Research Article

DOI :10.26650/di.2023.34.1.1198336   IUP :10.26650/di.2023.34.1.1198336    Full Text (PDF)

Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship

Faruk Karaca

Worship can be understood as the set of behaviors regulating the relationship between the believer and the believed and draws attention as a common basic religious practice all religions apply. Worship involves formal elements such as time, quantity, order, place, and symbolic meaning, the main purpose of which is to fill the worshipper’s religious consciousness

with that which is being believed; these features constitute the objective dimension of worship. The Hajj is one of the most prominent forms of Islamic worship in terms of formal elements. In addition to being performed at a blessed time and place, the pilgrimage also contains many formal elements that positively affect the psychology of worship. Among the first distinguishing features of the pilgrimage are the relatively long time required for its performance, the relatively long preparation period required compared to other prayers, and its performance with a higher motivation and an extremely large crowd. The fact that almost all other forms of worships are performed together with the pilgrimage provides the Hajj with set of forms of worship that unite Islamic worship. All these increase the potential impact the Hajj can have on the individual.

Those who perform the pilgrimage gain the new title of haji, which has a distinctive feature in increasing the long-term effect of the pilgrimage, especially after it finishes. This study discusses the potential multidimensional effects the Hajj has as a form of worship in light of empirical data and, as expected, has concluded the Hajj to produce high levels of longterm positive effects on the individuals who’ve performed it.

DOI :10.26650/di.2023.34.1.1198336   IUP :10.26650/di.2023.34.1.1198336    Full Text (PDF)

Hac İbadetinin Bireysel Çıktıları Üzerine Tecrübî Bir Araştırma

Faruk Karaca

İnanan-inanılan ilişkisini düzenleyen davranışlar dizisi olarak anlaşılabilecek olan ibadetler bütün dinlerin ortaklaşa başvurduğu temel dini pratikler olarak dikkat çekmektedir. Temel amacı dindar şuuru inanılan Varlık ile doldurmak olan ibadetlerde zaman, miktar, sıra, mekan, sembolik anlam ve unsurlar gibi şekli unsurlar vaz’i olup, bu özellikler ibadetlerin objektif boyutunu oluşturmaktadır. İslami ibadetler içinde şekli unsurlar açısından ön plana çıkan ibadetlerin başında hac gelmektedir. Hac ibadeti kutsanmış bir zaman ve mekânda icra edilmesinin yanında ibadet psikolojisini olumlu yönde etkileyen birçok biçimsel unsura sahiptir. Bunlar arasında icrası için gerekli olan zamanın görece uzun olması, diğer ibadetlere oranla nispeten uzun bir hazırlık evresi gerektirmesi, daha yüksek bir motivasyonla icra edilmesi ve son derece büyük bir kalabalıkla birlikte icra edilmesi haccın ilk akla gelen ayırıcı özellikleridir. Diğer ibadetlerin de neredeyse tamamının hacla birlikte icra ediliyor olması, hacca İslami ibadetleri bir araya toplayan bir “ibadet seti” niteliği kazandırmaktadır. Bütün bunlar hac ibadetinin birey üzerindeki etki potansiyelini yükseltmektedir. Haccın icracısına “hacı” adında yeni bir unvan kazandırması ise haccın özellikle ibadet sonrası süreğen etkisini artırma konusunda ayırıcı özelliğe sahiptir. Çalışmada hac ibadetinin sahip olduğu çok boyutlu etki potansiyeli tecrübi veriler ışığında ele alınmış, beklenildiği gibi hac ibadetini icra eden bireylerde yüksek düzeyde süreğen pozitif etkiler ürettiği sonucuna ulaşılmıştır.


Worship is an indicator of religious devotion and is expressed as the visible aspect of the supernatural relationship established with God, because almost all religions, especially the monotheistic ones, demand their members to express their beliefs in certain ways. This demand is generally fulfilled by the performance of religious practices. Accordingly, worship can be understood as the outward reflection of a person’s world of religious beliefs, thoughts, and emotions in terms of religious life, experiences, and behaviors. The recommendation and ordering of Islamic worship together with and immediately after the pillars of faith from the onset indicates their central positions in religion. With the effect of having spread over a long period of time, the pilgrimage combines almost all forms of Islamic worship and resembles a set of these forms. In addition to this feature, the Hajj comes to the forefront as a form of worship that is able to show the multidimensional and overall effects of religiosity, along with many other unique features. This study focuses on the Hajj, particularly the positive effects and results of Islamic worship. The study uses the relational screening method to test the following three hypotheses:

H₁. The Hajj produces highly positive effects.

H₂. Individuals who perform the Hajj have strong religious attitudes.

H₃. The effects from the Hajj vary according to demographic variables.


The sample of the research consists of 420 people from seven different geographical regions of Turkey who’ve performed the Hajj. Of the sample, 38.3% are women, and 61.7% are men; 94% of the sample are adults. The data used in this study were obtained from the TÜBİTAK project titled “The Effect of Hajj and Umrah Psychology on Religiosity”, which was initiated before 2019 (in 2015) when ethics committee approval was not mandatory.


The Hajj Effects Scale was developed by Karaca (2017) to measure the possible effects the Hajj has on people post-pilgrimage.

The Religious Attitude Scale was developed by Ok (2011). It consists of four subdimensions and eight items.


