O people! These are the days in which you are setting about traveling towards the Sacred Mosque, seeking the atonement of your sins, attainment of the Home of Peace (i.e., Paradise) and immediate reward as a compensation for the money you have spent in this cause.
O Muslims! You are heading for the House of your Lord and the blessed places that He has sanctified, in order to perform one of the best kinds of worship. You have not traveled for fun or out of pride or showing off, rather intending an act of devotion with which you seek the pleasure of your Lord, submitting your souls to His Majesty. You should therefore observe this obligation according to the commandments of your Lord, without excessiveness or negligence, maintaining other obligations as well, such as Wudhoo’ or Ghusl (for purification), Salaah(prayer), etc.
When you set off for Hajj or ‘Umrah (minor pilgrimage), you should hold the conviction that your sole aim is to observe one of the most sacred acts of reverence; during your journey, bind yourself to conform to other obligations such as purification and congregational Salaah, for many people neglect the principles of purification and perform Tayammum (dry ablution with dust) despite the availability of water, in which case the Tayammum becomes invalid. Some people may disregard the congregational Salaah, busying themselves with things that they can carry out after performing prayer. You should shorten the four Rak’ah (units of) prayers, performing two only, right from your departure from your town until you return to it. However, if you perform Salaah behind an Imaam who completes the Salaah (i.e., makes the entire Salaah), you should complete your Salaah likewise, whether you attended it from the beginning or if you missed any number of Rak’ahs. As for combining prayers, according to the Prophet’s sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam actions, a traveler should not combine prayers unless in the course of journeying. With regards for one who settles in a place, it is preferable for him not to combine them. Concerning Rawaatib (supererogatory prayers performed before and after the obligatory prayers), it is preferable not to perform them during travel, except the two Rak’ahs of Fajr. As for the Witr (a supererogatory prayer that consists of an odd number of Rak’ahs, the minimum of which is one Rak’ah) and other kinds of optional voluntary prayers, they are to be similarly performed in residence as well as in journey.
You must possess good manners – being kind, generous, cheerful, patient and forbearing. Indeed, circumstances are ever-changing and patience always has a good result.
Once you reach the Meeqaat (the location that a pilgrim should not go beyond without entering into the state of Ihraam), you should take a bath and scent your bodies, including your heads and beards. You should then assume Ihraam for ‘Umrah intending Tamattu’ (type of Hajj, i.e., performing ‘Umrah then waiting until the commencement of Hajj days, to perform Hajj) and proceed to Makkah while uttering the Talbiyah (saying: ‘Labbayka Allaahumma Labbayk, Labbayka Laa Shareeka Laka Labbayk, Innal-hamda Wan-ni’mata Laka Wal-mulk, Laa Shareeka Lak’ – ‘I respond to Your call, O Allaah, I respond to Your call; I am obedient to Your orders and You have no partner, I respond to Your call; all the praises and blessings are for You, all the sovereignty is for You and You have no partners.’) When you reach the Ka’bah, you should make seven rounds of Tawaaf (circumambulation) around it for ‘Umrah. You must know that the entire Sacred Mosque is a place for Tawaaf, no matter if you are close to the Ka’bah or far away from it. However, Tawaaf close to it is preferable, so long as the pilgrim is not harmed by the crowds. If there are throngs of pilgrims, one may do it from afar and this will suffice. After making Tawaaf, you should offer two Rak’ahs behind Maqaam Ibraaheem (station of Prophet Ibraaheem, where a stone with his footprints lie) either near the Ka’bah or far from it. The most important thing is that the Maqaam Ibraaheem must be between you and theKa’bah. You should then make Sa’i (pacing seven times between Safa and Marwah) beginning from Safa. When you finish the seven rounds, you should shorten the hair of your head, cutting it from your entire scalps, contrary to what is done by many people now, who cut hair from only one part.
On the eighth of the month of Dhul-Hijjah, you should take a bath and perfume your bodies in preparation for Ihraam for Hajj. You should assume Ihraam right from the place where you are staying, then you should go to Mina, where you are supposed to perform the Dhuhr (noon), ‘Asr (afternoon), Maghrib (sunset), ‘Ishaa’ (night) and Fajr (morning) prayers, shortening the four Rak’ah ones without combining them. This is based on the conduct of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam who used to do the same in Mina and Makkah.
Upon the crack of dawn on the Day of ‘Arafah, you should march to ‘Arafah, pronouncing Talbiyah solemnly with submissiveness. When you reach there, you should combine the Dhuhr and ‘Asr prayers, performing each as two Rak’ahs at the time of Dhuhr. You should then devote yourselves to supplication of Allaah, while in a state of Wudhoo’, facing the Qiblah (direction towards the Ka’bah in Makkah). You should pay attention to the precincts of ‘Arafah and its landmarks, as many pilgrims mistakenly stand outside its boundaries; whoever does not stand within the plain, his pilgrimage will be imperfect. The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Hajj is (the Day of) ‘Arafah.” (Ahmad) A pilgrim may stand at any place on the plain of ‘Arafah – east, west, north or south – except at the bottom of the valley of ‘Urnah. The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “I stand here and the entire ‘Arafah is a standing place.” (Muslim)
At sunset, when the setting of the sun is confirmed, you should rush to Muzdalifah, pronouncing Talbiyah with humility and gentleness as much as possible. This is according to the command of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam: when he hurried from ‘Arafah, he straitened the bridle of his she-camel, bending her neck until her head was about to reach his saddle and said:“O people! (With) tranquility! (With) tranquility!” When you reach Muzdalifah, you should perform the Maghrib and ‘Ishaa’ prayers, then spend the night there until dawn. The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam did not permit anyone to leave Muzdalifah before then, except the weak, who were permitted to leave by the end of the night.
