There are many ways to go about answering this question, all of them can be constituted as satisfactory replies. Hajj is a spiritual journey like no other. Every year during the month of Dhul Hijja, we hear or see live pictures of the millions of pilgrims flocking to Mecca, Mina, and Muzdalfah to perform this sacred pilgrimage.
Last year, over three million pilgrims performed Hajj and 2019 is expected to bring an even larger turnout.
Allah (SWT) has made Hajj compulsory. Just like Salat, Sawm and Zakat, Hajj is compulsory. Every able Muslim who has the finances available (after taking care of all family obligations), is required to embark on this journey once in their life. And since it is the command of Allah (SWT), the Creator of us all, it is the duty of every Muslim to make sure they perform Hajj while they can.
Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam. These pillars make up the core of the Islamic belief. To believe in Allah (SWT) and His Messenger, to perform Salat, to fast during Ramadan, to pay Zakat, and to embark on Hajj; these five things define a Muslim. Every Muslim needs to get this right in order to be identified as a person of the Islamic Faith.
Prophet Muhammad performed Hajj and as it is written that we should perform the task like He did, people embark on Hajj to obtain the blessings of Allah (SWT) and to follow in His footsteps.
Hajj serves not just as a spiritual journey but also as a means to seeking forgiveness for the mistakes of the past as well. Muslims who embark on Hajj also get their sins forgiven by Allah, The Merciful.
May Allah (SWT) accept their Hajj and the Qurbani sacrifice of all Muslims around the world. Muslim Aid would like to wish all already en route and those already in Mecca, a safe, swift and memorable Hajj pilgrimage.