Grand Mufti: Avoid politics at Haj
With five days to go for the trek to the nearby tent city of Mina at the start of the annual pilgrimage, hundreds of thousands of faithful throng the Grand Mosque in Makkah for prayers on Friday.
Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh has advised pilgrims to avoid politicizing the Haj.
Speaking during his Friday sermon at Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque in Riyadh, he said the main aim of the Haj should be remembering Allah while performing the rituals.
He said pilgrims must be wary of their Haj being dominated by “evil and wrong thoughts, deviant ideologies or abhorrent sectarianism.”
He said pilgrims must abide by the regulations that have been put in place by the Saudi government for the safety and comfort of all those on the holy journey.
The mufti said pilgrims should not undermine efforts to ensure the Haj is conducted safely and peacefully. “Strive to be close to Allah with the words and deeds that He loves, because you are in a great and blessed land …”
He said Allah has warned in the Qur’an that there would be a “most grievous penalty” for those whose purpose is “profanity or wrongdoing,” the Saudi Press Agency reported.
More than 2 million pilgrims are expected to perform Haj this year.
They will assemble in Mina, 12 km outside Makkah, on Thursday Oct. 2 at the start of the pilgrimage in preparation for their journey to Arafat the next day. About one million foreign pilgrims have already arrived for Haj.