Our beloved Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allah exalt his mention ) said: "Ramadan has come to you. It is a blessed month that Allah The Almighty prescribed fasting during it and wherein the gates of heavens are open, the gates of Hell are shut, and the rebellious devils are chained. Allah placed a night, which is better than one thousand months, in this month. The Muslim who misses the goodness of this night is the real loser."
Every year, more than 2.5 million Muslim pilgrims from across the world perform the rites of Hajj in Makkah where the Ka'bah is located. Literally, Ka'bah (which simply means ‘cube’) is much more than a cube-shaped building draped in black. It is the symbol of Islamic unity and at the heart of Islam and in particular the principle of Monotheism upon which it is based. Referred to as Al-Bayt Al-Haraam (The Sacred House) and Al-Bayt Al-Ateeq (The ‘Ancient’ or ‘Independent’ House) in the Quran, the Ka'bah has a unique place in the life of any Muslim.
The first house of worship
Hajj is proclaimed
Once the Ka'bah had been built, the ritual of Hajj was established. Allaah Almighty, told Ibraaheem may Allaah exalt his mention (what means): “And proclaim to the people the Hajj [pilgrimage]; they will come to you on foot and on every lean camel…” [Quran 22: 27]
The House of Allaah Alone
By now, it should be abundantly clear that the Ka'bah is a concrete symbol of Islamic Monotheism, and that our relationship to it as Muslims is practical, sentimental and spiritual.
When the Prophet, sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ), completed the proclamation of the message, Makkah was conquered and people embraced Islam in multitudes, Allaah The Almighty enjoined performance of pilgrimage at the end of the ninth year of Hijrah. So, the Prophet, sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ), resolved to perform Hajj and he declared his intention for that purpose.
Due to flooding, fires, attacks and other disasters, the Ka'bah has been rebuilt on several occasions, but always on the same foundation built upon by Ibraaheem may Allaah exalt his mention. One of these renovations occurred few years before Prophet Muhammad's sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) prophethood. Although this was before the time of the Quranic Revelation, the people of Quraysh made a pledge not to use money made from impure sources, such as prostitution, usury and other types of bad dealing or injustice.
The Hadeeth (narration) of Jaabir may Allaah be pleased with him which draws for us the description of the Hajj of the Prophet, sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ), is a great Hadeeth on this topic and a cornerstone in clarifying the rulings of Hajj. This Hadeeth was narrated in full by Imaam Muslim in his Saheeh and was not narrated by Al-Bukhaari in his Al-Jaami‘ may Allaah have mercy upon them.
Following is the full text of the Hadeeth as narrated by Muslim in his Saheeh:
The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) then waited a little until the sun rose, and commanded that a tent of hair should be pitched at Namirah. The Messenger of Allaah sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) then set out and the Quraysh did not doubt that he would halt at Al-Mash‘ar Al-Haraam (the sacred site at Muzdalifah) as the Quraysh used to do in the pre-Islamic period.
Once reaching Makkah, the pilgrim should hasten to Al-Masjid Al-Haraam in order to make Tawaaf (circumambulation) because Tawaaf is the most important goal for the pilgrim performing Hajj or 'Umrah.
- Permissibility to touch the Black Stone at the beginning of Tawaaf.
- Permissibility to kiss the Black Stone during Tawaaf but one should not overcrowd to reach it. It is impermissible to kiss any other inanimate objects and stones such as the standing place of Ibraaheem or the walls of the Ka'bah.