You are set to depart to accomplish a great obligation. Make this journey to Allah’s House as Allah wants. Think of the next journey that is surely coming, the one that leads to the meeting of Allah, the Highest. This raises questions like What did I prepare for that Day? Am I following Allah’s Commands? Am I a follower of the Sunnah? Allah says: “And invoke not any other ilaah (god) along with Allah, none has the right to be worshipped but He, everything will perish save His Face, His is the Decision, and to Him (all) shall be returned.” [Soorah al-Qasas (28): 88]
When you equip yourself with enough provision to reach the sacred land of Makkah – remember your journey to Allah and the Hereafter where you will require the provision of your good deeds to reach your desired goal. Before you are death and grave, accounting and scales and al-Siraat followed by either Paradise or Hell. The blessed one will be he whom Allah saves, therefore follow the Command of Allah “and whatever good you do, (be sure) Allah knows it. And take a provision (with you) for the Journey, but the best provision is at-Taqwa.” [Soorah al-Baqarah (2): 197]
Putting on the two garments of Ihram should remind you of the moment of shrouding when your body will be wrapped and put in a grave. This prompts you to give up disobedience and sins, just as you abandoned your expensive clothes and dressed in two clean, white garments. Clean and purify your heart from all stains of sins and disobedience.
When you stand in meeqat, remember that there is still another meeqat that is sure to come soon. It is the meeqat (appointed meeting) on the Day of Resurrection: “Say (O Muhammad sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam): Verily, those of old, and those of later times. All will surely be gathered together for an appointed Meeting of a known Day.” [(57): 49-50]
Upon entering Makkah remember you are in a secure sanctuary: “Have We not established for them a secure sanctuary (Makkah), to which are brought fruits of all kinds, a provision from Ourselves, but most of the men know not.” [Soorah (28): 57]
Remember the sanctuary on the Day of Resurrection, which none can achieve except those who truly believe in Allah and avoid all kinds of Shirk because “It is those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah and worship none but Him Alone) and confuse not their Belief with Zulm (wrong, i.e. by worshiping others besides Allah), for them (only) there is security and they are guided.” [al-An’aam 6:81]
“If you were to join gods with Allah, truly fruitless will be your deeds.” [Soorah az-Zumar (39): 65] So, commit yourself to repentance, having a good opinion of Allah, hoping that Allah will grant you security from His Punishment.
When you enter al-Masjid al-Haraam, from one of the gates, now you see what you hoped to see for a long time. Thank Allah for making this possible and hope that He will grant you the greatest reward of seeing His Majestic Face on the Day of Reckoning. This thankfulness is not just to say ‘Al-Hamdulillah’, but also to obey His Commands during the Hajj and all your life through.
Kissing the Black Stone should install in your love for the Sunnah of Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam), remember the saying of Umar (radhi allahu anhu), “I know that you are a mere stone that can neither harm nor do any good. If I had not seen the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) kissing you, I would have never kissed you.” [Saheeh al-Bukharee (1520) and others]
You start your Tawaaf; know that Tawaaf is a great time for magnifying Allah. Remember Him and busy yourself in Du’aa. Reflect upon the time when the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) was prevented from doing the same what you are performing!! Then think how Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) cleansed the House of Allah from every symbol signifying worship to others besides Allah. All idols were demolished! Ask Allah to make you steadfast on the correct belief and Path of the Salaf and make you die on the Deen al-Hanifiyyah.
Drink the water of Zam-Zam and supplicate to Allah and Glorify Him. Remember the blessing of Allah, which He has bestowed upon mankind in the form of this blessed water.
When you are in the Sa’ee (running between al-Safa’ and al-Marwa), contemplate on Hajrah, the mother of Isma’eel alaihis-salaam, when she asked her husband, Ibraheem alaihis-salaam: “Did Allah order you to do this (meaning leave me and my baby in the deserted area of Makkah)? When he (Ibraheem alaihis-salaam) replied in the affirmative, her strong belief, trust, and reliance on Allah was seen when she responded to him saying: “Then He (Allah) will not neglect us!!” This great statement of Haajar exemplifies the robust endurance, perseverance, and trust a Muslim should have in Allah. Here in the deserted Makkah was Hajrah with full conviction in Allah and there on the mountains was Ibraheem alaihis-salaam invoking Allah: “O our Rabb! I have made some of my offspring to dwell in a valley with no cultivation, by Your Sacred House, in order, O our Rabb that they may offer prayers perfectly, so fill some hearts among men with love towards them, and (O Allah) provide them with fruits so that they may give thanks.” [Soorah Ibraheem (14): 37] Allah answered the Du’aa of Ibraheem alaihis-salaam and valued the firm belief of Hajar – Men and fruit came to Makkah from different places and their son grew up to be a Prophet of Allah.
The Sa’ee and the struggle of Hajrah convey the lessons of Patience in adversity, and that man should turn to Allah, Who alone is the source of help. When a man remembers the struggle and patience of this woman, it makes it easier for him to bear his own problems.
Standing in Arafat (Wuqoof) and the crowd should remind you of the Day of Resurrection when all men from first to the last will stand in front of their Lord, barefooted, naked, and uncircumcised for fifty thousand years. Humble yourself to Allah and manifest your worship to Him alone. Determine to abandon all sins, rush to perform good deeds, and free yourself of all pride and arrogance.
Gather pebbles and when you are about to embark on stoning the jamaraat, remember the Hadeeth of Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam): “When you cast the small pebbles (i.e. at the jamaraat), it will be a light for you on the Day of Judgment.” [(Saheeh) by Shaikh al-Albanee in Silsilah al-Ahaadeeth as-Saheehah vol: 6, no: 2515] This stoning at the Jamaraat is a manifestation of Uboodiyyah because even if a man does not understand the complete reason and wisdom behind the stoning, he follows the Command of Allah in submission.
Before you perform the sacrifice, purify your intention because: “It is neither their meat nor their blood which reaches Allah, but it is your devotion that reaches Him.” [Soorah al-Hajj (22): 37] When you slaughter your Hady (sacrifice), remember the event when a father (Ibraheem (alaihi as-salaam) submitted to the Command of Allah and willingly agreed to sacrifice his only son (Isma’eel alaihis-salaam) who had grown and become a help for his old age. This teaches us to respond to the Command of Allah, just as Isma’eel did: “O my father! Do that which you are commanded Insha’Allah you will find me from the Saabireen (the patient ones).” [Soorah as-Saffat (37): 102]
After the completion of your Hajj, do not think that the remembrance of Allah has ended, carefully read what Allah says: “So when you have accomplished your Manaasik (i.e. the rites of Hajj) remember Allah as you remember your forefathers or with a far more remembrance.” [Soorah al-Baqarah (2): 200]