What is the significance of Tawaf Hajj?
Hajj is considered to be one of the essential pilgrimages of Muslims and it is essential to practice the same at least once in a life. However, the same contains various rituals such as dressing in Ihram, slaughtering a Halal animal, circumambulation, running back and forth in the hills of Safa and Marwa, and much more. One of the top-most rituals to accomplish Hajj is ‘Tawaf’ commonly known as circumambulation. The Tawaf Hajj pilgrims move around the ‘Kaaba’ in a clockwise direction and take a total of seven rounds. The rounds are mainly commenced from the point where the coloured stone is embellished and are concluded at the same spot.
Although the pilgrims have to either touch or kiss the black stone before setting off for the circumambulation, most of the Muslims can’t access the same due to an extreme crowd. Generally, due to the visiting of a large number of people to the state of Mecca, some pilgrims also suffer from respiratory issues and difficulty in breathing. It is acceptable if a person does not opt to get close to the black stone and instead hold their hands up and recite ‘Bismillah Allahu Akbar’ every time they move toward the next Tawaf Hajj. For men, the first three cycles must be taken at a hurried pace whereas the leisurely pace is permitted for the rest four circuits. After finishing the seven circuits, Muslims pray two Rak’ahs of Nafl in the place of Ibrahim following which they drink water often known as Abe Zamzam from the consecrated well of Allah. After the successful conclusion of these practices, pilgrims are entailed in the journey of Safa and Marwa.
Tawaf Hajj can be practiced as many times as the pilgrim desires but it is recommended to take at least two Tawaf i.e., one during the hajj procedure and another while leaving Mecca.