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HAJ AND UMRAH
HAJ

Haj is the 3rd of the religious duties of a muslim. Allah has made the Kaaba the sacred house situated at Mecca. Kaaba is the 'House of God', the oldest house in the world dedicated by mankind to God and to the cult of monotheism. The visit of the 'House of God' is self explanatory.

The performance of Haj is incumbent on all Muslims, at least once in a lifetime, if circumstances permit , i.e . if they are in a position both physically and materially to undertake the journey to Mecca , and make sufficient provision for their dependants during the period of their absence . Those who do not possess the material means of travel, are exempted from it . But which Muslim would not collect, little by little, the necessary amount for being able one day to visit the center of his religion, the Kaaba or the House of God?

Sequencial chart for performing Haj
Pillars of Haj without which Haj is invalid
- IHRAM
A religious uniform, consisting of two sheets of cloth - a loin cloth and a shoulder cover.
- WAQUF

Standing at Arafat.

- TAWAF-AL-ZIYARAT
Tawaf-al-Ziyarat can be performed after hair cut between 10 Zilhaj and 12 Zilhaj before sunset.
Wajbat-e-Haj

- Sai between the mount of Safa and Marwa.

- Waquf Muzdalifa
- Rammi on Jamrat (Lapidation of Satan)
- Sacrifice animal (Qurbani)
- Qasr or Halaq (Hair cut)
- Tawaf-al-vida
UMRAH

Umrah is Sunnat-e-Mowakada. Umrah is a Mini Haj that can be performed at any time, any day, round the clock when one desires, except for five days i.e. between 9 zilhaj to 13 zilhaj, in which Umrah is NOT allowed. Umrah can be performed along with Haj and independent of Haj in other days as well.

In Umrah pilgrims do not go to Mina, Arafat and Muzdalifa or throw pebbles on the Jumrat (Stone pillars representing devils) or offer animal sacrifice. These rites are performed in Haj only.

Umrah - Step by Step
Rites of Umrah
1 - Put on Ihram for Umrah.
2 - Tawaf Umrah.
3 - Sai between the mount of Safa and Marwa.
4 - Shaving and clipping of the hair after Sai.
Saying of Holy Prophet (Peace br upon Him)
1 - One Umrah becomes an antonement for the sins committed up to the next Umrah.
2 - Those who perform Haj or Umrah are the guest of Allah. Allah grants them what
they ask for.
3 - If one leaves his house with the intention of performing Haj or Umrah, and dies on
the way, will enter the paradise without judgement.
IZTEBA
Right shoulder should be kept open during all seven rounds of those Tawaf, after which Sai has to be performed. Pass upper portion of Ihram under the right armpit to place it on the right shoulder, thus keeping bare the right arm and left shoulder covered. In other conditions and all the time, both shoulders must be kept covered by Ihram.
RAMAL
In first three rounds of all those Tawaf after which Sai has to be performed, a man only (no women) should walk briskly, with pride, moving the shoulders with chest out. In rest of the round he should walk normal.
ISTELAM
To kiss Hajr-e-Aswad. After making Niyat (intention) for Tawaf Baitullah (Kaaba), kiss Hajr-e-Aswad, and if not possible to kiss due to heavy rush, then raise both hands, and place them on Hajr-e-Aswad in imagination and kiss both palms.
RUKN-E-YAMANI
Hajre-Aswad is the first corner and Rukn-e-Yamani is the fourth corner of Kaaba. During Tawaf touch Rukn-e-Yamani with both hands or with right hand only. Kissing and Istelam of Rukn-e-Yamani is not allowed. If not possible to touch due to heavy rush, may proceed onwards without touching.
S A I
Sai denotes walking back and forth seven times between the mount of Safa and Marwa. Sai starts from the mount of Safa. From Safa to Marwa is one round, and back from Marwa to Safa is another round, its seventh round
ends at Marwa. In all trips men should run slowly between the green tube lights, but women will walk with their normal pace. It is Sunnat to be in the state of ablution. It is obligatory to perform Sai on foot, unless there is some valid reason in which Sai can be performed by riding.
QASR
Get hair cut to be freed from all the impositions and restrictions that the state of Ihram imposes. Get hair clipped of full head or 1/4th head of at least one inch in length. If length of hair is less than one inch, shave off hair of complete head. Women may cut one inch of a lock of their hair (choti).
HALAQ
Shave hair of complete head to be free from all the impositions and restrictions that the state of Ihram imposes. Second time and onwards if hair is not available, still use razor on bare head. Halaq is for men only. Women are forbidden to shave their heads.
RAMMI
Seven pebbles are to be hit one by one on each Jumarat (Stone pillars representing Devil). Hold one pebble with index finger and thumb and hit one by one on each Jumarat. If more than one or seven pebbles thrown at a time, it will be counted as one pebble only. On 11th and 12th Zilhaj, perform Rammi on all three Jumrats:-
1st = Jumrat-al-Ula ( Small Satan )
2nd = Jumrat-al-Wusta ( Medium Satan)
3rd = Jumrat-al-Aqba ( Big Satan )
On 11th and 12th Zilhaj, if anyone performs Rammi before Zohar, his Rammi will not be considered, and will have to perform Rammi again after Zohar, otherwise he will have to sacrifice animal as a penality. On 10th Zilhaj perform Rammi before sun-set on Jumarat-al-Aqba ( Big Satan) only.
QURBANI
Sacrifice of animal. Haji will have to sacrifice two animals, one for Haj and the other for Eid-ul-Azha. For Haj animal is sacrificed between 10 Zilhaj after Rammi and 12 Zilhaj till sunset. For Eid-ul-Azha the animal can be sacrificed at home town also, but Musafir is exempted from sacrificing animal.