Published in  
July 5, 2022

Akhsar al-Mukhtasarat | Book of Hajj | Conditions

كِتَاب اَلْحَجُّ وَالْعُمْرَةُ


يَجِبَانِ عَلَى اَلْمُسْلِمِ اَلْحُرّ ِ اَلْمُكَلَّفِ اَلْمُسْتَطِيع ِ فِي اَلْعُمْرِ مَرَّةً عَلَى اَلْفَوْرِ

Hajj and Umrah are both wajib. The obligation is on those who meet the following 5 conditions:

  1. Muslim
  2. A Free Person
  3. Attained Maturity
  4. Sane of Mind
  5. A Capable Person: Physically and Financially

Hajj and Umrah are obligatory once in a person’s life provided the above conditions are met immediately. Anything after that is recommended and voluntary.

The moment the conditions are met, it becomes obligatory to perform Hajj, unlike the misunderstanding of many.  This is the position held by majority of the scholars across the board. People believe that they should delay Hajj till they are older and that they can wipe out their sins completely. This is a wrong way to look at things.

Hajj is an obligation by the consensus of the scholars and rejecting its obligation is an act of disbelief as it is rejecting a pillar of Islam. As for umrah, it is a matter of difference between the scholars. The Hanabilah deem it to be wajib. Its level of wujoob is not at the same level as that of Hajj as something cannot be at the same level as that of a pillar of Islam.

Allah says in the Quran regarding the obligation of Hajj,

فِيهِ آيَاتٌ بَيِّنَاتٌ مَّقَامُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَمَن دَخَلَهُ كَانَ آمِنًا وَلِلَّهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الْبَيْتِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًا وَمَن كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ عَنِ الْعَالَمِينَ

In it are clear signs [such as] the standing place of Abraham. And whoever enters it shall be safe. And [due] to Allah from the people is a pilgrimage to the House – for whoever is able to find thereto a way. But whoever disbelieves – then indeed, Allah is free from need of the worlds. [Surah Aal Imran, 97]

As of Umrah, Allah couples it with Hajj, when He says,

وَأَتِمُّوا الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلَّهِ

And complete the Hajj and ‘Umrah for Allah [Surah Al-Baqarah, 196]

Aishah رضي الله عنها narrated, ‘I once asked the Messenger of Allah ﷺ, ‘O Messenger of Allah! Is Jihad incumbent upon women? He replied,

نَعَمْ, عَلَيْهِنَّ جِهَادٌ لَا قِتَالَ فِيهِ: اَلْحَجُّ, وَالْعُمْرَةُ

“Yes. They have to take part in Jihad in which no fighting takes place, which is: Hajj and ‘Umrah.” [Ahmad]

We get many stories from people who say that the female companions fought with the male companions in battle, or that Aisha رضي الله عنها led armies in battle. All these are either distorted, exaggerated, or fake comments. Aisha was the wife of the Messenger of Allah ﷺ. Her word and opinion hold immense weight and importance. She didn’t physically wield swords and lead men in battle. Even the women who attended the battlefield, they were there as a support/care for the army, and not to physically engage in battle. One or two cases across history doesn’t make it a norm.

Financially capable includes that the money is enough to get a person to and fro from the Hajj and all that in between that is needed to survive. If the money is just enough to do Hajj but then nothing is left to provide for the family, then it is said that such a person is not financially capable. Why? Taking care of and providing for the family is an obligation that must be met by the man, before he can look towards Hajj. One shouldn’t take a loan or fall into debt to go for Hajj. The Shariah highly discourages for a Muslim to fall into debt or take loans.


فَإِنْ زَالَ مَانِعُ حَجٍّ بِعَرَفَةَ وَعُمْرَةٍ قَبْلَ طَوَافِهَا وَفُعِلَا إِذَنْ وَقَعَا فَرْضًا

The “مَانِعُ” is something that prevents the validity/acceptability. These are such that if a person was to even perform the Hajj, it wouldn’t be valid. What are they?

– Kufr: Accepts Islam
– Accountability Factor: Attains Puberty
– Slavery: Slave is Freed
– Lack of Consciousness: Gains Sanity

If these preventive outcomes are gone while the person is at Arafah or they are removed before the tawaf of Umrah, and the person goes on to do the Hajj or Umrah; then it takes the ruling of being an obligatory act. Such a Hajj or Umrah is valid. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:

الْحَجُّ عَرَفَاتٌ الْحَجُّ عَرَفَاتٌ الْحَجُّ عَرَفَاتٌ

“The Hajj is ‘Arafat, the Hajj is ‘Arafat, the Hajj is ‘Arafat. [Tirmidhi]

But what if a person was a disbeliever before this time? Aren’t all their actions invalid? Yes, the actions before acceptance are invalid. Arafah is the most important pillar of Hajj. The person after accepting Islam has a valid intention, has stood at Arafah, and completed the rest of its pillars. Likewise with Umrah. Such a Hajj or Umrah doesn’t need to be repeated.


وَإِنْ عَجَزَ لِكِبَرٍ أَوْ مَرَضٍ لَا يُرْجَى بُرْؤُهُ لَزِمَهُ أَنْ يُقِيمَ مَنْ يَحُجُّ عَنْهُ وَيَعْتَمِرُ مِنْ حَيْثُ وَجَبَا
ويُجْزِآنِهِ مَا لَمْ يَبْرَأْ قَبْلَ إِحْرَامِ نَائِبٍ

If the person is incapable of doing Hajj due to old age, or a permanent illness that one is not expected to recover from; then he is to appoint another person to perform Hajj and Umrah on his behalf from wherever the rites become obligatory.

