After a 1-year ban, Iranian Muslims were allowed to visit the most sacred place for Islam
Around 2 million Muslims fulfilled the Hajj, one of the 5 pillars of Islam: to visit the holly city of Mecca, at least once-in-a-lifetime. This year, the diplomatic tension between Saudi Arabian a Qatar, and the visit of the Iranian Muslims, have been under the spotlight.
Despite the possible tension between the Qataris and the Saudis, the governor of the province of Mecca, Jaled al Faisal, assured that the Hajj of this year was a "complete success" and there were no official reports of injured due to stampedes or terrorists attacks.
What is the Hajj?
The Hajj is the massive pilgrimage of the Muslims from all around the world to the city of Mecca. It's made during the Dhu al-hijjah period, which is in the 12 month of the Muslim calendar, and close to the New Year.
The Hajj is one of the 5 pillars of the Muslim religion, next to the five daily prayers, alms given, fasting during the Ramadan, and the profession of faith. The visit to the city represents the journey of the prophet Muhammad 1,400 years ago, when he traveled from the city of Medina to Mecca.
Pilgrims must wear an Irahm, a complete white dress with any decoration. Women usually wear a burqa or a niqab. They must also not use cologne or any fragrance.
Lee en Español: Peregrinación pacífica hacia la Meca
Muslims who arrive to the city, circle the rock of the Kaaba, "God's house", 7 times. According to Islam tradition, the first stone of the Kaaba was placed by Adam and Abraham built the rest.
They also walk to Arafat, a place situated 20 kilometers from Mecca, where they celebrate the Ramy al Jamarat, which consists to throwing stones to a wall representing the devil. After that, the community sacrifice sheep and lambs; with their meat, they must feed the less fortunate.
After visiting Mecca, some visit Medina, the hometown of the prophet Muhammad.
Latin American Post | Santiago Gómez Hernández
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