Mawlid or Mawlid al-Nabi al-Sharif is the observance of the birthday of Islamic prophet Muhammad, commemorated in Rabi' al-awwal, the third month in the Islamic calendar. 12th Rabi' al-awwal is the accepted date among most of the Sunni scholars, while Shi'a scholars regard 17th Rabi' al-awwal as the accepted date. The history of this celebration goes back to the early days of Islam when some of the Tabi‘un began to hold sessions in which poetry and songs composed to honour Muhammad were recited and sung to the crowds; the Ottomans declared it an official holiday in 1588. The term Mawlid is used in some parts of the world, such as Egypt, as a generic term for the birthday celebrations of other historical religious figures such as Sufi saints. Most denominations of Islam approve of the commemoration of Muhammad's birthday. Mawlid is recognized as a national holiday in most of the Muslim-majority countries of the world except Saudi Arabia and Qatar which are Wahhabi/Salafi. Mawlid is derived from the Arabic root word, meaning to give birth, bear a child, descendant.
In contemporary usage, Mawlid refers to the observance of the birthday of Muhammad. Along with being referred to as the celebration of the birth of Muhammad, the term Mawlid refers to the'text composed for and recited at Muhammad's nativity celebration' or "a text recited or sung on that day"; the date of Muhammad's birth is a matter of contention since the exact date is unknown and is not definitively recorded in the Islamic traditions. The issue of the correct date of the Mawlid is recorded by Ibn Khallikan as constituting the first proven disagreement concerning the celebration. Among the most recognisable dates, Sunni Muslims believe the date to have been on the twelfth of Rabi' al-awwal, whereas Shi'a Muslims believe the date to have been on the seventeenth. Since the Islamic calendar came into existence after Muhammad migrated from Mecca to Yathrib the date of death is known but the date of birth is not known. In early days of Islam, observation of Muhammad's birth as a holy day was arranged and was an increased number of visitors to the Mawlid house, open for the whole day for this celebration.
This celebration was introduced into the city Sabta by Abu'l'Abbas al-Azafi as a way of strengthening the Muslim community and to counteract Christian festivals. The early celebrations, included elements of Sufic influence, with animal sacrifices and torchlight processions along with public sermons and a feast; the celebrations occurred during the day, in contrast to modern day observances, with the ruler playing a key role in the ceremonies. Emphasis was given to the Ahl al-Bayt with presentation of recitations of the Qur ` an. According to the hypothesis of Nico Kaptein of Leiden University, the Mawlid was initiated by the Fatimids, with Marion Holmes Katz adding "The idea that the celebration of the mawlid originated with the Fatimid dynasty has today been universally accepted among both religious polemicists and secular scholars." This Shia origin is noted by those Sunnis who oppose Mawlid. Among Sunnis, the Mawlid celebration emerged in the 12th century, the first detailed description of a Sunni Mawlid celebration was of one sponsored by emir Gökböri.
Among Muslim scholars, the legality of Mawlid "has been the subject of intense debate" and has been described as "perhaps one of the most polemical discussions in Islamic law". Traditionally, most Sunni and nearly all of the Shia scholars have approved of the celebration of Mawlid, while Wahhabi and Ahmadiyya scholars oppose the celebration. Examples of historic Sunni scholars who permitted the Mawlid include the Shafi'i scholar Al-Suyuti who stated that:My answer is that the legal status of the observance of the Mawlid – as long as it just consists of a meeting together by the people, a recitation of apposite parts of the Qur'an, the recounting of transmitted accounts of the beginning of the Prophet – may God bless him and grant him peace – and the wonders that took place during his birth, all of, followed by a banquet, served to them and from which they eat-is a good innovation, for which one is rewarded because of the esteem shown for the position of the Prophet – may God bless him and grant him peace –, implicit in it, because of the expression of joy and happiness on his – may God bless him and grant him peace – noble birth.
