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Tuesday, 30 October 2007

The Prophet's Mosque in Madinah

The Prophets Mosque in Madinah
Taken from geocities.com/sjalam

The Prophet's Mosque in Madinah is the second most revered place of worship for Muslims around the world. Millions of Muslims visit the Mosque each year, to worship, to visit the Prophet's grave, and to see the city that gave birth to Islam. This pilgrimage is not mandatory as is the one to Makkah, but nevertheless popular. It is important to remember, however, that a visit to the Prophet's grave is not in any way to worship or revere him, but to commemorate his role as God's messenger, and to remind Muslims of his mortality and humanity.

The Prophet's Mosque was the first institution to be built following Prophet Muhammad's migration in 622 AD from Makkah, where he was born, to the town of Yathrib, which became known as 'Al-Madinah an-Nabi", or 'City of the Prophet', and is today simply Madinah.

Surrounded as it was by the shops and stalls of all kinds of merchants, the new mosque soon became the political and economic as well as the spiritual nucleus of the city, and played both a practical and a symbolic role in unifying the citizens, ultimately providing a solid foundation from which the Prophet and his companions could set forth and establish the Islamic state.

According to history, the manner in which the Prophet decided on its location, was to let his camel loose, and choose the site where it finally stopped to rest. The entire Muslim community, both the residents of Yathrib and those who had migrated from Makkah with the Prophet, participated in the construction of this first mosque, which was simply an open courtyard about 805 square meters in area surrounded by a wall made from bricks and tree trunks. On the eastern side apartments were built to house the Prophet and his family. By 629 the Prophet had enlarged the area of the mosque to 2,475 square meters.

Under the first four Caliphs, Madinah and the Mosque where the Prophet was buried continued to be the seat of government, reinforcing the synthesis of religion and governance in the Islamic state. The first two Caliphs, Abu Bakr and Omar, were buried next to the Prophet in the place that had originally been the Prophet's home, and which today is covered by the famous green dome of the mosque.

Throughout Islamic history, successive Islamic regimes have spared no cost or effort in dignifying and honoring the Prophet's Mosque in Madinah. In 638, the Caliph Omar Bin Al-Khattab increased the area by 1,100 square meters, and in 650 the Caliph Othman Bin Affan increased it by 496 square meters. The Caliph Al-Walid Bin Abdul Malik in 706 ordered an extension of 2,379 square meters, and 73 years later Caliph AL-Mahdi AL-Abbasi increased it by 2450 square meters.

For over seven centuries no additional improvements were made until Sultan Qaid Bey added another 120 square meters in 1483. Another three centuries passed, and in 1849 Sultan Abdul Majid initiated another extension of 1,293 square meters.

Soon after the establishment of the modern Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1932, King Abdul Aziz Al-Saud issued a royal decree ordering the expansion of the Prophet's Mosque, a plan implemented by his son King Saud in 1950. This first Saudi expansion was the largest the mosque had ever seen, and not only doubled it in size, but also brought about changes in the city of Madinah itself. The number of pilgrims continued to increase rapidly, from an average of 100,000 annually in 1955 to one million in 1970 and more than two million in 1980.

In 1973 King Faisal Bin Abdul Aziz ordered the construction of awnings on the west side of the mosque as a temporary solution to protect visitors from the elements, and in 1981 Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz began research into plans for further extensions that would ultimately result in a five-fold increase in the size of the mosque. The mosque today is one hundred times the size it was when the Prophet first established it, and can accommodate at any one time, more than half a million worshipers. Indicative of the facilities now available is an underground parking garage designed to hold nearly 5,000 cars.

Here are some pictures of the Prophets Mosque (not in any particular order)

Taken from Flickr: [mustafanafees, chinx786, kandaharihalak], hicaz2000.com, dawateislami.net and various other sources.

Unique Merit of the Prophet's Mosque
(Taken from geocities.com/al_hajj/Madinah)

The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) himself participated in the construction of this mosque, called it "My Mosque" and led prayers in it for years. It is a great privilege for the pilgrims to visit our beloved Prophet's tomb. The Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is reported to have said:

"A salaat performed in the Prophet's Mosque is better than a thousand salaats in any other place except Masjid al-Haram in Makkah" - Bukhari and Muslim.

"The person who offers 40 prayers consecutively in my Mosque, without missing a prayer in between, will secure immunity from the fire of Hell and other torments and also from hypocrisy." - reported by Hazrat Anas (ra)

"The person who comes solely for the purpose of paying a visit to my grave, has a right on me that I should intercede for him." - from Ilm al-Fiqh, Vol. V

And he also said: "The person who performs Hajj and then visits my tomb will be regarded as though he had seen me in my worldly life." (Al-Bayhaqi)

Places To Visit in and around Madinah Al-Munawara

It is Musthabb to visit the dwellers of Baqi in Madinah, and to visit other sacred places and the mosques and wells of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)

Jannat-ul-Baqi is the graveyard lying in the east of Madinah. Innumerable companions of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and saints are buried there. It is mustahabb to visit the dwellers of Baqi specially on Fridays.

The plain of Badar is 20 miles south west of Madinah where the first battle between 313 Muslims and 1000 Qureish of Makkah took place in 624 A.D. The Muslims had seventy camels and two horses whereas the Qureish had a cavalry of 200 Horses and 700 camels. They were superior in weapons too, but Muslims were victorious because they were strong in morale and strategy due to the leadership of the Holy Prophet (pbuh).

