Mecca: a city losing its spirituality?

Daily Times: The Mecca of today is different from old times, much more business-oriented and driven by money. It looks more like a commercial hotspot instead of a Divine residence 

Muslims disagree on almost everything. From the timing of their prayers or fasts to insignificant nuptial details, on every issue they have managed to somehow lock horns with each other. However, surprisingly, their faith in a Merciful Creator, the Holy Book and the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is still unanimous and unambiguous. Besides that, if they agree upon anything else collectively, it is the sanctity of Khana-e-Kaaba, the black cubicle widely venerated as the House of God. The Kaaba therefore is, without a doubt, the most sacred place in the world for the Muslims, a place they surmise is protected by God himself from all kinds of enemy attacks.

Irrespective of their sectarian preferences and regardless of their geographical location, all Muslims offer prayers in the direction of their revered edifice five times a day. At least once in their lifetime, they perform Hajj in Mecca and look at the monument built by Ishmael and his father Ibrahim. Without any exception, all their lives, while following everyday rituals, every Muslim builds a special association with the Holy Land, a relationship that is tremendously personal and unquestionably romantic. He grows up with the dream to visit the city of the Prophet (PBUH), to circumambulate the Khana-e-Kaaba, to touch the Black Stone and to offer prayers at the mark of Ibrahim. Accordingly, even with meagre resources and poor health, millions of people reach Mecca every year, and show their commitment to their Lord in the words: “Here I am at Thy service O Lord, here I am.”

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1 reply

  1. Well, to cope with a few hundred thousand pilgrims is not the same as to cope with a few million. Therefore changes were no doubt needed. We must admit that the Saudis have coped well providing for the huge numbers of pilgrims. Yes, we did enjoy a ‘real Hajj’ forty years ago, when we stayed in a rather humble local Makkan’s house rather than a few years ago when we stayed in modern hotels. BUT … no, I did not notice any ‘reduction of spirituality’. In fact millions of pilgrims reciting ‘LA BAIK ALLAH HUMMA’ all at the same time is really heart warming.

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