Is Umrah compulsory in Islam? from Abdul Maaz's blog

Umrah is an Arabic word literally translating to the meaning “visiting a populated place”. In Islam, there are two pilgrimages for Muslims. Hajj being the obligatory Ibadah, remains a Fardh (once in a lifetime) for every person who is mentally, physically as well as financially capable of it. Umrah, on the other hand, isn’t a Fardh rather a Sunnah of Hazrat Muhammad (SAWW).

In other words, Umrah is also a spiritual journey i.e. pilgrimage that Muslims from all around the globe undertake to Makkah but it isn’t compulsory to perform, even if a person possesses the mental, financial and physical ability for it. 

Why Umrah is Called as the Minor Pilgrimage?

As said earlier, there are two holy pilgrimages in Islam. Hajj pilgrimage being the obligatory one, Umrah is voluntary and also referred to as ‘Minor Pilgrimage’. Since most of the rituals of umrah also resemble that of hajj, that’s why it is also called as a minor pilgrimage. 

What are the main differences between Hajj and Umrah?

1. Fardh or Voluntary.

Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam, therefore its performance, once in a lifetime, becomes compulsory for every Muslim who can afford it; financially, physically as well as mentally. While Umrah is merely a sunnah of Hazrat Muhammad (SAWW) but rewards a pilgrim with benefits that are no less than that of hajj. Yet, it’s voluntary to perform umrah.

2. Time of Performance.

Hajj is an annual pilgrimage. It is performed during the 8th to 13th of Dhul-Hijjah; the last month of the Islamic year. Every year, tens of millions of Muslims traveling from all over the world gather in the holy city of Makkah for the holy rituals. It almost takes several days and nights to complete the hajj. 

Umrah, on the other hand, is a pilgrimage that can be performed at any time of the year but excluding the days of hajj. For which, hundreds of thousands of Muslims from all around the globe travel throughout the year for its performance. Unlike Hajj, Umrah can be perfumed in a matter of a few hours. 

Rituals of Umrah.

There are four fundamental rituals of Umrah that every pilgrim has to offer.

1.Entering the State of Ihram; Wearing Ihram clothing as well as reciting the intention for umrah. There are several prohibitions and precautions to take care of when a person enters into the state of Ihram that can only be denounced upon the completion of Umrah rituals.

2.Performing Tawaf; Circumambulating around the holy Kaabah for 7 Compete rounds in an anti-clockwise direction.

3.Sayee of Safah and Marwah; Strolling between the two hills for 7 consecutive rounds.

4.Halq or Taqsir; Upon the completion of Umrah rituals, shaving of the head preferred for men. However, men can also opt for trimming. On the other hand, Women can only cut a fingertip’s length of their hair.

So, if you are planning to perform a voluntary but highly rewarding act of Umrah, check out the variety of Cheap Packages as Umrah Experts Offers Best Hajj and Umrah Packages to book your journey in advance. 

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