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Virtues of Umrah – a spiritual journey

All year long, we hear our relatives and loved one’s hustle and bustle, buzzing with energy, excited to put on the “ihram”. The vigor to see the kabah for the first time, to hear the booming azan, to witness the bliss in the prophet’s mosque, to travel all the way to Makkah for Umrah…..

One Umrah is an expiation for the sins committed between it and another Umrah. (Bukhari, Muslim).

That’s the ultimate goal; attaining this virtue of expiations of sins. The focal expectation wanting to be achieved by us all. We spend a major part of our lives in the darkness of sins, always wanting Allah’s mercy to shine down upon us. Undertaking this journey is a great opportunity to reflect, think and break free of those sins.

The virtue of the sin beings expiated is further amplified in Ramadan. The Prophet ﷺ said “Umrah performed in the month of Ramadan will equal (in rewards) to that of Hajj or Hajj performed with Me.” (Bukhari, Muslim).  Imagine an entire hajj with The Prophet ﷺ; the immense rewards that would be for us when we undertake the journey in Ramadan……

This act of Umrah; a simple journey to Allah’s house is a voluntary act we Muslims may undertake all year long. Wearing tow pieces of unstitched cloth, chanting the “talbiyah”, huge crowds gather in the haram to perform the tawaf of the Kabah. Running between Safa and Marwa, the Umrah is completed by the total shaving of the head, or symbolic cutting of the hair. All of it topped by refreshing glasses of Zam Zam, and heartwarming emotions of community, brotherhood and solidarity.

The Prophet ﷺ himself performed Umrah four times in his life (Bukhari). He left behind a legacy for us to follow and pursue.

Streets of Makkah hosts thousands of humble pilgrims walking towards the mosque. Bowing their heads in servitude and respect, they unanimously resonate the words “Here I am, O Allah, here I am. Here I am, You have no partner, here I am. Verily all praise and blessings are Yours, and all sovereignty, You have no partner”. Instantly hearing these words echoing across the streets, one is filled with total submission to Allah’s might, his absolute King and Lordship, The Highest.

Standing in rows pilgrims are awestruck at the sheer magnitude of the people present. All of them gathered for One God, rich or pauper in the same simple clothes.

It is an overwhelming experience, with immense rewards of sins being erased, and a second chance to discover ourselves. May Allah give us the honor of visiting his house for the sake of Umrah.

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