From WikiHaj

Entering the state of iḥrām (الإحرام) is the first obligation in hajj and 'umra. The person in the state is called muhrim. The issues pertaining to ihram are divided into four groups:

Obligations of Ihram


The condition of intention is that one should specify whether he wants to perform hajj or 'umra and should also specify their type. The second condition is that one should have pure intention of obeying the orders of Allah Almighty.

If someone intends hajj instead of 'umra due to negligence or ignorance, his ihram is valid. For instance, while wearing ihram for 'umra al-tamattu', if he says: I am going to wear ihram for the sake of Allah for hajj al-tamattu' but he has intention to perform the deed that is being performed by others thinking they are classified as hajj, his ihram is valid.

Uttering one's intention or imagining the intention in one's mind is not necessary. Rather, if he intends to perform rites, it would suffice. Intention must be accompanied by wearing ihram. So a previous intention will be sufficient only if it continues until the time of wearing ihram.

Saying Labbayk (Talbiya)

Saying labbayk while wearing ihram is just like the takbirat al-ihram in prayer. When a pilgrim says labbayk, he becomes muhrim and is now prepared to perform the rites of 'umra.

talbiya means accepting the invitation of Allah Almighty who has invited qualified people to perform hajj. Therefore, it is worthy that one should pronounce the words of talbiya with full humility.

According to the most correct view, the sentences of talbiya are as follows:

If one says only this, his ihram is correct, however on the basis of mustahabb caution, one should say these mentioned talbiyas following the above talbiya:

And to observe more caution, one may add:

Saying talbiya once is obligatory but it is mustahabb that one repeats it as much as possible for him. It is obligatory for a person to pronounce talbiya correctly. Thus, if a person can learn the pronunciation exactly or somebody may say it word by word so that he says it correctly but he ignores these steps and pronounces it in a wrong way, it would not be enough. But if he cannot learn it due to shortage of time and he cannot say it correctly with somebody dictating, he should pronounce it in any possible way and it is based on caution that he should appoint a representative to say it on his behalf. The person who neglects talbiya purposely is similar to the person who neglects wearing ihram in miqat purposely. The person who does not pronounce talbiya correctly and has no excuse for it is similar to the man who neglects talbiya purposely.

It is obligatory for a person who wears ihram for 'umra al-tamattu', to stop saying talbiya upon seeing the houses of the holy city of Mecca – though these new buildings around the Mecca which are considered a part of it. For a person who wears ihram for hajj, it is obligatory to stop talbiya from the noon of the 9th of Dhu l-Hijja (the day of 'Arfah).

Ihram for hajj al-tamattu' and its 'umra, hajj al-ifrad and al-'umra al-mufrada is materialized only by saying talbiya, while ihram for hajj al-qiran is achieved by saying talbiya along with ish'ar or taqlid. Ish'ar is confined to the camel while taqlid includes other types of sacrifices as well.

Wearing Two Cloths of Ihram for Men

One of the cloths (loincloth) is fastened around waist, while with the other piece of cloth the shoulders should be covered. These two pieces of cloth should be worn after taking off all those clothes that are prohibited for a muhrim. On the basis of obligatory caution, one should wear these pieces of cloth before making intention of ihram and recitation of talbiya. It is not a condition that the loincloth covers the navel and the knees; it is sufficient that it is called loincloth and like those usually used for ihram. It is not allowed to fasten the loincloth around the neck. However, there is no objection to fasten it using a pin or fastening its one part with the other unless it is not called loincloth any more. Likewise, fastening the shawl with a pin, a clip or by using small pebbles on both sides and fastening it with a thread in a common and well-known way is no problem, as long as it is called rida' (shawl). It is based on obligatory caution that one should wear the two cloths with the intention of seeking closeness to Allah Almighty.

The two cloths should be of the material allowed to wear during prayer. Therefore, wearing ihram of pure silk or parts of those animals whose meat is prohibited to eat, or parts of an animal which is not ritually slaughtered or an impure cloth is not sufficient for wearing ihram. It is a condition for the loincloth that it should not be thin and transparent, whereas it is not a condition for the shawl to not be thin and transparent provided that it fits the definition of rida' (shawl).