The Shafi'i scholar Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani too approved of the Mawlid and states that:As for what is performed on the day of the Mawlid, one should limit oneself to what expresses thanks to God, such as the things that have been mentioned: recitation, serving food, alms-giving, recitation of praise about the Prophet – may God bless him and grant him peace – and asceticism which motivate people to perform good deeds and act in view of the next world. The Damascene Shafi'i scholar Abu Shama supports the celebration of the Mawlid as does the Maliki scholar Ibn al-Hajj who spoke positively of the observance of the Mawlid in his book al-Madhkal; the Shafi'i Egyptian scholar Ibn Hajar al-Haytami was an avid supporter of the Mawlid and wro
Muhammad in Islam
Muḥammad ibn ʿAbdullāh ibn ʿAbdul-Muṭṭalib ibn Hāshim known as Muhammad, is the last Messenger and Prophet of God in all the main branches of Islam. Muslims believe that the Quran, the central religious text of Islam, was revealed to Muhammad by God, that Muhammad was sent to restore Islam, which they believe to be the unaltered original monotheistic faith of Adam, Musa,'Isa, other Prophets; the religious and political tenets that Muhammad established with the Quran became the foundation of Islam and the Muslim world. Muslims refer to Muhammad as Prophet Muhammad, or just The Prophet or The Messenger, regard him as the greatest of all Prophets, he is seen by the Muslims as a possessor of all virtues. As an act of respect, most Muslims follow the name of Muhammad by the Arabic benediction sallallahu'alayhi wa sallam, sometimes abbreviated as SAW or PBUH; the deeds and sayings in the life of Muhammad – known as Sunnah – are considered a model of the life-style that Muslims are obliged to follow.
Recognizing Muhammad as God's final messenger is one of the central requirements in Islam, laid down in the second part of the Shahada: Lā ilāha illā l-Lāh, Muhammadun Rasūlu l-Lāh. The Quran, in passages such as 3:132, 48:29 and 66:1 uses the words "messenger" and "prophet" (such as ar-Rasūl or Rasūl Allāh for Muhammad, asks people to follow him, so as to become successful in this hayāt and al-Ākhirah. Born about 570 into a respected Qurayshi family of Mecca, Muhammad earned the title "al-Amin". At the age of 40 in 610 CE, Muhammad is said to have received his first verbal revelation in the cave called Hira, the beginning of the descent of the Quran that continued up to the end of his life; because of persecution of the newly converted Muslims, upon the invitation of a delegation from Medina and his followers migrated to Medina in 622 CE, an event known as the Hijrah. A turning point in Muhammad's life, this Hegira marks the beginning of the Islamic calendar. In Medina, Muhammad sketched out the Constitution of Medina specifying the rights of and relations among the various existing communities there, formed an independent community, managed to establish the first Islamic state.
Despite the ongoing hostility of the Meccans, along with his followers, took control of Mecca in 630 CE, ordered the destruction of all pagan idols. In years in Medina, Muhammad unified the different tribes of Arabia under Islam, carried out social and religious reforms. By the time he died in 632 all the tribes of the Arabian Peninsula had converted to Islam; the Quran enumerates little about Muhammad's early life or other biographic details, but it talks about his prophetic mission, his moral excellence, theological issues regarding Muhammad. According to the Quran, Muhammad is the last in a chain of prophets sent by God. Throughout the Quran, Muhammad is referred to as "Messenger", "Messenger of God", "Prophet"; some of such verses are 2:101, 2:143, 2:151, 3:32, 3:81, 3:144, 3:164, 4:79-80, 5:15, 5:41, 7:157, 8:01, 9:3, 33:40, 48:29, 66:09. Other terms are used, including "Warner", "bearer of glad tidings", the "one who invites people to a Single God"; the Quran asserts that Muhammad was a man who possessed the highest moral excellence, that God made him a good example or a "goodly model" for Muslims to follow.