In order to measure the effects the Hajj had on the sample group, an application was carried out using the Hajj Effects Scale one year after the pilgrimage. The average score the participants received from this scale for this application was χ = 60.79. This score corresponds to 83 out of 100 and supports hypothesis H1 . The same scale was applied two years after the pilgrimage, and the participants average score measured this time as χ = 61.16 (i.e., 84 out of 100). This score exceeded expectations and was one point higher than the first measurement (t = -1.17, p > .05).

The average score obtained from the Religious Attitude Scale that was applied to the sample group that participated in the research before the Hajj had been measured as χ = 36.91. This score was measured as χ = 36.39 one year after the Hajj and as χ = 36.28 two years after the Hajj. These scores correspond roughly to 90 out of 100 and support hypothesis H2 . The divergence in the effects from the Hajj according to marital status have been associated with older spouses and widows. According to the related variable, while the scores for widows who’d been the most positively affected by the Hajj in the first application noteworthily increased for the second year after the Hajj, a significant decrease occurred in the average scores of those who were not married (F(2, 417) = 7.24, p < .001).

The individual outputs from the Hajj also vary according to certain demographic variables, with the Central Anatolian and the Aegean regions showing higher scores compared to hajis who’d performed the pilgrimage from other regions. Although a decrease occurred in the scores according to the measurements performed two years after the pilgrimage, these two regions continued to show higher scores (F(6, 413) = 11.67, p < .001). No significant difference occurred regarding the individual effects from the Hajj according to gender (t = .724, p > .05). According to age group, the increase in the individual effects of the Hajj was more striking for the older groups and statistically significant, especially in the measurements performed two years after the pilgrimage (F(5, 415) = 4.28, p = .002).

The level of the Hajj’s effects on the sample group did not significantly differ statistically in terms of education level (F(4, 415) = .39, p > .05), nor did this status change in the study carried out two years after the pilgrimage (F(4, 415) = 1.66, p > .05). The same holds true with regard to socioeconomic level. Although the level of being affected by the pilgrimage worship for the sample group was higher in the lower and upper middle socioeconomic group levels, the relationship between socioeconomic level and effects from the Hajj did not reach a statistically significant level (see Table 13). F(4, 415) = 2.13, p > .05). This status did not change in the study carried out two years after the pilgrimage (F(4, 415) = .681, p > .05).


The measurements performed one year after the sample group of participants performed the Hajj showed its effects to be higher than expected. Although a relative decrease was expected in the positive outcomes of the pilgrimage, the scores regarding the Hajj’s effect increased even more in the measures conducted two years post-Hajj.Because no matter what kind of experience is, its effects diminish over time, and the fact that the scores are realised in this way, where even a 5-10 point consideration in pilgrimage experiences would be considered normal, is extremely important in terms of revealing that pilgrimage worship has long-term effects on the performer. It is thought that this situation is closely related to the title of “pilgrim” that the pilgrimage has brought to the performance of Hajj worship.

As a matter of fact, one of the sub-dimensions of the Pilgrimage Effects Scale used in the study measures the title of haji. The observations made in the field throughout the study revealed Turkish-origin pilgrims in particular to attach great importance to the title of haji and to develop a perception that negative behaviors can disrupt the Hajj. Although this perception, which is consciously produced by the religious and other private institutions appointed for the pilgrimage in order to encourage the pilgrims to be more sensitive toward religious and social issues, has no religious basis, it is reinforced by society in the post-hajj life, and people with the title of haji are treated as more pious, with more pious behavior also being expected of them.

The stability of the sample group’s religious attitude scores (χ = 36.91) measured before the pilgrimage and one (χ = 36.39) and two years (χ = 36.28) after the pilgrimage can be interpreted within the framework of the stable model related to religiosity. According to this proposed stable model of religious development, religiosity is known to show little change with age, so that the religious structure gained in adulthood maintains itself without any significant difference in the later periods of life.

The Hajj’s influence on the sample that participated in the study varied according to the geographical region in which they live. This difference occurred according to region as well as within the same regions over time. For example, the effects of the Hajj on pilgrims participating in the study from the Southeastern Anatolian region were measured as χ = 55.30 one year after the pilgrimage, but increased to χ = 62.85 two years postHajj. This is important in that it implies the effects of the Hajj to not be but to be able to increase over time. The inclusion of participants from seven geographical regions of Türkiye in the study is representative of the main universe, and no data was obtained that is able to explain the differences between regions.

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Karaca, F. (2023). Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship. darulfunun ilahiyat, 34(1), 189-210.


Karaca F. Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship. darulfunun ilahiyat. 2023;34(1):189-210.


Karaca, F. Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship. darulfunun ilahiyat, [Publisher Location], v. 34, n. 1, p. 189-210, 2023.

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Karaca, Faruk,. Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship.” darulfunun ilahiyat 34, no. 1 (Jul. 2024): 189-210.

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Karaca, F. (2023) ‘Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship’, darulfunun ilahiyat, 34(1), pp. 189-210. (18 Jul. 2024).


Karaca, Faruk,. Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship.” darulfunun ilahiyat, vol. 34, no. 1, 2023, pp. 189-210. [Database Container],


Karaca F. Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship. darulfunun ilahiyat [Internet]. 18 Jul. 2024 [cited 18 Jul. 2024];34(1):189-210. Available from: doi: 10.26650/di.2023.34.1.1198336


Karaca, Faruk. Experiential Research on the Individual Outcomes of Hajj Worship”. darulfunun ilahiyat 34/1 (Jul. 2024): 189-210.


Published Online20.06.2023


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