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Sunday, January 15, 2006

The Farewell Pilgrim and Khutba of Prophet Muhammad(SAWS)

The Pilgrimage

Early in 632 C.E. in the Hajj season, the Holy Prophet decided to proceed to
Makkah to perform the "Hajj". The pilgrimage was planned on a large scale,
Messengers were sent to all parts of Arabia calling upon the Muslims to
assemble at Madina for the purposes of the pilgrimage. In response to this
call, over one hundred thousand Muslims gathered at Madina to proceed to
Makkah to perform the Hajj.

The Caravan

After all arrangements had been completed, a caravan of over one hundred
thousand Muslims fired with their enthusiasm for Islam, started for Makkah
to visit the House of God and offer their submission to God. It was a
remarkable sight, like which the people of Arabia had not seen before. The
Holy Prophet rode at the head of the caravan. All his wives accompanied him.
Ali rode by his side. He was accompanied by Fatima,

Dhul Hulaifa

At Dhul Halaifa on the outskirts of Makkah, the Holy Prophet and all his
followers put on the Ihram - the pilgrim's garb. The Holy Prophet gave the
signal call "Labbayyak Allah hummah Labbayk" - "Here I am at your service O
Lord!" This was repeated by all the one-larch persons in the congregation.
The entire valley came to ring with the sound, the Muslims calling on their
Lord, submitting to Him, and placing themselves at His disposal.

Makkah and Mina

The party reached Makkah on the fourth of Zul Hajj after a journey of
nineteen days. After a stay of four days in Makkah, the pilgrims left for
Mina on the 5th of Zul Hajj, and passed the night there. The following day
the pilgrims proceeded to Arafat.

Farewell Address

After mid-day prayers on the 9th of Zul Hajj at Arafat, the Holy Prophet
delivered the historic "Hajj Khutba" which has come to be known as the
farewell address. After giving praise to God and thanking Him for the
bounties that he had conferred on the Muslims, and had crowned their efforts
in the cause of the Truth with success. the Holy Prophet said: "O People,
listen carefully to my words for I may not be among you next year, nor ever
address you again from this spot. O People, just as you regard this month as
sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as sacred. Return
the goods entrusted to you to their rightful owners. Hurt no one, so that no
one may hurt you. Usury is forbidden. Satan has despiated in leading you
astray in big things, so beware of his maneuvers in tempting you in small
things. Women have rights over you as you have rights over them. Be good to
them. You may soon have to appear before Allah and answer for your deeds. So
beware. Do not go astray after I am gone. O People, no prophet will come
after me, and no new faith will be born. Worship your Allah. Say your
prayers. Keep fast during the month of Ramdhan. Give of your wealth in
charity. All Muslims, free or slaves have the same rights and the same
responsibilities. None is higher than the other unless he is higher in
virtue. Feed your slaves as you feed yourself. Do not oppress them. Do not
usurp their rights. All distinctions between the Arabs the non-Arabs, the
black and the white are abolished. All Muslims are brothers. Do good. Be
faithful to your trusts. Be kind to the orphans. Remember God. Know that
while man being mortal is bound to die, God being immortal will live for
ever." Having spoken these words, the Holy Prophet turned his face to the
Heaven and said: "Be my witness O Allah, that I have conveyed your message
to Your people. " Thereupon the people corroborated saying, "Yes, O Prophet
of Allah, you have done so, and done it magnificently. "

The Revelation

After the Holy Prophet had delivered the address, Allah revealed to him the
verses: "This Day have I perfected for you, your faith, and completed My
blessings upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as religion. " All other
prophets including Moses and Jesus Christ had to leave their unfulfilled
mission to their successors. The Holy Prophet of Islam alone had the unique
distinction of seeing the successful fruition of his mission during his
lifetime.

Reaction of the Companions

As the Companions including Ali heard these verses about the perfection of
the faith, they wept because they felt that the mission of the Holy Prophet
having been completed, He was apt to depart to meet his Lord.

After the farewell address, the party left Arafat in the evening and passed
the night at Muzdalifa. The following day they went to Mina, and sacrificed
the animals. The Holy Prophet sacrificed 63 animals, one for each year of
his life, and these were shared by Ali. The men then shaved their heads, and
the ceremony of the Hajj was completed. Thereafter the pilgrims left for
Madina. On the return journey while the Companions were happy that their
faith had been perfected, they were overwhelmed with grief at the thought
that such consummation implied that the Holy Prophet was soon to depart from
their midst.

Compiled, edited and adapted by Khalid Latif, e-tabligue

Courtesy: Witness Pioneer

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