The Quran disclaims any superhuman characteristics for Muhammad, but describes him in terms of positive human qualities. In several verses, the Quran crystallizes Muhammad's relation to humanity. According to the Quran, God sent Muhammad with truth, as a blessing to the whole world. In Islamic tradition, this means that God sent Muhammad with his message to humanity the following of which will give people salvation in the afterlife, it is Muhammad's teachings and the purity of his personal life alone which keep alive the worship of God on this world; the Quran categorizes some theological issues regarding Muhammad. The most important among them is the edict to follow the teachings of Muhammad; the Quran commands people to "follow God and his Messenger" in verses including 3:31-32, 3:132, 4:59, 4:69. Muhammad, the son of'Abdullah ibn'Abd al-Muttalib ibn Hashim and his young wife Aminah, was born in 570 CE in the city of Mecca in the Arabian Peninsula, he was a member of the family of Banu Hashim, a respected branch of the prestigious and influential Quraysh tribe.
It is said that'Abd al-Muttalib named the child "Muhammad". Muhammad was orphaned; some months before the birth of Muhammad, his father died near Medina on a mercantile expedition to Syria. When Muhammad was six, he accompanied his mother Amina on her visit to Medina to visit her late husband's tomb. While returning to Mecca, Amina died at a desolate place called Abwa, about half-way to Mecca, was buried there. Muhammad was now taken in by his paternal grandfather Abd al-Muttalib, who himself died when Muhammad was eight, leaving him in the care of his unc
Medieval Christian views on Muhammad
During the Early Middle Ages, Christendom viewed Islam as a Christological heresy and Muhammad as a false prophet. By the Late Middle Ages, Islam was more grouped with heathenism, Muhammad was viewed as inspired by the devil. A more relaxed or benign view of Islam only developed in the modern period, after the Islamic empires ceased to be an acute military threat to Europe. See Orientalism; the earliest documented Christian knowledge of Muhammad stems from Byzantine sources, written shortly after Muhammad's death in 632. With the Crusades of the High Middle Ages, the wars against the Ottoman Empire during the Late Middle Ages, the Christian reception of Muhammad became more polemical, moving from the classification as a heretic to depiction of Muhammad as a servant of Satan or as the Antichrist, who will be suffering tortures in Hell. In contrast to the views of Muhammad in Islam, the Christian image stayed negative for over a millennium; the earliest written Christian knowledge of Muhammad stems from Byzantine sources, written shortly after Muhammad's death in 632.
In the anti-Jewish polemic the Teaching of Jacob, a dialogue between a recent Christian convert and several Jews, one participant writes that his brother "wrote to saying that a deceiving prophet has appeared amidst the Saracens". Another participant in the Doctrina replies about Muhammad: "He is deceiving. For do prophets come with sword and chariot?, …ou will discover nothing true from the said prophet except human bloodshed". Though Muhammad is never called by his name, the author seems to know of his existence and represents both Jews and Christians as viewing him in a negative light. Other contemporary sources, such as the writings of Sophronius of Jerusalem, do not characterize Saracens as having their own prophet or faith, only remarking that the Saracen attacks must be a punishment for Christian sins. Knowledge of Muhammad was available in Christendom from after the early expansion of his religion and the translation of a polemical work by John of Damascus, who used the phrase "false prophet" in "Heresies in Epitome: How They Began and Whence They Drew Their Origin.".
According to the Encyclopædia Britannica Christian knowledge of Muhammad's life "was nearly always used abusively". Another influential source was the Epistolae Saraceni or the “Letters of a Saracen” written by an Oriental Christian and translated into Latin from Arabic. From the 9th century onwards negative biographies of Muhammad were written in Latin, such as the one by Álvaro of Córdoba proclaiming him the Antichrist. Christendom gained some knowledge of Muhammad through the Mozarabs of Spain, such as the 9th-century Eulogius of Córdoba, one of the Martyrs of Córdoba. In the 11th century Petrus Alphonsi, a Jew who had converted to Christianity, was another Mozarab source of information on Muhammad. During the 12th century Peter the Venerable, who saw Muhammad as the precursor to the Antichrist and the successor of Arius, ordered the translation of the Quran into Latin and the collection of information on Muhammad so that Islamic teachings could be refuted by Christian scholars. During the 13th century European biographers completed their work on the life of Muhammad in a series of works by scholars such as Peter Pascual, Riccoldo da Monte di Croce, Ramon Llull in which Muhammad was depicted as an Antichrist while Islam was shown to be a Christian heresy.
