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Hajj Checklist and Packing Guide

I went for Hajj last year and I had started packing three months before we left! I know it’s crazy, but I was really confused and took my time researching products and asking family and friends for suggestions on what I might need to make my journey easier. Here is a checklist (summary version, and then a set of explanations for some of the items below) as well as packing suggestions based off of my prep last year and the trip and Hajj itself.I hope these suggestions will help you feel adequately prepared, without going overboard or going empty-handed, insha’Allah.

When you’re packing and preparing for your trip, have two intentions. The first is that you are preparing and planning to allow yourself the ability to relax and focus on the important things on your trip (like Hajj and all of the worship, resting, not exposing yourself to sickness in the markets, etc.).  The second is that because you’re preparing for Hajj now, make the intention that this is an act of worship which will allow you to do your part for preparing the worldly means necessary to have a successful Hajj, while leaving the rest up to Allah.

Last note–expect the unexpected and know that you will be unprepared for something or the other. But–do try to get yourself and your bags ready! Also, all of the products linked are products that I bought. I do not have any official or unofficial endorsements to the products in this list.

Hajj Checklist Summary

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Food

Clothing & Shoes

  • Pair flip flops for bathrooms
  • Shoe covers for tawaf, 1 reusable or a few disposable
  • Comfortable walking sandals, 2 pairs
  • Tennis ball
  • Sweatshirt and sweatpants, 1 each
  • Pure cotton clothing, thin but not sheer (I used old shawar kameez), suggested 1 pair of clothing/every 2 days of your trip to minimize laundry problems

Heat Management Supplies

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  • Mini squirt bottle
  • Mini electric fan necklace, or a manual fan
  • Cooling towel (you can find one that runners use)
  • Large-brimmed hat to provide shade

General Supplies

  • Door hook hanger for the bathroom, 2
  • Plastic bags, a few
  • Drawstring shoe bag (with pockets)
  • Neck pouch/necklace pouch for keeping money
  • Small towel
  • Sleeping “bag” liner (I made my own, here’s a DIY tutorial))
  • Small blanket (I cut a small throw in half so that it fit inside of my sleeping bag liner)
  • Yoga mat + carrying strap (not all of them at Bin Dawood had carrying straps, so I brought my own with me)
  • Zipper seal bags in different sizes, a handful of each size
  • Umbrella
  • Eye cover/sleeping mask (ask your Hajj leader if these will break ihram)
  • Ear plugs, 1 set/day of your trip
  • Sunglasses, 1 plus a backup
  • Clothesline and clothespins to keep up with laundry by handwashing, 8 ft. clothesline (I just used a rope) and 10 pins
  • Sewing kit
  • Inflatable airplane pillow/mini pillow
  • Extra collapsible large duffle bag (if you plan on shopping), 1 or 2 depending on your shopping list
  • D-clips for hanging stuff to your bag easily (like water bottle), 3
  • Suitcase (however many you need), suggestion: fit all of your things in 1 carry on or small check-in bag
  • Backpack or small duffle bag for the days of Hajj

Electronics

  • Portable phone charger
  • Old phone
  • Extension cord with multiple outlets
  • International power adapter)

Personal Hygiene

  • Unscented soap (small pieces in a Tupperware)
  • Unscented deodorant
  • Unscented lotion or oil
  • Unscented Vaseline
  • Gloves, a few pairs
  • Unscented hand sanitizer, 2 small bottles
  • Unscented wipes, 1 pack split up into convenient zipper seal mini packs
  • Disinfecting spray
  • Unscented laundry detergent
  • Unscented sunscreen
  • Portable lota (Wudu Pal) to help with travel
  • Toilet paper roll (mini roll will do, if you’re used to using toilet paper)

Spiritual Supplies

  • Notebook
  • Pens, 2
  • Dua book or app
  • Personal traveling prayer mat
  • Quran that you’re comfortable with, preferably small
  • Budgetized, itemized shopping list
  • Tawaf counter

Medication

  • Basic mini drugs kit (allergy, pain relief, anti-diarrheal/digestive problems)
  • Antibiotics, get them from a pharmacy there (no prescription needed, just consult with a doctor in your Hajj group) if you end up needing them
  • Ginger essential oil (to help with nausea/motion sickness, simply put a few drops in a tissue and breathe deeply)
  • Paper bags/diaper bags for throwing up and other unexpected problem
  • Sore throat and cough supplies (numbing lozenges and cough drops)
  • Cold medicines of choice (you can get them in Saudi, but you might not find exactly what you’re used to)
  • Topical pain reliever for sore muscles/aches and pains (try to get unscented)
  • *If you don’t get the daily vitamin electrolyte tablets as I suggested earlier in the “Food” section, then make sure you take Vitamin C pills/immunity boosting supplements with you

Documents

  • Extra copies of passport and visas, 2
  • Will/power of attorney forms, 2
  • Permanent marker/Masking, packing, or duct tape

