Saturday 10th August 2019 – I vividly remember the anticipation, a heightened sense of excitement coursing through my body as we awaited the coaches to ‘Arafat; like me, many of the sisters in our tent were feeling the exact same. One thought resonated through my mind…
The Prophet (may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon Him) said:
“…The Hajj is ‘Arafat, the Hajj is ‘Arafat, the Hajj is ‘Arafat…”
[Tirmidhi | Book 47 | Hadith 3241]
…And this is what brought a sense of hope to my heart. The months of anticipation, preparation, all the moments were leading up to this day and it had now arrived. A sense of oneness and unity could be felt throughout the tents as everyone busied themselves in anticipation of our departure to the plains of ‘Arafah. This is the day we had to exert ourselves and not miss out!
We were all beggars in the house of Allah, waiting with our hands open, hoping for His mercy and forgiveness.
The coach eventually arrived around 10am. As we drove, every eye was pealed, looking out for Mount ‘Arafat… then our coached halted and we had arrived at our destination. We were greeted with warm words and given advice to rest and keep energy for the long day ahead. We combined our Dhuhr and ‘Asr prayers followed by sincere advice that was shared with soft hearts. The family (Quba Travels Team!); you have to call them family, because the way in which we were taken care of was the same manner in which we take care of our loved ones – ensured that we had food to eat and that we were comfortable on the Day of ‘Arafah – we were Allah’s guests and so were they.
After Dhuhr, I picked a spot to stand, secluded from others, and made dua – as did many of the Hujaaj. And His mercy came, subhanAllaah. There was a serene breeze in the plains of ‘Arafah when the drops of rain began to fall and grace us. By this time I was sat with a few sisters and little did I know I was to witness the most beautiful gathering. It rained for the first time in ‘Arafah after years. As the rainfall grew heavier, people poured out of their tents… people rushed to make the most of this moment and supplicate to Him. It reminded me of the verse when Allah says;
“And He it is Who sends down the rain after they had despaired and
spreads His Mercy. And He is the Protector, The Praiseworthy One.”
[Qur’an | Surah ash-Shura | Verse 28]
As the rain poured down, simultaneously the tear drops fell with humility as we all begged to the Most Forgiving, Allah azza wa jal. Hands raised to the heavens, I found myself conversing with Allah – asking from Him and being grateful to Him. It was akin to the Day of Judgement, a day where every man will utter “nafsi, nafsi.” (myself, myself). Old, young, children, the sick, the abled, less abled, rich, the poor – everyone was enveloped in His mercy, the sobs and weeping grew louder with each passing minute. We all knew the best of day was to depart us soon…
As the sun set I found myself asking; this day will come again next year but would I be here? The standing at ‘Arafah is etched into my mind and heart and I pray Allah accepts the du’a of the Hujaaj and everyone else and I pray He invites you and me to His blessed lands again and again. May Allah accept the hard work and dedication the Quba Travels Team put into the Hajj 2019 trip. Ameen.