Ihram is the sacred state of cleanliness and dress code that Muslims observe while performing the Hajj or Umrah pilgrimage.
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It eliminates differences in wealth, status, and nationality and symbolizes equality and unity among pilgrims.
For those embarking on this spiritual journey, it is important to understand how to wear ihram correctly.
This step-by-step guide covers the necessary preparations and procedures to ensure proper ihram attire and a meaningful pilgrimage experience.
Total Time: 10 minutes
Clarify your intent
Before donning an ihram, it is important to clarify one’s intentions and remember the meaning and purpose of the pilgrimage. Think about the spiritual journey you are about to embark on and find integrity in your actions.
Perform wudu (purification)
Perform a complete ablution (wudu) to purify yourself physically and mentally. Make sure to wash your hands, mouth, face, arms, head, and feet according to Islamic ablution guidelines.
Choose Ihram Attire
Choose two pieces of clean, white, unstitched fabric for the ihram costume. The man usually wears two white sheets, while the woman may wear loose, plain white clothing that meets the requirements of modesty and provides adequate body coverage.
It is located in a clean and private area overlooking the Kaaba (the sacred site of Mecca). For men, wrap the bottom white sheet around your waist, covering from your navel to your ankles, and leave your right shoulder exposed. A woman should wear white clothing that conforms to the requirements of modesty and covers her entire body except for her face and hands.
Tie the Belt (Isar)
A belt (izar) is tied around the waist to secure the ihram garment. This keeps the bottom sheet in place and prevents it from falling out.
Cover the Torso
The man drapes the top white sheet over his left shoulder, leaving his right shoulder bare. This is known as Ihram al-Isar. A woman’s outerwear should be modest and cover her entire body except for her face and hands.
Make Intentions (Niyah)
When wearing an ihram, express your intention (niyyah) for the particular pilgrimage you are undertaking, whether it is Hajj or Umrah. Internalize your intentions and remember the purpose of your trip.
Observe Restrictions and Etiquette
Pilgrims must adhere to certain restrictions and codes of conduct once they arrive at an ihram. For example, do not cut hair or nails, use perfume, have sexual relations, or fight. It is also important to maintain constant remembrance of Allah (Dhikr), prayers, and recitation of the Quran.
Wearing an ihram properly is an important step in meeting the requirements of a hajj or Umrah pilgrimage.
By following the step-by-step guide above, pilgrims can ensure compliance with the rituals and requirements of the Ihram dress code.
Remember that ihram is not just a physical garment, it is also a symbol of state of mind, unity, equality, and devotion. May your pilgrimage be blessed and your sincere efforts be accepted by the Almighty.
Where to wear Ihram for Umrah?
Ihram is usually worn at designated miqat points such as Al-Hill, for those traveling by land. For air travelers, the ihram is usually put on before arriving at the Mikat point announced by the airline.
Can we enter Makkah without Ihram?
No, an ihram is usually worn at the miqat point before entering Medina or from Medina to Mecca.
Can we wear Ihram from home?
Yes, you are allowed to enter Ihram from your home, if you are not within miqaat bounderies.
Can I wear Ihram in Madinah Hotel?
No, Ihram is typically worn at the Miqat point before reaching Madinah or before leaving Madinah towards Makkah.