*Buy in Saudi Arabia

  • yoga mat
  • umbrella
  • dates
  • nuts
  • antibiotics, if needed
  • ihram

Hajj Checklist Suggestions Explained

Food

  • Collapsible reusable water bottle
    • These came in handy for filling ZamZam. If you’re already a reusable water bottle user, then you will probably be able to easily deal with a non-collapsible one. The collapsible ones are super portable and convenient, however.)
  • Electrolyte tablets
    • I used Nuun tablets and loved them.  They break into half and therefore fit easily into a water bottle (people are always handing you water bottles.) They also don’t have a huge hit of sugar like sports drinks powders so your energy levels aren’t dictated by sugar surges in your blood stream. I suggest getting both types, the ones with the daily vitamins (get enough for one for each morning) and the regular hydration tablets without the added vitamins (get three tablets for each day).
  • Energy/marathon chews
    • These are convenient for the days of Hajj when you need something to run on but don’t want to use the bathroom as often as you normally do.
    • I got Cliff ones with and without caffeine, because my husband and I are pretty used to drinking caffeine daily. I would suggest making sure whatever caffeinated food items you get have caffeine from natural sources (like tea or coffee).
  • Granola bars (energy and/or protein)
    • Just bring enough for one a day for each day of your planned trip. Don’t get the ones with chocolate in them, they’ll melt all over.
  • Dates
    • These work like energy bars but quite honestly are way better because of their slow releasing and stabilizing sugars and the huge amounts of potassium which helps with hydration. They’re ancient energy bars + hydration tablets in one.
    • I bought dates in Madinah.
  • Nuts
    • I also bought nuts from Bin Dawud (a store you’ll find everywhere in Saudi) for a protein-rich snack on the go. They were perfect for when I didn’t want to eat something sweet, like a date, or when I was really hungry but doing okay on energy.

Clothing & Shoes

  • Random flip flops
    • These will be great for using in public restrooms or even in the shower in your hotel/building, or for coming in and out of the tent easily in Mina.
  • Shoe covers for tawaf
    • I ordered these shoe covers online, but you can also get disposable ones.  A good pair of shoes will be helpful for anyone, regardless of foot and other health issues, for walking activities within the Haram (tawaf and sa’i). I needed to wear shoes per my physical therapist’s recommendation in the recovery of a foot injury I had sustained in March. I wear a size 6.5 in (US) Women’s and I think XS would have fit ideal for me.
    • I also had a pair of Haram/indoor walking sandals, just so that I could be more certain I didn’t have any ritual impurities on my shoes. I would change my shoes outside of the Haram/Masjid al Nabawi (in front of the guards) and then put on my shoe covers over them.
    • Shoe covers or socks? I say shoe covers. I would not want to keep socks on my feet in that heat.
  • Comfortable walking sandals
    • Make sure you have two solid pairs in case one gets lost or broken.
      • I didn’t bring sneakers, but some people in my group did.  I actually have no idea how they would wear sneakers in such heat. If you get really good walking sandals, they’ll have the same soles as sneakers and you won’t need sneakers.
    • According to Shaykh Omar Suleiman, for men, make sure there isn’t a strap at the back of the ankle. For women, I believe there were little to no limitations on clothing.
  • Tennis ball
    • This is something that I did multiple times a day based off of my physical therapist’s recommendation because of my fallen arches. After a long walk, you just roll the tennis ball under your foot and it’s like a foot massage. I also did this in Europe (and so did my sister) after long days of walking.
  • Sweatshirt and sweat pants
    • This is unexpected. But bring your sweat-shirt to Mina, especially if you have air conditioned tents. The AC is out of control and runs without a thermostat to stop it. I was freezing in my tent and I thought I was getting sick because I felt so cold and was going from 60 degrees inside to 110 degrees outside if I had to step out of the tent.
  • Pure cotton clothing, thin but not sheer
    • My family is from Pakistan, and this is where traditional clothing came to save the day. Because of my skin’s allergy to the heat, I can only wear pure cotton clothing above 50 degree temperatures as it is, so the prospect of surviving in Saudi Arabia with 100 degree nights was very scary for me.  I took shalwars (traditional pants) and long kamizes/calf-length maxis (longer shirts without slits that were six inches above the ankle.)
    • My mother-in-law is a bit taller than me and had some old shalwar kamiz outfits that she wanted to get rid of because they were getting worn out.  What she did is sew the slits on the side shut, so they were basically really thin, pure cotton abayas that were far enough above the ground to not get dusty or compromised in the bathroom, but below my knee enough to make me feel comfortable wearing them in the holiest places on earth.
    • My husband pretty much wore kurta shalwars the whole time, too, because of the looseness of the clothing and the quality of the cloth which made the heat bearable. He buys most of his clothes from Junaid Jamshed.

