The Mosque

The Badshahi Mosque

The centre of Islamic worship is the mosque. Outside there is normally a courtyard where people often meet and discuss matters. There is a fountain or pool or a washing area where people perform wudu before they pray as a symbol of their spiritual cleanliness.

The prayer hall is bare of furniture but if often carpeted because Muslims kneel on the floor to pray. The generally decorated oening (mihrab) shows the direction of the Kaaba, towards which they must face as they pray. Near this is a raised stand (mibar) from which anyone (but usually a religious teacher) may address the worshippers, or make announcements.

Outside the mosque is one, or more, slender towers (minarets) from which a religious leader calls the people prayer at the five times laid down. The mosque also offers space for a variety of religious and social duties. Teaching and prayer can all take place there.

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