by fawad71 on 24/11/07 at 10:41 am
Article has been written to share the experience of offering Friday prayers at Al-Haram Mosque at Mecca. Some important data regarding mosque has also been added for general information of the readers.
The Friday fell on 17 June 2005 during our stay at Mecca Saudi Arabia, but after last night’s hectic search for my mother who was lost (subsequently found) while at the grand mosque, it was very painful for me to even step foot on ground but I thought that offering Friday prayers in Al-Haram Mosque was an honor which only lucky ones get in their lives. So despite pain I went to the mosque to pray and with me my father and father in law also went, except my mother all women also went to offer Friday prayers, my mother was not feeling well so she stayed at hotel and offered her prayers in the room.
Offering Jummah (Friday) prayers in Al-Haram Mosque is a unique experience as almost complete population of Mecca city and surrounding areas reach the holy mosque to offer prayers. Once we went to Saudi Arabia the Friday prayers were held at 1 PM and we went to the mosque at 11 AM to get a place in the shade and to our luck we found place at the rear in the building. People who came late they got place in the outer courtyard and in the sun. Almost at each prayer mosque is full with people and is normally overcrowded at Fajar and Maghrib prayers.
Jumma prayers were lead by Imam Kaaba Sheikh Abdur Rehman Al Sadees and it was a unique experience to listen to the recitation of Holy Qurran during the prayers by him. His sweet voice had a charming effect on all attending the prayers. Best sound system has been installed in the mosque. The pitch and quality of the sound remains the same through out the mosque. We all family members were very happy to had availed this unique opportunity.
A good thing about Saudi Arabia is that at time of prayers all type of business comes to a halt, and shopkeepers close shops till the time prayers are offered. All buyers are encouraged to leave the shop at that time. During my stay at Saudi Arabia, except jewelry shops I never found any shop being locked, only shopkeeper would put a cloth in-front of his shop or at best put a chair or piece of cardboard in front. After prayers shops would open again, markets fills up with customers and shopping spree continues as usual.
I also found street vendors mostly from African countries selling low quality merchandise in the main streets after the prayers and they would flee in the narrow streets after seeing police patrol. These street vendors sell the same products that are available in the main shops but are of inferior quality, it seemed that China has taken over market every where. Mostly people from subcontinent and Africa having limited budget for shopping are often found buying things from these vendors. Mostly these people sell handbags, wrist watches, cut pieces of cloth and sweets
Some Important Statistics of Masjid-ul-Haram
For the benefit of the readers some important statistics of the mosque have been given for general knowledge.
|1||Main five gates of Masjid -ul- Haram||BAB -e- MALIK ABDUL AZIZ
BAB -e- FATEH
BAB -e- SAFA
BAB -e- UMRA
BAB -e- FAHAD
Bab-e-Fatha have 2 minarets each whereas Bab-e-Safa has only one minaret.)
|3||Height of Minarets||92 meters|
|4||Domes Large and Small||Total 52 domes including big domes|
|5||Area of Masjid-ul-Haram||365,000 Sq. Meter|
|6||Capacity of worshipers||773,000 people approximately|
|7||Total Gates||95 Including major and minor gates|
|8||Lifts||Available near Bab-e-Marva|
|9||Escalators||Available near all main gates|
|10||Washroom / Bathroom||Separate arrangements for men and women are available near all main gates and the largest one is near Marva gate (Bab-e-Marva)|