The Signs Of Accepted Hajj

The Signs Of Accepted Hajj

ALLAH the Almighty decreed acts of worship and obedience for great wisdom and sublime objectives. No wonder, as they strengthen the faith, purify the soul, correct the attitude and refine the morals.

If acts of worship did not achieve these objectives, then the Muslim would not benefit from them properly. In such a case, acts of worship might turn into lifeless rituals that one performs without any actual influence on his reality and attitude.

This rule applies to Hajj. When the believer performs Hajj properly realizing its objectives and feeling its meanings, it will be of great influence upon him in this life and in the Hereafter.

Thus, Allah the Almighty honoured the pilgrims with the blessing of visiting His House and enabled them to perform His obligation. Therefore, they have to stop and contemplate their conditions, review the state of their heart and correct the course of their life.

The first thing they have to realize is the greatness of the blessings that Allah the Almighty bestowed upon Hajis when He facilitated their affairs and enabled them to perform this great duty. Certainly, this necessitates them to praise Allah the Exalted for this blessing, of which many people are deprived, despite their longing for it. Praising Allah the Almighty for this blessing entails preserving it, adherence to obedience to Allah the Almighty and compliance with His religion and Shariah.

The most important thing that a pilgrim should maintain after Haj is the issue of steadfastness and guarding this great deed (performance of Haj) against things that could nullify it. One should ask Allah the Almighty ceaselessly to help him/her adhere firmly to His religion and guide them to obey Him, and make them avoid His disobedience so that they “will be with the ones upon whom Allah Has Bestowed favour of the prophets, the steadfast affirmers of truth, the martyrs and the righteous. And excellent are those as companions.” (Qur’an, 4:69)

Allah the Almighty gave people examples illustrating this issue to warn His slaves of invalidating their deeds and losing them when they need them urgently. Allah says: “Would one of you like to have a garden of palm trees and grapevines underneath which rivers flow in which he has from every fruit? But he is afflicted with old age and has weak offspring, and it is hit by a whirlwind containing fire and is burned. Thus Does Allah make clear to you (His) verses that you might give thought.” (Qur’an, 2:266)

This example speaks about those who did good deeds and then regressed replacing good deeds with evil ones. We seek refuge with Allah the Exalted from this. In his commentary on this verse, Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “This is an example of a rich man who does good acts out of obedience of Allah and then Allah sends him the devil whereupon he commits sins till all his good deeds are lost.” (Al-Bukhari)

Pilgrims should remember that the accepted Haj has signs. The most prominent of these signs is the continuity of uprightness and obedience to Allah the Exalted. Furthermore, your relationship with Allah the Almighty should be better than before. Al-Hasan Al-Basri (may Allah have mercy upon him) was told that the accepted Haj is rewarded by Paradise. He said, “The sign of this is to return (from Haj) renouncing this world and aspiring to the Hereafter.”

I wish that the pilgrims would finish their Haj while they realize that its most important objective is to train the Muslim in worshipping Allah the Almighty alone, to comply with His commandments, avoid His prohibitions and follow the Sunnah of His Prophet (peace be upon him). These objectives are not confined to a certain time; rather, the Muslim should adhere to them as long as he is alive. Allah the Almighty says: “And worship your Lord until there comes to you the certainty (death).” (Qur’an, 15:99)

Your condition after doing good deeds should be like those about whom Allah the Almighty says: “And they who give what they give while their hearts are fearful because they will be returning to their Lord.” (Qur’an, 23:60)

Although they try to get closer to Allah the Almighty through various acts of worship, they fear that their deeds may be rejected. That is why Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) used to say, “Be more concerned about the acceptance of your deeds than about the deeds themselves. Have you not read the Qur’anic verse in which Allah the Almighty says: “Indeed, Allah only accepts from the righteous (who fear Him).” (Qur’an, 5:27)?”

Hence, Allah the Almighty commanded the pilgrims to seek His forgiveness after departing from Aarafah and Al-Muzdalifa saying, “Then depart from the place from where (all) the people depart and ask forgiveness of Allah. Indeed, Allah is forgiving and merciful.” (Qur’an, 2:199)

A pilgrim stood at Aarafah, he shed tears and showed remorse over his previous misdeeds. Allah the Almighty emancipated him from Hell, so beware of regressing to sins after being forgiven by Allah or drawing near Hell after being saved from it.

Be determined to make your Haj a turning point in your life, reckon yourself and determine what influence your Haj had upon your heart, attitude, words and deeds.

Keep doing good deeds even if they are little, because regular small deeds are better than interrupted greater ones. The deeds, which Allah the Almighty loves most, are the most regular and constant ones even though they were little.

