WHAT IS AN UMRAH?

The Umrah as a means of spiritual purification

Umrah means to accept Allah’s invitation to his sacred house, the Kaaba. Yearning to answer Allah’s call, Muslims leave behind their homes and families to follow the Prophet’s footsteps. Their hearts are filled with nothing but love, and they try their best to fulfill Allah’s commands to attain spiritual purification. With regard to the purification and strengthening of the believer’s soul, the Umrah is one of the most crucial acts of worship there are. But it is not only about performing Ibâdahs: The Umrah also helps to reinforce the bands of brotherhood and sense of responsibility.

Pilgrims are very aware that thay are Allah’s guests. Therefore, they carefully mind what they are doing and saying and remember the Prophet Muhammads (s) words: “Those who perform the Hajj and the Umrah are Allah’s guests. If they ask for something, it will be granted. When they call upon him, he will answer them.” The pilgrims sincerely ask for Allah’s forgiveness. They experience the joy of being near to him at his sacred house. And upon returning home, they feel as if they had been born again.

“Umrah” literally means “to visit”. Pilgrims enter into the state of Ihrâm and perform the Umrah by circumambulating the Kaaba (Tawâf) and walking to and fro between the hills of Safa and Marwa (Say). Subsequently, they shave off their hair and leave the state of Ihrâm, such finishing the Umrah.

During the Tawâf the pilgrims visualize Allah’s oneness and eternal being. They surrender to the Most High and yield to the spiritual atmosphere of the Umrah and the steady flow of the Tawâf. It is the pilgrim’s only joy and desire to sense the presence of his Creator and to please him alone.