- Posted January 8, 2012 by
Arafat, Mecca, Saudi Arabia
Hajj 2011 - Arafat
On the 8th of Dhul-Hijjah (November 4th, 2011), our group began our Hajj-e-Tumattu. The first step involved heading to the Kaaba to make our official intention (Talbiyah) for the beginning of Hajj. Then, we traveled via bus to Mount Arafat, as pictured here. Tents were set up as far as the eye could see for pilgrims to spend a night on the holy grounds. Arafat is a very significant aspect of Hajj, as pilgrims are encouraged to remember the Day of Judgment itself, during which all sins will be laid bare in the presence of God for the ultimate judgment of an individual's deeds. During Hajj, the time spent here in Arafat is an opportunity for pilgrims to pray to God for forgiveness of all their past sins. Individuals stay up throughout the night, reciting prayers and verses of the Quran alone as well as in larger group settings.
Of my entire Hajj experience, my time in Arafat still stands out as one of my favorite moments. Separated from all worldly luxuries, donned in the white garment of Ihraam, beneath the ominous, yet calming sky, all else disappeared but the words of the Holy Quran transcending my soul, one verse at a time.