Malaysian chil­dren pa­rade in white robes for prac­tice hajj

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

Thou­sands of Malaysian chil­dren took part in a prac­tice run for the Mus­lim hajj pil­grim­age yes­ter­day, walk­ing round a model of the holy Kaaba shrine un­der the trop­i­cal sun. About 4,000 six year olds, dressed in white robes of the kind worn by pil­grims and car­ry­ing green bags, par­tic­i­pated in the “Lit­tle Hajj” event in a field out­side the cap­i­tal Kuala Lumpur. The Kaaba is a square build­ing cov­ered in a veil lo­cated in Mecca, Saudi Ara­bia, and is the holi­est shrine in Is­lam. Part of the hajj in­volves walk­ing round the Kaaba. Kha­i­rizah Ka­marud­din, spokes­woman for the or­ga­niz­ers, said the event was aimed at get­ting young­sters ready to per­form the annual hajj at a fu­ture date. “The aim of this sim­u­la­tion is to ed­u­cate young Mus­lims of the im­por­tance of the hajj and re­move any fear or anx­i­ety when they per­form the ac­tual rites around the crowded Kaaba,” Kha­i­rizah told AFP. “The chil­dren were so ex­cited, they are now look­ing for­ward to con­duct­ing the ac­tual hajj pil­grim­age.” The chil­dren tak­ing part in the “Lit­tle Hajj” also threw peb­bles at a wall dur­ing a prac­tice ver­sion of the “ston­ing of the devil”, another of the hajj rit­u­als. Pre­dom­i­nantly Mus­lim Malaysia sends some 27,000 pil­grims to per­form the hajj ev­ery year. The hajj is one of the five pil­lars of Is­lam, which ca­pa­ble Mus­lims must per­form at least once, and marks the spir­i­tual peak of their lives.

SHA ALAM: Ihram-clad Malaysian Mus­lim boys from the Lit­tle Caliphs kinder­garten cir­cum­am­bu­late a mockup of the Kaaba, Is­lam’s most sa­cred struc­ture lo­cated in the holy city of Makkah, dur­ing an ed­u­ca­tional sim­u­la­tion of the Hajj pil­grim­age.

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