After the accomplishment of the Call, the proclamation of the Message and the establishment of a new society on the basis of ‘There is no god but Allaah,’ and on Muhammad’s mission, a secret call uprose in the heart of the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) telling him that his stay in the Lower World was about to terminate. That was clear in his talk to Mu’adh whom he had dispatched to Yemen in the tenth year of Al-Hijrah: “O, Mu’adh! You may not see me after this current year. You may even pass by this very Mosque of mine and my tomb.” Upon hearing that Mu’adh cried for fear that he would part with the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم).
Allaah’s care was so bounteous as to let the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) see the fruits of his Call for the sake of which he suffered various sorts of trouble for over twenty years. Those twenty years had elapsed actively. He used to spend his last days meeting, at the outskirts of Makkah, members of tribes and their representatives who used to consult him and learn the laws and legislation of Islaam from him, and in return he used to exact their testimony that he had delivered trust and communicated the Message and counselled the people.
The Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) announced an intention to proceed with this blessed pilgrimage journey himself. Enormous crowds of people came to Madeenah, all of whom seek the guidance and Imamate of the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) in the pilgrimage (Al-Hajj). On a Saturday of the last four days of Dhul-Qa’dah, the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) started the departure preparations procedure. He combed his hair, applied some perfume, wore his garment, saddled his camel and set off in the afternoon. He arrived at Dhul-Hulaifa before the afternoon prayer. He performed two Rak’ah and spent the night there. When it was morning he said to his Companions:
“A comer, sent by my Lord, has called on me tonight and said: ‘Pray in this blessed valley and say: I intend ‘Umrah combined with pilgrimage (’Umrah into Al-Hajj).”
Before performing the noon prayer, he bathed for Ihram (ritual consecration),and ‘Aa’ishah (رضي الله عنها) perfumed him on both his body and head with her hand with a Dharira (a plant) and with a perfume containing musk. The thick sticky layer of perfume could be seen among his parts of hair and beard. He left it unwashed, wore his loincloth and garment. He performed the noon prayer shortened, two Rak’ah. He proclaimed pilgrimage procedure associated with ’Umrah at his prayer-place. He, then mounted his she-camel ‘Al-Qaswa’, and proclaimed: ‘There is no god but Allaah’. When he moved into the desert, he acclaimed the Name of Allaah.
He proceeded with his journey till he approached Makkah. He spent the night at Dhi Tuwa and entered Makkah after performing the dawn prayer. He had a bath on Sunday morning, the fourth of Dhul-Hijjah the tenth year of Al-Hijrah. He spent eight days on the way, which was an average period. As soon as he entered Al-Haram Mosque he circumambulated Al-Ka’bah and walked to and fro (Sa’i) between As-Safa and Al-Marwah. He did not finish the Ihram (ritual consecration) because he was Qarin (i.e. intending ‘Umrah and Al-Hajj associated). He then took Al-Hadi (i.e. the sacrificial animals) in order to slaughter them. He camped on a high place of Makkah Al-Hajun. As for circumambulation, he performed only that of Al-Hajj (pilgrimage circumambulation).
Those of his Companions who had no Hadi with them to sacrifice, were ordered to observe Ihram (i.e. the state of ritual consecration) into ’Umrah (i.e. lesser pilgrimage), and circumambulate Al-Ka’bah and stride ritually to and fro between As-Safa and Al-Marwah. After that they could relieve themselves from Ihram. They, however, showed reluctance to do what they had been told. Thereupon, the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said: Had I known beforehand what I knew afterward, I would not bring Hadi, and if I did not have Hadi, I would break Ihram. On hearing these words, his Companions obeyed the orders to the latter.