The fact that Muhammad was unlettered, that he married a wealthy widow, that in his life he had several wives, that he was involved in several wars, that he died like an ordinary person in contrast to the Christian belief in the supernatural end of Jesus' earthly life were all arguments used to discredit Muhammad. Medieval scholars and churchmen held that Islam was the work of Muhammad who in turn was inspired by Satan. Kenneth Setton wrote that Muhammad was calumniated and made a subject of legends taught by preachers as fact. For example, in order to show that Muhammad was the anti-Christ, it was asserted that Muhammad died not in the year 632 but in the year 666 – the number of the beast – in another variation on the theme the number "666" was used to represent the period of time Muslims would hold sway of the land. A verbal expression of Christian contempt for Islam was expressed in turning his name from Muhammad to Mahound, the "devil incarnate". Others confirmed to pious Christians that Muhammad had come to a bad end.
According to one version after falling into a drunken stupor he had been eaten by a herd of swine, this was ascribed as the reason why Muslims proscribed consumption of alcohol and pork. In another account of the alcohol ban, Muhammad learns about the Bible from a Jew and a heretical Arian monk. Muhammad and the monk fall asleep; the Jew kills the monk with Muhammad's sword. He blames Muhammad, believing he has committed the crime in a drunken rage, bans alcohol. Leggenda di Maometto is another example of such a story. In this version, as a child Muhammad was taught the black arts by a heretical Christian villain who escaped imprisonment by the Christian Church by fleeing to the Arabian Peninsula, it ascribed the Muslim holiday of Friday "dies Veneris", as against the Jewish and the Christian, to his followers' depravity as reflected in their multiplicity of wives. A negative depiction of Muhammad as a heretic, false prophet, renegade cardinal or founder of a violent religion found its way into many other works of European literature, such as the chansons de geste, William Langland's Piers Plowman, John Lydgate's The Fall of the Princes.
Muhammad in Medina
The Islamic prophet Muhammad came to Medina following the migration of his followers in what is known as the Hijra in 622. He had been invited to Medina by city leaders to adjudicate disputes between clans from which the city suffered, he left Medina to return to and conquer Mecca in December 629. A delegation from Medina, consisting of the representatives of the twelve important clans of Medina, invited Muhammad as a neutral outsider to serve as the chief arbitrator for the entire community. There was fighting in Yathrib involving its Arab and Jewish inhabitants for around a hundred years before 620; the recurring slaughters and disagreements over the resulting claims after the battle of Bu'ath in which all the clans were involved, made it obvious to them that the tribal conceptions of blood-feud and an eye for an eye were no longer workable unless there was one man with authority to adjudicate in disputed cases. The delegation from Medina pledged themselves and their fellow-citizens to accept Muhammad into their community and physically protect him as one of themselves.
Muhammad instructed his followers to emigrate to Medina until all of his followers had left Mecca. Being alarmed at the departure of Muslims, according to the tradition, the Meccans plotted to assassinate him, he fooled the Meccans who were watching him, secretly slipped away from the town. By 622, Muhammad had emigrated to Medina known as Yathrib, a large agricultural oasis. Following the emigration, the Meccans seized the properties of the Muslim emigrants in Mecca. Among the things Muhammad did in order to settle the longstanding grievances among the tribes of Medina was drafting a document known as the Constitution of Medina, "establishing a kind of alliance or federation" among the eight Medinan tribes and Muslim emigrants from Mecca, which specified the rights and duties of all citizens and the relationship of the different communities in Medina; the community defined in the Constitution of Medina, had a religious outlook but was shaped by the practical considerations and preserved the legal forms of the old Arab tribes.
Muhammad adopted some features of the Jewish worship and customs such as fasting on the Yom Kippur day. According to Alford Welch, the Jewish practice of having three daily prayer rituals appears to have been a factor in the introduction of the Islamic midday prayer. Welch thinks that Muhammad's adoption of facing north towards Jerusalem when performing the daily prayers however need not to be a borrowing from the Jews as the reports about the direction of prayer before migration to Medina are contradictory and further this direction of prayer was practiced among other groups in Arabia; the first group of pagan converts to Islam in Medina were the clans who had not produced great leaders for themselves but had suffered from warlike leaders from other clans. This was followed by the general acceptance of Islam by the pagan population of Medina, apart from some exceptions; this was, according to Ibn Ishaq, influenced by the conversion to Islam of Sa'd ibn Mua'dh, one of the prominent leaders in Medina.
