To circumambulate the Ka’bah 7 times is called Tawaf. One round is called a ‘Shaut’ while its plural is referred to as ‘Ashwat’. Tawaf is performed in Mataf (nearby area of Kaaba Sharif).
Types of Tawaf
The very first Tawaf performed on arriving in Makka-tul-Mukarramah is called ‘Tawaf-ul-Qudum’ that is Sunnat-ul-Muakkadah for those making the intention of Hajj Ifrad or Hajj Qiran.
It is also called Hawaf Ifadah. It is an essential pillar of hajj. It can be performed from the subh-e-sadiq of 10th Zul-hijjah till the sunset on 12th Zul-hijjah. However, it is referable to perform it on the 10th of Zul-hijjah.
This Tawaf is performed after Hajj before departing from Makka-tul-Mukarramah. It is Wajib for every Afaqi Haji (the definition of an Afaqi Haji is given ahead).
This Tawaf is Fard for the person performing ‘Umrah.
5. Nafil Tawaf
This Tawaf is Nafil. Ihram is not compulsory, perform in your regular dress. Perform Tawafs on behalf of the Holy Prophet Sallalahu Alaihi Wasallam, Sayyiduna Ghaus-ul-A’zam Rehmatullahe Ta’ala ‘Alaihi, your parents, your Family member, spiritual guide (Shaykh/Murshid) etc.
Remember! After performing a Nafl Tawaf, one should first embrace Multazam before offering 2 Rak’at Salah at Maqam-u-Ibrahim.
Seven Haram Acts During Tawaf
The following acts are Haram in Tawaf, even if it is a Nafl one:
1. To perform Tawaf without Wudu.
2. Unveiling of a quarter of that part of the body which is included in ‘Sitr.’ For example, unveiling of a quarter of thigh is Haram. Likewise, unveiling of a quarter of the ear or the wrist of an Islamic sister is Haram. Islamic sisters pay very little attention to this. During Tawaf, especially when doing Istilam of Hajar-ul-Aswad, a quarter of the wrists of several Islamic sisters is unveiled, even sometimes complete wrist is unveiled, which is Haram. (Unveiling the ear or the wrist to a non-Mahram male is Haram even besides Tawaf.).
3. To make Tawaf on some carriage or on someone’s back without a valid excuse.
4. To crawl or drag oneself whilst sitting during Tawaf without a valid excuse.
5. To make Tawaf in the opposite direction keeping the Ka’bah at right side.
6. To pass from inside the Hatim during Tawaf.
7. To perform less than seven rounds.
Seven Makruh Acts During Tawaf
1. Useless talking.
2. To make Du’a and Zikr aloud (therefore, it is Makruh that a person recites Du’a aloud during Tawaf and others also repeat it aloud).
3. To perform tawaf in impure clothes. (As a caution, don’t carry used shoes/slippers with you during Tawaf).
4. To perform Tawaf with longer intervals in between the rounds of Tawaf. However there is no harm if one needs to go to the toilet or to make Wudu. He may leave. He should resume Tawaf from where he had left; there is no need to restart from the beginning.
5. To start the next Tawaf without offering the two Rak’at salah of the previous one. However, if the time is Makruh for salah, there is no harm in doing so. For example, several Tawafs may be performed without offering Salah of Tawaf from Subh-e-Sadiq till 20 minutes after the appearance of the edge of the sun at sunrise or after offering Salat-ul-‘Asr till sunset. However, after the elapsing of Makruh timing, two Rak’at salah will have to be offered for each Tawaf.
6. Eating is Makruh during Tawaf (but one may drink water).
7. To perform Tawaf in the intense need of passing urine or breaking wind etc.
Seven Permissible Acts During Sa’i and Tawaf
1. To make Salam
2. To reply to Salam
3. To talk when necessary
4. To drink water (eating is not allowed during Tawaf but it is allowed during Sa’i. Make the intention of Nafl I’tikaf so that eating, drinking Zam Zam water will become permissible).
5. To recite verses of Hamd, Na’at or Manqabat in low voice
6. To pass across the front of someone offering Salah, as Tawaf is also like Salah. However, passing is impermissible during Sa’i.
7. To ask or answer an Islamic ruling