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Compassion starts at Mount Arafat

On Friday, hundreds of thousands of hajj pilgrims gathered on the plains of Arafat

Khaled Almaeena

Published: Updated:

On Friday, hundreds of thousands of hajj pilgrims are gathered on the plains of Arafat. All dressed in white and from all over the world.

Black, white, Africans, Asians, Caucasians, Orientals, Anglo-Saxons, they have come to perform hajj, one of the five pillars of Islam.

Here they congregate with only one thing in mind. To pray to the Lord asking for His forgiveness, beseeching Him for mercy, praying for whatever is nearest and dearest to them.

And above all their personal requests will be a plea, a request that God will accept their prayers for peace and prosperity not only for themselves but also for their fellow brethren.

The hajj is a great equalizer and all young and old, rich and poor, the healthy and the disabled with their hands stretched share the same link as they pray to the Almighty.

Hajj is a great equalizer and all young and old, rich and poor, the healthy and the disabled with their hands stretched share the same link as they pray

Khaled Almaeena

This year, they will be praying for peace, tolerance and an end to bloodshed.

They will pray for the millions of people uprooted in the Arab region due to terror inflicted by a group who have wrongly in the name of religion attacked and killed thousands. They will pray for scores of others who are missing as a result of the senseless wars being waged.

They will pray for the return of the missing children of Nigeria abducted by the evil and ruthless Boko Haram drug cult.

They will pray for the oppressed Ughurs of China. They will pray for an end to hostilities in the Ukraine.

And many from this part also will pray that God will in His infinite mercy keep all of us safe and secure in our country and grant us progress so that we can play a role in the world.

This article was fist published in the Saudi Gazette on October 2, 2014.

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Khaled Almaeena is a veteran Saudi journalist, commentator, businessman and the editor-at-large of the Saudi Gazette. Almaeena has held a broad range of positions in Saudi media for over thirty years, including CEO of a PR firm, Saudi Television news anchor, talk show host, radio announcer, lecturer and journalist. As a journalist, Almaeena has represented Saudi media at Arab summits in Baghdad, Morocco and elsewhere. In 1990, he was one of four journalists to cover the historic resumption of diplomatic ties between Saudi Arabia and Russia. He also traveled to China as part of this diplomatic mission. Almaeena's political and social columns appear regularly in Gulf News, Asharq al-Aswat, al-Eqtisadiah, Arab News, Times of Oman, Asian Age and The China Post. He can be reached at kalmaeena@saudigazette.com.sa and followed on Twitter: @KhaledAlmaeena

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