Monday, November 26, 2007

At one point the direction of the qibla was toward Bayt al-Maqdis, Jerusalem (and it is therefore called the First of the Two Qiblas). . In Islam, this only lasted for seventeen months, after which the qibla became oriented towards the Kaaba in Mecca. According to accounts from the prophet Muhammad's companions, the change happened very suddenly during the noon prayer in Medina, in a mosque known as Masjid al-Qiblatain (Mosque of the Two Qiblas). Muhammad was leading the prayer when he received a revelation from Allah instructing him to take the Kaaba as the qibla (literally, "turn your face towards the Masjid al Haram"). According to the historical accounts, Muhammad, who had been facing Jerusalem, upon receiving this revelation, immediately turned around to face Mecca, and those praying behind him also did so.
ref: Wiki

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