Supplies

  • Mini squirt bottle
    • Sometimes you are walking or in really cramped spaces and the mist will help revive you.
  • Mini electric fan necklace, or a manual fan
    • I liked having this electric fan necklace on. It was a little heavy, but I loved using it especially in Masjid Nabawi because everyone would sit so cramped in there and it was too stuffy to breathe.
  • Cooling towel (you can find one that runners use)
  • Door hook hanger for the bathroom
    • I got mine from the Dollar Tree. They’re really handy because you go into the stalls in Mina or Arafat and there aren’t any door hooks. You can easily hang up your bag or your towel/change of clothes without being worried about them getting wet or dirty
  • Plastic bags
    • Bring a couple grocery-sized bags, they’ll come in handy for anything and everything. Designate one specifically for bathroom trips during the days of Hajj to protect your clothes from getting wet in the bathroom.
  • Drawstring shoe bag
    • Although your Hajj package might give you one to match your group, I’m a little torn on their efficiency. The size of the drawstring bags are perfect, but the quality can be dubious (mine broke twice) and there aren’t smaller pockets for additional organization. I can’t tell you how many times I was digging in my bag to find a tiny object and how inconvenient it was.  My suggestion is to buy a small backpack or drawstring bag with additional internal/external pockets.  If your Hajj group provides a bag, simply cut out the logo from the bag and just safety-pin (or sew like I did, or hot glue even) it onto your bag. The reason why I mention this is because the same bags really do help in easily spotting your group and can be very useful to help you not get lost.
  • Sleeping “bag” liner
    • I made mine out of an old sheet that I bought from the thrift store (you can easily make your own, too, here’s how!) I saw one or two options available at the camping store, but the fabric was a synthetic blend that was not breathable. I decided to buy a pure cotton sheet from the thrift store (because I am relatively newly married, I don’t own any random old sheets) and then proceeded to hand-sew mine and my husband’s. Hand-sewing took forever and was a miserably long process, but I loved the end product and it really was truly so convenient and perfect for sleeping outside in Muzdalifah and even for sleeping in our building in Makkah and the tents in Mina (I wasn’t sure how clean the sheets and blankets were that they were giving us.) My husband said that in the tents in Mina, it is very easy for men to accidentally expose themselves due to their ihram clothing. He hung out in the tent inside his sleeping bag the whole time to avoid that problem. My suggestion is to find a masjid aunty who knows how to sew and ask her to help you, she’ll want the good deeds :)
  • Yoga mat
    • The yoga mat serves as the padding, which I suggest buying from Bin Dawood (a big store that you’ll find everywhere) when you get to Saudi so that you don’t have to lug a yoga mat around with you from the US. *Not all of the yoga mats at Bin Dawud had carrying straps. I thought they wouldn’t so I bought some from home and took them with me.
    • I looked into sleeping bag pads from the camping store as well, but they were much heftier and more expensive, so it seemed like a waste to me because I only planned on using the yoga mat for one night and we were told that if we left them in a pile in the morning someone would pick them up and reuse them. Also, the woman at the camping store told me that she uses a yoga mat every time she goes camping and that camping pads and yoga mats are essentially the same.
  • Zipper seal bags in different sizes
    • These will come in handy for creating small medicine packs for traveling on the actual days of Hajj, storing dates and nuts in, and so much more. If you have smaller to larger sizes then it will be easy for you store various items in.
    • Garment-sized zipper seal bags can also be very useful for keeping your clothes together in “packs” (per outfit or two). My suggestion is be organized and it will help you not waste time, get stressed out for no reason, and have everything you need.
  • Portable phone charger
    • You never know what the deal is with the outlets and power supply when you’re in the days of Hajj, so it’s a great idea to charge up a portable charger and have that as back-up. This is also easy because if you’re in Mina and you only have one power outlet with 10 slots for the whole tent, you’ll be able to hook up your charger whenever there’s a free outlet and you can charge as you need to. I got a Gorilla charger as a gift, and although I didn’t take it with me to Hajj, I should have! One thing to keep in mind is that you probably won’t zip through your phone’s battery as often as you do because you won’t really be on your phone during Hajj.
  • Old phone
    • If you want to risk losing your expensive smart phone, go ahead and take it. I brought an old phone (unlocked because I wanted to buy a SIM in Saudi) and my everyday smart phone to use coming in and out of the US. I left my smartphone in my building over the days of Hajj.
    • Another thing, it helps to use an old phone to unplug from the connectivity our smartphones allow us. Don’t link up your email and other social media accounts/apps. If you do, make sure you delete them before the days of Hajj start. You will be surprised at how little you will care about knowing how the rest of the world is getting on.
  • Extension cord with multiple outlets
    • Useful for everyone due to lack of outlets.
  • Umbrella
    • Useful to shield from the sun, which is intense. Also ihram-safe for men.
  • Eye covers/sleeping mask
    • If you’re a light sleeper, these will particularly come in handy. I don’t think I slept more than 5 hours at one time the whole duration of my trip and I would take naps at every time of the day and night so the eye covers helped me sleep.
  • Ear plugs
    • You will have no control over the people around you, especially in your tent in Mina. Do yourself a favor and bring ear plugs.
  • Clothesline and clothespins
    • You never know when you will need to wash something, and this will help you quickly tackle any laundry whenever you have it.
  • Extra collapsible large duffle bag (if you plan on shopping)
    • Just keep this folded up inside of one of your suitcases and you’ll be so happy you did!

