Hajj and All of its Components are Dhikrullāh

Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani

Those who did not go for Hajj must prepare to go today, tomorrow, or next year, but make your intention and prepare to go. The Prophet (s) said to the Sahabah (r):

مَا الْعَمَلُ فِي أَيَّامِ الْعَشْرِ أَفْضَلَ مِنَ الْعَمَلِ فِي هَذِهِ ‏”‏‏.‏ قَالُوا وَلاَ الْجِهَادُ قَالَ ‏”‏ وَلاَ الْجِهَادُ، إِلاَّ رَجُلٌ خَرَجَ يُخَاطِرُ بِنَفْسِهِ وَمَالِهِ فَلَمْ يَرْجِعْ بِشَىْءٍ ‏”‏‏.‏

“No good deeds done on other days are superior to those done on these (first ten days of Dhul Hijjah).” Then some companions of the Prophet (s) said, “Not even jihad?” He replied, “Not even jihad, except that of a man who does it by putting himself and his property in danger (for Allah’s sake) and does not return with any of those things.”29

It means, the ten days of Dhul-Hujjah are more important than that, during which we must try to do dhikr as much as possible, such as, “Ħasbuna ’Lāh Rabbuna ’Llāh,” or, “lā ilāha illa ’Llāh,” or whatever comes to the heart.
Allah (swt) will be very happy with those who are making a lot of dhikr and shows them to His Angels, saying, “Look how happy I am with them!” All deeds, prayers, fasting, zakat, Hajj, Shahadah, everything you do that reminds you of Allah (swt) is Dhikrullāh. These actions are only decreed for the sake of Dhikrullāh ; these constitutions and orders are there for the purpose of Dhikrullāh! Saying “alħamdulillāh” is Dhikrullāh ! The one addicted to Dhikrullāh will enter Paradise laughing because of no hisaab, no account. His mind is already with Allah (swt), not in dunyā, so he is not seeing anything else; he is only loving Allah (swt), and that one does not need to walk on Širāţ al-Mustaqīm, the Straight Path, as he is already there. So Dhikrullāh is a safety net for us to enter Paradise.

اتْلُ مَا أُوحِيَ إِلَيْكَ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَأَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ إِنَّ الصَّلَاةَ تَنْهَى عَنِ الْفَحْشَاء وَالْمُنكَرِ وَلَذِكْرُ اللَّهِ أَكْبَرُ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ مَا تَصْنَعُونَ

Recite what is sent of the Book by inspiration to you and establish regular prayer, for prayer restrains from shameful and unjust deeds. And remembrance of Allah is the greatest (thing in life) without doubt. And Allah knows the (deeds) you do. 30

“Read what has been revealed to you from the Book and establish the prayer!” Reading the Holy Qur’an and beginning your prayer is Dhikrullāh . When you enter into prayer, what do you say? “Allahu Akbar,” which means, “Yā Rabbīyy, I’m sorry for the way I’m doing my prayer, as it is not to Your Honor. My ego, my bad `amal is blended with my prayer and it doesn’t befit You, so please forgive me. You are Allahu Akbar, You are the Greatest, no one can reach You, yā Rabbīyy! I did not praise You as You deserve.” Then according to the Ħanafī School, you say:

سُبْحانَكَ اللَّهُمَّ وَبِحَمْدِكَ، وَتَبارَكَ اسْمُكَ، وَتَعَالَى جَدُّكَ، وَلاَ إِلَهَ غَيْرُكَ

Subhaanak allaahumma wa bi ħamdika wa tabaaraka ‘smuku wa ta`ala jadduka wa lā ilāha ghayruk.
Glory is to You O Allah, and praise. Blessed is Your Name and Exalted is Your Majesty. There is none worthy of worship but You.

You are making tasbeeh and ħamd, and saying, “Your Name be blessed!”
In the Shafi`i School, you say:

إِنِّي وَجَّهْتُ وَجْهِيَ لِلَّذِي فَطَرَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ حَنِيفًا وَمَا أَنَاْ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ

For me, I have set my face, firmly and truly, towards Him Who created the Heavens and the Earth, and never shall I give partners to Allah.31

إِنَّ صَلاَتِي وَنُسُكِي وَمَحْيَايَ وَمَمَاتِي لِلّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ اَ شَرِيكَ لَهُ وَبِذَلِكَ أُمِرْتُ وَأَنَاْ أَوَّلُ الْمُسْلِمِينَ

Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, the Cherisher of the Worlds in whose divinity none has a share: for thus have I been bidden, and I shall (always) be foremost among those who surrender themselves unto Him.32

This du`ā also has Tawħīd in it, it has Hajj in it: “I directed my face to the One Who created Heavens and Earth and I am not from the mushriks that associate someone with You,” and “All my prayers and all my nusuk,” meaning, the different rituals of Hajj, “are all from Allah!” Making ţawāf, sa`ī, going to `Arafat, coming to Mina, Muzdalifah, and going back to Makkah, all of these are nusukee. “My life and my death are in Your Hand, yā Rabbīyy, and I am from the Muslims.” This is the du`ā of Sayyīdinā Ibrāhīm (as).
That is why Sayyidah `Ayesha (r) mentioned in a Sahih Hadith that the Prophet (s) said:

إِنَّمَا جُعِلَ الطَّوَافُ بِالْبَيْتِ وَبَيْنَ الصَّفَا وَالْمَرْوَةِ وَرَمْىُ الْجِمَارِ لإِقَامَةِ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ ‏‏ ‏‏

Going around the Ka`bah, running between Safaa and Marwa and stoning of the pillars are meant for Dhikrullāh, the remembrance of Allah.33

The ţawāf—to circumambulate around the Ka`bah—has been ordered for every person who enters the Makkan Sanctuary (al-Ħaram al-Makki). If a person lives outside of Makkah, in Jeddah for example, he has to do Ţawāf al-Qudūm, the Circumambulation of Arrival, once he enters into Makkah. Sa`ī, the running between Safaa and Marwa is also a ritual that must be performed by Allah’s order. Those on `Umrah are obliged to do sa`ī between Safaa and Marwa, while those on Hajj are obligated to perform many other rituals, including pelting the Jamarāt. So, all of these nusuk, rituals, are considered forms of Dhikrullāh. Even throwing stones at the devil is from Dhikrullāh. You are stoning Shayţān, but you are saying, Ridan li ‘r-Raħmān, raghman li ‘sh-shayţān, “(This is for) Allah, the Most Merciful to be happy with us and for Shayţān to be down!” to reject Shayţān and for Haqq, the Divine Truth to rise up. Sa`ī, the running between Safaa and Marwa involves reading many kinds of du`ā that the Prophet (s) used to recite, and thus is Dhikrullāh. Ţawāf around the Ka`bah, going to Mina, going to `Arafat, going to Muzdalifah are all forms of Dhikrullāh. All the principles of Hajj are forms of Dhikrullāh.


29 Bukhārī.
30 Sūratu ’l-`Ankaboot, 29:45.
31 Sūratu ’l-An`am, 6:79.
32 Sūratu ’l-An`am, 6:162-163.
33 Abū Dawood and Tirmidhi.

Excerpted from Makkan Openings: A Pilgrim’s Guide to Divine Secrets