Hajj 2015 – the Good I Witnessed


It might be startling for many to believe that there was any good in Hajj 2015, especially after the unfortunate tragedies of the crane crash and Mina stampede. May Allah swt accept the Shahadah (martyrdom) of those who lost their lives. But I was there performing my very first pilgrimage to Bait-ul-Allah. It was an ethereal experience.

The system in place to manage 30 lac pilgrims was quite impressive. The exits and entrances to Masjid al Haram were efficiently monitored to prevent any crowd surges. Policemen were lined up with spray bottles filled with cold water, ready to spray at any face that wanted respite from the heat. Free potable water and juice cartons were distributed to weary Hajis trudging on foot. Free bus rides were arranged from Khana-e-Kaabah to other parts of the city from where one could either walk home or hail a cab. Eager volunteers were present to guide you to your destination sometimes in sign language if you didn’t speak Arabic. Public toilets were present after every few meters and were considerably usable for Wudu and to answer the call of nature.

And who can forget the call of the beautiful Adhan soring high in the Haram. It raised the hair on one’s back, lifted the lowest of Imans, brought tears to eyes blurring the black majestic Kabah ahead. Each worshipper poured his heart out to his Rabb. Everyone had a love story of his own to narrate. Their hands stretched out yearning for the Lord’s Mercy and Love. It was the moment. All else faded away in the background.

Hajj was truly a picture of supreme brotherhood. Muslims from all continents and of every colour praying in one direction, to one God in one language.  We shared food, water, our prayer mats and smiles. We tried conversing in sign language, broken English and wavering Arabic. We pushed wheel chairs of complete strangers and shared taxi rides with them too.

Personally three things helped me immensely. I embarked on the pilgrimage with my husband with zero expectations. I realized that if I was a guest of Allah (swt) I had to trust and respect His hospitality. This meant no complaining and exhibiting patience. And believe me this submission to Allah (swt) worked wonders. We were always pleasantly surprised since we expected nothing.

Hajj is not a vacation. If you want to go on a holiday you should trek to Bali or Dubai maybe. Hajj is serious worship

Secondly offering Sadqah every day in the morning reassured our faith. Be it the cleaners at the Haram or old and frail Hajis, we felt a sense of tranquility to be able to help the lesser privileged. In return we asked of Allah’s (swt) pleasure and mercy in our affairs.

Lastly the prayer of Ibrahim (as) “Husbiy allaha wanaimal wakeel” was a fort against every forwarding trouble in sight. He recited these words when he was thrown into the fire by King Namrood. Allah (swt) had commanded the fire to cool down and offer safety to prophet Ibrahim instead and he walked away unhurt. Hence I relied on the same prayer for the slightest of issues possible. Be it long queues, day’s heat, big crowds, wait for the cab, chance to enter the Haram gates, possibility of Tawaf, etc.

On a closing note, Hajj is not a vacation. If you want to go on a holiday you should trek to Bali or Dubai maybe. Hajj is serious worship. It is meant for the ones who want to grow spiritually and are ready to offer sacrifices of their everyday comforts and conveniences. It’s not for those who think that since they are wealthy enough they should embark on it as they are an eligible candidate for it. If we wish to have our entire life’s sins wiped out, we will have to pay some price.

A very highly recommended exercise for those who wish to perform Hajj next year would be to read a good book on the Prophet’s (sa) Seerah

A very highly recommended exercise for those who wish to perform Hajj next year would be to read a good book on the Prophet’s (sa) Seerah right before they advance for their pilgrimage. It will help them greatly appreciate the lofty sacrifices Muhammad (sa) made for us. At Hajj we could pray anywhere in the Haram, perform as many Tawaf as possible in the ocean of other pilgrims, behold the captivating sight of the breathless Kabah. But Prophet (sa) was beaten at the same place so many times by the disbelievers of Makkah in the first thirteen years of his prophethood for simply offering Salah on the same grounds. And finally he was driven out of the city.

We can today peacefully go for Hajj and worship lovingly all we can. The inconveniences we face in this journey should not even be mentioned if we remember what our Prophet (sa) bore in the way of Allah (swt).

“By the fig, and the olive. By Mount Sinai. By this city of security (Makkah).” (Surat  at- tin 95:1-3)

Reflections on the Haram Tragedy


On 11th September 2015, there was a huge sandstorm followed by thunder, lightning, and rain. In the midst of it all, a massive construction crane crashed into Makkah’s Grand Masjid and fell into the Mataf. This has so far resulted in a loss of over 107 precious lives and has left many injured.

Inna lillahi wa inna alayhi raji’oon.

May Allah (swt) grant forgiveness to the ones who have passed away and bless them with Firdaus and may He grant ease and Shifa to the injured, and may He grant solace and Sabr Jameel to their loved ones. Ameen Ya Rabb Al-Alameen.

It is time to pause and reflect. All this took place in the Haram, by the will of Allah (swt).

Either this came upon us (the Ummah) as a punishment, as Allah (swt) says in Surah Shoorah, 42:30:

“And whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned. And He pardons much.”

Or as a test:

It was narrated from Anas ibn Malik that the Prophet (sa) said: “Great reward comes with great trials. When Allah loves people, He tests them, and whoever accepts it attains His pleasure, whereas whoever shows discontent with it incurs His wrath.” (Tirmidhi)

Remember that when a calamity befalls a believer, he turns to Allah, seeks help through patience and prayer, and seeks forgiveness. Our response to the calamity tells us if it was a punishment or a test to raise one in status.

We are hopeful that those who have returned to their Rabb as a result of this incident are martyrs.

Abu Hurairah (rta) reported that the Messenger of Allah (sa) said: “Martyrs are of five kinds: One who dies of plague; one who dies of disease of his belly; the drowned; one who dies under the debris (of construction etc.), and one who dies while in the way of Allah.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

As for those who are injured as well as for the loved ones of the deceased and injured, we are hopeful that this event will be a source of forgiveness and purification for them.

Narrated Abu Saeed Al-Khudri and Abu Hurairah that the Prophet said: “No fatigue, nor disease, nor sorrow, nor sadness, nor hurt, nor distress befalls a Muslim, even if it were the prick he receives from a thorn, but that Allah expiates some of his sins for that.” (Bukhari)

Following are the responses of some scholars and teachers on this incident

yasir-qadhi-on-haram-tragedy mufti-menk-on-haram-tragedy wael-ibrahim-on-haram-tragedy