Hajj shall be observed in the specified months.*Whoever sets out to observe Hajj shall refrain from sexual intercourse, misconduct, and arguments throughout Hajj. Whatever good you do, GOD is fully aware thereof. As you prepare your provisions for the journey, the best provision is righteousness. You shall observe Me, O you who possess intelligence.
Surah Al Baqara 2:197
Many many years ago, performing hajj was farthest in my mind and was absolutely clueless about what hajj is all about. When I finally came to my senses, I performed my hajj with much trepidation.
Learning about the whole ritual of hajj can seem quite daunting for someone who was as clueless as I was. It can also be quite overwhelming. I mean I couldn't grasp the whole sequence of what was required to be done. The books were no help to me as there were too much information and that got me confused even further. Somehow my slow brain couldn't digest the information that I read.
So in the end, I went back to the very basic of hajj ie I started with where I was supposed to be and when. Once I got the logistics right, it was very much easier to fill in the blanks.
Ok let me just tell you the logistics of hajj the way I understand it. We start at Arafah. We have to be in Arafah on 9th Dzulhijjah from zuhr. After maghrib or isya' you would then be mobilised to Mudzalifah and you will stay there until after midnight. Thenafter, we go Mina where you will throw your first throw at Jamrat Aqabah to release you from state of ihram. For the next three days after that, you will throw your stones at all three Jamrat. After that we finally head back to Makkah for perform our hajj tawaf , saie and tahlul ie cutting of the hair.
That, in a nutshell is my simplified version of the logistics of hajj. All you need to know is that you need to be in four places in sequence ie Arafah, Mudzalifah, Mina and finally Makkah. There are variances and loopholes to the sequence but let's us just learn the basics first.
Once you know where and when you are suppose to be then it is easier to fill in the blanks later. At least for me it was...