Photography as Response / by Yousuf Zafar

 Rites of Hajj, 2011

Rites of Hajj, 2011

Very excited that this photo was selected for the Photography as Response show at The Center for Fine Art Photography in Colorado...and was selected as Honorable Mention by Juror Christy Havraneck (Photo Ops Director at HuffPost)! Check out the other great photo's selected here.

As I was walking behind this man, I noticed a convergence of lines in front of him. The crowd cleared a little at just the right moment so I could take the shot. As pilgrims leave Medina, the first act of the Hajj is to enter the “Ihram,” a state of being, before entering Mecca. Men drape themselves in two white sheets, and women wear any loose-fitting clothing. The sheets are symbolic of the physical and spiritual purity of the state of ihram. Upon arriving in Mecca at The Grand Mosque (Masjid al-Haram), pilgrims usually complete the tawaf, or walk seven times around the Kaaba while praying. As with any mosque, shoes are not permitted inside the Mosque.