In the course of Muhammad proselytizing in Mecca, he viewed Christians and Jews as natural allies, part of the Abrahamic religions, sharing the core principles of his teachings, anticipated their acceptance and support. Muslims, like Jews, were at that time praying towards Jerusalem. In the Constitution of Medina, Muhammad demanded the Jews' political loyalty in return for religious and cultural autonomy; the Jewish clans however kept aloof from Islam though in the course of time there were a few converts from them. After his migration to Medina, Muhammad's attitude towards Christians and Jews changed. Norman Stillman states: During this fateful time, fraught with tension after the Hijra, when Muhammad encountered contradiction and rejection from the Jewish scholars in Medina, he came to adopt a radically more negative view of the people of the Book who had received earlier scriptures; this attitude was evolving in the third Meccan period as the Prophet became more aware of the antipathy between Jews and Christians and the disagreements and strife amongst members of the same religion.
The Qur'an at this time states that it will "relate to the Children of Israel most of that about which they differ". Economically uprooted by their Meccan persecutors and with no available profession, the Muslim migrants turned to raiding Meccan caravans to respond to their persecution and to provide sustenance for their Muslim families, thus initiating armed conflict between the Muslims and the pagan Quraysh of Mecca. Muhammad delivered Qur'anic verses permitting the Muslims, "those who have been expelled from their homes", to fight the Meccans in opposition to persecution; these attacks provoked and pressured Mecca by interfering with trade, allowed the Muslims to acquire wealth and prestige while working toward their ultimate goal of inducing Mecca's submission to the new faith. In March 624, Muhammad led some three hundred warriors in a raid on a Meccan merchant caravan; the Muslims set an ambush for the Meccans at Badr. Aware of the plan, the Meccan caravan eluded the Muslims. Meanwhile, a force from Mecca was sent to protect the caravan.
The force did not return home upon hearing. The battle of Badr began in March 624. Though outnumbered more than three to one, the Muslims won the battle, killing at
The Message (1976 film)
The Message is a 1976 epic historical drama film directed by Moustapha Akkad, chronicling the life and times of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. Released in Arabic and English, The Message serves as an introduction to early Islamic history; the film was nominated for Best Original Score in the 50th Academy Awards, composed by Maurice Jarre, but lost the award to Star Wars. Muhammed is visited by the angel Gabriel, which makes him shocked; the angel asks him to spread Islam. The entire city of Mecca begins to convert; as a result, more enemies will come and hunt Muhammad and his companions from Mecca and confiscate their possessions. They head north, where they receive a warm welcome in the city of Medina and build the first Islamic mosque, they are told. Mohammed still gets permission to attack, they win the Battle of Badr. The Meccans want revenge and beat back with three thousand men in the Battle of Uhud, killing Hamza ibn Abd al-Muttalib; the Muslims left the camp unprotected. Because of this, they were surprised by riders from behind, so they lost this time.
The Meccans and the Muslims closed a 10-year truce. A few years Khalid ibn Walid, a Meccan general who killed many Muslims, converted to Islam. Meanwhile, Muslim camps in the desert were attacked in the night; the Muslims thought. Abu Sufyan came to Medina fearing retribution and claiming that it was not the Meccans, but robbers who had broken the truce. None of the Muslims give him an audience, claiming he "observes no treaty and keeps no pledge." The Muslims respond with an attack on Mecca with many troops and "men from every tribe". Abu Sufyan sought an audience with Muhammad on the eve of the attack; the Meccans became scared but are reassured that no one will be abused and any in their house, by the Kaaba, or in Abu Sufyan's house will be safe. They surrendered and Mecca came into the hands of the Muslims; the Pagan images of the gods in the Kaaba were destroyed, the first azan in Mecca was called on the Kaaba by Bilaal Ibn Rabaah. While creating The Message, director Akkad, Muslim, consulted Islamic clerics in a thorough attempt to be respectful towards Islam and its views on portraying Muhammad.
