6 Pillars of Hajj: Definition of Hajj, Terms of Hajj, and Its Priorities

Pillars of Hajj: Definition, Pillars, Conditions, and Priority – Hajj is the last pillar of Islam. As a devout Muslim, of course you want to do all the five pillars of Islam, the shahada, prayer, zakat, fasting and going on pilgrimage. But not everyone is required to perform the pilgrimage.

People who are required to perform Hajj are people who are able materially as well as physically. In carrying out the Hajj, of course, one must understand the conditions, pillars of Hajj and the procedure. If a person does not meet the conditions and pillars, then the pilgrimage performed is invalid. The article below will discuss what Hajj is, what are the conditions and laws and also the virtues of performing the pilgrimage.

Meaning of Hajj 

Hajj is derived from the Arabic ‘hajj’ which in Indonesian is visiting or heading. But many also interpret the word hajj as an annual Islamic pilgrimage. The pilgrimage was carried out in the city of Mecca, Arabia, the holiest city for Muslims. The word ‘hajj’ is similar to the Hebrew language which has the same sound and means ‘holiday’.

From the root of semiotics, it means ‘to surround, to go around’. In Jewish tradition, the bride surrounds the groom during the wedding ceremony. Thus in Islam, people who perform the pilgrimage will surround the Kaaba.

The pattern of the present Hajj was laid down by the Prophet Muhammad. however, based on the Koran. the elements of the pilgrimage have become known at the time of the Prophet Abraham. According to Islamic tradition, Ibrahim was ordered by Allah SWT to leave his wife Siti Hajar and his son Ismail in the desert.

At that time Siti Hajar was confused about finding water, so she jogged between the two hills of Safa and Marwah but could not find it. Then little Ismail scratched the ground and a fountain appeared under his feet. Prophet Ibrahim was ordered to build the Kaaba, he did it with the help of Ismail.

This story is stated in the Al-Quran surah Al-Baqarah verses 124 to 127 which reads,

وَاِذِ ابْتَلٰٓى اِبْرٰهٖمَ رَبُّهٗ بِكَلِمٰتٍ فَاَتَمَّهُنَّ ۗ قَالَ اِنِّيْ جَاعِلُكَ لِلنَّاسِ اِمَامًا ۗ قَالَ وَمِنْ ذُرِّيَّتِيْ ۗ قَالَ لَا يَنَالُ عَهْدِى الظّٰلِمِيْنَ

“And (remember), when Abraham was tested by his Lord with a few sentences, then he carried it out perfectly. He (Allah) said, “Verily I have made you a leader for all mankind.” He (Ibrahim) said, “And (also) from my children and grandchildren?” Allah said, “(True, but) My promise does not apply to the wrongdoers.”

وَاِذْ جَعَلْنَا الْبَيْتَ مَثَابَةً لِّلنَّاسِ وَاَمْنًاۗ وَاتَّخِذُوْا مِنْ مَّقَامِ اِبْرٰهٖمَ مُصَلًّىۗ وَعَهِدْنَآ اِلٰٓى اِبْرٰهٖمَ وَاِسْمٰعِيْلَ اَنْ طَهِّرَا بَيْتِيَ لِلطَّاۤىِٕفِيْنَ وَالْعٰكِفِيْنَ وَالرُّكَّعِ السُّجُوْدِ

“And (remember), when We made the house (Kaaba) a gathering place and a safe place for humans. And make Abraham’s tomb a place of prayer. And We have commanded Ibrahim and Ismail, “Clean My house for those who are tawaf, those who are iktikaf, those who bow and those who prostrate!”

