Why do Tawaf around the ka’bah? Published by


The Ka’bah plays the most significant role in the performance of the Muslim pilgrimage to Makkah. In Hajj,  once a year and the ‘Umrah, which can be done throughout the year, the Ka’bah is a central point, around which Muslims circle in an anti-clockwise direction, wherein this part of the Hajj or pilgrimage is known as Tawaaf. It means to turn, walk, around something. The Ka’bah is the most sacred site in Islam towards which the Muslims face 5 times a day to perform their daily prayers.

The Tawaf(circumambulation) an extremely symbolic act, demonstrates, unity of the believers in the worship of their One God Allah, an act done in harmony together as one entity.

It is the most circumambulated structure in the world at all times of the year every time except, 5 times during their daily prayers which signifies the preceding significance of daily Salah over the Tawaf. It’s an act of worship to Allah and not worshipping the stone structure or regarding it as any other intermediary to invoke Allah’s blessing

Tawaf depicts the idea of oneness. This implies the importance of maintaining unity in all spheres of one’s social and family.  The reason of seven tawafs during Hajj and Umrah, is because the sky has seven layers; man has seven souls. Each circling around the Ka’bah denotes a phase, a stage where it means to rise from the lowest step of the soul, which has seven steps, to the highest one. Beginning from Nafs Al-Ammarah (soul commanding the evil) to Nafs al-Mutmainnah (tranquil self); from the animal life to the spiritual life. Rotating around the Ka’bah is a kind of worship in sync with the order of the universe.  Everything in the universe, from the tiny atoms to huge galaxies, is in a state of tawaf. In the atom, electrons rotate around the nucleus, in the galaxy, billions of stars circle around the center with an incredible speed. They move as if they worship the Creator that created them.

This spectacular scene, where millions of Muslims in Unison, walk around the ka’bah is similar to the galaxy turning together with billions of stars.  A Muslim who moves in this orbit lets himself into this spiritual flow and becomes a drop in the ocean of believers. The Tawaf is deemed as the synopsis of the universe and creation surrendering to the divine decree.  Therefore, to rotate around the ka’bah, means to love Islam, to rotate around it and to attach oneself to Allah.A phenomenon where all believers are equal. There exists unity, equality, and brotherhood which is the symbol of oneness, and to move as one in the congregation.