Hajj Journey – Part 3
After praying Maghrib, we took the bus towards Muztalifah where we spent the night. The plain of Muztalifah is just a plain land in the middle of nowhere. We had to bring our own sleeping bags and find an empty space to sleep. The vast land of Muztalifah was filled with pilgrims as far as the eyes can see – it was a very majestic sight indeed. I came to understand that there is no difference between us all – we were just Muslims. We spent the night like that. We picked some stones for our journey tomorrow. As the sun rises for dawn, we headed back to Mina to rest up. In the afternoon, we took those stones that we picked for the Rami (the stoning of the devil). We threw the stones towards the 3 pillars known as Jamaraat representing the devil.
After completing the Rami, we walked back to Aziziyah’s hostel to rest up. As we are no longer in the state of Ihram after doing the Rami, we got cleaned up and changed back into our normal clothes. In the evening, we did the tawaf ifadah in masjid al haram and head back to Mina for the next 2 -3 days. That evening was particularly difficult to get back to Mina as everyone had to head back there before fajr. We were charged extortionate rates on the bus (around £10/person for a very short journey).
On the last Rami, as everyone was trying to complete their Hajj rites, there were nearly 200 thousand people trying to head towards stoning. It was important to stay calm and not push as it could lead to injuries and stampede.
After completing our 5 days of Hajj, we stayed for a further 8 days in Makkah where we visited the different sites, but mainly to pray our 5 salah in Masjid al Haram. We also take this opportunity to complete a few more Umrahs. Since there were a lot of people during the hajj season, if we wanted to pray inside the mosque, we had to get there at least 1 hour before the prayer time in order to get in as they usually have blockade around the mosque. This was more the case during Friday prayers, as there were a lot of people outside the mosque, praying even inside the shopping mall opposite the kabah. As Hajj is a once in a lifetime opportunity, we tried to pray inside the mosque as much as we could so that we could get more blessings.
People praying in the mall.
People praying outside the mosque.
In the next part, I will continue my journey into Medinah.