What is Ihram and the Do's & Don't.

Photo credit:www.ilinktours.com
What is Ihram
The word ihram is taken from the Arabic language, from the word "Al-haram" which means prohibited or preventable. 
The word ihram is also used for three meanings:

1. The two pieces of cloth worn by male pilgrims.

2. The very act of starting Hajj or 'Umrah by making the intention that one is now starting Hajj or 'Umrah and saying the Talbiyah.

3. The state of consecration in which the pilgrims are during Hajj or 'Umrah. After putting on ihram (first meaning) and making the intention of ihram (second meaning), the pilgrims enter automatically the state of ihram, which requires them to avoid certain things. Below are more details on ihram in its three senses.
A pilgrim must enter into this state before crossing the pilgrimage boundary, known as Miqat by performing the cleansing rituals.
Things to do before entering state of Ihram
  • - Cut nails, trim beard and hair (including the armpit and private areas).
  • - Take the purifying bath of Ghusl.
What are the prohibitions while in the state of ihram?

Having started Hajj or 'Umrah, you are now in the state of ihram. From now until you finish the 'Umrah or until you are done with the major tasks of Hajj, you are supposed to abandon certain things (called mahzurat al-ihram) or the don'ts of the state of ihram. They are the following:

  • For men wearing stitched clothes or covered footwear the head. So wearing shirts, robes, trousers, turbans, hats, gloves, socks, etc. is prohibited.
  • For women, wearing Niqab or gloves.
  • Clipping nails and shaving hair from any part of the body.
  • Using perfume in any way.
  • Having sexual intercourse.
  • Getting marriage.
  • Hunting or eating from game meat: Pilgrims are forbidden to hunt, help in hunting, or eat of any land game prepared for their sake, at their suggestion, or with their help.
  • Using harsh words, fighting with others, lying or boasting.
  • Covering the head or using anything to shade themselves from the sun, rain, etc
One of the common mistakes made during Hajj is not being aware of all the do's and don'ts of Hajj. Therefore, a man might end up doing something that is prohibited, such as seeking shade or killing a mosquito. Even if he does so without the knowledge that it is wrong, doing a prohibited act makes him liable to pay a penalty in the form of sacrificing a sheep.
What is Allowed During Ihram?
  • Wearing open footwear like slippers (as long as all the toes and most of the upper foot is visible).
  • The pilgrim is allowed to cover his body and feet with blankets, or pieces of cloth that are stitched at the edges. He may even use extra pieces of cloth if needed to protect against the cold.
  • He may use safety pins or clips to keep the cloths in place.
  • He may use a belt or a money purse, even if they are stitched as its added item and not clothings, to keep his valuables. 
  • Pilgrims may use lotions, creams, or medications if they are for medical purposes.
  • He may use unscented soaps and shampoos for cleansing purposes.
  • He is allowed to look into the mirror out of necessity (e.g. while driving), and he can use a camera.
  • A man is allowed to change his clothes (while following the dress code of Ihram) as many times as needed (e.g. if they become dirty, etc.).
  • He can use phones, but it is best to place them away from the ear, as otherwise, it may count as covering the ear.

 How to wear the Ihram for men

Credits : Hajmobiliti 

How, where, and when do I start pilgrimage?

  1. Now after putting on the clothing of ihram, you are ready to start your pilgrimage by making the intention of starting Hajj or 'Umrah. It is recommended to make the intention after performing one of the obligatory prayers or after praying two rak'ahs. 
  2. Talbiyah : Labbaika Allahumma labbaik, labbaika laa syariika laka labbaik. Innal hamda wanni’mata laka wal mulk, laa syariikaa laka.  




  • Mariam

    Very informative with the basics however it will be better if you could put some contact of well known scholars at the end , to assist readers for any further correct information

  • Maimuna Abubakar Ahmed

    Thank you so much for the enlightenment, its really educating because some of us do things without knowing its implication.

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