The Important Of Visiting The Masjidul Aqsa And Also The Sunnah Of Wearing Ihraam Of Umra From There.

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Bismihi Ta`ala
*THE IMPORTANCE OF VISITING THE MASJIDUL AQSA AND ALSO THE SUNNAH OF WEARING IHRAAM OF UMRAH FROM THERE.*

The birth of the land`s surface owes its surfacing over the sea originally to the land of Makkah. That is why Makkah is named Ummul Quraa(The mother of earth). See ayah 92 of Surah 6 and ayah 7 of Surah 42. In fact, the first area of the earth crust that surfaced over the sea is that particular land underneath the Ka`bah. The first Masjid that was built on the surface of the earth was the Ka`bah: ‘’Verily, the first sacred house built for people (place of worship) in the one in Makkah.’’(3:96) The blessings of Makkah can be derived around the whole Universe. Hence Allah Ta`ala has favoured the land of Makkah as the main and original Haram.
Then the next favourite is the place where the beloved prophet Swalallahou `Alaihi Wasallam migrated and buried: Madinah. Place where the prophet Swalallahou `Alaihi Wasallam established the capital of the predicted Muslim Empire enjoy in its crust the honour of holding body Mubarak of Rasouloullah SAW. The sand touching the body Mubarak of Rasouloullah SAW is more precious than the Ka`bah, the Arsh and Loh Mahfooz. Hence, it is a mistake to objectively avoid visiting the prophet and say that we should visit Masjid Nabawi. I will come on the issue another time.
Then the next precious Masjid on the earth is Masjidul Aqsa. After Makkah and Madinah, we should objectively travel to Jerusalem for its virtue of salaah and its sanctity. 

عَنْ الزُّهْرِيِّ عَنْ سَعِيدٍ عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ
عَنْ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ لَا تُشَدُّ الرِّحَالُ إِلَّا إِلَى ثَلَاثَةِ مَسَاجِدَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَمَسْجِدِ الرَّسُولِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ وَمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى
بخاري

One should not travel to visit sanctity sites but towards these 3 Masjids: 1. Masjidul Haram(Makkah), 2. Masjidur Rasoul(Madinah) and 3. Masjidul Aqsa.(Bukhari)

Hence the 3rd holy place in Islam that merit our travelling is Masjidul Aqsa. How many of us already visited Dubai, Europe, China, etc and yet have not seen the beautiful Markaz of prophets: Masjidul Aqsa.

Before travelling to see the heavens, Allah Ta`ala took the beloved prophet SAW by air to Masjidul Aqsa:

سُبْحَانَ الَّذِي أَسْرَى بِعَبْدِهِ لَيْلًا مِنَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ إِلَى الْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى الَّذِي بَارَكْنَا حَوْلَهُ لِنُرِيَهُ مِنْ آيَاتِنَا إِنَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْبَصِيرُ

‘’Glory is He who made His servant travel by night from Masjidul Haram to Masjidul Aqsa whose environs we have blessed..’’(17:1)

One of the tafseer of the ‘’Barkats around Masjidul Aqsa’’ described in this ayah are said to be the tombs of prophets around Masjidul Aqsa(Qurtubi). There is concentration of the most beloved human beings that were sent generation after generation one after the other. Reported in Musnad Ahmad that the beloved prophet SAW led salaah in front of all prophets in Masjidul Aqsa:  
فَلَمَّا دَخَلَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ الْمَسْجِدَ الْأَقْصَى قَامَ يُصَلِّي، ثُمَّ الْتَفَتَ فَإِذَا النَّبِيُّونَ أَجْمَعُونَ يُصَلُّونَ مَعَهُ، فَلَمَّا انْصَرَفَ جِيءَ بِقَدَحَيْنِ، أَحَدُهُمَا عَنِ الْيَمِينِ، وَالْآخَرُ عَنِ الشِّمَالِ، فِي أَحَدِهِمَا لَبَنٌ، وَفِي الْآخَرِ عَسَلٌ، فَأَخَذَ اللَّبَنَ فَشَرِبَ مِنْهُ، فَقَالَ: الَّذِي كَانَ مَعَهُ الْقَدَحُ أَصَبْتَ الْفِطْرَةَ
احمد

This hadith is stamped Sahih by Ibn Katheer r.a. in his Tafseer.  
إسناد صحيح ولم يخرجوه

It is Allah Ta`ala`s wish to assemble the prophets there and also note the we will be assembled there on the day of Qiyamah. Imaam Suyuti r.a. commented the following hadith as a sahih hadith of Baihaqi and Tabrani:

صلاة فى مسجدى هذا أفضل من أربع صلوات فى بيت المقدس ولنعم المصلى فى أرض المحشر والمنشر وليأتين على الناس زمان ولقيد سوط الرجل حيث يرى منه بيت المقدس خير له من الدنيا جميعا (البيهقى فى شعب الإيمان ، والطبرانى فى الأوسط عن أبى ذر ، ورجاله رجال الصحيح)
Salaah in this masjid of mine is 4 times more virtuous than Salaah in Baytul Maqdis(Aqsa). And indeed, praiseworthy is the person performing salaah in the land of Assembly and the land of Resurrection. A time will come upon the people such that the whip`s space of a person`s view on Baytul Maqdis will be more cherish than anywhere in the whole world.(Tabrani;Baihaqi)

Note that one of the reasons why the beloved prophet SAW went to Jerusalem is to put his Mubarak pace upon a special place whereby prophets used to stand. It is reported in a Sahih hadith of Musnad Ahmad that the beloved prophet SAW said: ‘’On the night of ascension(Mi`raj), I put my feet on the place that the prophets used to put their feet in Baytul Maqdis and hence I was presented to Isaa a.s….’’(Ahmad)

حَدَّثَنَا بَكْرُ بْنُ عِيسَى أَبُو بِشْرٍ الرَّاسِبِيُّ، قَالَ: سَمِعْتُ أَبَا عَوَانَةَ، حَدَّثَنَا عُمَرُ بْنُ أَبِي سَلَمَةَ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ: ” لَيْلَةَ أُسْرِيَ بِي وَضَعْتُ قَدَمَيَّ حَيْثُ تُوضَعُ أَقْدَامُ الْأَنْبِيَاءِ مِنْ بَيْتِ الْمَقْدِسِ، فَعُرِضَ عَلَيَّ عِيسَى ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ . قَالَ: فَإِذَا أَقْرَبُ النَّاسِ بِهِ شَبَهًا عُرْوَةُ بْنُ مَسْعُودٍ، وَعُرِضَ عَلَيَّ مُوسَى، فَإِذَا رَجُلٌ ضَرْبٌ مِنَ الرِّجَالِ، كَأَنَّهُ مِنْ رِجَالِ شَنُوءَةَ، وَعُرِضَ عَلَيَّ إِبْرَاهِيمُ . قَالَ: فَإِذَا أَقْرَبُ النَّاسِ شَبَهًا بِصَاحِبِكُمْ
احمد

As such, placing your feet with respect upon the Mubarak footsteps of prophets would benefit us spiritually.   


Furthermore the beloved prophet Swalallahou `Alaihi Wasallam recommended us to go do salaah in Masjidul Aqsa or if unsafe then at least send some oil(contributions) for the masjid:

عَنْ مَيْمُونَةَ مَوْلَاةِ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَنَّهَا قَالَتْ
يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَفْتِنَا فِي بَيْتِ الْمَقْدِسِ فَقَالَ ائْتُوهُ فَصَلُّوا فِيهِ وَكَانَتْ الْبِلَادُ إِذْ ذَاكَ حَرْبًا فَإِنْ لَمْ تَأْتُوهُ وَتُصَلُّوا فِيهِ فَابْعَثُوا بِزَيْتٍ يُسْرَجُ فِي قَنَادِيلِهِ
ابو داود

When Maymounah r.a. asked about Baytul Maqdis, the beloved prophet Swalallahou `Alaihi Wasallam said: ‘’Do go there, to then read salaah there- and because the area was affected by wars- if you can`t go there, then at least send some oil that would be used in its lamps.’’Abu Dawood. 

So the first command of Shariah to Baytul Maqdis is to visit the masjid. How many of us tried to visit it until now? And know that foreign passports are respected by Israel. At least be at the border and try to get inside Palestine. If you are refused, then at least send some money contributions for the masjid. We should have been ready to give our lives for Masjidul Aqsa. But today, we are asked only to sacrifice this movement towards populating the masjidul aqsa.  

Also it is well known that the Shariah has prescribed visits to Makkah and Madinah frequently. But unfortunately we have ignored the virtue that we put our Ihraam of Umrah and Hajj from Masjidul Aqsa.

*THE MAIN THREE REASONS WHY FUTURE HUJJAAJ/MU`TAMIRS ARE REQUESTED TO WEAR THEIR IHRAAM AT MASJID AQSA-JERUSALEM:*



1.      *FORGIVENESS*

عَنْ أُمِّ سَلَمَةَ، زَوْجِ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَتْ: سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَقُولُ: ” مَنْ أَهَلَّ مِنَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى بِعُمْرَةٍ، أَوْ بِحَجَّةٍ، غُفِرَ لَهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِهِ

مسند احمد

صَحِيحِ ابْنِ حِبَّانَ



Our mother, Hazrat Umme Salma radiyallu `anha, the wife of the prophet SAW,  reported that she heard the the beloved Prophet (Swalallahou `alaihi wasallam) saying:*”WHOEVER WEARS THE IHRAAM OF HIS UMRAH OR HIS HAJJ AT MASJID Al AQSA(JERUSALEM) -AND THEN PROCEED TO MAKKAH- THEN HE WILL HAVE ALL HIS SINS FORGIVEN.” (Sahih Ibn Hibbaan, Ahmad).*



2.      *FULL FORGIVENESS*

عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ عَمْرٍو عَنْ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ لَمَّا فَرَغَ سُلَيْمَانُ بْنُ دَاوُدَ مِنْ بِنَاءِ بَيْتِ الْمَقْدِسِ سَأَلَ اللَّهَ ثَلَاثًا حُكْمًا يُصَادِفُ حُكْمَهُ وَمُلْكًا لَا يَنْبَغِي لَأَحَدٍ مِنْ بَعْدِهِ وَأَلَّا يَأْتِيَ هَذَا الْمَسْجِدَ أَحَدٌ لَا يُرِيدُ إِلَّا الصَّلَاةَ فِيهِ إِلَّا خَرَجَ مِنْ ذُنُوبِهِ كَيَوْمِ وَلَدَتْهُ أُمُّهُ فَقَالَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَمَّا اثْنَتَانِ فَقَدْ أُعْطِيَهُمَا وَأَرْجُو أَنْ يَكُونَ قَدْ أُعْطِيَ الثَّالِثَةَ

ابن ماجة



Hazrat suleiman a.s. asked this du`as for all those who will come and do salaah in Masjidul Aqsa-Jerusalem: *O Allah forgive that person such that he becomes as sinless as the day he was born.(Ibn Majah)*


3.      *FILL IN THE DESTRUCTIVE VACUUM*


All the difficulties of the muslim world is because we have emptied our masjids. To secure our deen, our well being, our family in a respective area, we have to populate the masjids of the area. It is because we have emptied Masjidul Aqsa that Palestinians are suffering. We need a help from Hujjaaj and Mu`tamirs that populate Makkah and Madinah harams to also populate the third haram: Masjidul Aqsa of Jerusalem. Begging for all of us to at least try getting there for a few salaahs to contribute for the well being of Palestinians and neighbourhood.

Furthermore, the virtue of wearing the ihram at Masjid Al Aqsa has also been mentioned in the following Hadith collections: Abu Dawood, Ibn Majah, Ibn Abi Shaibah, Abu Ya’laa, Baihaqi and Darul Qutni. Moreover, there are narrations of those sahabahs (ra) who went there to wear their ihram. A narration from Baihaqi reports that, under the caliphate of Umar (ra), Hazrat Muaaz (ra) and Ka’ab (ra) led a group of Muslims to Masjid Al Aqsa where they wore their ihram and from there proceeded for Umrah. On another occasion, a man came to see Umar (ra) in order to seek his permission to visit Masjid Al Aqsa. Umar (ra) replied: Go and get ready for the journey. When you are ready, come and see me. When he was ready, Umar (ra) told him: Go ahead and from there perform an umrah. (Ibn Abi Shaibah).
عَنْ سَعِيدِ بْنِ الْمُسَيَّبِ ، قَالَ : أَتَى رَجُلٌ عُمَرَ ، فَقَالَ : إنِّي أُرِيدُ بَيْتَ الْمَقْدِسِ ، فَقَالَ : اذْهَبْ فَتَجَهَّزْ فَإِذَا تَجَهَّزْت فَآذِنِّي ، فَلَمَّا تَجَهَّزَ أَتَاهُ ، قَالَ : اجْعَلْهَا عُمْرَةً.
ابن ابي شيبة

It has been reported in Musannaf of Ibn Abi Shaibah that Hazrat Ibn Umar (ra) did wear his ihram in Masjid Al Aqsa. Narrators of Hadith, Wakee and Umme Hakeem, did both wear their ihraam at Masjid Al Aqsa before proceeding for Umrah from there. (Abu Dawood, Ibn Hibbaan)
It is therefore recommended to visit Bait ul Muqaddas from time to time. However, nowadays, organizers of such trips plan such a visit only after Umrah. It is noteworthy that it is more virtuous, for those who have the means to perform Umrah and the visit to Palestine, to proceed to Jerusalem before Umrah. So therefore, do 2 rakaats in Masjid ul Aqsa, Jerusalem, then wear your ihram at Masjid Al Aqsa and from there proceed to Makkah for Umrah. In this way, you will acquire the virtue of forgiveness and at the same time you will imitate the actions of the sahabahs (ra). And if all those who have means could act in this way, then Masjid Al Aqsa would have become a better-frequented place by the Muslim world. In that respect, Muslims would have had a greater influence over that Masjid, which, nowadays, is under other influence.

Mufti Ayoob Mackoojee
Islam-qna.org
+23057921333
@MuftiMackoojee
 
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