Talbīya (Arabic:تلبیه) is one of the obligatory acts of Ihram in hajj and 'umra and consists of some specific phrases that include the Arabic word "Labbayk." The most common terms of Talbiya is: لَبَّیكَ الّلهُمَّ لَبَّیكَ، لَبَّیكَ لاشَریكَ لَكَ لَبَّیكَ، إنَّ الْحَمْدَ وَ النِّعْمَةَ لَكَ وَالْمُلكَ، لاشَریكَ لَكَ لَبَّیكَ, which means "O Allah, I have come to you and I am responding your call, responding after responding. You have no partner. Verily, all praise and blessings and sovereignty is yours. You have no partner. I am responding your call.". These sentences should be pronounced correctly in Arabic while one is making intention of Ihram. By saying Talbiya one enters the state of Ihram and should refrain from the prohibited acts during Ihram. "Labbayk" in hajj is a response to the call of Allah and a reminder that we all are His servants. Repeating Talbiya in some occasions on the way from Miqat to Mecca is mustahab (recommended).
- 1 Terminology
- 2 History
- 3 Talbiya in Islam
- 4 Philosophy of Talbiya
- 5 Obligation of Talbiya and Validity Condition of Ihram
- 6 Phrases of Talbiya
- 7 Simultaneity of Talbiya and Ihram
- 8 Occasions in which Repeating Talbiya is Mustahab
- 9 When to Stop Reciting Talbiya
- 10 Forgetting Talbiya
- 11 Notes
- 12 References
"Talbiya" in Arabic is derived from "l-b-y" or "l-b-b" which means residing and staying in a place, answering, responding affirmatively and saying Labbayk; in addition, the latter also means the pure extract of something. Hence, in Arabic, intellect is called "lubb" and intellectual is called " labib". Accordingly, the meaning of "Labbayk" in response to any caller would be: "My sincerity is yours" or "I am abiding upon your compliance."
As a jurisprudential term, "Labbayk" means saying special phrases that include the word "Labbayk" (which means responding to Allah's call) in the Ihram of hajj and 'umra. One of the words that is closely related to Talbiya is "Ihlal" which means to say Talbiya loudly.
According to historical and hadith sources, angels were the first who recited Labbayk around the Throne of God. It is asserted in our sources that the prophets Adam (a), Abraham (a), Noah (a), Hud (a), Salih (a), Moses (a), Jesus (a), Jonah (a) and some other Israelite prophets recited Talbiya. Although there are some differences in their wording and phrasing, the word "Labbayk" is found in all of them.
Before Islam and during the age of Jahiliyya, Talbiya was distorted and got a polytheistic form. Every tribe in the Arabian Peninsula had its own Talbiya, for instance the Quraysh's was: " لَبَّیكَ الّلهُمَّ لَبَّیكَ؛ لَبَّیكَ لاشَریكَ لَكَ اِلّا شَریکٌ هُوَ لَكَ تَملِكُهُ وَ ما مَلَكَ"[Note 1]. They also had a special Talbiya for each of the well-known idols.
Talbiya in Islam
Prophet Muhammad (s) introduced this Talbiya as the accepted one in Islam:
Moreover, the Prophet (s) repeated this phrase a lot: "لَبَّیكَ ذَا المَعارِجِ لَبَّیكَ".[Note 2] He repeated Talbiya after mounting his riding animal, while going uphill or downhill, at the end of the night, and also after performing each prayer. At the sunset, on the Day of Tarwiya, the Prophet (s) ordered his companions to recite Talbiya and then headed toward Mina with them while reciting Talbiya.
Philosophy of Talbiya
The following are mentioned in hadiths as a philosophy of Talbiya:
- Responding Allah's call.
- Responding the call of prophet Abraham (a), who called people to perform hajj upon Allah's command.
- Forgiveness of sins by Talbiya.
- Deciding to talk for Allah's sake and in his obedience.
- Refraining from all sins.
It is narrated that while saying Talbiya, Imam al-Sadiq's (a) mood was changed and his voice trembled. Replying the question regarding this mood change, he said, "I am afraid that Allah rejects me and says: لالَبّیكَ و لاسَعْدَیكَ.[Note 3]
Obligation of Talbiya and Validity Condition of Ihram
According to majority of Shi'a faqihs, for entering the state of Ihram, in hajj al-tamattu', 'umrat al-tamattu', hajj al-Ifrad and al-'umrat al-mufrada, reciting Talbiya once is obligatory and the validity of Ihram depends on it. However, in hajj al-qiran, the pilgrim is free to choose between Talbiya, Ish'ar (putting a mark on the animal for sacrifice) and Taqlid. After reciting Talbiya in Miqat, one officially enters the state of Ihram and should refrain from prohibited acts of Ihram.
Shafi'i and Hanbali faqihs count Talbiya as mustahab , while Maliki faqihs see it as wajib (obligatory). Hanbali faqihs believe that recommended Talbiya is either the intention of Talbiya or reciting one of these phrases:"لااله الا الله"[Note 4], "الحمد لله"[Note 5], "سبحان الله"[Note 6], or Taqlid.
The majority of Shi'a and Sunni faqihs do not count Talbiya as a Rukn (elemental part) of hajj and 'umra.