He received approval from Al-Azhar in Egypt but was rejected by the Muslim World League in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Akkad had to go outside the United States in order to raise the production money needed for the film. Lack of financing nearly shut down the film. Financing for the project came from the governments of Kuwait and Morocco, but when it was rejected by the Muslim World League, Emir Sabah III Al-Salim Al-Sabah of Kuwait withdrew financial support. King Hassan II of Morocco gave Akkad full support for the production, while King Khalid bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia and then-Libyan leader Muammar al-Gaddafi provided financial support too; the film was shot in Morocco and Libya, with production taking four and a half months to build the cities of Mecca and Medina as they looked in Muhammad's time. Production took one year. Akkad went to al-Gaddafi for support in order to complete the project, the Libyan leader allowed him to move the filming to Libya for the remaining six months. Akkad saw the film as a way to bridge the gap between the Western and Islamic worlds, stating in a 1976 interview: I did the film because it is a personal thing for me.
Besides its production values as a film, it has its intrigue, its drama. Besides all this I think there was something personal, being a Muslim myself who lived in the west I felt that it was my obligation my duty to tell the truth about Islam, it is a religion that has a 700 million following, yet it's so little known about which surprised me. I thought I should tell the story that will bring this gap to the west. Akkad filmed an Arabic version of the film with an Arab cast, for Arabic-speaking audiences, he felt that dubbing the English version into Arabic would not be enough, because the Arabic acting style differs from that of Hollywood and the Arab world. The actors took turns doing the English and Arabic versions in each scene, both are now sold together on some DVDs. In accordance with the beliefs of some Muslims regarding depictions of Muhammad, his face is not depicted on-screen nor is his voice heard; because Islamic tradition forbids any direct representation of religious figures, the following disclaimer is displayed at the beginning of the film: The makers of this film honour the Islamic tradition which holds that the impersonation of the Prophet offends against the spirituality of his message.
Therefore, the person of Mohammad will not be shown. The rule above was extended to his wives, his daughters including Fatimah, his sons-in-law, the first caliphs; this left his adopted son Zayd as the central characters. During the battles of Badr and Uhud depicted in the movie, Hamza was in nominal command though the actual fighting was led by Muhammad. Whenever Muhammad was present or close by, his presence was indicated by light organ music, his words, as he spoke them, were repeated by someone else such as Zayd or Bilal. When a scene called for him to be present, the ac
Isra and Mi'raj
The Isra and Mi'raj are the two parts of a Night Journey that, according to Islam, the Islamic prophet Muhammad took during a single night around the year 621. Within Islam it signifies both a spiritual journey; the Quran surah al-Isra contains an outline account, while greater detail is found in the hadith collections of the reports, teachings and sayings of Muhammad. In the accounts of the Isra’, Muhammad is said to have traveled on the back of a winged mule-like white beast, called Buraq, to "the farthest mosque". By tradition this mosque, which came to represent the physical world, was identified as the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. At the mosque, Muhammad is said to have led the other prophets in prayer, his subsequent ascent into the heavens came to be known as the Mi‘raj. Muhammad's journey and ascent is marked as one of the most celebrated dates in the Islamic calendar; the events of Isra and Mi'raj mentioned in the Qur'an are further enlarged and interpreted within the supplement to the Qur'an, the literary corpus known as hadith, which contain the reported sayings of Muhammad.