وَاِذْ قَالَ اِبْرٰهٖمُ رَبِّ اجْعَلْ هٰذَا بَلَدًا اٰمِنًا وَّارْزُقْ اَهْلَهٗ مِنَ الثَّمَرٰتِ مَنْ اٰمَنَ مِنْهُمْ بِاللّٰهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْاٰخِرِۗ قَالَ وَمَنْ كَفَرَ فَاُمَتِّعُهٗ قَلِيْلًا ثُمَّ اَضْطَرُّهٗٓ اِلٰى عَذَابِ النَّارِ ۗ وَبِئْسَ الْمَصِيْرُ

“And (remember) when Abraham prayed, “O my Lord, make this (Mecca) a safe country and give sustenance in the form of fruits to its inhabitants, namely among those who believe in Allah and the Last Day,” He (Allah) said, “And to those who disbelieve I will give pleasure temporarily, then I will force him into the punishment of hell and that is the worst place to return.”

وَاِذْ يَرْفَعُ اِبْرٰهٖمُ الْقَوَاعِدَ مِنَ الْبَيْتِ وَاِسْمٰعِيْلُۗ رَبَّنَا تَقَبَّلْ مِنَّا ۗ

“And (remember) when Abraham raised the foundation of the Baitullah with Ismail, (while praying), “O our Lord, accept (charity) from us. Verily, You are the All-Hearing, All-Knowing.”

In the pre-Islamic era, or the Age of Jahiliyah, the Kaaba was surrounded by many idols. In 630 AD, the Prophet Muhammad and his followers departed from Medina to Mecca to clean the Kaaba by destroying the idols. In 632 AD Prophet Muhammad made the last pilgrimage with his followers and taught them how to perform the pilgrimage. This is where the pilgrimage is defined as one of the pillars of Islam.

During the Middle Ages, pilgrims flocked to the cities of Syria, Egypt and Iraq to go to Mecca and in groups. During the Ottoman Empire, pilgrimage groups were escorted by military forces and doctors under the command of Amir Al-Hajj. This aims to protect the pilgrimage group from Bedouin robbers and to ensure that pilgrims get enough supplies.

The date of performing the pilgrimage is determined by the Islamic calendar which is based on the lunar year. Every year, the pilgrimage takes place on 1-10 Dzulhijjah, the twelfth month of the Islamic calendar. Among the last ten days, the 9th of Dzulhijjah is known as the day of Arafat. Because the Islamic year is shorter than the Gregorian year, of course the Hajj calendar changes every year. This allows the pilgrimage season to occur twice in one Gregorian year.

Laws of Hajj 

Hajj laws are written in the Al-Quran and also the hadith.

The following is a letter explaining the obligation of pilgrimage, namely the letter Ali-imran verse 97 which reads,

فِيْهِ اٰيٰتٌۢ بَيِّنٰتٌ مَّقَامُ اِبْرٰهِيْمَ ەۚ وَمَنْ دَخَلَهٗ كَانَ اٰمِنًا ۗ وَلِلّٰهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الْبَيْتِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ اِلَيْهِ سَبِيْلًا ۗ وَمَنْ كَفَرَ فَاِنَّ اللّٰهَ غَنِيٌّ عَنِ الْعٰلَمِيْنَ

“There are clear signs, (among them) Maqam Ibrahim. Whoever enters it (Baitullah) is safe. And (among) the obligations of humans towards Allah is to carry out the pilgrimage to the House of Allah, that is for people who are able to travel there. Whoever denies the (obligation) pilgrimage, then know that Allah is Rich (does not need anything) from all nature.”

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There is also a letter of Al-Baqarah verse 196 which reads,

وَاَتِمُّوا الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلّٰهِ ۗ فَاِنْ اُحْصِرْتُمْ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِۚ وَلَا تَحْلِقُوْا رُءُوْسَكُمْ حَتّٰى يَبْلُغَ الْهَدْيُ مَحِلَّهٗ ۗ فَمَنْ كَانَ مِنْكُمْ مَّرِيْضًا اَوْ بِهٖٓ اَذًى مِّنْ رَّأْسِهٖ فَفِدْيَةٌ مِّنْ صِيَامٍ اَوْ صَدَقَةٍ اَوْ نُسُكٍ ۚ فَاِذَآ اَمِنْتُمْ ۗ فَمَنْ تَمَتَّعَ بِالْعُمْرَةِ اِلَى الْحَجِّ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِۚ فَمَنْ لَّمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلٰثَةِ اَيَّامٍ فِى الْحَجِّ وَسَبْعَةٍ اِذَا رَجَعْتُمْ ۗ تِلْكَ عَشَرَةٌ كَامِلَةٌ ۗذٰلِكَ لِمَنْ لَّمْ يَكُنْ اَهْلُهٗ حَاضِرِى الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ ۗ 