We ask Allah the Almighty by His names and most beautiful attributes to accept Haj, forgive your sins and reward you for your efforts. We also ask Him to accept our good deeds and provide us with steadfastness and uprightness until death.

When the pilgrims return to their home countries after the journey of Haj, they return spiritually refreshed, forgiven of their sins, and ready to start life anew, with a clean slate.

Family and community members often prepare a celebration to welcome pilgrims home and congratulate them on completing the journey. Those who have performed the Haj are often called by an honorific title, “Haji,” (one who has performed the Haj).

According to the Qur’an, “…Pilgrimage to the House is a duty owed to Allah by all who can make their way to it..”(Aal ‘Imran, 3:97). According to a Hadith narrated by Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him), the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The Umrah to the next Umrah is a Kaffarah(expiation) of all sins one commits between them, and an accepted Haj (Al-Haj Al-Mabroor) is a supreme action, the reward for which is paradise.”

He also said, “Verily there shall be no reward for a Hajj Mabroor (an accepted Haj) except Jannah (the Paradise).” (Bukhari, Muslim)

How fortunate are these souls who are blessed with the following words from the Prophet (peace be upon him): “Whoever performs Hajj for the pleasure of Allah and therein utters no word of evil, nor commits any evil deed, shall return from it (free from sin) as the day on which his mother gave birth to him.” (Bukhari, Muslim)

Mind you, there is a particular significance to each of the modes of worship in Islam. The significance of establishing Salah (prayers), for example, is to remember Allah Almighty. “…And establish Salah (prayers) to remember Me.” (Qur’an, 20:14) The significance of observing Siyam (fasting) is to cultivate Taqwa (God-consciousness) in oneself. “O you who believe, fasting is prescribed for you, as it was prescribed for those before you, so that you may be conscious of God” (Qur’an, 2:183). Likewise, the significance or essence of Haj is making sincere repentance to Allah Almighty and seeking His forgiveness. Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrates: “I heard the Prophet say, ‘Whoever performs Haj and does not commit any Rafath (obscenity) or Fusooq (transgression), he returns (free from sin) as the day his mother bore him’.”

It is unfortunate that there are some people who turn these modes of worship into mere rituals. Circumambulating the Kaaba for instance or running between the hillocks of Safa and Marwa or performing other rites and rituals of Haj do not have any deep meaning with such people. Consequently, the conditions of their lives do not change for the better even after their Haj. As for those pilgrims whose attitude, conduct, lifestyle, and relationship with their creator and His creation show a positive transformation after the pilgrimage, they are the ones inshaAllah, who are blessed with the rewards of an accepted Haj. Just as Salah (the daily prayer) prevents one from indecency and wrongdoing, and connects one to Allah, and Siyam (fasting) makes one more mindful of Allah the Almighty, so should Hajj reconnect one with one’s creator. If these ends are not achieved through these modes of worship, then all the hardships endured in performing these acts of worship are in vain. Analogically, just as the efficacy of a medicine becomes known when a sick person is healed, likewise, an accepted Hajj manifests itself in the change that takes place in the condition of the pilgrim to an extent that is pleasing to Allah the Almighty.

The pilgrims should focus their attention toward certain points, which are necessary and of utmost importance and which many pilgrims ignore because they are unaware of their significance.

First of which is his sincerity. Sincerity of intention should remain even after the performance of Hajj. There should be no pomp or show. One should not wish to be called or recognized as a Haji.

Many people adopt the habit of talking frequently about their journey in order that people may come to know of their Hajj. They talk about the expenses incurred in the way of Allah, their charity among the poor and the needy, their devotion and worship, their assisting the weak and old, etc.; and all is mentioned only with the intention of gaining fame. This is a deceit from Satan who ruins the devotion without the person even knowing it. It is therefore of great importance that the pilgrim does not talk about his Hajj without necessity as it may lead to ‘Riyaa’ (show, insincerity). However, if necessity arises and one must talk about his Hajj then he is at liberty to do so. But, he must not indulge in this type of conversation unnecessarily.

Secondly, repentance, revitalization of faith, and renewal of covenant are the three things that need to be done by all Muslims individually and collectively, and most especially the pilgrim in order to mend matters and emerge successful both in this life and the next. This is because Hajj epitomizes all these three aspects beautifully.

 

How can one know whether one’s Haj is accepted or not?

The basic sign of a ‘Hajj Mabroor’ or an ‘accepted Haj’ is that upon one’s return, his life changes from worst to good. He becomes totally punctual in fulfilling the commands of Allah Almighty. His love and inclination toward the Hereafter increases and love for the worldly pleasures decline. Therefore, it is essential that the pilgrim is watchful over his actions and should try his utmost to instil in himself good characters and refrain from all types of evil. He should try his best to fullfill the obligations laid down by Allah and avoid all the things forbidden by Him.

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