If the person is financially incapable, then there is no need to appoint another person, as even a physically able person is excused because of financial inability. The one who is doing the Hajj and Umrah on behalf of the sick person needs to have done their own obligatory Hajj and Umrah before. The two cannot be merged together.

An interesting point; as per the Hanabilah, the person has to do the Hajj by embarking from the location of the sick person and not from anywhere else in the world. Why? When a person is incapable of doing an action that is obligatory, its replacement has to be done in exactly the same way that the obligatory action would have been done. There will be a huge difference in the Hajj of the person embarking on a Hajj from Andalus and the one embarking on Hajj from Makkah itself. The person being sent as a replacement has to be at a travels distance at max from the person. When a person misses Dhuhr salah, how many rakat does he pray when he makes it up? He prays 4 itself. The Qadha needs to be the same as ‘Adaa. A secondary opinion in the madhab is that as long as another person is performing the Hajj on your behalf, then that is valid and the obligation is fulfilled.

The Hajj and Umrah on behalf of a person are valid as long as the ill person hasn’t recovered before the replacing person puts on their Ihram. If the person has already worn the ihram, then they can go ahead and complete the rites. When it is said ihram, it means the intention and not the physical cloths itself.

وَشُرِطَ لِاِمْرَأَةٍ مَحْرَمٌ أَيْضًا, فَإِنْ أَيِسَتْ مِنْهُ اِسْتَنَابَت

It is a condition for the woman to have a mahram.

Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said,

لاَ يَحِلُّ لاِمْرَأَةٍ تُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ أَنْ تُسَافِرَ مَسِيرَةَ يَوْمٍ وَلَيْلَةٍ لَيْسَ مَعَهَا حُرْمَةٌ


“It is not permissible for a woman who believes in Allah and the Last Day to travel for one day and night except with a Mahram.”  [Bukhari]

Narrated Ibn Abbas: The Prophet (ﷺ) said,

اَ تُسَافِرِ الْمَرْأَةُ إِلاَّ مَعَ ذِي مَحْرَمٍ، وَلاَ يَدْخُلُ عَلَيْهَا رَجُلٌ إِلاَّ وَمَعَهَا مَحْرَمٌ


“A woman should not travel except with a Dhu-Mahram (her husband or a man with whom that woman cannot marry at all according to the Islamic Jurisprudence), and no man may visit her except in the presence of a Dhu-Mahram.” A man got up and said, “O Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ)! I intend to go to such and such an army and my wife wants to perform Hajj.” The Prophet (ﷺ) said (to him),

اخْرُجْ مَعَهَا

“Go along with her (to Hajj). [Bukhari]


A condition indicates that if the woman doesn’t have a mahram, Hajj isn’t obligatory upon her even if she is a millionaire. If she doesn’t have a mahram or her existing maharim refuse to accompany her, then she doesn’t need to pay another person to do Hajj on her behalf as it has not become obligatory upon her in the first place. The woman needs to be financially able to pay for her Hajj as well as the Hajj of her mahram, for her to be deemed financially capable for Hajj. This is the technical ruling if we are looking at pure black and white. Custom, tradition, and the nature of man is such that he pays for the Hajj of the women under his care. Just like when the scholars say that a husband isn’t obliged to pay for his wife’s medication doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t. If he doesn’t, then there is some problem in the marriage. It is a lack of manliness and self-respect to do this.

If the woman goes for Hajj irrespective without a mahram, then she is deemed to be doing that which is impermissible but her Hajj is counted as a valid act. She doesn’t need to repeat the act. It will remain a valid act but with high deficiency of rewards or its quality and she is considered sinful. Some latter scholars leaned towards flexibility and deemed it permissible for a woman to go alone, provided she has enough security and care taken care of her during her journey.

If she cannot find a mahram to accompany her, and she has lost all hope in the matter, then she can have someone else do Hajj on her behalf. This is similar to the one who is incapable or permanently ill. Isn’t this statement apparently contradicting that which we mentioned in the last paragraph? This statement was explained by Sheikh Mansur al-Buhuti. He says that if a woman had a mahram and she was neglectful of going for Hajj; and later she no longer has a mahram, then she is blameworthy of not performing Hajj when all the conditions were met. Remember, Hajj is to be done as soon as the conditions are met, without any unnecessary delay. It is because of this negligence, and lack of mahram that she pays someone else to do the Hajj on her behalf.

When something is a condition for an obligation;
if the condition is not met, then the obligation does not stand.


وَإِنْ مَاتَ مَنْ لَزِمَاهُ أُخْرِجَا مِنْ تَرِكَتِه ِ

If someone had fulfilled all the conditions of Hajj and then they are taken by death, then the Hajj needs to be made up. How? The money is taken from the estate (تَرِكَتِه) that they have left behind. This is counted as a debt on the person that needs to be paid off. This is the case irrespective if the person explicitly mentioned it in their will or not. This is an obligatory debt that needs to be paid off.

 Based on the Hanbali primer, Akhsar Al-Mukhtasarat authored by Ibn Balban al-Hanbali as taught by Sheikh Zahed Fettah حفظه الله

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