Personal Hygiene

  • Unscented soap (small pieces in a Tupperware)
    • Just use the soap as shampoo, and even for washing clothes if necessary.
  • Unscented deodorant
  • Unscented lotion or oil
    • You may get sunburned or have severe reactions to the dry heat.
  • Unscented Vaseline
    • Especially helpful for men to prevent chafing due to ihram.
  • Gloves
  • Unscented hand sanitizer
  • Unscented wipes
    • I packed these in smaller zipper seal bags and rolled the wipes to fit easily inside.
  • Disinfecting spray
    • I made my own with tea tree essential oil, rubbing alcohol, and water in a spray bottle. I brought the tea tree essential oil in a small dropper bottle and put the rubbing alcohol in the spray bottle to easily pass through airport restrictions. Once I got to my hotel, I finished making the solution there. In a 4 oz. Bottle, I put 1 ounce of rubbing alcohol, 20 drops of essential oil, and filled the rest with water.
    • Spray bottles I bought are here (safe to use with essential oils).
  • Unscented laundry detergent
    • I made my own unscented laundry concentrate, which was convenient because a tiny amount went a long way. I might make some available to buy in my Etsy shop in the next two weeks, but am not sure if I have the itme.
  • Other personal care products that you enjoy using and would normally use if traveling for any other trip (these might be especially nice once you are finished with Hajj and take your first shower using the products you’re used to)
    • I got to take a shower on Eid back in our building in Makkah and it was the shower of a lifetime.

Spiritual Supplies

  • Pens
    • Impossible to find in Madinah, for some odd reason.
  • Dua book or app
    • like Accepted Whispers for example
    • Hard copy or electronic copy? My suggestion is to stay off of digital devices as much as possible. Hard copies are generally more reliable and less likely to “run out of battery” or “break” etc.
  • Personal traveling prayer mat
    • I bought mine in Madinah (I went to Madinah first) as a sort of souvenir. I would suggest always taking your prayer mat with you so that you can avoid getting sick—people are sneezing and coughing all over the ground during prayer.
  • Quran that you’re comfortable with, preferably small
  • Budgetized, itemized shopping list
    • You’ll be surprised to find this under spiritual supplies, but it is very easy to get distracted with shopping during your Hajj trip. Make a list of what you want to buy from there and what gifts you will be buying and for who. The more prepared you are, the less time you will waste in the marketplace.
  • Tawaf counter
    • (I didn’t need one because I planned a dua list for each round in Tawaf/pass in Sa’i. For example, dua for myself in the first, for my parents in the second, for my spouse in the third, etc.)
    • On that note, I would really suggest planning your dua for tawaf and sa’i in a similar manner. For example: first lap is dua for myself, second lap is dua for my kids, third lap is dua for my spouse, fourth lap is dua for my parents, fifth lap is dua for my siblings, sixth lap is dua for my community, seventh lap is dua for the Ummah. I had slightly different lists for tawaf and sa’i, so don’t feel locked in by your decision. I find it helpful to plan for your dua so that you don’t feel lost or confused or like you’re wasting precious seconds while you’re actually making tawaf or sa’i.

Medication

  • Mini drugs kit (allergy, Tylenol, anti-diarrheal)
    • Small enough to slip in your Hajj bag
  • Ginger essential oil (to help with nausea/motion sickness, simply put a few drops in a tissue and breathe deeply)
    • With the heat, you never know if you will feel sick to your stomach or not!
  • Sore throat and cough supplies
    • You will have a problem with your throat at some point.
  • Cold medicines of choice (you can get them in Saudi, but you might not find exactly what you’re used to, like Robitussin or something)

Hajj Packing Suggestions

  1. Order and gather all of your supplies NOW. Make sure everything is ready to go at least one week before your departure. Just a word of caution–your Hajj trip is precious. Do not waste your time by leaving toothpaste at home and needing to buy it in Saudi Arabia. Don’t have time? Send someone to the store with a list for you or just sit down on your computer and knock out your list in an hour or two, leaving enough time for delivery/shipping.
  2. Print out the Hajj Checklist, add whatever else you need to, and use it to make sure you have bought everything. Print out another clean copy and check off the items as you pack them. If you want to be very organized, make a note of where your items are packed.
  3. How much clothing should you take? You really don’t want to run out of clothes. I always pack light in terms of clothing but you really don’t want to, not for Hajj. Women, make sure you at least have 5 outfits (one for each day of Hajj) and men, make sure you have your ihram and a backup ihram (our Hajj leader suggested to buy the thicker ihrams that look like towels). Other than the days of Hajj, make sure you have at least 1 set of clothes for every 2 days of your trip. (If you’re a woman on a 12-day trip, for example, I would suggest taking 8 outfits.)  Men should also check if/when they can change out of their ihram with the Hajj leader. You will have to keep up with your laundry by hand washing it yourself. My suggestion is to hand wash your laundry every other day until the day of Hajj so that you don’t have any problems. (2 days before we started Hajj our Hajj group was in a frenzy to wash everything and it was overwhelming. We were lucky enough to have a building with clotheslines on the roof, but even then the clotheslines ran out of space.) If you find yourself thinking “yeah right this is way too much clothing”–think again, I challenge you! When my mom went for Hajj over 10 years ago this was her number one suggestion to me–bring a pair of clothes for every day.  In my Hajj group, there were people literally on the brink of tears because they ran out of clothes and couldn’t send them to get laundered in time before we left for Hajj (laundry there is basically paying for dry-cleaning, so get ready to shell out $3 for one clean pair of your old underwear.) Don’t do this to yourself–make sure you’ve got your clothing situation under control!
  4. Packing clothing in sets inside large zipper seal bags is very easy. Make sure you have your Hajj sets laundered, packed, and ready to go 2 days before the days of Hajj begin. Make sure each set is self-contained, you don’t want to be rummaging around for a missing something or the other in the tent in Mina and realize you forgot it at your hotel.
  5. Make sure you have a backpack or separate bag for the days of Hajj. Keep it light and easy to carry and walk with, you never know what is going to happen.
  6. Subpackage all of your things in groups. Make a medication baggie, make a shoe baggie, make a documents baggie, etc. I used cloth drawstring bags to put different groups of items together.
  7. Don’t freak out–you will be going with a group and it is likely you can borrow or take something from someone in your group if you don’t have it. You can always go to stores like Bin Dawood and get the things you need if you forgot something or something is broken.

