Hajj is the name assigned to the annual pilgrimage undertaken by thousands and millions of Muslims. This religious pilgrimage starts in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, and is important in Islam. Every elderly Muslim must perform this excursion at least once in their lifespan. The pilgrimage takes place during the Islamic month of Zil Hijjah, which also happens to be the Islamic calendar’s final month. It's among Islam's five pillars, along with Shahadah, Salat, Zakat, and Sawm. Istita'ah refers to the status of being financially and physically able to undertake the Hajj, and a Muslim who achieves this requirement is known as a Mustati. The Hajj is a representation of the Muslim people's unity and reverence for God. We are aware of the pertinence of Hajj in the lives of Muslim people. It's worth considering its spot in children's lives. When it comes to children a lot of questions came to our mind including can children undertake Hajj? Can they pursue this religious pilgrimage as pilgrims with their parents? What are the laws and policies of Hajj in Islam for children? These are some most important and naturally occurring questions when one decides to take their kids with them.
The Hajj pilgrimage can be viewed as a meaningful experience for kids amid their developing years. Everyone who is capable of doing this virtuous act is deemed to be fortunate and blessed. For several families, bringing their kids to Hajj is a great chance to provide them with a perception that they will cherish for the rest of their lives. It can be an excellent learning opportunity for kids concerning the importance of pilgrimage in the Religion of Islam. Children can also cherish the rewards of this spiritual journey at the same time. It depends on their parents whether or not to send their children on the pilgrimage, but children are under no pressure to do so. They will also be rewarded for executing this pilgrimage successfully. In a Hadith, it is stated that:
This clearly shows that children can perform Hajj conveniently with their parents and there is no loss in it. And it is shown from the above Hadith that children also get rewarded for performing it but this does not negate the fact that kids in their adulthood must undergo this pilgrimage again. As they enter the maturity phase of their lives, it will be obligatory for them to embark on it. moreover, for kids who do not know how to say the difficult Arabic Duas or Talbiyah, their parents can narrate on their basis. As it is mentioned in another Hadith:
Hajj is the time when everyone either they are performing or not gets excited. Kids despite less understanding know that something is coming for which everyone is getting prepared. Especially Hajj brings Eid-ul-Adha and Muslims tend to prepare themselves for it. Kids learn a lot from these things every year but if you are taking your kids with you to undertake the spiritual journey of Hajj, then there are some things that you must teach them carefully. Here's a quick guide we put together for parents who have planned to go on Hajj with their family and kids:
Teaching them by telling stories is a great way to put things in their minds. It also helps them to understand the basics quickly. Start by educating your kids about the meaning and purpose of Hajj. Kids tend to empathize with new environments and sites after listening to stories about them. Thus, one of the easiest ways for kids to understand about Hajj is by storytelling. While teaching them about Hajj, tell them why Hajj is the most superior Ibaadah and how one gets blessed after undertaking it.
The Ka’bah is a crucial component of the hajj procedure. Muslims tend to circulate around them in an anticlockwise manner so teach them about it. Based on the kid's level you might educate them regarding the context and significance of the Ka’bah. With the degree of their understanding ability, you can teach them in different ways like you can create cards or models of Ka’bah with them. Actually taught them that the Kaaba is the House of Allah (SWT) and the very first Place of Worship, and it was constructed upon Allah's orders by Ibrahim (A.S) and Ismail (A.S). And that during Hajj Muslims circulated around them.
Reading is an excellent way to convey information. Children adore books. Speak with them on Hajj, its relevance, and the Islamic practices associated with it. It is one of the most effective ways to educate kids about any topic, so take benefit from it. There is a famous and informative Hajj-themed book Going to Mecca, written by Na’ima Roberts, most parents use this book as a guide for their kid's better understanding.
During the Hajj or while placing on the Ihram, the Talbiyah is memorized many times. Try reciting Talbiyah loudly in front of them as kids are most likely to copy what others do especially their parents. Repeating the Talbiyah is a kind of Ibaadah since it incorporates the idea of Tawhid or the oneness of Allah (SWT). Tell your kids how to recite or memorize the Talbiyah.
Initiate by telling them about the search of Hazrat Hajra (A.S) and her running between Safa and Marwa for water. Tell them how Zamzam emerged and the purification of this special water. You can also watch videos on YouTube or storybooks that show the history with appropriate picturization. Then, share the story of Hazrat Ibrahim (A.S) and his sacrifice of his child, and that why we celebrate Eid-ul-Adha on the last day of Hajj. Kids are more prone to adapt to things quickly and telling these stories will definitely build up their understanding to some extent about Islam and Hajj.
Managing a whole tour of Hajj with kids no doubt is a challenging task. But parents prefer to take their kids with them so they can grasp better knowledge and understanding about Islam from the start. From planning and preparing to tips for managing the difficult trip, here's everything you need to know before conducting Hajj with your family and children. Before embarking on a family trip to Makkah, it is necessary to know what to bring, precautions to take, and methods to include children in the holy pilgrimage. Following are some of the elements that you should consider from packing to booking and other stuff:
Look for travel operators who provide kid-friendly Hajj packages with all the required facilities and services that one might need during their pilgrimage. Many packages, for instance, include guides to oversee kids while you execute Hajj rites and you can also bring them with you. Don’t book your package in a hurry rather take time and go for the best one within your range of budget. Booking in advance will also cost you less and can save a big amount of money.
Both you and your kids can get burned by the blistering sun. Carry plenty of sunscreen and hats for everyone in your family. You should also bring enough bottles of water because thirst would be an issue during most of your spiritual journey. Take less clothes with you and don’t overburden yourselves as it would be difficult to carry the luggage and you are unlikely to use everything you bring. Also brings some heat-resistant snacks or food as kids want something to eat after short periods. Add a travel pillow to your list of essentials in case if the kid wants to sleep somewhere, these pillows are basically portable. Moreover, bring the toiletries of your kids as you might them at any point so it’s better to have items like diapers, sheets, wet tissues, etc.
Kids are at times a bit noisy and keep the parents occupied at that times parents miss out on important documents and stuff. It’s better to keep extra copies of important travel documents to avoid last-minute chaos. Keep all those document copies of your family and kids at different places so if one gets misplaced you can rely on the other.
One of the parent's biggest concerns is getting split from their kids. A child identity bracelet or badge can provide you with a sense of security. For this, you can customize bracelets, badges, or anything you want as an identification for your kid. Furthermore, put a chit on your kid's pocket with the name of the kid, parent’s, and hotel along with hotel and local phone number. Remember that Hajj sites will become noisy and turbulent so, be prepared for it and take adequate security measures for your child's safety.
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Hajj is the name assigned to the annual pilgrimage undertaken by thousands and millions of Muslims. This religious pilgrimage starts in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, and is important in Islam. Every elderly Muslim must perform this excursion at least once in their lifespan. The pilgrimage takes place during the Islamic month of Zil Hijjah, which also happens to be the Islamic calendar’s final month. It's among Islam's five pillars, along with Shahadah, Salat, Zakat, and Sawm. ...Read More
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