This article mainly talks about the procedures and rites of Umrah, it also differentiates between Hajj and Umrah and also throws light upon the significance of Umrah and provides guidance for its performance. If you’re planning to go on Umrah, this article is your best guide!
Umrah and its Importance?
Umrah is a religious activity that many Muslims perform, it has similarities with the Pillar of Islam Hajj, however, it is not mandatory, takes less time and has lesser rites and rituals. Umrah is known as a lesser Hajj or a minor Pilgrimage.
There are two types of Umrah, Umrah ul Mufradah; this Umrah is performed all around the Islamic year except for the time of Hajj. The second type of Umrah ul Tammattu; this Umrah is performed before the ritual of Hajj. The rites of Umrah remain the same between the two types only the timings of these Umrah differ. There are many Umrah packages available for all year round including December Umrah packages.
The Procedure of Performing Umrah
In any Islamic practice, certain tasks are deemed as Farz or Obligatory and others are considered Wajibaat. Wajib acts are those which are essential to the performance of any Islamic duty however are not considered Obligatory.
In Umrah, it is Farz on the Pilgrim to enter the state of Ihram. The state of Ihram refers to a special state of purity, where the pilgrim has worn the prescribed clothing, performed cleaning duties and is now free of any worldly thoughts and ready to submit one’s mind and soul to the praise of Allah.
The second Farz ritual is the Tawaf. Tawaf means to move in a circular motion, the Tawaf is done around the Holy Ka’aba the House of Allah. The Tawaf is done in the state of Ihram and while performing the Tawaf, the pilgrim recites the Talbiya. The Talbiya is a declaration of one’s presence at the Holy Ka’aba and praise for Allah. It translates into:
“Here I am, O Allaah, here I am. Here I am, You have no partner, here I am. Verily all praise and blessings are Yours, and all sovereignty, You have no partner”
Muslim men are to recite the Talbiyah loudly whereas the women can recite it in a lower voice however they must not recite it in their hearts, their lips must say these words while performing the Talbiya.
After this the pilgrims perform what is known as Sa’i. Sa’I is the wajib Act of Umrah. This act is a performance of running between the hills of Safa and Marwa in a manner similar to Bibi Hajra. She was the wife of the Prophet Ibrahim who ran in the hills to find water for her son.
At the end of this, Muslims now perform the act of cutting their hair as a part of the sacrifice, Men usually shave their head and women cut a piece of their hair. After the performance of all these acts, Muslims have successfully performed the Umrah.
Umrah is a special pilgrimage, it is a blessed act of Islam and it strengthens the Eman. Muslims avail Umrah packages that range from days to 4 weeks. Since it’s colder in December, many Muslims avail of December Umrah Packages.