Hajj Mabroor to you! Wishing you a life-changing journey!

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Meena is a high school English teacher, DIY enthusiast, wife, and new mom. She loves working with Muslim youth and is interested in literature, arts, and culture. She studied Comparative Literature and Creative Writing at the University of California, Irvine, briefly dabbled in Classical Arabic studies in the US, and has a Master’s in Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Amatullah

    July 27, 2017 at 7:51 AM

    Assalamu alaikum wr wb there!
    That was a really HUGE list. My luggage was just 1/4th of this and there was nothing I fell short of, Alhamdulillah. I suggest that people take a call on their own about how much and what they’re going to need. You certainly have loads of things to carry back from the places you visit!

    • Avatar

      Amatullah

      July 27, 2017 at 8:00 AM

      BUT I must say this list pretty much covers everything of what’s needed!
      Ma shaa Allah, good job ukhti

    • Avatar

      Sadi

      July 2, 2018 at 6:10 AM

      Alhumdolilah sis Iam going for haj this year and jazak ALLAH your list was really helpful

  2. Avatar

    Ayesha

    July 27, 2017 at 2:08 PM

    Jazakallahu khairan for this list.I will be going for Haj Insha Allah and need to start preparing.Received this in my inbox just in right time.May Allah bless us all with Haj mabroor.

    • Avatar

      Faiza

      July 27, 2017 at 5:54 PM

      Your blog remind me of my Hajj Journey :). I wish to perform Hajj again n again Insha Allah :)

  3. Avatar

    Amina salihu

    July 29, 2017 at 9:54 AM

    MashaAllah! May Allah reward your effort. It’s a very intelligent list for each to determine what they may need. I have forwarded to friends I know who are lucky to have been called for hajj this year. May Allah accept our acts of worship.

  4. Avatar

    Hujja

    July 30, 2017 at 10:42 PM

    IHere is my HajjPacking list : https://goo.gl/7cbsBr

  5. Avatar

    Tahir Malik

    July 31, 2017 at 7:55 AM

    Thanks a lot for taking time and writing all this down. This is very helpful.

    JazakAllah

  6. Avatar

    Sarah

    August 20, 2017 at 7:16 PM

    Jazakillah Khayr!!

  7. Avatar

    Asif

    December 8, 2017 at 1:01 AM

    Masha Allah. Thanks for this checklist for haj. May Allah give us strength for Umrah and Haaj.

  8. Avatar

    Seher

    May 30, 2018 at 9:27 AM

    JazakAllah khair for sharing your hajj Travel list! It’s extremely helpful! And it contains very important tips and information!
    May Allah bless you sister.

  9. Avatar

    Nuzhat

    June 29, 2018 at 1:42 PM

    Thank You for sharing these tips.

  10. Avatar

    Fatema Yeasmin

    July 15, 2018 at 8:51 AM

    Thank you so much :)
    May Allah bless you sister❤

  11. Avatar

    Rene

    July 17, 2018 at 1:12 AM

    As salamu alaykum. Jazak Allah khair for this list. I am not a walker and sayee is like 1.96 miles or 3.5 km in 7 times, but I do not see in any video of any ladies wearing shoes or slippers. I see you have shoe cover, did you use it without anyone objecting you? I want to use it for sayii.

    • Avatar

      Meena Malik

      July 28, 2018 at 12:01 AM

      Ws. I saw many, many people wearing shoes in the sa’i area. I was surprised at how many people were wearing them actually! You CAN wear shoes during tawaf (which I did and saw other people doing as well) but because it’s the Haram and Muslims are super sensitive about shoes, you might get some people yelling at you. That’s why the shoe covers were so great–no one can get mad at you for “wearing your shoes” in the masjid. I didn’t have anyone say anything to me when I used my shoe covers. I made sure to stand near the guards as I changed my shoes from outdoor to indoor/masjid shoes and THEN put the shoe covers on. I hope that helps!

      • Avatar

        Rene

        July 29, 2018 at 6:33 PM

        Jazak Allah khair sister Meena!

  12. Avatar

    Khales

    July 21, 2018 at 5:35 PM

    Though this list is comprehensive, individuals will need to make a judgement call. Some great things in there like ear plugs, food items, zipper bags that I would have easily overlooked. Fantastic effort nd may Allah reward you imensly. Make dua for me as I’ve booked for hajj this year Inshaa’Allaah.

  13. Avatar

    Mohammed

    July 30, 2018 at 1:07 AM

    Im going for hajj this year 2018 InShaAllah from New Zealand and i am using your list. great stuff. jazakAllahukahiran

  14. Avatar

    wazeer shaik

    February 7, 2020 at 1:35 AM

    Hajj is once in lifetime worship done to please Allah (SWT) for the very reason we should pack in such a way that we should try to cover almost all the things to carry if the person intends to go for the pilgrimage so that it makes to do maximum ibadah without any hassles.

