As we know, Tawaf is one of the main rites of the Hajj pilgrimage. The word ‘tawaf’ itself comes from the Arabic verb “taafa,” which means “to encircle something” or “to walk around something.”
Tawaf in Islam means taking rounds or encircling the Kaabah seven times in an anti-clockwise motion, with each one starting and ending at Hajr-al-Aswad (the black stone located in the eastern corner of the Kaabah).
But unfortunately, many Muslims do not know that there are five types of Tawaf in Islam, which each performed differently. To educate us more about the five types of Tawaf in Islam, let’s read an explanation of the kinds of Tawaf below.
This type of Tawaf is carried out by pilgrims who want to perform Umrah outside the Hajj season or those who wish to perform Hajj al-Tamattu. Hajj al-Tammattu is usually performed by those who live outside Saudi Arabia and intend to perform both Umrah and Hajj together.
Usually, they will perform Umrah first, where the Tawaf al-Umrah is performed, and then proceed to Hajj. This type of Tawaf is an obligatory rite, and Umrah is invalid without this Tawaf. This type of Tawaf is performed wearing Ihram.
Tawaf al-Qudum is also called the Tawaf of Arrival because it is performed upon arriving in Makkah before starting the Hajj. This type of Tawaf is obligatory for Muslims traveling from outside the Miqat boundary to perform Hajj al-Qiran and Hajj al-Ifrad before Wuquf on the 9th of Dhulhijjah at the least.
Pilgrims are required to wear Ihram while performing this type of Tawaf, and it is sunnah to perform Idtiba and Raml.
3. Tawaf-al-Ifada and Tawaf-al-Ziyarah
Tawaf-al-Ifada or Tawaf-al-Ziyarah is the Tawaf performed by all pilgrims after being free from sacrifice, Halq (shaving the head or cutting hair) and having left the state of Ihram and changed to regular clothes.
This Tawaf is performed on the 10th of Dzulhijjah before returning to Mina to carry out Rami Al-Jamarat. And it is also sunnah to perform Raml during Tawaf-al-Ifada.
Tawaf al Widaa or farewell Tawaf is an act of Hajj that must be carried out by pilgrims who come from outside the boundaries of Miqat. At the same time, people who live within the boundaries of Miqat are not required to perform this Tawaf.
This Tawaf is the final rite performed in Makkah before continuing to the next destination. There is no need to wear Ihram to perform this Tawaf as it can be performed in regular clothes.
5. Nafl Tawaf
Nafl Tawaf is an act of Nafl that is voluntary Tawaf that can be done anytime, by anyone, and as much as they want.
Usually, people do Nafl Tawaf whenever they wish in Masjid al-Haram. While you are in Makkah for any reason, you can make the most of your free time by doing Nafl Tawaf.
Guidelines for Tawaf
Although there are several types of Tawaf, the procedure for doing it remains the same. Here are the steps for performing Tawaf as exemplified by the Holy Prophet PBUH:
- Pilgrims are required to perform Wudu to perform tawaf.
- Both men and women have to cover their private parts to perform tawaf.
- Pilgrims should begin and end their tawaf at the Hajr-al-Aswad (black stone). Hajr-al-Aswad marks the starting point and ending point of Tawaf.
- Although women are allowed to perform all the Hajj rituals during their menstruation cycle, however, they are prohibited from performing tawaf and sai.
- when performing tawaf, pilgrims must be careful to not to enter the Hateem area. This section is part of the Holy Kaaba, you have to be encircling it rather than entering it. If someone enters Hateemare while performing tawaf, then the round will not be valid as tawaf.
- Tawaf must be done in 7 rounds and must be completed in all. If you miss a single round then the tawaf will be invalid.