Types of Hajj

Hajj is a rejuvenating journey, a ritual which cleanses the heart of a believer from all sins. Its blessings and rewards are endless. When a Pilgrim goes to Makkah to perform this beautiful act of worship, he/she is a guest at the house of Allah SWT, Subhan’Allah!

Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (SAW) said:

“Those who perform the Hajj and those who perform the Umrah are people who have come to visit Allah. If they supplicate Him He will respond to them, and if they ask Him for forgiveness He will forgive them.” (Tirmidhi 2536 and Ibn Majah)

There are a prescribed set of compulsory rituals that have to be performed in order to accomplish Hajj. While the basic Manasiks (rituals) of Hajj remain the same, there are a few variations on how to perform these rites, which categorizes Hajj into three types:

  • Hajj al-Ifrad
  • Hajj al-Qiran
  • Hajj al-Tamattu’

Hajj al-Ifrad:

Ifrad means “Isolation”. The pilgrim performing Hajj al-Ifrad is called Mufrid. In this type of Hajj, the Mufrid enters into the state of Ihram at Meeqat with the intention of performing only Hajj. In other words, he/she does not perform Umrah. Mufrid should say:

“Labbayk Allahumma labbayka bi Hajj” or “Labbayka Hajjan”
“O Allah! I answer Your call to perform Hajj.”

The pilgrim remains in the state of Ihram till he has carried out all the rituals of Hajj, upto the Farewell Tawaf (Tawaf e Wida). It is not obligatory for Mufrid to slaughter the hadi (sacrificial animal).

Hajj al-Qiran:

Qiran means “conjoining”. In this type of Hajj, the Pilgrim (called Qarin in this case) goes into the state of Ihram, at Meeqat, with the intention of performing both Umrah and Hajj. He/She performs Umrah (Tawaf and Sa’i) and maintains Ihram till all the rituals of Hajj are performed. In other words, a Qarin is not allowed to abandon the state of Ihram after carrying out Umrah. The pilgrim should say:

“Labbayk Allahumma labbayka bi Hajjin wa Umrah”

“O Allah! I answer Your call to perform Hajj and Umrah”

 It is obligatory for Qarin to offer the sacrifice of animal in the name of Allah SWT.

Hajj al-Tamattu:

Tamattu‘ means “to resort to ease and comfort”. It is the easiest and the most abundantly performed type of Hajj. The Pilgrims carry out both Hajj and Umrah but with separate Ihram each, which means that there is a relaxation of Ihram between Hajj and Umrah. The pilgrim performing Hajj al-Tamattu is called Mutamatti’.

In this type of Hajj, the pilgrim or Mutamatti’ first goes into the state of Ihram at Meeqat with the intention of performing only Umrah. He/She should say:

“Labbayk Allahumma labbayka bi Umrah” or “Labbayka ‘Umratan”
“O Allah! I answer Your call to perform Umrah.”

 The Mutamatti’ performs the Tawaf, prays two Rak’ahs at Maqaam e Ibrahim, drinks Zamzam, carries out Sa’i and then gets the hair cut or shaved. This ends his/her Umrah and the Mutamatti comes out of the state of Ihram. Now he can continue wearing his normal clothes and the restrictions of Ihram does not apply.

Then on the day of Tarwiyah, that is the 8th of Dhu al-Hijjah, the pilgrim again enters into the state of Ihram, this time with the intention of Hajj, saying:

“Labbayk Allahumma labbayka bi Hajj” or “Labbayka Hajjan”
“O Allah! I answer Your call to perform Hajj.”

 The pilgrim then performs all the rituals of Hajj and then comes out of the state of Ihram. Slaughtering of hadi is mandatory in Hajj al-Tamattu‘. Allah SWT says in the Quran:

“If any one wishes to continue the Umrah on to the Hajj, he must make an offering such as he can afford, but if he cannot afford it, he should fast three days during the Hajj and seven days on his return, making ten days in all. This is for those whose household is not in (the precincts of) the Sacred Mosque, and fear Allah, and know that Allah, is strict in punishment.” [2:196]

For those who set out for Hajj way before the Day of Tarwiyah (8 Dhu al-Hijjah), Tamattu’ is the most practical form of Hajj to carry out; while for those who arrive at Makkah close to the Day of Tarwiyah, both Qiran and Ifrad can be easily consummated. It must be clear, however, that all the three above mentioned ways to perform Hajj are perfectly acceptable in Islam; it is merely a matter of preference, convenience and choice.

Which one is the best way to perform Hajj? There is a difference of opinion among scholars on it. According to some, Tamattu’ and Qiran are better and should be preferred since both of these are more demanding and require more effort from the pilgrim. While some scholars are of the view that Ifrad is the best form of Hajj since it allows the pilgrim to carry out Hajj rituals with full involvement, focus and concentration. However it should be remembered that it’s not the type of Hajj which should matter, the reward and acceptance of Hajj lies in the intention, zest and devotion with which Hajj rituals are performed.

As Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said:

“Verily, all actions are but driven by intention and for everyone is what he intended.” [Bukhari and Muslim]

Rest, Allah SWT knows the Best!

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3 Responses to Types of Hajj

  1. Shafaq says:

    An informative piece of writing i must say….May Allah give His reward and bestow blessings for each of the hajji’s effort, money, sweat, ibadat, prayers….and accept, by His grace, their hajj as makbool….Ameen

  2. Muslimah says:

    Very informative, thanks!

  3. Dawn Travels says:

    Labbayk Allahumma labbayka bi Hajj
    O Allah! I answer Your call to perform Hajj
    INSA ALLAH one time all muslims are perform to Hajj in our life may Allah bless you all muslims n ummah.

    http://www.dawntravels.com/hajj.htm

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