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Prosperity Islam And The Coronavirus Problem

Hadith: “Hasten to perform good deeds before seven events: Are you waiting for poverty that makes you forgetful? Or wealth that burdens you? Or a debilitating disease or senility? Or an unexpected death or the False Messiah? Or is it evil in the unseen you are waiting for? Or the Hour itself? The Hour will be bitter and terrible.

Islam encompasses all of human experience. We believe in the good and bad from divine decree. The ‘problem of evil’ is not a Muslim dilemma because the abode of this world is a test, and the next life is the abode of recompense. Those who do evil in this world may enjoy comfortable and pleasurable lives. Pious Muslims on the other hand may live in immense suffering and oppression.

One’s state with Allah is not known through worldly position.

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The Quran has lots of mention of suffering in this world and the reward for the pious is constantly in the hereafter. Distance from the Quran distances us from what our Creator told us about living in His world.

Habituation to feel-good religious programs and motivational talks has left us unable to know how to be serious. The Coronavirus pandemic should be all the motivation we need for serious learning and hasten to good deeds.

New-age religion and the prosperity gospel

Modern Islamic discourse intertwines notions of sulook (spiritual wayfaring) with new-age spiritual ideas which make spiritual progression a self-centering endeavor of ‘personal development.’ Missing from this discourse is submission to Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He), which entails doing what one is obliged to do- even if there is no apparent personal win. A self-centering religious perspective is antithetical to true religion, and ironically a spiritual pursuit becomes a selfish pursuit.

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Within this approach, we see our practice of Islam not in terms of fulfilling obligations or understanding we must develop virtues we lack; rather we approach Islam as consumers and form identities around how we choose to be Muslim. This is visible on marriage apps where Muslims will brand themselves around how often they pray, whether or not they eat halal, and how practicing they are. Once this identity is formed, such Muslims are less likely to experience contrition and ultimately improve. The self is then a commodity on the marriage market.

When it comes to worship, for example, giving charity becomes an ‘act of kindness’ to fill the quota of selfless acts to becoming a better person. In other instances, acts of worship are articulated in worldly language, such as fasting in Ramadan being a weight-loss opportunity. One can make multiple intentions, but health benefits of fasting should not be used to articulate the primary benefit of fasting. In other instances, some opt to not pray, simply because they don’t feel spiritual enough to pray. This prioritizes feelings over servitude, but follows from a ‘self’ focused religious mentality.

Much like the prosperity Gospel, Muslims have fallen into the trap of teaching religion as a means of worldly success. While it is true that the discipline, commitment, and work ethic of religious progression can be used for material success, it is utterly false that religious status is on any parallel with material status.

Too many Sunday schools and conferences have taught generations that being a good Muslim means being the best student, having the best jobs, and then displaying the power of Islam to non-Muslims via worldly success and a character that is most compliant to rules. Not only does this type of religion cater to the prosperous and ignore those suffering, it leaves everyone ill prepared for the realities of life. It comes as a shock to many Muslims then that bad things can happen even when you work hard to live a good life. The prosperity gospel has tainted our religious teachings, and the pandemic of COVID19 is coming as a shock difficult for many to process in religious terms. There will be a crisis when bad things happen to good people if we are not in touch with our scripture and favor a teaching focused on worldly gains.

Why it leads to misunderstanding religion

Tribulations, persecution, and events that are outside of our control do not fit the popular self-help form of religion that is pervasive today. Islam means submission, and while we must avoid fatalism, we cannot delude ourselves into idolatry of the self. An Islam that focuses on our individual life journey and finding ourselves has no room for the ‘bad stuff.’ This type of religion favors well-to-do Muslims who are used to the illusion of control and the luxuries of self-improvement. Those who believe that if you are good then God will give you good things in this world will have a false belief shattered and understand the world is not the abode of recompense for the believer.

Islam means submission, and while we must avoid fatalism, we cannot delude ourselves into idolatry of the self.Click To Tweet

Tribulations may then effect faith because it questions the often subconscious teachings of prosperity gospel versions of Islam that we are in control of our own destiny, if we are good enough we will succeed. If this is the basis of a person’s faith, it can be proven “wrong” by any level of tribulation. Having one’s ‘faith’ disproven is terrifying but it should make us ask the question: “Does this mean that Islam is not true, or does this mean that my understanding and my way of living Islam are not true?”

My advice is do not avoid struggle or pain by ignoring it or practicing “patience” just thinking that you are a strong Muslim because you can conquer this pain without complaint. Running from pain and not feeling pain will catch up to us later. Learn from it. Sometimes when we are challenged, we falter. We ask why, we question, we complain, and we struggle. We don’t understand because it doesn’t fit our understanding of Islam. We need a new understanding and that understanding will only come by living through the pain and not being afraid of the questions or the emptiness.

Our faith needs to be able to encompass reality in its good and bad, not shelter us from reality because, ultimately, only God is Real.

Unlearn false teachings

Prosperity religion makes it much easier to blame the person who is suffering and for the one suffering to blame himself. As believers we take the means for a good life in this world and the next, but recognize that acceptance of good actions is only something Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) knows, and that life is unpredictable.