Martyrs of Uhad
Three miles to the north of Madinah is the mountain about which the Mesenger of Allah (pbuh) said "Uhad is a mountain that loves us and we love it." The "Ghazwah Uhud" (war) took place here in the year 3 A.H. it is mustahabb to visit martyrs of Uhud, the mountain itself and its mosques on Thursday after the Fajr prayers. The grave of Hazrat Hamzah lies here, where one should offer salam.

Mosques in and around Madinah Al-Munawara
There are many other mosques in and around Madinah apart from Masjid Nabawi. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and his Companions prayed in these mosques. It is mustahabb to visit these mosques, some of which still exist.

Masjid Quba
It is about two miles south-west from Masjid-an Nabawi. This is the very first mosque of the muslims. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and his companions built it with their own hands. This is the first mosque in the history of Islam whose foundation stone was laid down by Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) himself on his migration to Madinah. To offer 2 rakaats of nafl in it is equal to one Umrah.

Masjid Juma
It is near Bustan al Jaza in the valley Zanuna to the east on the new road to Quba. The Messenger of Allah prayed the first Friday there.

Masjid Qiblatain
It is situated to the north-west near the valley Aqiq. In this mosque, Allah SWT directed Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), who was in the middle of a salaat along with "sahaba karam", to turn his face from Islam's first qibla, "Bait-ul-Muqqadis", (Masjid Alaqs in Jerusalem) to "Ka'ba" in "Masjid al-Haram" in Makka. Consequently, this mosque is known as a mosque with two qiblas.

Masjid Musallah / Masjid Ghumana
It is to the south west of Manakho. The Messenger of Allah offered Eid prayers here.

Masjid Suqya
There is a dome inside a railway station near Bab 'Anbariyah. It is known as Qubbah Ra'us. On his way to Ghazwah Badr, the Messenger of Allah offered his prayers there.

Masjid Ahzab / Masjid Fath
It is on the western corner of Jabl Sala'. When the unbelievers had united together in the Ghazwah Ahzab and attacked Madinah and the trench was dug, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) made a supplication for three days. Allah granted the prayer and the muslims emerged victorious.

Masjid Zubab
As one gets down Thaniah al-Wada' on the road to Jabl Uhad the Jabal Zubab is on the left side. That's where the mosque is located. The Prophet prayed there too.

Masjid Al Fadih
It is situated on the east of Awali. The Messenger of Allah had offered his prayers here at the time of siege of Bani Nadir. Fadih is the wine from dates. The mosque takes its name from an incident involving Sayyidina Ayyub Ansari and his companions while they were drinking wine. It was here that the verse disallowing intoxicants was revealed.

Masjid Bani Qurayzah
It is a little distance from Masjid Fadih to the east. The Messenger of Allah had camped here during during the siege of the Bani Qurayzah.

Masjid Bani Bami Zafar / Masjid Baghalah
It is on the boundary of Harrah Waqim to the east of Baqi. The Banu Zafar used to live there. A stone near the mosque bears the mark of the hoof of the mare of the Prophet.

Masjid Ijabah
It is to the north of Baqi near Bustan Saman. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) prayed there.

Masjid Sajadah / Masjid Al-Buhayr
It is between Bustan Buhayri and Bastin Sadaqah. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) had offered two rakaat here and observed a long prostration.

Masjid Ubayy
It is next to Baqi. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) visited the mosque frequently.

Masjid Bani Haram
It is on the way to Masjid Fath in the valley of Jabl Sala' on the right side. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) offered prayers here too. There is a cave nearby where he had received a revelation.

Masjid Abu Bakr
Near the Masjid Musalla towards the north.

Masjid Ali
Also near Masjid Musalla.

Masjid Umm Ibrahim bin Muhammad
It is situated in Awali to the north of Masjid Bani Qurayz. Sayyidina Ibrahim was born there. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) prayed here as well.

Mounts in and around Madinah Al-Munawara
There are several Mountains. Pilgrims must visit some of the more famous ones.

About four miles on the north of Madinah, famous battle of Uhad was fought at 3 A.H. Hazrat Hamza, the Holy Prophet's uncle and other companions are buried here.

This is the site for the battle of Ditch which was fought in 5 A.H. Now there are six mosques at this place.

Wells in and around Madinah Al-Munawara

There are several wells from which the Prophet drank or performed ablution. Pilgrims must visit some of the more famous ones.

Bi' Urays
To the west of Masjid Quba.

Bi' Ghars
Situated in the village Qurban about four furlongs from Masjid Quba to the north east.

Bi' Buda'ah
In Jamal al-layl next to the Syrian door.

Bi' Bussah
Next to Baqi on the road to Quba.

Bi' Ha'
It is opposite Bab Majidi outside the north wall of the city.

Bi' Ahan
It is in Awali to the east of Masjid Quba near Masjid Shams.

Bi' Rumah
About three miles away from Madinah in a desert at the edge of the valley Aqiq to the north-west of Madinah.

Useful readings:
Historical Sites of Madinah Munawwarah - By Imtiaz Ahmad

imedia.ae - 360 degree photographs of The Prophet's Mosque (Masjid Al-Nabawi) [Green Dome side, Bab Al-Salam side & Bab Al-Baqie side], as well as Mountain Uhad [West Side, East Side & Bowmen Hill] and various Masjids like Masjid Quba, Masjid Qiblatain & Masjid Fath / Masjid Ahzab.

Map of inside the Prophets mosque (of original mosque) - Musjid-Nabawi.pdf


syed said...

i also belive that prophet Rasoollallah sallallahe aalihe oasallam alive.

Mustafa Nafees said...