God bless you

“And perfect the Hajj and Umrah for the sake of Allah. But if you are surrounded (by the enemy), then (slaughter) hadyu that is easy to get, and don’t shave your head before the hadyu arrives at the place of slaughter. If any of you is sick or has problems with his head (then he shaves), then he is obliged to make fidyah, namely fasting, giving alms or making sacrifices. If you are safe, then whoever performs Umrah before Hajj, he (must slaughter) hadyu which is easy to obtain. But if he does not get it, then he (obliged) to fast three days in the pilgrimage (season) and seven (days) after you return. That is a total of ten (days). That’s how it is for people whose families are not around the Grand Mosque. Fear Allah and know that Allah is severe in punishment.”

As for the hadith which explains the obligation of the pilgrimage, namely, Narrated from Bukhari and Muslim, the Prophet SAW said

عَنْ أَبِيْ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ عَبْدِ اللهِ بْنِ عُمَرَ بْنِ الخَطَّابِ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُمَا قَال: سَمِعْتُ النَّبِيَّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَقُوْلُ: (بُنِيَ الإِسْلاَمُ عَلَى خَمْسٍ: شَهَادَةِ أَنْ لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ اللهُ وَأَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا رَسُوْلُ اللهِ، وَإِقَامِ الصَّلاَةِ، وَإِيْتَاءِ الزَّكَاةِ، وَحَجِّ البَيْتِ، وَصَوْمِ رَمَضَانَ) رَوَاهُ الْبُخَارِ وَمُسْلِمٌ

From Abdullah bin Umar radhiyallahu ‘anhuma he said: “Rasulullah SAW said: “Islam is built on five foundations: the testimony (syahadat) that there is no god who has the right to be worshiped except Allah SWT and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah, establishing prayer, paying zakat, pilgrimage (to the Baitullah) and fasting in the month of Ramadan.”

Requirements for Hajj

Hajj conditions are conditions that must be fulfilled by someone to perform the pilgrimage. If a person does not meet the requirements of Hajj, then he is not obliged to perform Hajj. The following are the conditions for Hajj:

  • Islamic religion
  • Reasonable
  • Healthy physically and spiritually. Healthy and strong to carry out the pilgrimage, understand the rituals of pilgrimage and mental readiness because the pilgrimage is a worship that is carried out for many days.
  • Baligh, reaching adulthood
  • Free, not a slave
  • Able, both physically, mentally and materially. Hajj pilgrimage will require travel costs that are not cheap. If someone has to sell the only source of life they have, then that is not permissible because it will bring a lot of harm to that person and his family. In addition, people who want to perform the pilgrimage must also provide living expenses for the family they leave at home.

Pillars of Hajj 

Fiqh literature explains in detail the procedures for carrying out the pilgrimage. Usually pilgrims will be given a guidebook to fulfill the pillars of Hajj. When performing the pilgrimage, pilgrims not only follow the model of the Prophet Muhammad, but also commemorate events related to the Prophet Abraham.

To better understand the rules or fiqh literature and procedures for the pilgrimage, Sinaumed’s can read the book Demands for Prayers for Hajj & Umrah (New Edition) which is the latest edition to complement the previous edition.

The following are the Pillars of Hajj or activities that must be carried out during Hajj. If this activity is not carried out then the pilgrimage is invalid or cancelled.