Favor from God is not reflected through prosperity. It is a form of idolatry to believe that you can control God or get what you want from God, and this belief cannot even stand up to a distanced tragedy.

Responding appropriately requires good habits.

Tribulations are supposed to push us towards God and remind us to take life very seriously. Even with widespread calamity and suffering, many of us still have a very self-centered way of understanding events and do not hasten to good actions.

For example, reaching old age is supposed to be an opportunity to repent, spend more time in prayer, and to expatiate for shortcomings. Old age itself is a reminder that one will soon return to his Lord.

However, we see many of today’s elders not knowing how to grow old and prepare for death. Most continue in habits such as watching television or even pick up new habits and stay glued to smart phones. This is unfortunate but natural progression to a life void of an Islamic education and edification.

Similarly we are seeing that Muslims do not know what to do in the midst of a global crisis. Even the elderly are spending hours reading and forwarding articles related to Covid-19 on different WhatsApp groups. This raises the question of what more is needed to wake us up. This problem is natural progression of a shallow Islamic culture that caters to affluence, prosperity, and feel-good messaging. Previous generations had practices such as doing readings of the Quran, As-Shifa of Qadi Iyad, Sahih al-Bukhari, or the Burda when afflicted with tribulations.

If we are playing video games, watching movies, or engaging in idle activities there is something very wrong with our state. We need to build good habits and be persistent regardless of how spiritual those habits feel, because as we are seeing, sudden tribulations will not just bestow upon us the ability to repent and worship. The point of being regimented in prayer and invocations is that these practices themselves draw one closer to God, and persisting when one does not feel spiritual as well as when one does is itself a milestone in religious progression.

While its scale is something we haven’t seen in our lifetime, it’s important to recognize the coronavirus pandemic as a tribulation.  The response to tribulation should be worship and repentance, and a reminder that ‘self-improvement’ should not be a path to becoming more likable or confident only, but to adorn our hearts with praiseworthy qualities and rid them of blameworthy qualities. Death can take any of us at any moment without notice, and we will be resurrected on a day where only a sound heart benefits.

Our religious education and practice should be a preparation for our afterlife first and foremost. Modeling our religious teachings in a worldly lens has left many of us unable to deal with tribulations to the point where we just feel anxiety from the possibility of suffering. This anxiety is causing people to seek therapy. It is praiseworthy for those who need to seek therapy, and noble of therapists to give the service, but my point is the need itself serves as a poignant gauge for how much our discourse has failed generations.

Benefit from Solitude

We should use solitude to our benefit, reflect more, and ponder the meanings of the Quran.  Completing courses on Seerah, Shamail, Arabic, or Fiqh would also be good uses of time. What should be left out however are motivational talks or short lectures that were given in communal events. In such gatherings, meeting in a wholesome environment is often the goal, and talks are compliments to the overall atmosphere. When that atmosphere is removed, it would be wise to use that normally allotted time for more beneficial actions. Instead of listening to webinars, which are not generally building an actual knowledge base that the previously mentioned courses would, nor is it a major act of worship like reading and reflecting upon the Quran. In other words, our inspirational talks should lead us to action, and studying is one of the highest devotional acts.

The pandemic should serve as sufficient inspiration and we need to learn how to be serious. I urge Muslims to ignore motivational and feel-good lectures that are now feel-good webinars, and focus on studying and worshipping. We should really ask if we just lack the capacity to move beyond motivational lectures if we still need motivation in the midst of a global pandemic.  The fact that after years of programming the destination is not the Quran for ‘processing events’ or studying texts for learning is symptomatic of a consciously personality oriented structure.

Muslims struggling to process a pandemic (opposed to coping with associated tragedies, such as loved ones dying or suffering) show the lack of edification feel good talks can produce.

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Coronavirus

A Doctor And A COVID19 Patient: “I will tell Allah about you.”

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By Dr Farah Farzana

I get bleeped at around 2.30am to review a patient. A Pakistani gentleman admitted with Covid19.

The lovely nurse on duty says, “He is on maximum amount of oxygen on the ward, but keeps on removing his oxygen mask and nasal cannula, very confused and is not listening to anyone.”

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I arrive as soon as I can to the ward. I stare at him through the glass doors of the closed bay, while putting on my inadequate PPE.

He looks like he is drowning, he is gasping for air, flushed and eyes bulging like someone is strangling him.

I immediately introduce myself, hold his hands and he squeezes my hand pulls it close to his chest. Starts to speak in Urdu and says he doesn’t know what is going on, he cannot understand anyone and he is so scared.

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I give him my Salam and start speaking to him in Urdu. His eyes fill up with tears and hope.

I explain to him he really needs to have his oxygen mask on as we are trying to make him feel better. He tells me he is suffocating with the mask and he doesn’t like the noise. I grab his arm help him sit up in his bed.

We exercise synchronising his breathing and I put the mask and nasal cannula back on.

He asks me Doctor, am I going to die? I cannot hear the voices anymore, they don’t come to visit, everything is quiet and silent, like Allah is waiting to take me to Him. I am lost for words and tell him we are doing all we can to make him feel and get better. He tells me he has been speaking to Allah, he doesn’t care for himself just his family. I know he is scared and feels so alone. I tell him I’m here with him and am not leaving yet. I monitor his saturations and surely they come straight back up. I tell him I am going to give him medications for his temperatures and fluid in his lungs.

