Religious Journey

Hey guys I hope that you all are doing great.
This week I would like to share with you all a recent trip that I took. The trip was a religious journey that is an obligation for every mentally and physically healthy and financially able Muslim to complete once in his/her lifetime. The destination of this journey was Mecca and the reason was to complete the Hajj pilgrimage.

Al Kaaba during Hajj

Pilgrimage to Mecca occurred thousand of years ago and it is preformed annually and it has its roots from the time of Prophet Abraham who build Al Kaaba with his son Ismael for it to be the center of worship for all humankind. Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam (1- Faith, 2- Prayer, 3- Zakat, 4- Fasting, 5- Hajj) and it goes for about 7 days in which Muslims at the end of it celebrate what is known as Eid Al Hajj (Muslims only celebrate 2 holidays Eid El Futor and Eid Al Hajj).
During pilgrimage certain acts of worship should be preformed to god. And the main concept is to have all mankind under the name of one god. Pilgrimage is considered a time where all people are equal and there are no differences what so ever. No difference between male or female, master and labor, rich or poor, black or white. The equality is really shown during this time of the year. Where all humans are gathered for one reason and do the exact same thing, praying the same prayers, repeating the same supplements, and preforming the same rituals.
During pilgrimage all Muslim men (only who are doing Hajj) from everywhere around the world have to dress in a certain way for the first 3 days of Hajj and it is called Ihram. Of course they can change into clean and new ones but the have to eat, sleep, and preform Hajj rituals while wearing this dress code. This is also a way to show equality between rich and poor…etc. females on the other hand are not required a certain dress code. But they are asked to not over beautify them selves.

This is an image i took at the airport. and this is the dress code for men they need to wear.

My Husband and I had to travel by air to The Holy city since it is on the west side of the kingdom and as you know we are on the east side. After we landed we imdeiatly went to El kaaba.

This is me and the building behind me is Al Haram where the kaaba is

This is my husband wearing the Ihram. Behind him is Al kaaba and what is known as the tallest clock in the world

This is a close-up image of Al Kaaba door. Every year the government of Saudi Arabia dresses Al Kaaba with the finest and most expensive fabric in the world. The door of Al kaaba is made out of pure gold along with the patterns of calligraphic statement of the Quran. By the end of each Islamic year (The month of Tho elheja where Hajj is done within this month) the government give Al Kaaba new “clothing” in celebration of 1- Eid Al Hajj. 2- the end of a blissful pilgrimage. 3- the start of a new year.

Getting back to my trip, I was talking to my husband about the number of people who came to this year Hajj. The government of Saudi Arabia announced that this year the number of pilgrims were much lower than each year where they estimate the number of pilgrims to be around 3,161,573. Although it is said that this number is not as high as other years, I think that it is still a lot. People where everywhere. Let me leave you guys with some images I took.

there are lots and lots of people. you can see people even at the far end of the image

lots of people are tenting near by and sleeping on the streets rather than sleeping at a hotel or a rentable tents that has lots of amenities or a rentable apartments. The government has tried every thing to keep these people stay of streets because it is very dangerous to them selves and to others.

This is another image of people who are sleeping and spending their time on the side of streets.

my husband at the tram in the holy city. the tram is build to serve pilgrims at Hajj. After finishing half of the rituals in Al Hajj it is required for women and women to either cut you hair by shortening it just a little bit or for men only shaving it all of so guess what my husband decided on.

my husband infront of Al Haram building.

Al Haram has marvelous interiors. This is the sealing.

I felt terrified of the amount of people down there so I decided I will not go down.

it was my first time preforming pilgrimage although it was very hard, preforming it was very fulfilling plus it was really fun when you get to know people and make friends. It is really interesting to see how at the end we are ALL equal. And that’s the essence of Islam.


6 thoughts on “Religious Journey

    • sorry for the late LATE respond but better now then never right? ;P
      My dear these are not masks, they are for protection. Me and my husband wore them to prevent our selves from getting sick since we do not want to pick any kind of disease like the flu that will weaken us.

  1. I think your blog is excellent. I have a 17 year old Saudi student from Mecca staying with me, and I have been trying to understand more about his culture, but it is not always easy to ask questions for fear of touching on a subject one shouldn’t. I am very happy to have seen your photos also. Keep writing!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s