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Pilgrims Perform Dhuhr and Asr Prayers at Arafat Holy Site
Published in Saudi Press Agency on 19 - 07 - 2021

Pilgrims flocked to Namirah Mosque at the Holy Site of Arafat earlier today to perform Dhuhr (Noon) and Asr (Afternoon) prayers and to listen to the Arafah sermon.
The pilgrims took their places at the 110,000 square-meter mosque and its 8,000 square-meter courtyards.
Imam of the Grand Holy Mosque and Member of the Council of Senior Scholars Sheikh Dr. Bandar bin Abdulaziz Baleelah delivered, before the prayers, Arafah sermon.
During his sermon, he reminded the congregation to observe taqwaa and have ihsaan. He said:
You must observe taqwaa of Allah - the Most Exalted - by complying with all of His directives. When you do that, you will achieve the greatest of success in both this world and the hereafter. Allah - the Most Exalted - informed us of that by saying, ((And the best ending is for those who observe taqwaa)) [7:128]. Allah - the Most Exalted - also said, ((Allah is indeed with those who observe taqwaa and those who continue to have ihsaan [by worshipping Allah in the best way and dealing with His servants in the best manner])) [16:128]. Allah - the Most Exalted - further said, ((Indeed, anyone who observes taqwaa and perseveres does what is included in having ihsaan, and Allah does not cause any reward to be lost in the case of those who have ihsaan)) [12:90].
Part of what Allah has instructed you to do is have ihsaan [by worshipping Allah in the best way and dealing with His servants in the best manner]. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Indeed, Allah instructs all of you to be just, have ihsaan, and give relatives what is due to them)) [16:90]. Thus, a servant of Allah is to have ihsaan in worshipping Allah, as in the hadeeth in which the Prophet (may Allah grant him commendation and protection) said, "Ihsaan is for you to worship Allah as though you could see Him; and although you do not see Him, you must remember that He always sees you." This was collected by al-Bukhaaree and Muslim.
The most important part of that ihsaan lies in tawheed (sincerely devoting all worship to Allah alone). Allah - who is perfect in every way - said, ((When any person sincerely submits himself to Allah by devoting all worship to Him while having ihsaan, that person has certainly taken hold of the strongest means to salvation. And to Allah alone all matters ultimately return)) [31:22].
Sheikh Dr. Baleelah continued his sermon by explaining what is entailed by the testimony of tawheed, as well as by ihsaan. He said:
What preceded is dictated by the testimony of tawheed: laa ilaaha illallaah (none has the right to be worshipped except Allah). Yet, there is another testimony that goes along with it: the testimony that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. This means the directives of that Messenger are to be complied with, what that Messenger says is to be accepted, and Allah is only to be worshipped in the way that Messenger taught. This is because Allah completed the religion He prescribed for that Messenger, and it does not require anything to be invented and then added to it. Allah - the Most Exalted - said in the passage of the Qur'aan sent down on the Day of 'Arafah: ((Today, I have perfected your religion for you, I have completed My favor to you, and I am pleased with Islam as a religion for you)) [5:3].
Another element of ihsaan in worshipping Allah is remaining constant in establishing the five daily prayers at their prescribed times each day. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Consistently establish the five obligatory prayers, especially the middle prayer, and stand before Allah with obedient devotion)) [2:238]. Another element of ihsaan is giving obligatory charity. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((And as for My mercy, it encompasses all things in this world. However, I will record My mercy in the hereafter for those who observe taqwaa and give the obligatory charity, and those who accept Our evidences and submit to them)) [7:156].
Another element of ihsaan is fasting Ramadaan. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Therefore, anyone among you who witnesses the Month is to fast its days)) [2:185].
Another element of ihsaan is performing Hajj at Allah's Sanctified House. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((And performance of Hajj at this House is an obligation people must fulfill for Allah if able to do so)) [3:97].
Other elements of the ihsaan that Allah - who is perfect in every way - extended to His servants include sending scriptures down to them and sending Messengers to guide mankind. One instance of that is sending down His magnificent scripture - the Quran - to His esteemed Prophet Muhammad (may Allah grant him commendation and protection). Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Allah most certainly bestowed an immense favor upon the people of eemaan by sending them a Messenger from among themselves. He recites to them Allah's evidences, purifies them, and teaches them the Quran and the wisdom, whereas they were in clear misguidance prior to that)) [3:164]. Allah - the Most Exalted - also said, ((Allah sent down the best of speech: a scripture whose passages resemble one another in perfection. When people who have reverential fear of their Lord hear it being recited, their skins shiver, then their skins and hearts soften and incline towards the mention of Allah. That scripture and its effects are all part of Allah's guidance that He grants to whomever He wills)) [39:23].