On the eighth day of Dhul-Hijjah - that is the Day of Tarwiyah, he left for Mina where he performed the noon, the afternoon, the sunset, the evening and the dawn prayers - i.e. five prayers. Then he stayed for a while till the sun rose up then he passed along till he reached ‘Arafah, where there was a tent built for him at Namirah. He sat inside till the sun went down. He ordered that Al-Qaswa’, his she-camel, should be prepared for him. They saddled it and had it ready, so he went down the valley where a hundred thousand and twenty-four or forty-four thousand people gathered round him. There he stood up and delivered the following speech:
“O people! Listen to what I say. I do not know whether I will ever meet you at this place once again after this current year. It is unlawful for you to shed the blood of one another or take (unlawfully) the fortunes of one another. They are as unlawful, (Haraam) as shedding blood on such a day as today and in such a month as this Haraam month and in such a sanctified city as this sacred city (i.e. Makkah and the surrounding areas).”
“Behold! all practices of paganism and ignorance are now under my feet. The blood-revenge of the Days of Ignorance (pre-Islaamic time) are remitted. The first claim on blood I abolish is that of Ibn Rabi’a bin Harith who was nursed in the tribe of Sa’d and whom Hudhail killed. Usury is forbidden, and I make a beginning by remitting the amount of interest which ‘Abbas bin ‘Abdul Muttalib has to receive. Verily, it is remitted entirely.”
“O people! Fear Allaah concerning women. Verily you have taken them on the security of Allaah and have made their persons lawful unto you by Words of Allaah! It is incumbent upon them to honour their conjugal rights and, not to commit acts of impropriety which, if they do, you have authority to chastise them, yet not severely. If your wives refrain from impropriety and are faithful to you, clothe and feed them suitably.”
“Verily, I have left amongst you the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah (Traditions) of His Messenger which if you hold fast, you shall never go astray.”
“O people, I am not succeeded by a Prophet and you are not succeeded by any nation. So I recommend you to worship your Lord, to pray the five prayers, to fast Ramadan and to offer the Zakat (poor-due) of your provision willingly. I recommend you to do the pilgrimage to the Sacred House of your Lord and to obey those who are in charge of you then you will be awarded to enter the Paradise of your Lord.”
“And if you were asked about me, what wanted you to say?”
“We bear witness that you have conveyed the message and discharged your ministry.”
He then raised his forefinger skywards and then moved it down towards people while saying:
“O Allaah, Bear witness.”
He said that phrase thrice.
The one who repeated the Prophet’s (صلى الله علیه وسلم) statements loudly at ‘Arafat was Rabi’a bin Omaiyah bin Khalaf.
As soon as the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) had accomplished delivering the speech, the following Qur’aanic verse was revealed to him:
“This day I have perfected your religion for you, completed My Favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islaam as your religion.” [5:3]
Upon hearing this verse ‘Umar cried. “What makes you cry?” He was asked. His answer was: “Nothing succeeds perfection but imperfection.”
Bilal called for prayer after the speech, and then made the second call. The Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) performed both of the noon and the afternoon prayers separately, with no prayers in between. He then mounted his she-camel Al-Qaswa’, approached the location of the vigil, directed his face towards Al-Qiblah, kept on standing till sunset when the sky yellow colour vanished a bit and the disc of the sun disappeared. Usamah added that the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) moved onward to Muzdalifa, where he observed the sunset and the evening prayers with one ‘First call’ and two ‘second calls’. He did not entertain the Glory of Allaah between the two prayers. Then he lay down till it was dawn prayer time. He performed it with one first call and one second call at almost daybreak time. Mounting on his Al-Qaswa’, he moved towards Al-Mash’ar Al-Haram. He faced Al-Qiblah and started supplicating: “Allaah is the Greatest. There is no god but Allaah.” He remained there till it was clear morning and before the sun rose high, he made his way to Mina. He walked a little and threaded the mid-road leading to the big Jamrah where he stopped and pelted seven pebbles at it saying “Allaah is the Greatest” each time. They were like small pebbles hurled from the bottom of the valley. Then he set off to the sacrificial place, where he sacrificed sixty-three camels with his hands, and asked ‘Alee to slaughter the others, a hundred and thirty-seven altogether. He made ‘Alee share him in Al-Hadi. A piece of meat from each slaughtered animal was ordered to be cooked in a pot and from which both men ate, and drank the soup.
