The word ‘Mina’ means to flow, symbolizing the blood of sacrificial animals flowing during the day of Eid-ul-Adha. During the Farewell Pilgrimage of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), the Muslims had brought 100 camels with them to be sacrificed. After stoning the Jamarat on 10th Dhul Hijjah, the Prophet (pbuh) went back to his camp in Mina and sacrificed 63 camels. Ali (RA) sacrificed the remaining 37 camels. Prophet (pbuh) instructed him to cook part of each camel and serve it to him and his Companions.
When Allah commanded Ibrahim (AS) to sacrifice his son, he left for Mina to fulfill His command. It was in Mina that the devil tried to dissuade Ibrahim (AS) from sacrificing his son. Satan appeared to him at Al- Aqaba and the Angel Gabriel urged Ibrahim (AS) to stone the devil in order to defy it. He followed the angel’s advice and threw seven stones at the devil that disappeared immediately. The devil appeared again and Gabriel again urged Ibrahim to pelt the stones. The devil appeared third time in an attempt to dissuade Ibrahim (AS) and he pelted seven stones at it for the third time.
The stoning of devil holds a symbolic significance. The first appearance of the devil symbolizes the temptation of Ibrahim (AS) for not sacrificing his son in accordance with the command of Allah. The second appearance marks the temptation of Hajirah, the wife of Ibrahim (AS) against the sacrifice of their son. The third appearance signifies the temptation of Ismael (AS) against getting sacrificed. The devil remained disappointed in all his attempts. The stoning of the devil signifies shunning of nafs (lower self) to attain closeness to Allah. This is the reason why Hajj pilgrims stone Jamarats in Mina.
During their stay in Mina, pilgrims reaffirm their faith and hope for spirituality by casting pebbles for three days.
The casting of stones cements their resolution to confine both satan and their nafs (lower self). It allows them to renew their promise to Allah and affirms His greatness over everything.
After the nafs is jailed by the Hajj ritual of stoning the devil in Jamarat, it is slaughtered in Mina on Eid-ul-Adha. Ibrahim’s (AS) sacrifice was momentous. He surrendered completely to the commandment of Allah without thinking about his own will. He was called ‘Khalil’ (Cherished friend) because of his enormous love for Allah that consumed his whole heart.
One must acknowledge the fact that while performing the ritual of stoning of devil in Jamarat, one stones his own nafs. The devil is not standing there. People get aggressive while performing this ritual which is one of the most common mistakes that are made when stoning the Jamaraat. Each stone is used to kill the things that pull you far from Allah including your, ego, pride and anger.