Mosque is where the doctrine of equality of mankind is put into practice

Mosque is where the doctrine of equality of mankind is put into practice

It is known that prayers are accepted wherever you perform them and that it is not required to go to an actual mosque to pray.

By Khwaja Mohammed Zubair (Reflections)

Published: Mon 22 Jun 2015, 12:59 AM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 3:16 PM

A devotees reading Holy Quran at Al Farooq Omar bin Khattab Mosque, popularly known as Blue mosque Dubai. - Photo by Shihab

As the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said, the whole earth is a mosque for you, so pray wherever you are when the time for prayer comes. But prayer in mosque is strongly recommended and is much more rewarding.

It has additional sawaab when you pray in a mosque and even more sawaab if you pray in the row just behind the Imam.

There is a Hadith about importance of praying in a mosque.

The prophet (Peace be upon him) said, “The prayer offered in congregation is 25 times more superior (in reward) to the prayer offered alone in one’s house or in a business centre, because if one performs ablution and does it perfectly, and then proceeds to the mosque with the sole intention of praying, then for each step which he takes towards the mosque, Allah upgrades him a degree in reward and crosses out (forgives) one sin till he enters the mosque.

When he enters the mosque, he is considered in prayer as long as he is waiting for the prayer and the angels keep on asking for Allah’s forgiveness for him and they keep on saying: ‘O Allah! Be Merciful to him, O Allah! Forgive him, as long as he keeps on sitting at his praying place in a state of purity.’” — Narrated by Abu Huraira.

Therefore, the mosque plays a more important part in Islam than does any other house of worship in any other religion.

Where the Holy Quran speaks of the Muslims’ duty to defend and protect all houses of worship, to whatever religion they may belong, it speaks of the mosque last of all. However, it mentions its distinctive characteristics, namely that the name of God is remembered there most of all.

 “Did not God check one set of people by means of another, there would surely have been pulled down monasteries, churches, synagogues and mosques, in which the name of God is commemorated in abundant measure.” (Holy Quran 22:40).

The concluding words of the verse — “mosques, in which the name of God is commemorated in abundant measure” — are significant.

Many religious buildings are visited no more than once a week, but the mosque is visited five times a day for the remembrance of God. In fact, if any house on earth can be called God’s house, on account of its association with the divine name, it is the mosque. All other religious houses seem neglected in comparison.

The whole atmosphere of the mosque is charged with the electricity of the divine name.

There is the call to prayer five times a day, which rends the air with cries of the greatness and unity of God; there is the individual service, carried on in silence, but with God’s name on the lips of every individual worshipper; there is the public service in which the Imam recites aloud portions of the Quran, that tell of divine grandeur and glory, with the refrain of ‘Allahu Akbar’ repeated at every change of movement; and when the prayer is finished, there is again a chorus of voices speaking of divine greatness, making the mosque echo and re-echo with the remembrance of God.

Being a meeting place of Muslims five times daily, the mosque serves as a training ground where the doctrine of the equality and fraternity of mankind is put into practice.

It is undoubtedly true that every religion is based on the two fundamental principles of the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man, but it is equally true that no religion has been so successful in establishing a living brotherhood of man as has Islam, and the secret of this unparalleled success lies in the mosque.

Besides being its religious centre, the mosque is also the cultural centre of the Muslim community.

Here the Muslim community is educated on all questions of its welfare.

The Friday sermon is a regular weekly lecture on all such questions, but besides that, whenever in the time of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) and his successors it became necessary to inform the Muslim community on any matter of importance, a sermon or a lecture was delivered in the mosque.

Even during his last illness, the prophet (Peace be upon him) came out in the mosque and delivered a sermon to the people.

In addition to this mass education in the mosque of the prophet (Peace be upon him), there were also arrangements for the education of those who wanted to acquire learning.

 Men, who had to be trained as missionaries for the spread of light and learning in distant parts of the country, received their education in the mosque.

Almost every mosque to this day has, to some extent, arrangements for the education of students, being a necessary adjunct to the mosque.

(The author is a former Khaleej Times staffer)

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