1. Ihram 

Ihram is the name given to the special state, the sacred state which marks the start of the Hajj rituals for each pilgrim. Ihram begins with reading the intention and wearing all white clothes to symbolize purity, cleanliness. Men are required to wear two white cloths, one of which is wrapped around the waist below the knee and the other is draped over the left shoulder. For women, they can wear ordinary clothes that cover their genitals, but their face and hands cannot be covered.

When in ihram there are several prohibitions such as not being able to cut nails, wear perfume, shave hair anywhere on the body, have sexual intercourse, kill animals, marry, wear head coverings for male worshipers and cover the face and hands for female worshipers.

The purpose of the pillars of ihram is to show the equality of all pilgrims before Allah SWT without any distinction between the rich or the poor, and so on. Wearing unstitched cloth is a symbol to keep people away from material vanity. Through clothes one’s individuality can be seen and differences and will create barriers that separate people.

2. Wukuf 

Wukuf is a ritual of silence. Don’t just sit there and think about nothing. However, during the period of standing, you should always recite and pray at the Arafah Field from sunset to sunrise. Wukuf will be held on the 9th of Dzulhijjah to 10 of Dzulhijjah.

3. Tawaf

Tawaf is a ritual performed by walking around the Kaaba counterclockwise. When they arrive at the Grand Mosque, the congregation must perform the arrival tawaf. During the tawaf, pilgrims can kiss or touch the Black Stone. They walked around saying a prayer. If the congregation cannot kiss or touch the Black Stone because of the crowd, the congregation can simply point at the stone with their hand.

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During the tawaf, pilgrims are not allowed to eat, but drinking is permissible because during the tawaf they can get tired or dehydrated due to being jostled with many people. For male worshipers it is recommended to go around the Kaaba in the first three circuits at a fast pace, the rest can walk at a leisurely pace.

if the tawaf is complete, the congregation immediately performs two cycles of prayer at the tomb of Prophet Ibrahim, a place near the Kaaba. However, because of the large number of pilgrims from various countries, pilgrims can pray these two rak’ahs in the mosque. Usually, after praying, the congregation will drink water from the Zamzam well which is available around the mosque.

4. Sa’i

After performing Tawaf, the next obligation is to perform sa’i or jog or walk between the hills of Safa and Marwah seven times.

5. Tahallul 

After performing Sa’i, the male worshipers will shave or tidy their hair. As for the female congregation, they only need to cut their hair a little. This ritual is called Tahallu. When finished doing Tahallul, all the prohibitions in Hajj may be carried out except for husband and wife relations.

Tahallul is carried out on the 10th of Dzulhijjah when the congregation has already carried out the stoning of the jumrah. Lontar jumrah is the ritual of throwing pebbles at the jumrah. Lontar jumrah reminds pilgrims that the devil will always try to hinder believers who want to do good. 

6. Order

Then the last thing that must be fulfilled is order. Pilgrims are required to carry out the entire series of worship sequentially starting from ihram to tahalul / shaving.

Hajj and Umrah pilgrimages are currently being carried out more and more by Muslims. Therefore, it is very important to know the terms and pillars of Hajj, including the differences in the 4 schools of thought and the details through the Indonesian Fiqh Encyclopedia: Hajj & Umrah.

Hajj types 

There are several types of pilgrimage that can be chosen by prospective pilgrims. Pilgrims can choose the type of pilgrimage that they think is easy to do. The following are the types of Hajj, namely:

1. Hajj AL-ifrad 

Hajj ifrad basically refers to performing the rituals of the pilgrimage on your own without the need for sacrificial animals. A pilgrim who performs this form of Hajj is called a Mufrid.

2. Hajj Al-Qiran 

Hajj qiran is a pilgrimage in which a person performs Hajj and Umrah together while in ihram. This type of pilgrimage requires sacrificial animals to complete its pillars. A pilgrim who performs this form of Hajj is called a Qaarin. 

