The Jamarat

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Jamarat these are the three stone pillars that are put as an obligatory ritual of the Hajj in imitation of the Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him). They represent the three places where Ibrahim (peace be upon him) threw stones at Satan (Shaitan) when he tried to discourage him from sacrificing his son Ismail (peace be upon him). The columns are called “Jamarat al-Ula”, “Jamarat al-Wusta” and “Jamarat al-Aqaba”.

The Jamarat | “Jamarat al-Ula”, “Jamarat al-Wusta“Jamarat al-Aqaba”
Hujjaj on their way to cast stones at the Jamarat – Photo: DailyMail.com

One of the goals and mandatory of the Hajj is to recall in Mina how a 94-year-old father Ibrahim (peace be upon him) brought his eight-year-old son Ishmael (peace be upon him) here for sacrifice. Ibrahim (peace be upon him) was the first to leave his wife and the newborn son Ishmael (peace be upon him) in the desert by the command of Allah. Then, returning after eight years to them, he had a dream in which a man told him that Allah wanted him to sacrifice his only son. He had the same dream three nights in a row, and since he was a prophet, his dreams were a form of the Divine Instructions. He understood that Allah wanted him to sacrifice his son, to whom his heart was filled with love and emotions. He went to his wife and inform her about the dream and asked her to dress up Ishmael (peace be upon him). Ishmael (peace be upon him) was overjoyed that his father had come after so long and now led him out for a walk. When Hajra (peace be upon her) asked: "Where are you taking him?" He replied: "Meet a friend."

The Jamarat | “Jamarat al-Ula”, “Jamarat al-Wusta“Jamarat al-Aqaba”
Stoning at the Jamarat – Photo: alriyadh.com (The Jamarat | “Jamarat al-Ula”, “Jamarat al-Wusta“Jamarat al-Aqaba”)

Then they reached Mina. Here, Ibrahim (peace be upon him) asked his son that your father had such a dream, what did you think of it? The reason to ask was not to ask his opinion when deciding whether or not to continue the command. He had to evaluate whether his son would allow to follow the order freely or whether he would have to enforce this order. In other words, he asked this to test the power of the love of Allah in the heart of his son Ishmael (peace be upon him). The son replied: “My father, obey the commandment of Allah. Insha Allah, you will find me persistent. Give my shirt to my mother, as this will be a source of comfort for her, and wrap me in your shirt. Put my face down so that you cannot see my face, so that you do not hesitate in carrying out my slaughter. ”

Heaven and earth witnessed that Ibrahim (peace be upon him) bound his son and laid him on the ground. Now it was very unacceptable for Satan, so he first went to Hajra (peace to her) and asked her: “Do you know where Ibrahim took your son?” She replied: “to meet a friend.” He said: He went to meet Allah. He is going to sacrifice your only son! "She said," How can a father sacrifice his son? ". By mistake, Satan said: "This is the commandment of Allah." Hearing this Hajra (peace be upon her), replied: "If this is the commandment of Allah, thus, even a hundred Ishmaels can be sacrificed in this way."

Then he went to distract Ibrahim (peace be upon him). When he appeared to him on the first Jamarat, Angel Jibreel (peace be upon him) said to Ibrahim (peace be upon him): “Pelt him!” Therefore, Ibrahim (peace be upon him) threw seven stones at him, and he disappeared from him, then he appeared to him the second Jamarata. Gibrail (peace be upon him) said to him: “Pelt him!” And he threw him with seven stones, and he disappeared from him. Then he came to him on the third Jamarat. Gibrail (peace be upon him) again instructed him: “Pelt him!” And he again threw seven stones at him, and Shaitan withdrew from him. This action is imitated by all hajj pilgrimage, symbolizing the recognition that Shaitan is the enemy and should be reflected. as Allah mention in the Al-Quran Chapter2:208- O you who believe, you shall embrace total submission to Allah; do not follow the steps of Shaitan (Satan), for he is your most plain enemy to you.

Then Ibrahim (peace be upon him) laid Ishmael down (peace be upon him) and put a knee on his neck so that he could not move. Then he looked to the sky and called the Most High Allah: “O Allah! If you didn’t like the presence of love for Ismail in my heart, I ask your forgiveness. ” Then he proclaimed the name of Allah and laid a knife on Ismail’s throat (peace be upon him). He rub the knife, but knife not cut Ismail’s throat, Allah have taken away the quality of cutting from the knife.

The Jamarat | “Jamarat al-Ula”, “Jamarat al-Wusta“Jamarat al-Aqaba”
The Jamarat during the Hajj of 1953

Allah was pleased with the sincerity of Ibrahim (peace be upon him) and sent a white, big-eyed sheep with horns instead of Ismail (peace be upon him), which Ibrahim (peace be upon him) sacrificed in return. This is the story behind the offering animals for sacrifice during Hajj and all other Muslims around the world in the time of Eid-ul-Adha it also called Eid-ul-Kabir (Festival of Sacrifice).

Please take note that the opinions of people of the Jews and Christians are very different from Muslims regarding who the sacrificial son was and where the incident occurred. To enhance their prestige and honor, they attribute the sacrificial son Isaac (peace be upon him), who is the forefather of Jews people and Christians, and not Ishmael (peace be upon him), who is the ancestor of Muslims. They also placed the setting in Jerusalem, not in Mina. It is clear that, looking at the biblical scriptures, the evidence shows that only Ismail (peace be upon him) could be the sacrificial son. one of the references to this in the Bible:, in Genesis 22: 2, Abraham was ordered to take his only son as a sacrifice. Since Ishmael (peace be upon him) was 13 years older than Isaac (peace be upon him) and both were alive at the time of death of their father, logically Isaac (peace be upon him) could never be his only son.


Sources: The Intellect – Volume 2, Issue 3, The History of Makkah Mukarramah – Dr. Muhammad Ilyas Abdul Ghani

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