Phrases of Talbiya
According to majority of Shi'a faqihs, the obligatory phrases of Talbiya are as follows: "لَبَّیكَ الّلهُمَّ لَبَّیكَ، لَبَّیكَ لاشَریكَ لَكَ لَبَّیک"[Note 7] However, according to the majority of recent Shi'a Marja's, these phrases are obligatory: "لَبَّیكَ الّلهُمَّ لَبَّیكَ، لَبَّیكَ إنَّ الحَمدَ وَ النِّعمَةَ لَكَ وَ المُلكَ، لاشَریكَ لَكَ لاشَریكَ لَكَ لَبَّیكَ"[Note 8]
It is noteworthy that some others faqihs have mentioned other phrases for Talbiya.Moreover, adding other phrases that include the word "Labbayk" after the obligatory phrases is recommended, such as: لَبَّیكَ ذَا لمَعَارِجِ لَبَّیكَ، لَبَّیكَ دَاعِیاً اِلَیدار السَّلامِ لَبَّیكَ[Note 9]
لَبّیكَ أتَقَرَّبُ إلَیكَ بِمُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ لَبَّیكَ، لَبَّیكَ بِحَجَّةٍ وَ عُمرَهٍ لَبَّیكَ [Note 10]
Having wudu or ghusl is another recommended act in Talbiya. Additionally, some Marja's say that reciting Talbiya loudly is recommended for men. Sunni faqihs believe that the original wording of Talbiya is this: "لَبَّیكَ الّلهُمَّ لَبَّیكَ، لَبَّیكَ لاشَریكَ لَكَ لَبَّیكَ، إنَّ الحَمدَ وَ النِّعمَةَ لَكَ وَ المُلكَ، لاشَریكَ لَكَ"[Note 11] Some have counted this as unanimous.
Correct Arabic Pronunciation of Talbiya
Talbiya should be recited in correct Arabic pronunciation. However, if the pilgrim is unable to do so, there are different fatwas based on hadiths:
- Appointing a deputy for reciting Talbiya;
- Reciting the translation of Talbiya;
- Reciting Talbiya in any possible pronunciation;
- Reciting it in any possible pronunciation, plus reciting the translation and appointing a deputy for reciting it.
However, some scholars believe that in the case of absolute inability of reciting Talbiya in any possible Arabic pronunciation, the pilgrim is excused from performing hajj in that year and the pilgrim should learn the correct Arabic pronunciation for the coming year.
Simultaneity of Talbiya and Ihram
Although some faqihs see that it is permissible to recite Talbiya after wearing Ihram outfit and its Niyya (intention), many of contemporary faqihs believe that Talbiya must be recited simultaneously with the intention of Ihram; i.e., Ihram is not valid if Talbiya is recited before or after the intention of Ihram. Furthermore, some faqihs believe that Talbiya should be recited simultaneously with wearing Ihram outfit.
Occasions in which Repeating Talbiya is Mustahab
According to Shi'a, Shafi'i, Hanafi and Hanbali faqihs, repeating Talbiya, especially in some occasions, is mustahab. Some of these occasions are:
- At the end of the night and beginning of the day.
- At dawn (sahar).
- While going uphill or downhill.
- After performing wajib or mustahab prayers.
- When meeting other pilgrims who travel with you.
Additionally, Shi'a and Hanbali faqihs see that reciting Talbiya after committing some prohibited acts during Ihram - for instance looking at mirror - is recommended.
When to Stop Reciting Talbiya
Based on Shi'a fiqh, it is obligatory that the pilgrim stop reciting Talbiya at noon of the Day of 'Arafa. However, some faqihs say that if the pilgrim is coming from Iraq, reciting should be stopped in Aqaba al-Madaniyyin, and if the pilgrim is coming from Medina, it should be stopped in Aqaba Dhi Tuwa. According to majority of Shi'a faqihs, in al-'umrat al-mufrada, if one has become Muhrim out of Haram, Talbiya should be stopped when one enters Haram, but if one has become Muhrim in Mecca and in Adna l-Hill, it should be stopped when one sees Ka'ba. It is not permissible to recite Talbiya while performing obligatory tawaf of 'umra.
A number of Shi'a faqihs believe that if a Muhrim forgets reciting Talbiya after making intention and passes Miqat, it is obligatory to return to Miqat and make it up. If it is not possible, the Muhrim must recite it at that place. Some other faqihs has joined the case of ignorance (not knowing the ruling) to the case of forgetting. They believe that if it is not possible for the pilgrim of 'umrat al-tamattu' to return back to Miqat or Adna l-Hill, his 'umra is void and he must perform hajj al-ifrad.
- labbayk allahumm-a labbayk,labbayk la sharik-a huwa lak-a tamlikuh wa ma malak
- Labbayk Dha l-Ma'arij Labbayk
- la Labbayk wa la Sa'dayk.
- "La Ilaha Illa Allah," which means there is no God but Allah.
- "al-Hamd Li Allah," which means all praises belong to Allah.
- "Subhan Allah." which means glory be to Allah.
- Labbayk allahumm-a labbayk, labbayk la sharik-a lak-a labbayk.
- Labbayk allahumm-a labbayk, labbayk inn-a l-hamd-a wa al-ni'mat-a lak-a wa l-mulk, la sharik-a lak-a labbayk.
- Labbayk dha l-ma'arij labbayk, labbayk da'iya ila dar al-salam labbayk.
- Labbayk ataqarrab-u ilayk-a bi-Muhammad wa Al Muhammad labbayk,labbayk bi-hajja wa 'umra labbayk.
- Labbayk allahumm-a labbayk, labbayk la sharik-a lak-a labbayk, inn-a l-hamd-a wa al-ni'mat-a lak-a wa l-mulk, la sharik-a lak.
- The material for this article is mainly taken from تلبیه in Farsi WikiShia.