The Five Pillars of Islam

The Institution of Hajj

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Another form of worship is Hajj—the Pilgrimage; which does not mean that a person should carry out the formality of the Pilgrimage by providing for his journey across the ocean with money lawfully or unlawfully acquired, and having repeated the prayers and formulas according to the directions of the servitors of the Ka’bah, should come back and boast that he has performed the Pilgrimage. The purpose that God Almighty has appointed for the Pilgrimage is not achieved in this manner. The truth is that the last stage of the seeker’s journey is that withdrawing himself altogether from the demands and desires of self he should be completely engulfed by the love of God and complete devotion to Him. A true lover sacrifices his soul and heart; and the circuit of the House of Allah is a visible sign of such a sacrifice. As there is a House of Allah here below on the earth, so there is one in heaven. Until a person performs the circuit of the House above, his circuit of the House below is not truly performed. One who performs the circuit of the House below puts aside all garments, retaining only one of them to cover his body, but he who performs the circuit of the House above discards all garments altogether and becomes naked for the sake of God. The circuit is a sign of the lovers of God. They go round the Ka’bah as if they have no will of their own left and they are devoted wholly to Him.[1]

Creative Commons Image by Fadi El Binni Courtesy of Al
Creative Commons Image by Fadi El Binni Courtesy of Al Jazeera English.

 

Endnotes

1. Speeches to Jalsa Salana, 1906, pp. 20-21 (English Translation: The Essence of Islam, Vol 2 pp. 317-318.

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