MUMBAI: Bollywood actor Aamir Khan feels like a changed man ever since he has returned from ‘Hajj’.
‘Hajj’ is a religious duty that every able-bodied person who follows Islam and who can afford to visit, must perform at least once in his or her lifetime. Aamir Khan who is always shown an inclination for all things social and spiritual, recently undertook this journey which he had promised to his mother, Zeenat Hussain. And the experience has changed him.
“It was a moving and spiritually overawing. A very emotional and introspective moment for me,” said the ‘Talaash’ actor.
Describing his experience in Mecca in detail, Aamir said, “I felt very close to God. The character and beauty of the place has a surreal feeling. Especially when you go to the maidaan of Arafat — that’s the most important moment of the trip. Because it’s here that you spend the whole day recalling your mistakes, your offenses and the people affected by them, and then ask God for forgiveness. A sense of catharsis overtook me.”
Recalling how it all came to be, Khan elaborated, “Ammi had been wanting to go there for a while. In Islam, a woman has to be accompanied by either her brother, husband or son if she wishes to go to Mecca. Ammi doesn’t have her husband now; she doesn’t have a brother either, so Faizal or I could have taken her for the trip. So I told her to block the dates and then I locked my time.”
A thorough professional, Aamir planned his calendar well. “I told Aditya Chopra about it much before I started shooting for ‘Dhoom 3’,” said the actor.
Aamir who was last seen in ‘3 idiots’ and then in cameos for his own productions ‘Dhobi Ghat’ and ‘Delhi Belly’ brought a wave of change in Indian thought processes when he touched hard, social issues plaguing the country in his TV show ‘Satyamev Jayate’.
But what are the changes Aamir felt from within, after the pilgrimage? “I have become more spiritual than I ever was. I am much happier and at peace then I used to be. I certainly want to lead a noble or good life where hopefully I won’t commit mistakes like I have done in the past. I will try to live as honestly as I have lived in the past, without having to compromise with anything and without hurting anyone. I want to live a life of caring and sharing and full of happiness. This is the life I always wanted and my search for a good life will continue.”
So do these spiritual and emotional changes apply to the actor’s relationships too? Especially, the one with Shah Rukh Khan? Rumours that Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan had finally patched up at the Grand Premiere of ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan’ have been doing the rounds lately. It is also being said that Aamir was the catalyst for the patch up.
Aamir stays non-committal, “It’s not my place to comment on other people’s personal lives and relationships. But what I can say is that Adi had organised a lovely evening in memory of his father Yashji, and I am glad that so many from the film fraternity came and interacted with each other warmly. It was a wonderful night.”
Coming back to the pilgrimage, Aamir has a message for all fellow Muslims: “I am a Haji, but what’s important is what I feel within, not how I am addressed. I pray that all Muslims who intend to go for the Haj should make their trip there unfailingly.”