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Hajjatul-Wada’: The Farewell Pilgrimage

Under category : When the Moon Spilt
7817 2018/04/18 2024/07/14


By the year 10 A.H., Islam had spread over the entire Arabian Peninsula. A great number of people capable of carrying the message of Islam worldwide arose in the coming years. It was at this point that Allah chose to show His Prophet the fruits of his mission by calling him to make a farewell pilgrimage to Makkah.

The Prophet announced that he would perform Hajj, and a large number of people flocked to Madinah to accompany him.



On Saturday, Dhul Qa’dah 26, the Prophet left Madinah after praying the noon prayer and a few hours later he reached Dhul Hulayfah, where he prayed the afternoon prayer and spent the night. The next morning, the Prophet said, “Perform prayer in this blessed valley and tell the people that Umrah can be performed during Hajj.” This was in reference to the common belief that Umrah could not be performed during the time of Hajj.


Then the Prophet bathed before noon prayer, and applied musk on his head and body. After the prayer, he put on his Ihraam and then raised his voice and began the pilgrim’s chant: “I answer Your call, O Allah, I answer your call. I answer Your call, You Who have no partner, I answer Your call. Verily, all praise, and dominion belong to You, You Who have no partner.”

A week later, the Prophet reached Makkah. After praying the dawn prayer, he entered the Sacred Mosque. It was Sunday morning, Dhul Hijjah.


The Prophet then circumambulated the Ka’bah, and performed seven circuits between Mount Safa and Marwa. When he finished, he remained in Ihraam, which meant he was still in the consecrated state of pilgrimage. He asked all the pilgrims who had brought sacrificial animals along with them to remain in Ihraam also. Others were allowed to shave their heads.


Then on Dhul Hijjah 8, the Prophet went to Mina, where those who had shaved their heads assumed Ihraam again. In Mina the Prophet performed the noon, afternoon, sunset, evening, and dawn prayers. He left Mina after sunrise for Arafat. A tent was set up for him in the valley of Namirah. As the sun was setting, he mounted his camel and rode into the valley of Arafat. Pilgrims began gathering around him and waited to hear what was to be one of his most important speeches. He began by glorifying Allah, testifying that Allah was the One God, and that he Muhammad, was His Prophet and Messenger.


“O people listen: I know not whether I shall meet you here again after this year. Your blood, your property and your honour are as sacred this day, this month and this city. Behold! I declare that all pagan customs and everything from the Days of Ignorance are beneath my feet. Abolished also is the practice of spilling blood for revenge. The first case of blood revenge that I abolish is that of the son of Rabi’a bin Harith, who was nursed by the Banu Sa’d and killed by Banu Hudhayl. Moreover, the usury of the Days of Ignorance is abolished, and the first practice of usury I abolish is that of Abbas bin Abdul Muttalib. Now all usury is abolished. Fear Allah regarding women! You have taken them as a trust from Allah, and intercourse with them has been made permissible by the words of Allah. You have rights over them – one of which is that they must not allow someone you dislike into your home. If they do so, you are within your rights to chastise them, but not severely. It is their right over you that you should feed them and clothe them in a fitting manner. I leave behind something. If you hold fast to it, you will never go astray – and that is the Book of Allah. Now, if you are asked about me on the Day of Judgement, how will you respond?”


The Prophet’s Companions replied, “We will testify that you have conveyed the message and fulfilled your mission.” The Prophet raised his index finger towards the sky and then pointed toward the people, “O Allah, be witness! O Allah, be witness! O Allah, be witness!”


After the Prophet had finished addressing the people, he received a revelation from Allah: “Today I have perfected your religion for you and completed My favour upon you, and I have chosen Islam as your religion.” (5: 3).

After the Prophet ended his address, Bilal made the prayer call (Adhan) and the final prayer call (Iqamah), and the Prophet led the people in the shortened noon prayer. Following that, Bilal called another Iqamah, and the Prophet led the people in the shortened afternoon prayer. Thus, the Prophet demonstrated how travellers should combine and shorten prayers.


After sunset, the Prophet left for Muzdalifa and combined the sunset and evening prayers. He did not shorten the sunset prayer, but he did shorten the evening prayer. Furthermore, when the Prophet combined the noon and afternoon prayers as well as the sunset and evening prayers, he did not perform any additional voluntary (Sunnah prayers) between them. Then he returned to Makkah to the Sacred Mosque. He faced the Qiblah and repeated the Takbeer (Allahu Akbar / Allah is Most Great), the Tahleel (La ilaaha illallah/ There is no deity except Allah) and Tawheed (The testimony of the Oneness of Allah) until light began to appear in the horizon.


Before sunrise, the Prophet left for Mina again. He threw seven stones at the largest Jamrah, saying, Allahu Akbar with every throw. When the Prophet finished stoning the Jamrah, he ceased reciting the Talbiyah (Labbayk Allahu humma, Labbayk…).


He also told his Companions: “Learn the rites of Hajj after this year.”


The stoning being completed, the Prophet went to his camp in Mina and slaughtered sixty-three camels. Ali slaughtered the remaining thirty-seven camels, and the Prophet instructed that a part of each camel be cooked and served to him and his Companions.


After performing the sacrifice, the Prophet had his head shaved, beginning with the right side of his head, and some of the hair was distributed among his Companions. Abu Talha was given the Prophet’s hair from the left side of his head.

The Prophet put on his ordinary clothes now that he was out of Ihraam, applied musk, and then rode his camel to the Sacred Mosque. There he circled the Ka’bah seven times. After the noon prayer, he went to the people of Banu Abdul Muttalib, who were serving Zamzam water to the pilgrims. He said, “Banu Abdul Muttalib, continue drawing water from the well. I would join you in this task, but I fear people would try to take over your rightful duty.” They gave the Prophet some Zamzam water which he proceeded to drink.


The Prophet returned to Mina and stayed there for the days of Tashreeq (Dhul Hijjah 11,12 and 13). Each day he stoned all three Jamarahs after sunset, starting with the smallest one, Jamarah Al-Sughrah, and then proceeding to the middle and large ones.


The Prophet delivered two more addresses, on the 10th and 12th of Dhul Hijjah, stressing the same points he had made in his sermon on the plane of Arafat. It was during the days of Tashreeq before his last address that he received Surah Al-Nasr.


On Tuesday, Dhul Hijjah 13, the Prophet left Mina after stoning all three Jamrahs. He performed the noon, afternoon, sunset, and evening prayers at Abtah. He also sent Aishah along with her brother, Abdul Rahman bin Abi Bakr, to perform Umrah.


When Aisha returned, the Prophet went to the Ka’bah and performed the farewell circumambulation. After performing the dawn prayer, he left Makkah to begin the journey back to Madinah. As he approached the city of Madinah, and its landmarks grew visible, the Prophet called out, “Allahu Akbar” thrice and said: “Nothing is to be worshipped except Allah. He is the One. He has no associate. Dominion and all praise are His, and He has power over all things. We are returning, repenting, praising and bowing before our Lord. Allah has proved that His promise is true, and He has helped His slaves. Victory is His alone.”


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