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People are returning back to Atlanta after performing Hajj. For many, if not all, this is a life changing experience. One such experience is described by a 29 year-old Marietta resident who made Hajj with her husband.
Hajj was the most amazing experience of my entire life. Our life in Makkah and Madina revolved around Ibadah-the worship of Allah (ST). Sleeping, eating and other "necessities of life" were squeezed around our prayers and duaa. They were no longer high on the priority list but done in our spare time. Think of the nicest masjid you have ever seen and magnify it 100,0000 fold; this is Al Haram El-Makky. The feeling of doing tawaf alongside thousands of others is beyond words. All dressed in the simplest of clothing, glorifying Allah the Most High in their own languages and their own way. Some reading from duaa books and others just looking at the sky and saying "Oh Allah. I need you! I come to you with so many sins and only You...ONLY YOU can forgive." In the Masjid Al Haram, one's level of khoshoo'a - devotion to Allah, is something I never experienced else where. There was one day (during the farewell tawaf) that there were people everywhere...all praying maghrib prayer. Imagine all 3 floors of Al Haram completely filled with people; people outside praying miles down the road.
Then there was Madina. Allah (ST) says that he put double of Makkahs blessings in Madina. Al Haram Al Madany (Masjid Al Nabawy - the Prophet's Mosque) is a magnificent structure. At first I could not believe that I was only a few feet away from the Prophet's grave. Ya Allah! He went through so much torment and hardship to allow me to stand and pray to Allah in his masjid. The trials and tribulations we go through now are nothing..NOTHING...in comparison to those faced by the companions during the Prophet's time.
Following my stay in Madina were the big days...Hajj......Our stay in Mina was simple. We were sleeping in camps, making dhikr (Allah's remembrance and praying..getting ready for Arafat. The Prophet said that Hajj is Arafat......Imagine people of all socioeconomic status, different cultures and races making duaa with tears trickling from their eyes. We are weak and slaves of Allah despite our professions or status at home.
Sometimes I would look at the crowd with amazement. What other religion has millions of people gathered in the same place, at the same time, worshipping the one God. Yes it was hot; yes it was crowded; but this did not bother us. We were doing as Allah commanded...running to Him and saying "Here I am, Oh Allah. Here I am! You asked me to come so here I am!"
I strongly encourage all of you to take on this spiritual journey while you can. It is both physically and spiritually draining and the older you are, the harder it will be physically....but Subhan Allah, Allah gives you strength when you do something for His sake. We were on 2-3 hours of sleep a night and were functioning as if we had slept 12. We saw 80 year old men and women, running during tawaf and saa'y. Subhan Allah. I wish I could say more but there are really no words that I could use that would give this trip justice.
May Allah reward all of you Hajj Mabroor, thamb maghfoor, saay mashkoor and duaan makbool Inshallah.
Fee Aman Allah,
A New and Improved person Inshallah!
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