5 Important Places in Hajj

Hajj is the fifth pillar (pillar of islam) of Islam after the shahada, salat, zakat and fasting. Performing hajj is an annual ritual performed by muslims around the world who are able (material, physical, and scientific) by visiting and carrying out several activities in several places in Saudi Arabia at a time known as the Hajj season (the month of Zulhijah).

This is different from the worship that can be done at any time.

The core activities of the Hajj pilgrimage begin on the 8th of Zulhijah when Muslims spend the night in Mina, wukuf (silent) in Padang Arafat on the 9th of Zulhijah, and ends after throwing jumrah (throwing stones symbolizing satan) on the 10th of Zulhijah.

1) Makkah Al Mukaramah

Makkah or Makkah al-Mukarramah is a major city in Saudi Arabia. This city became the main destination of Muslims in performing hajj.

In this city there is a main building called Masjidilharam with Kaaba in it. This Kaaba building is used as a benchmark qibla direction for the worship of Muslims around the world.

It is the holy city of Muslims and the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad. In the Qur’an, the city is also referred to by 11 different names. Makkah is located about 600 km south of the city of Medina, approximately 200 km northeast of jeddah.

This city is a narrow valley surrounded by mountains with kaaba buildings as its center. Thus, in the past the city was prone to flooding when in the rainy season before finally the Government of Saudi Arabia repaired this city and renovated this city. As with most cities in Saudi Arabia, this city is desert climate.

2) Arafah (wukuf in arafah is pillar of hajj)

The city to the east of Makkah is also known as the central place of Hajj, which is where wukuf is carried out, namely on the 9th of Zulhijah every year. This vast field-shaped area is a gathering place for about two million pilgrims from all over the world and is always increasing from year to year.

Outside of the Hajj season, this area is not used. Arafat is an open and large area to the east outside the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

In this vast field, on one day (noon) on the 9th of Dhul-Hijjah on the Hijri calendar gathered more than two million Muslims from various corners of the world to perform the core of hajj, wukuf worship.

3) Muzdalifah (must visit when performing Hajj)

The place near Mina and Arafat, known as where pilgrims perform Mabit (Overnight) and collect rocks to perform jumrah in Mina.

Muzdalifah is an open area between Mecca and Mina in Saudi Arabia where pilgrims are ordered to stop and spend the night after departing from Arafat.

Muzdalifah lies between Ma’zamain (two paths separating the two opposite mountains) of Arafat and the valley of Muhassir. The area of Muzdalifah is about 12.25 km², there are barrier signs that determine the beginning and end limits of Muzdalifah.

Pilgrims after performing wukuf in Arafat move towards Muzdalifah after sunset (Maghrib time).

In Muzdalifah pilgrims perform Maghrib and Isha prayers combined and abbreviated (plural qashar) and spend there until dawn. In Muzdalifah pilgrims collect pebbles that will be used to throw jumrah. Staying overnight in Muzdalifah is mandatory in Hajj.

Anyone who leaves it is required to pay for the dam. It is advisable to follow in the footsteps of the Prophet Muhammad ( PEACE BE UPON HIM); Overnight until entering the time of dawn prayer, then stop until dawn yellows.

But for the weak, such as women, the elderly and those like them, may leave Muzdalifah after midnight. After the Dawn prayer, pilgrims leave for Mina.

4) Mina

The place of the establishment of jumrah monument, which is the place of the implementation of stone throwing activities to the jumrah monument as a symbolization of the actions of prophet Ibrahim when expelling demons.

In each of the places stands the monument used for the implementation: Jumrah Aqabah, Jumrah Ula, and Jumrah Wustha. In this place pilgrims are also required to stay one night.

Mina is a valley in the desert located about 5 kilometers east of the city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. It is located between Mecca and Muzdalifah.

Mina earned the nickname tent city, as it contains tents for millions of pilgrims around the world. The tents remain standing even if the Hajj season does not take place. Mina is best known as the place where the jumrah throwing activities in the Mina hajj pilgrimage was visited by pilgrims on the 8th of Dzulhijah or the day before wukuf in Arafat.

Pilgrims stay here a day a night so they can perform Dzuhur, Ashar, Maghrib, Isha and Fajr prayers. Then after the Dawn prayer on the 9th of Dzulhijah, pilgrims leave for Arafat.

Pilgrims come again to Mina after completing wukuf in Arafat. Pilgrims to Mina again because the pilgrims will throw jumrah. The place or location of throwing jumrah there are 3 namely Jumrah Aqabah, Jumrah Wusta and Jumrah Ula.

In Mina pilgrims are obliged to carry out mabit (overnight) which is the night of the 11.12 Dzulhijah for pilgrims who perform Nafar Awal or the night of 11,12,13 dzulhijah for pilgrims who perform Nafar Tsani.

Mina is also the place or location of the slaughter of sacrificial animals. In Mina there is a mosque khaif, is a mosque where the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) performs prayers and sermons while in Mina while performing hajj.

5) Medina

The second holy city of Muslims. This is where the role model of Muslims, the Prophet Muhammad is buried in the Prophet’s Mosque. This place does not actually enter into the ritual of hajj.

But Pilgrims from all over the world usually take the time to visit the city which is located approximately 330km (450 km by land transportation) north of Makkah to make pilgrimages and perform prayers at the Prophet’s mosque.

Medina, also transliterified as Madīnah, is a city in Hejaz, as well as the capital of the Medina Province of Saudi Arabia. In this city there is the Prophet’s Mosque, the burial place of the Prophet Muhammad, and it is also the second holiest city to Islam after Mecca.

Medina was the purpose of the Prophet Muhammad to perform the Hijrah from Mecca. It gradually turned into the capital of the Muslim Empire with the first leader to be carried by the Prophet Muhammad.

Then continued by Khulafaur Rashiddin, Abu Bakr, Umar bin Khattab, Uthman bin Affan, and Ali.

The city became an Islamic powerhouse in the centuries the Muslim community began to flourish. Medina is home to three of the oldest mosques ever built, namely Quba Mosque, Prophet’s Mosque, and Qiblatain Mosque (two Qibla mosque).

Muslims believe that the completion of a series of qur’anic surah declines was received by the Prophet Muhammad in Medina, known as Surah Madaniyah which appears to be in contrast to Surah Makkiyyah.

Like the city of Mecca, non-Muslims are not allowed to enter the holy area of Medina (but not into the central part of the city) under the rule of the Government of Saudi Arabia.

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