The Official Website of the Office of His Eminence Al-Sayyid Ali Al-Husseini Al-Sistani

Question & Answer » Ihram

1 Question: It is recommended to perform hajj every year. However, there are many poor Muslims who are in dire need of food and clothing in various Muslim countries. If it comes to making a choice between spending the money for hajj repeatedly or ziyãrat (pilgrimage to the shrine of one of the Infallibles [a.s.]) and between giving in charity for those believers—which is more meritorious?
Answer: In principle, helping those needy Muslims is better than a recommended hajj or ziyãrat of the holy shrines. However, at times the hajj or the ziyãrat is associated with certain other issues that can elevate them to the same or even higher status of virtue.
2 Question: When is the best time for wearing Ihram? Does the law make a difference for aged people?
Answer: The best time for wearing ihram for Hajj is the day of Tarwiyah which is the eighth of Thil Hijjah at zawaal. It is permissible for old and sick people who are fearful of overcrowding, to wear ihram, three days before then. They can wear ihram and leave Makkah before other people. Indeed, if need be, they can leave immediately after completing Umrat-ut-Tamatu'.
3 Question: Is it permissible to put on the ihrãm for hajj from the city of Jeddah? If it is not permissible, what should one do since the plane lands in Jeddah?
Answer: Jeddah is neither a miqãt nor parallel to any of the miqãts; therefore, it is not in order to put on the ihrãm from there for ‘umrah or hajj. However, if one knows that between Jeddah and the Haram [the holy territory around Mecca], there is a place which is parallel to one of the miqãts —this is not improbable, if one looks for a parallel of Juhfah— he can put on the ihrãm from there by offering nadhr. [Nadhr means making a vow in the name of Allãh that he will put on the ihram from place x.]
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