Then the Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) mounted his she-camel and returned to the House where he observed the noon prayer at Makkah and there he came upon the children of ‘Abdul Muttalib who were supplying drinking water to people at Zamzam Well. “Draw up water, children of ‘Abdul Muttalib, I would draw up with you if I were not afraid that people would appropriate this honour after me.” They handed him a pail of water and he drank to his fill.
At the daytime of the tenth of Dhul-Hijjah on the Slaughtering Day (Yaum An-Nahr) the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) delivered another speech. That was at high time morning, while he was mounting a grey mule. ‘Alee conveyed his statements to the people, who were standing or sitting. He repeated some of the statements that he had previously said the day before. The two Shaykhs (Bukhaari andMuslim) reported a version narrated by Abee Bakrah who said:
The Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) made a speech on Yaum An-Nahr (day of slaughtering) and said:
“Time has grown similar in form and state to the time when Allaah created the heavens and the earth. A year is twelve months. Four of which are Sacred Months ([i]Hurum). Three of the four months are successive. They are Dhul-Qa’dah, Dhul-Hijjah, and Al-Muharram. The fourth Month is Rajab Mudar, which comes between Jumada and Sha’ban.”[/i]
“What month is this month?” He asked. We said: “Allaah and His Messenger know best of all.” He kept silent for a while till we thought he would attach to it a different appellation. “Is it not Dhul-Hijjah?” He wondered. “Yes. It is.” We said. Then he asked, “What is this town called?” We said: “Allaah and His Messenger know best of all.” He was silent for a while till we thought he would give it a different name. “Is it not Al-Baldah?” (i.e. the town) asked he. “Yes. It is.” We replied. Then he asked again, “What day is it today?” We replied: “Allaah and His Messenger know best of all.” Then he kept silent for a while and said wondering: “Is it not ‘An-Nahr’ (i.e. slaughtering) Day?” “Yes. It is.” Said we. Then he said:
“(Shedding) the blood of one another and eating or taking one another’s provisions (unwillingly) and your honour are all inviolable ([i]Haraam). It is unlawful to violate their holiness. They must be as sacred to one another as this sacred day, in this sacred month, in this sacred town.”[/i]
“You will go back to be resurrected (after death) to your Lord. There you will be accounted for your deeds. So do not turn into people who go astray and kill one another.”
“Have I not delivered the Message (of my Lord)?” “Yes you have.” Said they. “O Allaah! Bear witness! Let him that is present convey it unto him who is absent. For haply, many people to whom the Message is conveyed may be more mindful of it than the audience,” said he.
In another version it is said that the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) had said in that very speech:
“He whoever plunges into misfortune will certainly aggrieve himself. So let no one of you inflict an evil upon his parents. Verily Satan has utterly despaired being worshipped in this country of yours; but he will be obeyed at your committing trivial things you disdain. Satan will be contented with such things.”
The Messenger of Allaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) spent At-Tashreeq Days (11th, 12th and 13th of Dhul-Hijjah) in Mina performing the ritual teachings of Islaam, remembering Allaah (praying), following the ways of guidance of Ibraheem, wiping out all traces and features or polytheism. On some days of At-Tashreeq he delivered some speeches as well. In a version of Abu Daawood with good reference to Sira,’ the daughter of Nabhan; she said: “The Messenger ofAllaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) made us a speech at the Ru’us (Heads) Day in which he said: “Is it not this the middle day of At-Tashreeq Days.”
His speech that day was similar to that of An-Nahr Day’s. It was made after the revelation of Soorah An-Nasr.
On the second day of An-Nafr (i.e. Departure) - on the thirteenth of Dhul-Hijjah, the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) proceeded with An-Nafr to Mina and stayed at a high place of a mountain side at Bani Kinanah from Al-Abtah. He spent the rest of that day and night there where he performed the noon, the afternoon, the sunset and the evening prayers.
Then he slept for a short while and mounted leaving for the Ka’bah. He performed the Farewell Circumambulation (Tawaf Al-Wada’), after ordering his Companions to do the same thing.
Upon the accomplishment of his religious rituals he quickened his move to the purified Madeenah. He went there not to seek rest but to resume the strife and struggle in the way of Allaah.