Ihraam means having the intention of starting the rituals of Hajj or ‘Umrah.
- When the pilgrim wants to enter ihraam, he should change his clothes and do ghusl like the ghusl done to cleanse oneself of janaabah (impurity following sexual activity).
- Then he should apply whatever perfume is available, musk or whatever, to his head and beard. It does not matter if traces of that perfume remain after he enters ihraam,
Because of the hadeeth narrated in al-Saheehayn from ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) who said:
When the Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi waa sallam) wanted to enter ihraam, he would perfume himself with the best perfume he could find, then I would see shining traces of that musk on his head and beard after that.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 271; Muslim, 1190.
Doing ghusl when entering ihraam is Sunnah for both men and women, even women who are bleeding following childbirth or menstruating, because the Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) commanded Asma’ bint ‘Umays when she was bleeding following childbirth to do ghusl when she entered ihraam, and to bandage her private parts and enter ihraam. Narrated by Muslim, 1209.
Then after doing ghusl and putting on perfume, the pilgrim should put on the ihraam garments and – apart from women who are bleeding following childbirth or menstruating – pray the obligatory prayer if that is at the time of an obligatory prayer, otherwise they should pray two rak’ahs with the intention of the Sunnah prayer of wudoo’.
When the pilgrim has finished praying he should face the qiblah and enter ihraam. He may delay ihraam until he has boarded his means of transportation, and is ready to move off, but he should enter ihraam before he leaves the meeqaat for Makkah.
- If he is doing Tamattu’, he should say, “Labbayk Allaahumma bi ‘Umrah (Here I am, O Allaah, for ‘Umrah).”
- If he is doing Qiraam, he should say, “Labbayk Allaahumma bi Hijjah wa ‘Umrah (Here I am, O Allaah, for Hajj and ‘Umrah).”
- If he is doing Ifraad, he should say, “Labbayk Allaahumma Hajjan (Here I am, O Allaah, for Hajj).”
Then he should say, “Allaahumma haadhihi hijjah laa riyaa’a fiha wa la sum’ah (O Allaah, this is a pilgrimage in which there is no showing off or seeking reputation).”
Then he should recite the Talbiyah as the Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa salla) did: “Labbayka Allaahumma labbayk, labbayka laa shareeka laka labbayk. Inna al-hamd wa’l-ni’mata laka wa’l-mulk, laa shareeka lak (Here I am, O Allaah, here I am. Here I am, You have no partner, here I am. Verily all praise and blessings are Yours, and all sovereignty, You have no partner).”
The Talbiyah of the Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) also included the words, “Labbayka ilaah al-haqq (Here I am, O God of Truth).”
Ibn ‘Umar used to add to the Talbiyah the words, “Labbaayk wa sa’dayka, wa’l-khayr bi yadayka, wa’l-raghba’ ilayka wa’l-‘aml (Here I am and blessed by You, and all good is in Your hands, and desire and action are directed towards You).”
Men should raise their voices when saying this, but a woman should recite in such a manner that those who are beside her can hear it, unless there is a man beside her who is not one of her mahrams, in which case she should recite it silently.
If the person who is entering ihraam fears some obstacle that may prevent him from completing his pilgrimage (such as sickness, an enemy, being stopped from proceeding any further, etc), then he should stipulate a condition when entering ihraam by saying, “If I am prevented then my exiting ihraam is where I am prevented” – i.e., if something prevents me from completing my pilgrimage such as sickness or delay etc, then I will exit my ihraam. The Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) commanded Dubaa’ah bint al-Zubayr, when she wanted to enter ihraam but she was sick, to stipulate such a condition, and he said, “Your condition is valid with your Lord.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (5089) and Muslim (1207).
If he stipulates this condition and something happens to prevent him from completing his pilgrimage, then he exits his ihraam and does not have to do anything (i.e., offer a sacrifice in compensation).
But the one who does not fear that some obstacle may prevent him from completing his pilgrimage does not have to stipulate any conditions, because the Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) did not stipulate conditions nor did he command everyone to do so. Rather he told Dubaa’ah bint al-Zubayr to do that because she was sick.
- The muhrim (person who has entered ihraam) should recite the Talbiyah a great deal, especially when circumstances and times change, such as when going up to a high place or going down to a low place, or when night or day begin.
- After that he should ask Allaah for His good pleasure and for Paradise, and seek refuge in His Mercy from the Fire.
The Talbiyah is prescribed in ‘Umrah from the moment one enters ihraam until one starts Tawaaf. In Hajj it is prescribed from the moment one enters ihraam until one stones Jamarat al-‘Aqabah on the day of Eid.