Two of the best hadith sources are by Ibn ` Abbas. Both were young boys at the time of Muhammad's journey of Mi'raj. Within the Qur'an, surat al-Isra, contains a brief description of Isra in the first verse; some scholars say a verse in surah an-Najm holds information on the Isra and Mi'raj. Glory to Him Who carried His beloved by night from the Sacred Masjid to the Furthest Masjid, whose precincts We have blessed, to show him of Our wonders! He it is Who is All-Hearing, All-Seeing! Remember when We said to you that your Lord encompasses mankind in His knowledge. Nor did We make the vision We showed you except as a test to people, as the accursed tree in the Qur'an, and he saw him a second time,By the lote-tree of the ExtremityNear, the Garden of RefugeWhen there covered the lote-tree that which covered it. The neither overreached, he saw some of his Lord's greatest wonders. From the tradition of Ibn Ishaq, the earliest biographer of Muhammad, the reference in the Qur'an to "the Farthest Masjid", from surat al-Isra, has been interpretd to mean the site of the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.
Numerous ahadith support this interpretation. The Masjid in Jerusalem was built after Muhammad's lifetime, the term used for mosque means "Place of prostration," and includes monotheistic places of worship, but does not lend itself to physical structures but a location, as Muhammad stated "The earth has been made for me a place for praying." Therefore, the phrase "Al-Masjidil-Aqsa" means that there was a place, but not a building, where Muhammad prostrated to God or worshipped Him, in the "Blessed Region." When the Rashid caliph ‘Umar conquered Jerusalem after Muhammad's death, a prayer house was rebuilt on the site. The structure was expanded by the Umayyad caliph ‘Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan and finished by his son al-Walid I in 705; the building was destroyed by earthquakes and rebuilt, until the reconstruction in 1033 CE, by the Fatimid caliph ‘Ali az-Zahir, that structure stands to the present day. Islamic scholars such as Heribert Busse and Neal Robinson, believe that Jerusalem is the interpretation intended in the Qur’an.
Muslims used to pray towards Jerusalem, but according to the following verses of their Quran, God changed this direction, the Qiblah, to instead direct to al-Masjid al-Haram: And thus we have made you a just community that you will be witnesses over the people and the Messenger will be a witness over you. And We did not make the qiblah which you used to face except that We might make evident who would follow the Messenger from who would turn back on his heels, and indeed, it is difficult except for those. And never would Allah have caused you to lose your faith. Indeed Allah is, to the people and Merciful. We have seen the turning of your face, toward the heaven, We will turn you to a qiblah with which you will be pleased. So turn your face toward al-Masjid al-Haram, and wherever you are, turn your faces toward it. Indeed, those who have been given the Scripture well know, and Allah is not unaware of. From various hadiths we learn much greater detail; the Isra is the part of the journey of Muhammad from Mecca to Jerusalem.
It began when Muhammad was in the Great Mosque, the Archangel Jibrīl came to him, brought Buraq, the traditional heavenly mount of the prophets. Buraq carried Muhammad to the "Farthest Mosque", in Jerusalem. Muhammad alighted, tethered Buraq to the Temple Mount and performed prayer, where on God's command he was tested by Gabriel, it was told by Anas ibn Malik that Muhammad said: "Jibra'il brought me a vessel of wine, a vessel of water and a vessel of milk, I chose the milk. Jibra'il said:'You have chosen the Fitrah.'" In the second part of the journey, the Mi'raj, Jibra'il took him to the heavens, where he toured the seven stages of heaven, spoke with the earlier prophets such as Abraham, John the Baptist, Jesus. Muhammad was taken to Sidrat al-Muntaha – a holy tree in the seventh heaven that Gabriel was not allowed to pass. According to Islamic tradition, God instructed Muhammad tha
Al-Masjid an-Nabawī is a mosque established and built by the Islamic Prophet Muhammad, situated in the city of Medina in the Hejaz region of Saudi Arabia. It was the third mosque built in the history of Islam, is now one of the largest mosques in the world, it is the second-holiest site in Islam, after the Great Mosque in Mecca. It is always open, regardless of time; the site was adjacent to Muhammad's house. He shared in the heavy work of construction; the original mosque was an open-air building. The mosque served as a community center, a court, a religious school. There was a raised platform for the people. Subsequent Islamic rulers expanded and decorated it. In 1909, it became the first place in the Arabian Peninsula to be provided with electrical lights; the mosque is under the control of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques. The mosque is located in what was traditionally the center of Medina, with many hotels and old markets nearby, it is a major pilgrimage site. Many pilgrims who perform the Hajj go on to Medina to visit the mosque, due to its connection to Muhammad.
