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Exploration Of Mosque And Masjid Essay

2254 words - 9 pages

Exploration of Mosque and Masjid

A Mosque, or Masjid is, a Muslim place of worship where Muslims go
five times a day to pray their prayers in Jama'ah (congregation)
behind an Imam (prayer leader).

The technical meaning of Masjid is a Muslim place of worship

And the technical meaning of Mosque is a Muslim place of worship

The linguistic meaning of Masjid is a transliteration of the Arabic
word مَسْجÙدٌ meaning the place of Sajda سَجْدَةٌ (prostration).

There are 2 types of Masjids: the main Masjid is called Jama'a, and is
the one where the Friday prayer is performed. The Jama'as are often
richly adorned. The other is called Masjid, and are local and smaller
Masjids. Also anywhere a Muslim kneels down in prayer is a Masjid,
even a prayer mat layed down on the side of the street is a Masjid.
While Masjids can be richly adorned, they can seldom be compared to
the Jama'as.

While Salah can be performed anywhere, it is considered more
meritorious when performed in the Masjid, i.e. together with other
people. The Sunna states that Salah in the Masjid is 27 times more
valuable than the one performed in the home.

The first Masjid is the one in Mecca, defined as the area that
surrounded the Ka'ba. But the model of an early Masjid was the Prophet
Muhammad's Masjid in Medina. This was organized with a Qibla, which at
first faced the direction of Jerusalem. To the left of this Qibla,
houses for Prophet Muhammad's wives were erected. There were three
entrances to the courtyard. An area of the courtyard was roofed, and
here prayer was performed. After 1 & ½ years the direction of the
Qibla was changed, to face Mecca.

However the first purpose built Masjid was the Prophet Muhammad's
Masjid in Medina (622 CE), in present-day Saudi Arabia. The wall of
the courtyard facing in the direction of the holy city of Mecca-called
the Qibla wall-was provided with a roofed area where prayers were
prayed; the other three walls were lined with arcades. This method
became the basic plan for all later Masjid design, of which the three
main essentials continued to be the courtyard, the Qibla wall, and the
roofed prayer hall. In the centre of the Qibla wall is the Mihrab, or
prayer niche, that indicates the direction of Mecca. Next to the
Mihrab is the Mimbar, a platform from which the Friday sermon is

Layout of a Mosque

Domes originated in turkey, they were inspired by Turkish tradition.
Domes also help the air to circulate and to amplify the human voice,
since there were originally no microphones or loud speakers.

Masjid's usually have one or more minarets, from which the Muathin
(the person who calls for prayer) calls Muslims to prayer five times a
day. In the earliest Masjid, the call to prayer was given by the
Muathin, or crier, directly from the roof...

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