A Call to Prayer

One thing I have found surprisingly beautiful is the Call to Prayer.  Mosques dot the landscape the same way LDS stake centres do in Utah.  In each Emirate the timing of the prayer is a little bit different.

Within the Emirate it is an amazing, surreal chorus that rings out across the land.  Anna Zacharias of The National wrote, “The call to prayer, or adhan, is beamed live across the emirate five times a day via satellite from the Sheikh Zayed Mosque on the al Qawassim Corniche in RAK city. The four callers span the Islamic world, hailing from Morocco, Egypt, the UAE and Bangladesh. Though a single voice at a time delivers adhan to mosques at the click of a button, the call in each mosque absorbs the character of its setting.”

AUS Mosque

The following is the Arabic transliteration and the English translation of what you hear:

Allahu Akbar
God is Great
(said four times)

Ashhadu an la ilaha illa Allah
I bear witness that there is no god except the One God.
(said two times)

Ashadu anna Muhammadan Rasool Allah
I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of God.
(said two times)

Hayya ‘ala-s-Salah
Hurry to the prayer (Rise up for prayer)
(said two times)

Hayya ‘ala-l-Falah
Hurry to success (Rise up for Salvation)
(said two times)

Allahu Akbar
God is Great
[said two times]

La ilaha illa Allah
There is no god except the One God

For the pre-dawn (fajr) prayer, the following phrase is inserted after the fifth part above, towards the end:

As-salatu Khayrun Minan-nawm
Prayer is better than sleep
(said two times)

There is a mosque in downtown Sharjah, Al Noor Mosque, that allows non-Muslim visitors and residents to take a tour, and photos of the interior of the Mosque and learn more about the religion.  I intend to look into it, so stay tuned for a post on this topic.

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