The Performance of Hajj

There are three ways of performing the Hajj:

    1. Hajj al-Tamatt’u (interrupted)
    1. Hajj al-Qiran (combined)
  1. Hajj al-Ifrad (single)

Hajj al-Tamett’u

This means entering into Ihram for the Umrah during the months of Hajj, i.e., the months of Shawwal, Dhul-Q’idah and the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah; to take off Ihram after performing the Umrah, and then to take Ihram again for the Hajj from Makkah on the 8th day of Dhul-Hijjah during the same year in which the Umrah was performed.

Hajj al-Qiran

This denotes entering into Ihram for both the Umrah and the Hajj at the same time, not taking off the ihram until the day of Sacrifice (the 10th of Dhul-Hijjah). Alternatively, one may first enter into Ihram for the Umrah, and before beginning one’s tawaf may make the intention of Ihram for the Hajj as well.

Hajj al-Ifrad

This signifies donning Ihram for the Hajj either from the prescribed Station of Ihram (al-miqat), from Makkah if one resides there, or from a place in between al-miqat and Makkah.

1. If you are performing Hajj al-Ifrad or Hajj al-Qiran you enter into Ihram at the Station of Ihram (al-miqat) through which you pass on your way to Makkah. If you do not pass through any Station of Ihram on your way to Makkah, you enter into Ihram from your residence. If you are performing Hajj al-Tamatt’u, you enter into Ihram for Hajj from your residence in Makkah on the 8th of Dhul-Hijjah. Perform ghusl (shower or washing of the entire body), and then put on the two-piece garment of Ihram. This applies to men only. Women likewise perform ghusl but are not to use perfume. They may wear any clothes they have as long as they do not display their adornments. They should be completely covered except of her face and hands. After putting on Ihram make your niyyah (intention) by saying: “Labbayka Hajjan” then recite talbiyyah:

“Labbayka Allahumma Labbayk. Labbayka La Shareeka Laka Labbayk. Innal-hamda wan-n’imata Laka Wal-mulk La Shareeka Lak”

(Here I am at your service. O Lord, here I am. Here I am. No partner do you have. Here I am. Truly, the praise and the favour is yours, and the dominion. No partner do you have.)

2. You then go to Mina, where you pray the Dhuhr, ‘Asr, Maghrib, ‘Isha and Fajr prayers at their proper times, shortening prayers of four rak’as to two rak’as. Do not combine these prayers.

3. When the sun has risen on the 9th of Dhul-Hijjah, proceed toward Arafat in a dignified manner and without harming your fellow pilgrims. At Arafat, pray the Dhuhr and ‘Asr prayers, shortened and combined during the time of Dhuhr with one adhan and two iqamahs.

4. When the sun has set, proceed toward Muzdalifah in a peaceful and dignified manner, reciting talbiyyah. Do not harm or cause any discomfort to your fellow pilgrims. When you arrive at Muzdalifah, Pray the Maghrib and ‘Isha prayers combined, shortening ‘Isha to two rak’as. Stay at Muzdalifah until you have prayed the Fajr prayer. Then wait until the brightness of the morning is wide spread, supplicate facing qiblah with upraised hands, following the practice of the Prophet (Peace be on him).

  • For women or weak individuals, it is permissible to proceed to Mina at any time after midnight.

In Muzdalifah, pick up only seven pebbles to throw at the Stone Pillar of ‘Aqabah. Other pebbles can be picked up at Mina. There is no harm even if the seven pebbles to be thrown at the Stone Pillars of ‘Aqabah are also picked up at Mina.

5. When you arrive at Mina, do the following:

    1. At the Stone Pillar of ‘Aqabah (This is the pillar nearest to Makkah) throw the seven pebbles one after the other, saying “Allahu Akbar” at each throw.
    1. if you are required to sacrifice, slaughter your sacrificial animal. You are to eat some of its meat and distribute the major part of it to the needy.
  1. Shave your head or cut some hair from it. Shaving is preferable for men, while for women the length of hair to be cut is that of a fingertip.
      • The above-mentioned order of doing things is preferred, however, if they are done in some other order, there is no harm in it.
    • After you have thrown the pebbles and shaved or cut some of your hair, the prohibitions of Ihram are lifted, excepting the prohibition of sexual intercourse with your spouse. This is the first tahallul. You are now to wear your usual clothes.

6. Then you go to Makkah and perform the tawaf al-ifadah (the tawaf which is an essential part of the Hajj). If you are doing Hajj al-Tamatt’u, you also perform sa’ye. If you are performing Hajj al-Ifrad or Hajj al-qiran and you did not perform sa’ye with tawaf al-qudum (the tawaf of arrival), you must do sa’ye now. After this, the prohibition of marital relations is also lifted and you return to a completely normal life.

  • It is permissible to delay the tawaf al-ifadah until the days spent at Mina are over, going to Makkah for this tawaf after all three Pillars have been stoned.

7. After performing your tawaf al-ifadah on the Day of Sacrifice, return to Mina and spend there the nights preceding the 11th,12th and13th days of Dhul-Hijjah (the three days following the Day of Sacrifice which are known as Ayyamu-Tashreeq). It is however, permissible to spend only two nights in Mina instead of three.

8. At any time in the afternoon of each of the two or three days of your stay in Mina, stone each of the three Pillars, starting with the first Pillar (the one which is farthest from Makkah), followed by the middle Pillar and lastly the Pillar of ‘Aqabah . Throw seven pebbles, one by one, at each of these Pillars, saying “Allahu Akbar” at each throw.

    • If you stay in Mina for only two days, you must leave Mina before the sunset on the second day. If the sun should set before your are able to depart, remain in Mina for the third night and throw pebbles again the next day.
  • It is permissible for the sick and the weak to appoint a proxy to throw their pebbles, followed by the pebbles of the person he represents while at the same pillar.

9. If you decide to return to your country after completing the rites of Hajj, you perform the farewell tawaf (tawaf al-wida) before leaving Makkah. No one is excused from this except the women who are menstruating or on the period of discharge following childbirth.

How to Perform Hajj – Step by Step