Perform the Lesser Pilgrimage Easily with Umrah Packagesby Safeena Rahman Travel Addict
Umrah, also known as the 'lesser pilgrimage' or 'minor pilgrimage', is performed by millions of Muslims every year. It involves making a journey to the sacred city of Makkah, located in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This involves a certain amount of cost. However, the lesser pilgrimage is not mandatory. Another great aspect of this pilgrimage is that it can be performed at any time of the year if the pilgrim is in good physical condition. An individual performing Umrah must first enter the state of 'Ihram' by wearing a seamless pilgrim's garment, which is white in the case of males.
Most of the Umrah packages offered by the tour operators or travel companies in recent times have accommodations arranged for the pilgrims near the Masjid al-Haram. This makes it easier for pilgrims staying in them to enter the state of ihram and keep their purity intact for performing the rituals of Umrah. Once they enter this pure state by putting on the pilgrim's clothing, they can proceed towards the holy mosque to perform their 'Tawaf'. This ritual involves circumambulation of Kaabah while keeping it to the left. The circumambulation is done with seven rounds in the anti-clockwise direction. Each round begins from Kaabah's corner and ends at the same place.
After the completion of these seven rounds, a two-Rakaat prayer is recited near the place where Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) stood while constructing the Kaabah. This place is known as 'Maqam-e-Ibrahim'. If a pilgrim is not able to say this prayer owing to the presence of a heavy crowd, he or she can recite the prayer at some other place in the Masjid al-Haram. After the completion of Tawaf, the Sa'i or Sa'ee ritual is performed. It commemorates the event in which Prophet Ibrahim's (peace be upon him) wife Hajar (May Allah be pleased with her) had gone seven times back and forth between the Safa and Marwah mountains in search for her son.
This event is emulated by the Sa'i ritual with the pilgrims walking to and fro between the two mountains situated near Kaabah. According to the Islamic traditions, The Almighty Allah had sent archangel Jibreel (A.S) to instruct Hajar (May Allah be pleased with her) to lift the infant Prophet Ismael (peace be upon him). According to archangel Jibreel's (A.S) instructions, she lifted the baby and noticed that water had sprung from the spot where the infant prophet had hit the ground with his feet. This became a source of water, which is today known as the 'Well of Zamzam'.
The ritual performed next is the cutting of hair, which is called 'Taqsir' when performed on women and 'Halq' when performed on men. The hair of male pilgrims is completely shaved off from their heads while performing 'Halq' and a fingertip's length or an inch from the end of women's hair is cut while performing 'Taqsir'. After the completion of these rituals, the lesser pilgrimage is accomplished. Most of the pilgrims drink water from the Well of Zamzam, although it is not a ritual of Umrah.
Created on Aug 2nd 2019 04:44. Viewed 246 times.