After an expansion during the reign of the Umayyad caliph al-Walid I, it now incorporates the final resting place of Muhammad and the first two Rashidun caliphs Abu Bakr and Umar. One of the most notable features of the site is the Green Dome in the south-east corner of the mosque Aisha's house, where the tomb of Muhammad is located. In 1279, a wooden cupola was built over the tomb, rebuilt and renovated multiple times in late 15th century and once in 1817; the current dome was added in 1818 by the Ottoman sultan Mahmud II, it was first painted green in 1837, hence becoming known as the "Green Dome". The mosque was built after his arrival in the city of Medina. Riding on a camel called Qaswa he arrived at the place where this mosque was built; the land was owned by Sahal and Suhayl as a place for drying dates, at one end had been used as a burial ground. Refusing to "accept the land as a gift", he bought the land and it took seven months to complete the construction of the mosque, it measured 30.5 m × 35.62 m.
The roof, supported by palm trunks was made of beaten clay and palm leaves. It was at a height of 3.60 m. The three doors of the mosque were Bab-al-Rahmah to the south, Bab-al-Jibril to the west and Babal-Nisa to the east. After the Battle of Khaybar, the mosque was "enlarged"; the mosque extended for 47.32 m on each side and three rows of columns were built beside the west wall, which became the place of praying. The mosque remained unaltered during the reign of the first Rashidun caliph Abu Bakr; the second caliph Umar demolished all the houses around the mosque except that of Muhammad's wives to expand it. The new mosque's dimensions became 57.49 m × 66.14 m. Sun-dried mud bricks were used to construct the walls of the enclosure. Besides strewing pebbles on the floor, the roof's height was increased to 5.6 m. Umar moreover constructed three more gates for entrance, he added the Al-Butayha for people to recite poetry. The third caliph Uthman demolished the mosque in 649. Ten months were spent in building the new rectangular shaped mosque whose face was turned towards the Kaaba in Mecca.
The new mosque measured 81.40 m × 62.58 m. The number of gates as well as their names remained the same; the enclosure walls were made of stones laid in mortar. The palm trunk columns were replaced by stone columns. Teakwood was used in reconstructing the ceiling. In 707, Umayyad caliph Al-Walid ibn Abd al-Malik renovated the mosque, it took three years for the work to be completed. Raw materials were procured from the Byzantine Empire; the area of the mosque was increased from 5094 sq. metre of Uthman's time to 8672 sq metre. A wall was built to segregate the houses of the wives of Prophet Muhammad; the mosque was reconstructed in a trapezoid shape with a length of 101.76 metres. For the first time, porticoes were built in the mosque connecting the northern part of the structure to the sanctuary. For the first time, minarets were built in Medina. Abbasid caliph Al-Mahdi extended the mosque to the north by 50 metres, his name was inscribed on the walls of the mosque. He planned to remove six steps to the minbar, but abandoned this idea, owing to this causing damage of the woods on which they were built.
According to an inscription of Ibn Qutaybah, the third caliph Al-Mamun did "unspecified work" on the mosque. Al-Mutawakkil lined the enclosure of Prophet Muhammad's tomb with marble. Al-Ashraf Qansuh al-Ghawri built a dome of stone over his grave in 1476; the Rawdah, covered by the dome over the south-east corner of the mosque, was constructed in 1817C. E. During the reign of Sultan Mahmud II; the dome was painted green in 1837 C. E. and came to be known as the "Green Dome". The Sultan Abdul Majid I took thirteen years to rebuild the mosque, which started in 1849. Red stone bricks were used as the main material in reconstruction of the mosque; the floor area of the mosque was increased by 1293 square metre. On the walls, verses from the Quran were inscribed in Islamic calligraphy. In the northern side of the mosque, a madrasah was built for "teaching Quranic lessons"; when Saud bin Abdul-Aziz took Medina in 1805, his followers, the Wahhabis, demolished nearly every tomb dome in Medina in order to prevent their veneration, the Green Dome is said to have narrowly escaped the same fate.