Hajj is ‘Arafa (الحج عرفة)

‘Arafa ( عرفة), is known to be the most important day of the year (with laylatul qadr representing the most important night), at which stage we get the opportunity to rest our bodies for a few hours before the journey back to ‘The House’, and to nourish our souls with supplication and invocation with the Beloved. It’s a time to reflect, to contemplate, to become cognizant with the world of creation, with Divine Unity, with Prophethood and Wilayah. It is a time to connect with our Imams (as), and especially the Master of Martyrs Imam Hussein (as). It is a time to reach certainty of truth.

Martyr Ali Shari’ati said:

‘Arafat means: “Knowledge” and “science”! Mashar means: “Consciousness” and “understanding”! Mina means: “love” and “faith”! Go from Mecca to Arafat (Lo’ we are Allah’s) and then return from Arafat to Ka’ba (Lo’ unto Him we are returning). Arafat represents the beginning of man’s creation.’

‘…As was said previously, the descension from “Kaaba” to “Arafat” represents the beginning of Man’s creation. The time of man’s creation was simultaneous to the creation of “knowledge”! .. Consequently, from a philosophical point of view, man’s existence was contemporaneous with the existence of knowledge; from a scientific point of view, man’s history started with knowledge!’

‘…In the past, you lived under oppression and were kept ignorant as moss in stagnated waters …! Now, Oh “man”, come out of your tent, draw yourself into this deep ocean of people and let your “ego” burn under the glowing sun of Arafat! Only for one day, Oh “man ‘, be as a candle, burning and illuminating the hearts of these people! Do not be like wax and melt in the hands of the oppressors. Do not be a puppet.’

‘..With the passage of time and the influence of various forces of the social system which disregard human rights and duties, your character has been changed. The vicissitudes of life have affected you to the degree that you became alienated and neglectful. Originally, with Allah’s spirit in your heart, you were supposed to shoulder the responsibility of being Allah’s trustee on earth. You were granted time as a means for fulfilling this task but you failed because the gift was used carelessly!’


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