3. Hajj Al-tamattu 

Hajj Tamattu is the most common pilgrimage. This pilgrimage is the type of pilgrimage recommended by the Prophet Muhammad to be performed by his companions. This type of Hajj refers to performing the Umrah rituals during the Hajj season and then carrying out the Hajj rituals between 8 to 13 Dzulhijjah. Umrah and Hajj rituals must be performed in separate ihram conditions. In addition to completing this pilgrimage required sacrificial animals. A pilgrim who performs this type of pilgrimage is called a Muttamatti.

The guide contains tips and information regarding the jurisprudence of haj and umrah, remembrance and prayer, as well as a comparison of the schools of thought regarding the pillars and conditions of haj and umrah which can also be found by Sinaumed’s in the Hajj and Umrah Travel Map book (New Edition).

The priority of Hajj 

Hajj is one of the noble acts of worship. Hajj is the fifth pillar of Islam and must be performed for those who can afford it. The virtues of Hajj are mentioned in the Al-Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet. Following are the virtues of Hajj:

Hajj is an afdol practice 

This is based on a hadith narrated by Bukhari. From Abu Hurairah, he said

سُئِلَ النَّبِىُّ – صلى الله عليه وسلم – أَىُّ الأَعْمَالِ أَفْضَلُ قَالَ « إِيمَانٌ بِاللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ » . قِيلَ ثُمَّ مَاذَا قَالَ « جِهَادٌ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ » . قِيلَ مَاذَا قَالَ « حَجٌّ مَبْرُورٌ 

“The Prophet SAW was asked, “What practice is the most afdhol?” He replied, “Believe in Allah and His Messenger.” Someone asked again, “Then what else?” He replied, “Jihad in the way of Allah.” Someone asked again, “Then what else?” “Haji mabrur”, replied the Prophet Muhammad SAW.

For those who perform the pilgrimage, they will be rewarded with heaven 

This is based on the hadith narrated by Bukhari and Muslim. From Abu Hurairah, he said,

God bless you

“And haj mabrur there is no proper reward for him other than heaven.”

Hajj includes jihad in the way of Allah SWT 

This is based on a hadith narrated by Bukhari. From Aisha, he said,

يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ، نَرَى الْجِهَادَ أَفْضَلَ الْعَمَل\ 

“O Messenger of Allah, we view that jihad is the most afdhol practice. Does that mean we have to wage jihad?” “No. The most important jihad is hajj mabrur, “replied the Prophet SAW.”

Hajj can wash away sins 

In addition to getting guaranteed heaven, pilgrimage can erase the sins of those who perform it. This is based on a hadith narrated by Bukhari. From Abu Hurairah, he said,

عن أبي هريرة قالَ: سَمِعْتُ رسُولَ اللَّهِ ﷺ يَقولُ: منْ حجَّ فَلَم يرْفُثْ ، وَلَم يفْسُقْ متفقٌ عَلَيْهِ

“Whoever performs the pilgrimage to the Kaaba and then does not speak lewdly and does not commit wickedness, then he returns to his country as when his mother gave birth to him.”

Hajj can eliminate poverty within 

This is based on a hadith narrated by Tirmidhi. From Abdullah bin Mas’ud, Rasulullah SAW said,

تَابِعُوا بَيْنَ الْحَجِّ وَالْعُمْرَةِ فَإِنَّهُمَا يَنْفِيَانِ الْفَقْرَ وَالذُّنُوبَ كَمَا يَنْفِى الْكِيرُ خَبَثَ الْحَدِيدِ وَالذَّهَبِ وَالْفِضَّةِ وَلَيْسَ لِلْحَجَّةِ الْمَبْرُورَةِ ثَوَابٌ إِلاَّ الْجَنَّةُ

“Join Umrah for Hajj, because both remove poverty and sins as burning removes rust from iron, gold and silver. Meanwhile, there is no reward for a mabrur pilgrimage except paradise.”