In less than a month, millions of Muslims from all around the world will be embarking on a journey; a mental, physical and spiritual journey on the Hajj pilgrimage.
In hadith, it is narrated that the Prophet referred to all pilgrims as the guests of Allah. Furthermore, “He called them and they responded; they ask of Him and He will give them.”
As a guest of The Almighty, it is only proper that we fully prepare our minds, bodies and souls to meet the Host in our best state. Hajj and Umra Express have a quick guide to how you can get ready for the beginning of Hajj, which is the evening of the 30th August.
Basic Hajj Information
Hajj is the annual pilgrimage to Mecca that Muslims are expected to make at least once in their lives. The word loosely translates into ‘to intend a journey’.
They journey to Mecca to give thanks to Allah before the most sacred Mosque: the Kaaba. It is by far one of the biggest annual gatherings of people in the world.
Hajj takes place from the 8th to the 12th of Dhu al-Hijja, although as the Islamic calendar is based around the moon’s cycle, the dates move yearly. This year it takes place between 30th August and 4th September, depending on the moon.
Hajj consists of many physically demanding rituals, so anyone attending should be in their best physical shape possible.
Last year, a 31-year-old architect from Bali, Atika Salma Irhamy performed hajj and shared a few words of wisdom:
“I highly recommend performing the hajj at a young age,”
“In addition, it is a great idea to start a cardio exercise routine a few months prior to the scheduled departure. A good amount of exercise really builds up the body’s resilience, which is very important for coping with fatigue and extreme weather conditions.”
She also recommends fasting and a balanced diet. Hajj falls only a couple of months after Ramadan, so the body is accustomed to having less.
“Before and during the hajj, make sure that we pay attention to the quality of our food. Eat less processed and fried foods, and have more fruits and vegetables.”
Like with many other acts of worship or spiritual-based events, our intentions and sincerity will be tested alongside our mental shape, which comes in all different forms.
As an example.,Winnie Wulandini experienced a huge amount of stress at work a few weeks before Hajj and was diagnosed with having Hyperthyroidism. Winnie said:
“But Subhanallah, only one week before the flight, my lab tests returned with normal results and I was able to perform every hajj ritual in a healthy condition.”
She puts her positive results down to a part miracle a part positive mental attitude, calm approach and determination to make it to Hajj to fulfil her obligations.
Everyone experiences their own sets of trials and tribulations in life, and this can be a constant reminder that we need to truly surrender to Allah and keep our faith with him. The full realisation of all these aspects is a part of how you can mentally prepare yourself for your Hajj pilgrimage.
Soul & Spirit
Even though when at Hajj you may feel like a small dot next to the millions of people that will be there, we need to keep in mind our every act whilst there and in the run-up of preparation for the pilgrimage.
Developing good habits such as regular prayer routines, reading the Qur’an regularly and learning the Pbuh are just a few ways to get ready spiritually. Prepare yourself to face all sorts of challenges, such as managing people and situations, but above all be ready to lend a helping hand and assist anyone who needs help.
Above all, appreciate the opportunity you have to attend Hajj and your fortune to be able to explore this spiritual territory. You can see our previous blog on preparing for Hajj 2017 to find out more about the pilgrimage and tips such as how to save money for it.