Mount Arafat or Mount Arafah (Arabic: transliterated Jabal ‘Arafāt) is a granite hill east of Mecca in the plain of Arafat.
Arafat is a plain about 20 km (12 mi) southeast of Mecca. Mount Arafat reaches about 70 m (230 ft) in height and is also known as the Mount of Mercy (Jabal ar-Rahmah).
According to Islamic tradition, the hill is the place where the Islamic prophet Muhammad stood and delivered the Farewell Sermon to the Muslims who had accompanied him for the Hajj towards the end of his life.
The Day of Arafah is the day on which Muslim Hajj pilgrims gather on Mount Arafah, praying and supplicating to their Lord. Crowds of people stand on Mount Arafah, which is meant to remind those standing of the Day of Resurrection, when crowds of people stand waiting for judgment. Standing as a singular community encourages pilgrims to rid themselves of false pride.
On the ninth of the month of Dhu al-Hijjah pilgrims go to Arafat from Mina, for the most important part of the Hajj.
Those who are not on the holy pilgrimage (not in Arafah) are highly recommended by Islamic tradition to fast.
The Khutbah of Hajj is narrated and Zuhr prayer and Asr prayer are prayed together. The pilgrims spend the whole day on the mountain to supplicate to Allah to forgive their sins and to pray for personal strength in the future.
Arafah rituals end at sunset and pilgrims then move to Muzdalifah for a shortened Maghrib Prayer and Isha prayer and for a short rest.
The level area surrounding the hill is called the Plain of Arafat. The term Mount Arafah is sometimes applied to this entire area. It is an important place in Islam because during the Hajj, pilgrims spend the afternoon there on the ninth day of Dhul Hijjah.
Failure to be present in the plain of Arafat on the required day invalidates the pilgrimage.
Since late 2010, this place is served by Mecca Metro. On a normal Hajj, it would be around 21 km (13 mi) to walk.
DAY OF ARAFAT FACTS
•It is common Muslim belief that the Prophet Muhammad said that fasting on the day of Arafah forgives all the minor sins of the past year and coming year.
- The Prophet Muhammad gave his last sermon standing on Mount Arafah. For that reason, it is visited by pilgrims during the Hajj.
- Standing on top of Mount Arafah completes the Hajj (Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca). It is believed to be the singular most significant act Muslim pilgrims undertake.
- The day of Arafah was declared by Prophet Muhammad as a day of celebration and feasting.
THINGS TO DO
•Buy gifts for children. As for him who gives (gifts) and guards against evil and accepts the best, we will facilitate for him the easy end (Quran, 92:5). According to Islamic tradition, those that spend on their children on this day are rewarded by God very generously. As a result, many Muslim parents buy toys and other gifts for their children on the day of Arafah.
- At Mount Arafah, pilgrims cast stones at a pillar that represents the devil as part of Hajj. According to tradition, at least forty-nine stones need to be cast.
- Although not required by Islamic tradition, many pilgrims spend the night at Mount Arafah and on the surrounding plains keeping vigil and praying for forgiveness.