Changing one’s name after performing Hajj

Question: What is the ruling on changing one’s name like most of the Indonesian pilgrims do? Indonesians usually change their names when they go to Makkah Al-Mukarramah or Al-Madeenah Al-Munawwarah. Is this Sunnah (action following the teachings of the Prophet) or not?

Answer: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to change bad names to good ones. If the Indonesian pilgrims are changing their names for this purpose, and not for finishing the rituals of Hajj or their visiting Al-Masjid Al-Nabawee (the Prophet’s Mosque in Madeenah) and offering Salaah therein, then this is permissible… read more here.

Setting aside a certain bed or a Sofa until a pilgrim comes back to use it

Question: In our country, the family of a pilgrim sets aside for him a bed or a sofa. They cover it with clean and perfumed coverlets and place money and bottles of perfume around it. They prevent people from using it telling them that they cannot sit on it until the pilgrim returns from Hajj and use it first. After the pilgrim uses it, others may then sit on it. I hope that you can inform us about this practice. Many thanks to you, may Allaah benefit Muslims with your knowledge!

Answer: The actions mentioned above done by the family of a person intending to perform Hajj is a Bid`ah (innovation in religion). Setting aside a bed, washing it, covering and perfuming it and preventing people from sitting on it till the pilgrim returns from Hajj to be the first to sit on it, are acts of Bid`ah and instituting in religion that which Allaah has not ordained… read more here.