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Hajj is a religious pilgrimage that Muslims go on to be forgiven from all their sins from Allah.

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Hajj is a religious pilgrimage that Muslims go on to be forgiven from all their sins from Allah. It involves going to Makkah, 'the mother town' (Qur'an 42:7), in Saudi Arabia. Muslims go to Hajj for a number of different reasons. Firstly, it is one of the five pillars of Islam so therefore it is fard (Arabic for compulsory). If you complete Hajj your sins are forgiven; 'as sinless as a new born baby' - Muhammad (pbuh). If you don't get to go to Makkah but were intending to, you are still forgiven from your sins as Allah judges you by your intentions as opposed to your actions. Also, Muslims may want to follow the example of Muhammad (pbuh). It is special for Muslims to go to Hajj because they can learn more about their religion. They can visit Muhammad's birthplace and the Ka'ba because Muslims face it five times a day. Muslims also want to show that they are prepared to worship Allah by making such a large sacrifice. Most Muslims try to get to Makkah at one point in their lives. Non-Muslims cannot get into Makkah. You need to get a permit from your mosque allowing you to enter. Muhammad (pbuh) made Makkah a holy city because he was born, lived and prayed there. When Muslims go on Hajj they are forgiven from their sins. ...read more.


It is also showing trust in Allah. Muslims believe that this improves their spiritual values and makes them better Muslims. If they can afford it, pilgrims on Hajj are obliged to offer an animal as sacrifice towards Allah. This is done at Mina, where the meat is roasted and eaten by the pilgrims. However, at least a third of it must be donated to those who are too poor to buy their own animal, although there is too much meat to distribute at once. This sacrifice is another reminder of the story of Ibrahim and Isma'il, since a ram was given to Ibrahim to sacrifice rather than his son. The sacrifice teaches Muslims to recognise that the meat we eat is a gift from Allah which should not be taken for granted. Also, due to the expense of buying a whole live animal, Muslims show that they are prepared to give up things for their religion. After the sacrifice, pilgrims are allowed to change out of their Ihram (the clothes that the pilgrims are required to wear) and relax for a while before changing back into the Ihram and completing the rituals of the Hajj. It is quite obvious that once a person has been on such a large, religious pilgrimage such as Hajj then their personality and attitude to life will change. ...read more.


There are also some rituals that emphasise the equality in Hajj. The Tawaf symbolises the unity of Muslims in the worship of God. The ritual involves all the pilgrims walking around the Ka'ba seven times in a clockwise direction. A non-Muslim, however, might argue that Hajj does not stress equality because they are not allowed into Makkah. I think this is an unfair opinion. One of the reasons I think this, and as do many others, is because I think it is fair to let Muslims have a place to worship for themselves. I think that if non-Muslims were to enter Makkah then it would turn into more of a tourist resort than a holy city for a religious pilgrimage. The Muslims may also feel very insecure if they were being watched by tourists as this would be very humiliating for them. The Muslims may also feel as if the spiritual atmosphere has gone if there are non-Muslims watching. I think it would be very unfair and inconsiderate if Hajj allowed non-Muslims in. It is a holy city and would contradict the Muslim beliefs. I think it would make the Muslims feel very uncomfortable. Muslims treat Hajj as a very special place and if tourists were to intrude then it would be like strangers walking into their own homes uninvited. Even if non-Muslims don't think Hajj stresses equality, Makkah is a special place for Muslims and if they think it stresses equality then it doesn't matter as it is their pilgrimage and so it is their opinion that counts. ??????????????????????? ...read more.

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