The word Umrah simply means to visit. Umrah is a lesser Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca, Hijaz, Saudi Arabia, performed by Muslims. Umrah can be undertaken at any time of the year, unlike Ḥajj which has specific dates according to the Islamic lunar calendar. Umrah means paying a visit to Ka’bah, performing Tawaaf (circumambulation) around it, walking between Safaa and Marwah seven times.
Allah says in the glorious Quran
”And complete the Hajj and the Umrah for Allah, but if, you are prevented, (send) whatever offering is easy to obtain, and do not shave your heads until the offering reaches its destination; but whoever among you is sick or has an ailment of the head, he (should effect) a compensation by fasting or alms or sacrificing, then when you are secure, whoever profits by combining the visit with the pilgrimage (should take) what offering is easy to obtain; but he who cannot find (any offering) should fast for three days during the pilgrimage and for seven days when you return; these (make) ten (days) complete; this is for him whose family is not present in the Sacred Mosque, and be careful (of your duty) to Allah, and know that Allah is severe in requiting (evil)’’. Q2:196
The Prophet PBUH said that, “The accepted hajj has no other reward, except Paradise.”[Bukhari] #1773 The Umrah is known to be an expiation of one’s sins. Hazrat Abu Hurairah, a close companion of the Prophet PBUH, reported a saying of the Prophet PBUH: “An Umrah is expiation for the sins committed between it and the next, and hajj, which is accepted will receive no other reward than Paradise.” [Muslim]. He further reported that Holy Prophet PBUH says that: “Whoever performs hajj/ Umrah to this House (Ka’aba) and does not approach his wife for sexual relations nor commits sins (while performing hajj, Umrah), he will come out as sinless as a newly-born child.”[Bukhari]
The Umrah is placed at a level of spiritual purity for the Muslims. It is neither directly or imperatively, an obligation for the Muslims, but it is a Sunnat-e-muwaqada for them, a holy act which our beloved Prophet, Muhammad PBUH, carried twice in His lifetime.
The benefits of Umrah are enormous which may easily be seen in the quran and hadiths.
The amazing benefits of Umrah include:
- Being the quest of Allah
The most pleasant benefit of Umrah is to be a guest of Almighty Allah where He Himself hosts the one who spends his time and wealth to oblige, abandon his family and work to be with Allah with pure intentions. Hazrat Abu Huraira RA reported that Prophet PBUH said:
“The guests of Allah are three: The Ghazi (the warrior who fights in Jihad just for the sake of Allah), the Hajji (the pilgrim who performs Hajj) and the Mu’tamir (the pilgrim who performs Umrah)”.
- To Build a stronger Iman
Umrah encompasses so many benefits, so when you perform Umrah with sincere intention, it creates an avenue for you to renew and strengthen your Iman, this gives you inner peace, satisfaction and calmness.
Anas bin Maalik (RA) said, ”The pilgrims and those who perform Umrah are the delegation of Allah. He will give them whatever they ask for, answer their supplications and He will give them better than what they spend. Every Dirham will be multiplied by a thousand”. (Baihaqi)
- To Eliminate Poverty
Performing Umrah also protects one from poverty since they are there solely for the sake of Allah (SWT) spending their wealth and time in completing the deed. Ibn Mas’ood (R) said that the Prophet (S.A.W.) said, ‘Follow up the Hajj and Umrah, because they certainly remove poverty and sins as fire separates the impurities from iron, gold and silver.’ (Tirmidhi). Also Umar bin Khattab (R) said that Prophet (S.A.W.) said, ‘Follow up between the Hajj and Umrah, because certainly succession between the two of them increases the life span and dispels poverty and sins as fire removes impurities.’ (Baihaqi)
- To Purify one from past sin
The act of Umrah is known to purify one’s soul from past committed sins. Almighty Allah also gives you a chance to ask for forgiveness and He definitely forgives you in a blink of an eye. It is advised to do Umrah more than once in your lifetime so that it can act as a washing of the sins from the last time one performed Umrah. Abu Hurairah (R) narrates that the Prophet (S.A.W.) said, ‘An Umrah to another Umrah will be redemption of sins for whatever (minor) occurs between them.’ (Bukhari, Muslim).
- Gives you bodily strength:
The beauty of Islam is that it benefits you in every way although one is doing it for Allah Almighty but He is the Best of the Best Giver who gives you lot more than we deserve. When you performs Umrah, it gives you strength and helps you to get over your bodily diseases as your soul becomes light your body also feels lighter. Umrah enhances the daily provisions and nourishment and makes our body healthy.
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