Why Do We Pray towards Mecca? Facts and Direction of the Qibla

By Halal Trip | 03, Jan, 2017
Why Do We Pray towards Mecca? Facts and Direction of the Qibla

We all have always prayed in the direction of the Ka’bah but have you wondered about the history of it? The Qibla represents the unity of the Ummah under the Shariah law, or the Law of God. It is also mentioned in Surah al-Baqarah:

al baqarah ayat 144

Before the Prophet Muhammad PBUH arrived in Medina, the qiblah faced the Noble Sanctuary in Jerusalem and it has been so for over thirteen years. While he was there, Rasulullah prayed in that direction for some time until it was changed to be towards the Kaaba in Mecca. This was first revealed during noon prayers in Medina, in Masjid Al-Qiblatayn. While leading the prayer, he received revelations from God instructing him to take the Ka’bah as the Qiblah. In accordance to various hadiths, Rasulullah immediately turned around to face Mecca, and those praying behind him followed suit.


Image Credit: Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

It was not easy to find the precise direction of qibla during the medieval times. Devices such as astrolabes were used to find the qibla direction and sundials, compasses and and the Sun itself was used to find the prayer times as well as sunrises and sunsets.


How to Calculate Qibla Direction with HalalTrip App (iOS and Android)

Today, technology is proven to be such a wondrous invention that has made getting accurate qibla direction not as hard as back then. HalalTrip has integrated these technologies so that Muslims can find the direction of Qiblah easily.

qibla direction

A common method of searching qibla direction in the modern world is with a mobile compass. It’ll be very easy to keep Qibla direction compass while you are traveling, especially in a non-familiar location. HalalTrip app (Apple and Android) has three types of online compass. The dynamic compass is the easiest to use. Simply have your location service and internet connection on, and the Kaaba pinpoint will show you the qibla and you’re good to go! If you are inside buildings, then to get a more accurate direction you can use the map based Qiblah direction finder.

prayer times

Once again, technology has proved made our lives much easier. With simple computer calculations, we are able to predict past, present and future prayer times.

Searching for prayer times is easy with HalalTrip’s Prayer Times and Mosques feature. It will simply find your location and it will calculate all five prayer times as well as sunrise and the time left in between two prayers. An additional feature in this app is you can input your accommodation location as a traveller. This is a handy feature to calculate the time you have in your city so if you have no choice but to pray back at the hotel you will not miss your prayers.

Did you know? When it’s time for Asr and you’re in space… yes! You still need a qibla direction for salah prayers. There is no qibla locator and definitely no way to view the Qibla direction on a map. There was a conference by the Malaysian National Space Agency specially for this. It was decided and prioritized in order regarding the qibla direction: 1) The Ka’aba, 2) the projection of Ka’aba, 3) the Earth, 4) wherever.

The history makes up what we practice today as an Ummah. It is always good to know how the people back then had to find their prayer times and qibla direction in order to offer salaat and please Allah swt . Today, we are fortunate enough to have everything at our fingertips so let’s make the most out of it!

HalalTrip website Qibla locator found here!
HalalTrip website Prayer times found here!
HalalTrip Mosque Listing found here!
How do you use a Qibla compassClick here for more information
Click here to use the Qibla direction feature and the prayer calculator feature on HalalTrip to figure out accurate prayer times and direction when traveling.

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