He agrees to take them.

He asks me why I didn’t come to see him until now, because I am his own. He says when he speaks to Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) he will tell Him about me and that I am a good person and I cared for him.

I get a little choked up.

I can’t gather my thoughts before my bleep goes off again. I have to leave now though I tell him I have lots of patients who need my help. He begs me not to leave, but understands after a while and lets me go.I take off my inadequate surgical mask (PPE) before I leave the bay I look back at him to smile and he smiles back. We both wave goodbye. I can see tears rolling down his cheeks.

I don’t know how he will do, how he is now but I cannot stop thinking about him. I always assume positive outcome if I don’t get called back during the night to see the patient again. Plus it was such a busy night I had no time to stop to reflect, and I continued with a smile.

I speak fluent Bangla and my Urdu isn’t very good. But that night Urdu flawed so effortlessly out of my mouth without any hesitation and I was able to say exactly what I needed to him *SubhanAllah*.

My heart breaks for the minority patients, with language barriers. They are fighting this battle more alone and scared than ever.
Normally, they would rely on family members to translate for them, but given the current situation they must feel helpless.

It’s not just the suffering it’s the suffering alone that pulls on my heartstrings.

‘Indeed, to Allah we belong and to Him we shall return’
Quran 2:156

When all this is over, please remember to appreciate the little things.

  • Appreciate your freedom.
  • Appreciate all the hugs and love.
  • Appreciate your health and your health service.
  • Appreciate your families and loved ones.
  • And just be grateful to be ALIVE.
  • Stay at home. Save lives.
    #stayhome #nhs #gratitude

Courtesy: Facebook post

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I Once Spent Ramadan Semi-Quarantined, Here’s How It Went

Even though it was over 10 years ago, the memory of that Ramadan is seared into my mind.

I’d just taken my first consulting job – the kind in the movies. Hop on a plane every Monday morning and come home late every Thursday night. Except, unlike in the movies, I wasn’t off to big cities every week – I went to Louisville, Kentucky. Every week.

And because I was the junior member on the team, I didn’t get the same perks as everyone else – like a rental car. I was stuck in a hotel walking distance from our client in downtown, limited to eat at whatever restaurants were within nearby like TGI Friday’s or Panera. This was a pre-Lyft and Uber world.

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A couple of months into this routine and it was time for Ramadan. It was going to be weird, and no matter how much I prepared myself mentally, I wasn’t ready for it — Iftar alone in a hotel room. Maghrib and Isha also alone in a hotel room. Suhur was whatever I could save from dinner to eat in the morning that didn’t require refrigeration.

Most people think that with the isolation and extra time you would pass the time praying extra and reading tons of Quran. I wish that was the case. The isolation, lack of masjid, and lack of community put me into a deep funk that was hard to shake.

Flying home on the weekends would give me an energizing boost. I was able to see friends, go to the masjid, see my family. Then all of a sudden back to the other extreme for the majority of the week.

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I’ve been thinking a lot about that Ramadan with the prospect of a quarantined Ramadan upon us. I wish I could say that I made the most of the situation, and toughed it out. The truth is, the reason the memory of that particular Ramadan is so vivid in my mind is because of how sad it was. It was the only time I remember not getting a huge iman boost while fasting.

We’re now facing the prospect of a “socially distanced” Ramadan. We most likely won’t experience hearing the recitation of the verses of fasting from Surah Baqarah in the days leading up to Ramadan. We’re going to miss out on seeing extended family or having iftars with our friends. Heck, some of us might even start feeling nostalgia for those Ramadan fundraisers.

All of this is on top of the general stress and anxiety of the COVID-19 crisis.

Ramadan traditionally offers us a spiritual reprieve from the rigors and hustle of our day to day lives. That may not be easy as many are facing the uncertainty of loss of income, business, or even loved ones.

So this isn’t going to be one of those Quran-time or “How to have an amazing Ramadan in quarantine!” posts. Instead, I’m going to offer some advice that might rub a few folks the wrong way.

Make this the Ramadan of good enough

How you define good enough is relative. Aim to make Ramadan better than your average day.

Stick to the basics and have your obligatory act of worship on lockdown.

Pray at least a little bit extra over what you normally do during a day. For some, that means having full-blown Taraweeh at home, especially if someone in the house is a hafiz. For others, it will mean 2 or 4 rakat extra over your normal routine.

Fill your free time with Quran and dua. Do whatever you can. I try to finish one recitation of the Quran every Ramadan, but my Ramadan in semi-quarantine was the hardest to do it in. Make sure your Quran in Ramadan is better during the month than on a normal day, but don’t set hard goals that will stress you out. We’re under enormous stress being in a crisis situation as it is. If you need a way to jump-start your relationship with the Quran, I wrote an article on 3 steps to reconnect with the Qur’an after a year of disconnect.

Your dua list during this Ramadan should follow you everywhere you go. Write it down on an index card and fold it around your phone. Take it out whenever you get a chance and pour your heart out to Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He). Share your stresses, anxieties, worries, fears, and hopes with Him.

He is the Most-Merciful and Ramadan is a month of mercy. Approach the month with that in mind, and do your best.

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The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

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