuquf, stand on Arafat, is about forgiveness and restoration. Pilgrims report their
elation as they feel they have been cleansed of their wrongdoings. Muhammad had said
that a person who performs Hajj properly "will return as a newly born baby [free of all
sins]". Arafat is a rehearsal for their day on the plain of Judgement.
-
The jumraat rituals are carried out in a quest for redemption. The individual throws
stones at the pillars in order to defy Satan. When completing jumraat (stoning) the
pilgrim affirms that there is good and evil and erase: the desire to commit evil acts.
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-
Greater prospects in the hereafter life and helps them to be reborn and rejuvenate
Puts the individual on the right path
- Wuquf - Born anew
- reminds Muslims that all are equal before God and at the time of judgement there will
be no discrimination of colour, gender or race, only of good and bad deeds.
- Being in a state of ihram has an impact on the individual – they are in a pure state of
mind where they practice patience, courtesy and respect.
-
While at Arafat, pilgrims are still in their “ihram” clothes and everyone looks the same.
Arafat is where Adam and Eve found each other after exile from heaven. For this reason,
it is viewed as a rehearsal for Judgment Day when the individual faces GOD. In
undertaking the Hajj the Muslim pilgrim experiences these elements of Islam in a
profound and powerful way.
Community
The significance of the Hajj for the Muslim community can be seen in four elements.
1)
2)
3)
4)
The huge public statement it makes about submission to Allah.
Its witness to the principles of international and multiracial harmony - it reminds
the community that race, gender and colour are insignificant and what matters is
that everyone who undertakes Hajj is Muslim. Hajj strengthens the unity and
equality among the Islamic community: All are equal in Hajj ‘And proclaim unto
mankind the Hajj ... That they may witness things that are of benefit to them’
(Surah 22:27-8)
Edification of the Islamic tradition. Through Hajj the individual takes pride in being
part of the worldwide Muslim community. There is a profound and overwhelming
sense of the diversity of Islam, yet at the same time, an experience of the unity of
the Muslim world converging on the holy city of Makkah for the Hajj.
It provides inspiration to others. The community at home is involved with the
preparation of the pilgrims before they leave, in supporting family member of the
pilgrim while they are undertaking the Hajj and often in having special times of
prayer and of course with the festival of Id-ul-Adha, the festival of sacrifice. All
Muslims celebrate Eid al Adhu (the sacrifice) - even if they are not on Hajj - linking
all Muslim people.
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