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This is a special series of Blogs which describes my time and experiences during Hajj this year.
Aziziya – Haram Shareef
The number of people in the Mataf keeps fluctuating. For a little while, you would feel that the rush has considerably gone down; in the next few moments you would see Tawaf circle swelling to the edges of Mataf. It is Allah’s arrangement. People come, stay, leave and others come. Sitting in Mataf, you would keep seeing it and would not tire.
You would also not tire looking at Ka’aba tul Musharrafah. However, Ka’aba tul Musharrafah has such Elegant Grandeur that you would not be able to stare at it continuously. Your stare shall be broken quickly.
It is said that 120 Blessings descend upon Ka’aba tul Musharrafah every day. 60 upon those doing Tawaf; 40 upon those doing other Ibadaat; and 20 upon those who just sit and look at Ka’aba tul Musharrafah with affection and devotion.
It is also commonly reported that while you are in Haram Shareef, you would get what you desire immediately. People narrate many such instances. I had had several such experiences and shall share one.
On a previous occasion in Mataf (not during Hajj), the crowd was really thin. The queue for kissing Hajr e Aswad was also small. I thought it was a golden opportunity and I stood at the end of the queue. It kept moving. When my turn arrived, the guard standing above Hajr e Aswad did not allow me and gestured me to go away. I got away a few steps and felt very poor, dejected and deprived upon losing the opportunity. Right the next moment, the guard called me and gestured to me to come and kiss the Hajr e Aswad. This is what is special here. You don’t even pray, only think and feel and get it. You would hear many such instances from others also.
There is no doubt that Allah has a system of Special Watch at Haram Shareef, Ka’aba tul Musharrafah and Mataf. Hundreds of thousands of people pray in an equal number of languages and all are heard. Some prayers may be answered right away; others would be answered in due course. InShaAllah.
Let us take this point further.
At a place which is, if I may say, under Special Surveillance at all times, it is all the more important to be very careful and respectful.
Would you not consider that while all Ibadaat are being recorded in real time, so are all of the wrong things being committed; such as disturbing other pilgrims during Tawaf, making long, useless talks with your group, making long unnecessary calls on mobile, eating dates and throwing its’ stones in the Mataf which would prick and hurt others, throwing trash in Mataf or anywhere in Haram Shareef, and engaging in any objectionable or undesirable activity?
Allah is Lateef (seeing even most subtle things) and Khabeer (knowing all happenings). Allah’s Watch is upon us at all times, and it is even closer in Haram Shareef.
Swallows (ababeel) still fly over Ka’aba tul Musharrafah and they are the only bird flying over it. Their flying and chirping in the morning is lovely and audible. However, what happened to Abraha 1500 years ago could happen even now to those who try to violate the sanctity of Haram Shareef.
I wish to emphasize with the greatest possible concern that Harmain Shareefain are extremely respectable places; the highest we could think of. Every movement we do here, must be done with required protocol.
In the Hajj/Umrah guidebooks, it is written that when you are in Masjid Nabawi or Haram Shareef, recite niyat for Aetikaaf. Then, your laying, sleeping, eating shall be included in Ibadat and you would get Thawab for these. Mind it, the niyat of Aetikaaf does not absolve us from following protocol.
Thawab and its collection appears constantly in our lives. The Believers (not just Muslims) have individually and collectively fit ‘Thawab Calculators’ upon themselves. These keep ticking and adding Thawab. Apparently small acts such as holding glass of water in right hand can accrue enough Thawab to match several martyrs. Or just praying 2-4 raka’at of Ishraq prayer might accrue Thawab equivalent to several Hajj. We look at the credit balance on our Thawab Calculator and go into bliss. Who would be more pious than me? I have millions and millions of Thawab units.
It has become highly necessary to have an ‘Azaab Calculator’ as well. It would tell that 50,000 units were debited due to 10 lies told to others; that 500,000 units were debited for taking bribe and doing undue favor; and 50,000,000 units were debited for usurping the property of orphan nephew, and so on. The Azaab Calculator is urgently required to give us reality-check and bring us out of our misplaced pious slumber.
Alas, it is not happening. Even at organized, collective level, ‘Amar bil Ma’roof’ (asking to do good) is being talked day and night; ‘Nahi unil Munkar (stopping from evils) is nowhere. No one wants to do it; probably because it is unpleasant and may result in the loss of followers. Bribery, Thievery, vagary is rampant; at the same time, all religious events draw hundreds of thousands of followers, but following the values and morals is at its lowest. Huge collective prayers are being conducted since many years, but the society keeps going deeper into the abyss of hell.
Once on a flight to Karachi, the gentleman sitting next to me was going back after ‘the collective prayer’. His main activity was gambling in horse races and he was very contented. We have kept good and evil together in a highly expert manner; one does not disturb the other.
I happened to read a short story by our famous writer, Razia Butt, which had the same topic. A house maid observes that lot of money comes into the house where she works, and it is apparently illegitimate. The lady of the house is always doing charity; food and such things. One day, she requests the lady to lend her some money for an urgent need. The lady refuses and says very harsh words. The maid later steals the amount from the house. While going back home, she gives five rupees to a beggar. The job is done, and the conscience is also satisfied.
Similarly, too many employers treat their staff shabbily. They would never pay their wages on time but would be very active in giving alms and charity.
This is another contradiction of our lives and is also our undoing.
Without doubt, Allah is Samad; above and beyond our highest limits.