Stages of Hajj
TAWAFUN NISA’ & ITS SALAT
After completing the sa‘i, the pilgrim proceeds to the tenth of the obligatory rituals of hajj known as tawafun nisa’. After that he goes on to fulfill the eleventh ritual known as salatu tawafin nisa’.
Once the pilgrim has completed the sa‘i, he returns to the Sacred Mosque to do tawafun nisa’ with sincere intention which may be done in the following words: “I am circumambulating seven times around the Ka‘bah for tawafun nisa’ of hajj at-tamattu‘ to seek nearness to Almighty Allah.”
Then the pilgrim proceeds to do salat of tawafun nisa’ behind the Maqam Ibrahim (a.s.) with sincere intention of seeking the pleasure of Allah which may be done by saying, “I am doing two rak‘ats of tawafun nisa’ for hajj at-tamattu‘ to seek nearness of Almighty Allah.” As mentioned earlier, the niyyat does not have to done verbally.
RULES OF TAWAFUN NISA
1. Tawafun Nisa’ is obligatory upon the men as well as women. If a male pilgrim neglects tawafun nisa’, then any sexual relations with his present or future wife is prohibited for him; and if a female pilgrim neglects tawafun nisa’, then any sexual relations with her present or future husband is prohibited for her.
2. A pilgrim who is doing the pilgrimage on behalf of someone else has to do the tawafun nisa’, like other rituals, on behalf the person whom he is representing. And if he neglects that tawafun nisa’ (on behalf of the other person), then the prohibition of conjugal relationship would apply on the pilgrim and not the other person.
3. The method and conditions of tawafun nisa’ and its salat is like the tawaf of hajj and its salat, and the difference is only in their niyyats.
4. Whoever neglects the tawafun nisa’ knowingly or by forgetfulness, it is obligatory on him to do it even if it means returning back to Mecca, and the prohibition of conjugal relations will continue until that tawaf is done.
If going back to do the tawafun nisa’ by himself is not possible or it is extremely difficult, then he can appoint someone else to do the tawaf on his behalf. Only after the tawafun nisa’ has been done will the prohibition of conjugal relations be lifted.
5. Once a male pilgrim has done the tawafun nisa’ and its salat, then conjugal relations become permissible for him; similarly, once a female pilgrim has done the tawafun nisa’ and its salat, then conjugal relations become permissible for her.
COMMON MISTAKES IN TAWAFUN NISA’ & ITS SALAT
1. Sometime jama‘at prayers is held in the Sacred Mosque while the pilgrim is doing his tawafun nisa’, and that forces him to interrupt his tawaf and then he joins in the jama‘at. After the prayers, he starts the tawaf from the very beginning thinking that the prayer between the rounds of tawaf invalidated his tawaf. This is an incorrect notion because the gap in between the rounds of tawaf for sake of joining the jama‘at does not harm the validity of the tawaf. In such a case, he should continue his tawaf from wherever he had stopped for the jama‘at and there is no need for starting it from the beginning.
In the same case as above, if the pilgrim did not participate in the jama‘at prayer for whatever reason and stood on the side for ten minutes or more waiting for the jama‘at to end to continue his tawafun nisa’ – in this case the gap of ten minutes just standing at the side cancels the continuity which is an essential condition for validity of the tawaf. In this case, he has to start his tawafun nisa’ from the very beginning.
2. In a case similar to the two previous situations, sometimes the jama‘at prayer is held when the pilgrim has ended the tawafun nisa’ but has not yet started the salat of tawafun nisa’, and the pilgrim in this case participates in the jama‘at prayer to do his daily prayer. However, he also thinks that the gap between the tawafun nisa’ and the salat of tawafun nisa’ has invalidated his tawaf and so he does the tawaf all over again. This is a wrong understanding.
The pilgrim in this case has to proceed with saying the salat of tawafun nisa’ and not to redo the entire tawaf.
3. Some elderly pilgrims, men as well as women, neglect the tawafun nisa’ thinking that they have already passed the age where they would not need to establish conjugal relations with their spouses. This is an incorrect thought since tawafun nisa’ is obligatory upon all pilgrims even if they do not or cannot establish conjugal relations with their spouses.
4. Some pilgrims do the tawafun nisa’ soon after the tawaf of hajj and before doing the sa‘i. This is incorrect. However, if someone commits this mistake out of ignorance, then there is no need for him to repeat the tawafun nisa’ after doing the sa‘i.
5. Some Shi‘a pilgrims travel with caravans run by non-Shi‘a Muslims who do not believe in obligation of tawafun nisa’ and, therefore, they neglect to do that tawaf out of ignorance. The prohibition of conjugal relations will not be lifted from them until they return back to Mecca and do the tawafun nisa’ themselves. If returning to Mecca is extremely difficult for them, then they can appoint someone else to do the tawafun nisa’ on their behalf.