An element of the ihsaan that Allah instructed people to have is being kind to Allah's creatures in all ways. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Have ihsaan by being kind to others just as Allah extended His ihsaan by being kind to you, and do not seek to spread corruption upon the Earth. Indeed, Allah does not love those who spread corruption)) [28:77]. Thus, an individual is to be kind to those with whom he shares kinship. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((And extend kindness to parents, relatives, orphans, the needy, neighbors who are relatives or in close proximity, neighbors who are farther away, the companion by your side, stranded travelers, and the slaves whom you may own. Indeed, Allah does not love those who are arrogant and boastful)) [4:36].
Other elements of ihsaan are raising children well and striving to strengthen solidarity and cooperation between members of society. That includes a husband being good to his wife, and not being unkind in the event that he separates from his wife. It also includes a wife being good to her husband. Allah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Giving an acceptable amount is an established right to be fulfilled by those who have ihsaan)) [2:236]. Allah - the Most Exalted - also said, ((After any revocable divorce, the husband has to make a choice: he can either reconcile with his wife by taking her back and treating her kindly, or let her go in a manner that reflects ihsaan)) [2:229].
Part of Islam's teachings is that when a person has ihsaan by way of extending kindness to others, the recipients should supplicate for that person, express their appreciation, and acknowledge his kindness; and this is why the Prophet (may Allah grant him commendation and protection) censured denying the kindness of others or refusing to admit it.
Among those who have extended kindness to the people of Islam at large are the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz, as well as His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince. They have done so by giving concern to those who come for Hajj, caring for the Two Holy Mosques and keeping them safe, deploying personnel who would be kind to all who come to perform Hajj and 'Umrah, ensuring that the Hajj period is not conducive to spreading diseases, and remaining keen to let Hajj be performed in a way that is healthy such that it complies with protective measures and social distancing guidelines. All of this has been done to actualize one of Islam's objectives: protecting people's lives; and also in compliance with the statement of the Prophet (may Allah grant him commendation and protection), "If you hear of a disease outbreak in a land, do not go to it; and if there is a disease outbreak in a land where you are, do not leave it." Thus, we implore Allah to reward the two of them immensely; grant them many blessings; and make them means of goodness, guidance, and happiness for all people.
Dear Hujjaaj who have come to Allah's Sanctified House: Perform your rites of worship according to how they were performed by Allah's Messenger (may Allah grant him commendation and protection), in compliance with his statement, "You must take your rites of Hajj from me", and also in compliance with Allah's statement, ((And you must complete Hajj and 'Umrah for Allah)) [2:196]. By complying with those directives, you would be someone who has ihsaan in performing Hajj. Additionally, supplicate Allah much in this revered time and location. Supplicate Him for yourselves, your relatives, the leaders in authority, and the people of Islam at large. "There is no day on which Allaah frees more servants from the hellfire than the day of 'Arafah. He draws near and then boasts to the angels about them."
Sheikh Dr. Baleelah concluded the sermon by reminding the congregation about how the Prophet (may Allah grant him commendation and protection) performed the rites of Hajj. Sheikh Dr. Baleelah said: When Allah's Messenger (may Allah grant him commendation and protection) was in 'Arafah, he delivered a sermon, Bilaal called the athaan and then the iqaamah, the Messenger prayed Thuhr shortened to two units, Bilaal then called another iqaamah, and the Messenger then prayed 'Asr shortened to two units. He then remained in 'Arafah upon his camel, continuing to mention Allah and supplicate Him. When the sun had completely descended beneath the horizon, the Messenger proceeded to Muzdalifah and he said, "People, you must remain tranquil and composed."
After reaching Muzdalifah, he prayed Maghrib and 'Ishaa' combined, with the former as three units and the latter as two. He spent the night in Muzdalifah, prayed Fajr at the beginning of its prescribed time, supplicated Allah until the sky became bright, departed for Mina, pelted jamratul-'aqabah after sunrise with seven pebbles, offered his sacrifice, had his head shaved, and then performed Tawaaf Al-Ifaadah. Throughout the days of tashreeq, he remained in Mina while mentioning Allah. Each day, he pelted the three jamaraat after midday, and he supplicated after pelting the first and second of the jamaraat. In addition, for those who had a legitimate excuse, he granted a concession to not spend the nights of tashreeq in Mina. ((Once you have completed your rites of worship, you are to mention Allah as you mention your forefathers, or with much greater mention)) [2:200]. Ensure to include among your supplications: (("Our Lord, grant us good in this world, grant us good in the hereafter, and save us from the torment of the hellfire")) [2:201], as Allah said about those who make that supplication, ((They are the ones who will receive immense reward in the hereafter for their righteous deeds in this world, and Allah is swift in reckoning)) [2:202].
The Sunnah of Allah's Messenger (may Allah grant him commendation and protection) is to stay in Mina until the 13th of Thul-Hijjah since that is more virtuous, and he permitted hastening to depart on the 12th. When he completed his rites of Hajj, he performed tawaaf at the Ka'bah before leaving Makkah.

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