After you perform Salaah, you should face the Qiblah, pronounce Takbeer (saying: Allaahu Akbar – ‘Allaah is the Greatest’), praise Allaah and supplicate to Him until the daylight becomes visible. You should then move on to Mina before sunrise and pick up seven pebbles. Then, you should go to Al-Jamrah Al-‘Aqabah (one of the three stone-built pillars at which pebbles are thrown, which is situated at the entrance of Mina from the direction of Makkah) and throw seven stones at it after sunrise, saying Takbeer upon each toss, while being submissive to Allaah and honoring Him. Know that the aim of throwing stones is to remember Allaah and glorify Him; remember that the pebbles should fall within the wire fence and it is not necessary that they hit the stone column.
When you finish throwing the pebbles, you should slaughter your Hadi (the animal offered as a sacrifice by the pilgrim). The same conditions of Udhiyah (animal sacrificed on ‘Eed Al–Adha) apply also to the Hadi. Moreover, a pilgrim may commission a person to slaughter the Hadi on his behalf. You should then shave your entire head after the slaughtering; it is not lawful to shave a part of the head and leave another part. Women should cut as much as a fingertip from the end of their hair. By doing so, you will be in the first state of Tahallul (minor release, meaning you will be partially free from the restrictions of Ihraam). Thus you may wear your regular clothing, clip your fingernails and apply perfume, but may not have sexual intercourse with your spouses. You should then go to Makkah before the Dhuhr prayer, where you will make Tawaaf for Hajj and then do Sa’i; then, you must return to Mina. It is after this Tawaaf,Sa’i, throwing of pebbles and shaving your head that you will be in the second state of Tahallul (major release) after which you are then permitted to do all things you were previously forbidden due to being in the state of Ihraam, even having sexual relations with your spouses.
O people! A pilgrim should perform four rituals on the day of ‘Eed: (he ought to) throw the pebbles, slaughter a sacrificial animal, shave his head and perform Sa’i and Tawaaf – this is the most perfect type of sequence. If you do any of the four above-mentioned steps before the other, such as shaving the head before slaughtering, making Sa’i and Tawaaf after leaving Mina, delaying slaughtering until the thirteenth of Dhul–Hijjah in Makkah, (your Hajj) will still be valid, especially if there is a need to do so.
You should spend the night of the eleventh day of Dhul–Hijjah in Mina. When the sun passes its zenith (noon), you should throw the pebbles at the three positions of the Jamaraat, starting with Al–Jamrah Al-Oola (As–Sughraa), then Al–Jamrah Al–Wustaa, then Al-Jamrah Al-‘Aqabah (Al-Kubraa), each one with seven stones, accompanied by Takbeer at every throw. The time for this practice on the Day of ‘Eed begins from sunrise for the physically fit people; the weak, however, may do so from the latest hours of the night of the first day of ‘Eed until sunset. Its timings after ‘Eed is from once the sun passes its zenith until sunset. It is not permissible to throw stones before midday. It is permissible, however, to throw the stones at night, if it is too crowded during the daytime. If a pilgrim cannot throw pebbles in person, due to his being too young or old, or due to illness, he may appoint another person to do it on his behalf. It is lawful that the appointed person throw pebbles for himself and for the other person who assigned him at the same instance, but he should begin with himself.
Upon throwing the small stones on the twelfth day of the month of Dhul–Hijjah, the Hajj is completed. The pilgrims, at this point, have the option to either hurry and leave, or stay and spend the night of the thirteenth day and throw stones at the three Jamaraat after the sun passes its high point (i.e., noon). The latter is preferable because it is in agreement with the actions of the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. If you want to leave Makkah, you should perform the Farewell Tawaaf. The menstruating woman and a woman in post-natal bleeding are exempt from the Farewell Tawaaf; in fact, they are not even permitted to come to the gate of the mosque or stand in front of it.
O Muslims! This is a brief description of the procedures of Hajj. So, fear Allaah as much as you can, and listen and obey; He said which means: “And proclaim to the people the Hajj (pilgrimage); they will come to you on foot and on every lean camel; they will come from every distant pass – That they may witness (i.e., attend) benefits for themselves and mention the name of Allaah on known (i.e., specific) days over what He has provided for them of (sacrificial) animals. So eat of them and feed the miserable and poor. Then let them end their untidiness and fulfill their vows and perform Tawaaf (circumambulation) around the ancient House.” (Al-Hajj: 27-29)