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Comparative Fatwas on Istita'ah (Enjoying all the Requirements for Hajj)

Fatwās Of Imam Khomeini (q.)

Fatwās of the Grand Ayatollah Khamenei (d.)

1- Istitā‘ah is conditioned by having enough money/property upon return, i.e. on returning from hajj, he would earn his living by trading, farming, industry or the profit gained from properties like orchard(s), shop(s), and so on in a way that he would not face difficulty or serious problem. Also, if he has the ability to earn living compatible to his station in any way, it is enough. After returning from hajj, depending on zakāt, khums or other religious tithes as a living source is not sufficient. Therefore, hajj is not obligatory for the religions students who depend on stipends from Islamic seminaries for their livelihood.

1- After return if they can provide their livelihood by receiving stipends, it is incumbent upon them to perform hajj.


2- If a person, who does not enjoy istitā‘ah, borrows money for covering hajj expenses, such a person will not acquire istitā‘ah even though he/she can easily pay back the money later on. If such a person performs hajj with this money, it does not replace ḥajjah al-Islam.

2- A person — who is financially incapable of performing hajj but he/she can easily borrow and pay back later an amount enough for hajj expenses — is not obliged to acquire istitā‘ah by borrowing such an amount. Anyhow, if this person does borrow this money, hajj becomes obligatory for him/her.


3- If a person is hired to perform hajj on behalf of another person, specifically this year, and becomes financially capable of performing hajj in the same year, first he must perform the hajj on behalf of that person. Next year he/she will perform hajj for himself/herself if he/she still enjoys istitā‘ah.

3- If istitā‘ah has been attained through being hired, i.e. receiving compensation for performing hajj on behalf of another person, one has to follow Imam Khomeini's fatwa, but if istitā‘ah has been attained through other means, it shows that the hiring contract was void and the person must perform hajj for himself/herself.

4- A person who is in need for marriage and needs some money to pay for it is not considered enjoying istitā‘ah unless he/she has enough money for both hajj and marriage.

4- If a person is in such an urgent need for marriage that in case of remaining unmarried he/she would be in a serious problem, suffer from illness or commit ḥarām, or remaining unmarried would lead to his disgrace, it is incumbent on him/her to go for hajj only if he/she have enough money for both hajj and marriage.

5- A person, who has enough money for hajj but has not attained istitā‘ah either due to health problem or because the way is not open and he/she will acquire such istitā‘ah in the next year/s, may spend the money referred to and make himself/herself unable to go.

5- A person who has attained istitā‘ah cannot spend money for something else to make himself/herself financially unable to go for hajj if it is time to leave for hajj and cannot be delayed.
Before this time also, it is obligatory caution not to do so.

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