Wearing the two cloths is obligatory solely for men, while women are allowed to wear their usual clothes in state of ihram whether they are sewn or not. However, the clothes should be according to the guidelines for a person who recites prayer.

The dress of ihram for women should not be made of pure silk. It is not a condition for the two cloths to be manufactured with cotton or wool. Nevertheless if they are made of leather, nylon, or plastic, they should be called dress and usually worn. Likewise, there is no objection if the cloth is felted but called a dress and usually worn. While wearing ihram, if a person does not change his sewn clothes on purpose, the validity of his ihram would be objectionable. On the basis of obligatory caution, one should repeat his intention and recitation of talbiya after taking off these sewn clothes.

If a person is compelled to wear sewn clothes due to cold weather, he is allowed to wear normal clothes such as a shirt but he should not wear it like normal clothes but he should place the cloth on his body upside down or inside out. A person who is in state of ihram is allowed to take off ihiram for the purpose of shower, bathing, or the like. Changing the ihram dress is also permitted. A man in state of ihram can wear more than two [ihram] dresses due to cold weather. Likewise, he is allowed to use two shawls on his shoulders or two pieces of cloth around the waist.

If ihram cloths becomes najis, on the basis of obligatory caution, one must change or purify it. Being in state of wudu' or ghusl is not a condition for the validity of ihram; therefore, one can join the state of ihram during janaba or menses. However, it is highly recommended to take ghusl before wearing ihram which is called 'recommended ghusl of ihram'. It is better that one does not neglect it.

Mustahabb Acts of Ihram

It is recommended that body is pure before wearing ihram, the extra hair of body is removed and nails are cut off. Brushing teeth is also recommended before wearing ihram. It is also mustahabb to take ghusl before entering in the state of ihram at miqat. It is said that on cautionary basis this ghusl should not be neglected. Furthermore, it is recommended that one wears ihram after an obligatory noon-prayer or after any obligatory prayer or after offering a two-rak'ah prayer. It is mentioned in some hadiths that one offers six rak'ahs of recommended prayers as such prayers have great significance/reward. For a person who wants to perform hajj, it is recommended that he does not cut his hair in the month of Dhu l-Qa'da.

Makruh Acts of Ihram

Ihram with black, dirty, and striped dresses is makruh. It is better to wear white colour in state of ihram. Likewise, it is makruh to sleep on a yellow mattress or sleeps putting yellow pillow under one's head in state of ihram. Using henna before wearing ihram, in case its color would remain until wearing ihram, is also makruh. It is also makruh to say 'labbayk' in response to someone's calling. Taking ghusl and rubbing the body with rough cloth is also considered makruh.

Prohibited Acts of Ihram

It is obligatory to refrain from certain deeds from the moment ihram is worn until the end of ihram which are called prohibited acts of ihram.

There are twenty two things forbidden in ihram, out of which some are forbidden only for men/women. The prohibited acts will be discussed in general, followed by rules and issues regarding them. Forbidden acts during ihram are as follows:

  • Wearing sewn clothes by men;
  • Wearing footwear that covers upper part of the foot for men;
  • Covering the head for men and covering the face for women;
  • Spreading shadow over the head during the day while moving and traveling for men;
  • Using perfumes and things of good smell;
  • Looking into a mirror;
  • Wearing a ring;
  • Using henna;
  • Applying oil to the body;
  • Removing body hair from oneself or from others;
  • Applying kohl;
  • Clipping the nails;
  • Making a part of body bleed;
  • Fusuq (telling a lie, using bad names and boasting);
  • Jidal means saying: la wa-Allah (No by God!) and bala wa-Allah (Yes by God!);
  • To kill those creatures that live on the body;
  • Uprooting trees or plants in Haram;
  • Carrying weapons;
  • Hunting wild animals of the desert;
  • Sexual intercourse and getting any sort of physical pleasure from one's spouse such as watching (lustfully), kissing and touching;
  • Marriage; and
  • Masturbation.

Some of these acts are forbidden even in normal state and their prohibition will be stricter in state of ihram.


  • The Rites of Hajj, In Accord with Fatwas of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei, Hajj and Ziarah Research Center