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Popular questions and answers
1Rules regarding the haircut during Hajj/Umrah?
Men have two options when they complete the Hajj or Umrah; either they can shave the head (which is called Halq) or they can trim the hair (which is called Qasr). The Prophet prayed for those who shave their head and those who trim it, so both are permissible (Sunan Tirmidhi, Book of Hajj, Hadith no. 837). In your case, it is better to perform Qasr each and every time, and then shave it the last time you perform the Umrah. Do not symbolically snip a few hair from each side as Qasr. This is wrong and forbidden in Shariah. It in fact resembles the Jews who deliberately have uneven amount of hair on their head. Instead, perform the Qasr at a barber and ensure he does cut an equal amount all over the head.
2Can a person use a sleeping bag as this will cover his feet?
In the state of Ihram, the man should leave his feet uncovered so that the bones on the upper part of the feet are left exposed. He should not wear sandals that cover the upper part. Using a sleeping bag is merely a means of keeping oneself warm; it is not a part of clothing as such. Therefore he can use it in extreme weather. The head and face of a man should be left exposed at all times during the Ihram state.
3Praying 2 rakaats for ihram?
The two Rakaats for the Ihram are Sunna; Jabir (may Allah be pleased with him) reports that he saw the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) perform two Rakaats at Zul-Hulaifa when he wore the Ihram. We are told it is better to recite Surah Kafirun in the first Rakaat and Surah Ikhlas in the second.
4Is it permissible to travel with my adopted sisters for Umrah as their mahram?
If the sister in question has been formally adopted, then she is a Mahram, and thus she is suitable as a partner for Umrah. Please note that it will be worthwhile taking official documents to Saudi Arabia to prove she is your adopted sister in case of any problems.
5Is it permissible to take pills to stop period during Hajj/Umrah?
The scholars say this is permissible when there is no long-term harm to the body in doing so. Otherwise it is forbidden.