The Pause on `Arafah (wuqūf)

This is the stopping place or Pause of the Pilgrimage; as the Prophet said:

~ The Pilgrimage is `Arafah.

After completing the Tawāf and the Hastening, the Master is overcome by a state above which there is no higher condition or increase, which is the abandonment of anything known to him beyond the ability to describe. In this station of absolute abandonment, he is ordered to give up his physical form, his soul, his self, his reasoning, the names as well as the Attributes, and anything which has the scent of manifestation; he is commanded to gatheredness and to enfold the outward within the inward and the inward in the outward. When he has realized this state then he has completed the climb up the mountain, which is referred to as the Pause. It is also referred to as ‘The Blindness’ because it is absolute non‑existence, witnessing neither creation nor Creator.

The Pause is a station beyond reasoning, and therefore impossible to express, that it has been called the ‘obscure’, the ‘amazement’, the ‘bewilderment’, the ‘obliteration’, and the ‘Realm of Lāhūt’ (Pure Unity). Men of Allah are in wonderment at the mention of it, unable to describe it as if they were deaf and dumb and powerless to reason.

`Arafah, then, is the station of the Pause and the final goal of total annihilation (or complete vanishing from existence). The Pause occurs after zuhr (midday prayer time) and after the vanishing of existence (zawwāl):

# When the sun is rolled up and the stars are cast adrift. [81:1‑2]

This is the station of obliteration and blindness, of which the Prophet said:

~ Indeed, it is the station of blindness (with) no atmosphere above it or below it.

As this station is incomprehensible and full of awe one must exit from it as soon as possible, remaining merely for a pause. The seeker must then hasten to the place of nearness: Muzdalifah.

~ Flee from it (`Arafah) to the Place of Nearness (Muzdalifah) lest you vanish within it.

Thus, it is cried out in bewilderment:

~ O my Lord, from the standpoint of the Truth of Existence, You are the Worshipper and You are the Worshipped, You are the Witness and the Witnessed.

After this, the seeker must hasten to Makkah, which is referred to as the Presence of Oneness, in order to cease his wandering, attain a sense of security, bathe, and pray his sunrise prayer.

This concludes all four spiritual Pillars of the Pilgrimage. Next excerpt with cover other Obligatory Actions by Shaykh Fadhlalla Haeri.

  1. Hajj
  2. Pillars of the Pilgrimage 1 – Al-ihram
  3. Pillars of the Pilgrimage 2 – The walking around the Ka’bahPillars of the Pilgrimage 3 – Hastening between the stations of pilgrimage
  4. Pillars of the Pilgrimage 4 – The pause on ‘Arafat
  5. Obligatory Actions
    • The stoning of Shaytan
    • The Prohibition against Hunting
    • The Prohibition on Sexual Intercourse while on Pilgrimage
  6. Other Aspects
    • The lesser Pilgrimage (Umrah)
    • Ka’bah
  7. The Levels of the Pilgrimage
    • The Pilgrimage of the Revealed Law
    • The Pilgrimage of the Adepts
    • The Pilgrimage of the Gnostic