HAJJ – The Lover’s Journey
“HAJJ EK AASHIQ KAA SAFAR”
The Shahadah is a declaration (eilaan) and a proof of ishq-e-Ilaahi (love for Allah) and Ta’luk (connection) with Allah. The ishq in the heart of the person who makes this declaration makes it compulsive upon him to stand in front of Allah five times a day. Sacrificing sleep, work, family etc he is ready to stand in the presence of his beloved. In fact if it were not for the duties that need to be fulfilled, he would never leave the masjid. For the lover there is no peace when away from the beloved. All thoughts are with the beloved even while busy with other work. Sleep eludes him but it is of no consequence (i.e. tahajjud and taraweeh salaat) and a little food suffices (i.e. fasting), while love for wealth decreases and zakat and other voluntary sadaqah (charity) is given away to the needy. All of these conditions are a proof of the ishq-e-Ilaahi in one’s heart.
Love increases and for the lover of Allah it is not enough to just sacrifice sleep and food. His love has increased his desire to be in the presence of the Beloved – now the lover leaves for Hajj leaving everything behind in his quest for his Beloved. He heads for the markaz (the centre) of where countless mercies descend, the Baytullah, not caring for his appearance or dress, chanting “labbayk, allaahumma labbayk” over and over again as if saying, “I want only You O my Beloved, make me yours”!
He reaches the house of his Beloved and circumambulates it like Majnun did around the streets where his beloved Layla lived. Then like a mad lover he leaves for the jungle and reaches Mina, then the plains of Arafah. Here was the place where Adam begged forgiveness and re-established his connection with Allah. Finally finding solace in this very same place he moves on to Muzdalifah and spends the night in contemplation and remembrance. Here he makes a promise of making Shaytaan an enemy and he collects pebbles for the humiliation of the enemy. After Rami where the pebbles are thrown for the pleasure of the Beloved and the humuliation of the enemy, a sacrifice is made which is a demonstration of sacrificing his own life if it was permissible to do so. Now he returns for Tawafe Ziyarat, this time cicumambulating with love and devotion after establishing a deep connection with the Beloved whereas before the circumambulating was that of a majnun (mad lover) and a mujrim (criminal – not sure if this is the correct translation).
Knowing that I have been unable to do justice to Shaykh’s words, I nevertheless post it as it may Insha Allah inspire others to listen to the lecture. May Allah grant us the Hajj and Ziyarat of the Ush-shaaq (the Lovers). Aameen.
For those intending to go this year, may Allah make it easy and accept every step. Please, please remember us in your Du’a while in the blessed places.
Lecture by Shaykh Muhammad Saleem Dhorat