One of the things that I really miss while living in this cold/windy/frigid/ ehm… /nice/magnificent country is hearing the adhan (the call to prayer) summoned from the mosques five times a day. Listening to the various (upto 20) muezzins (callers of the adhan) with different tones but all at the same time is truly a blessed 2-3mts experience that you will have.
Especially having lived in a country like Saudi Arabia where there is a mosque every 2-3 blocks, I and many others used (and some still are) to complain about how everything comes to a complete stand-still during prayer times. Everything from the small baqala (grocery shop) to the largest of the largest supermarket chains (UPDATE: Bigger supermarkets are open during prayer time, but the counters are closed); the smallest start-up company to the biggest banks; and err… an online newspaper as well. There are even times when the traffic is at an all-time low during prayers. More about this can be read here.
And now I can really put the pieces together and get an idea of the complete picture. Getting those time-offs just so that you can pray on time is really something everyone should cherish. An excerpt from “Susie of Arabia”:
Another thing that struck me on this drive was the sheer number of mosques we passed along the way. I know that in Jeddah, there seems to be mosques every few blocks in every direction. But out in the middle of nowhere, it felt that even in extremely remote and sparsely populated areas, mosques stood every couple of miles or so. Some were very minimalist, with a floor, walls, a roof, and of course a minaret, and just bare openings without actual doors or windows affixed. Even very small villages seemed to have numerous mosques within their boundaries. When Muslims are traveling, they can delay saying their prayers until they arrive at their destination, but with mosques conveniently located every few miles, delaying prayer times is not really necessary.
What really made me write this post was this video that I stumbled upon. A British journalist for the BBC, Kate Humble, was in Jeddah(as part of the documentary, The Frankincense Trail) with the film crew where she was taken on top of a building in Balad (downtown Jeddah) during maghrib(sunset prayer). She was so over whelmed by the dozens of adhans that she breaks into tears.
I would like to end this post with this beautiful adhan from a mosque in Malaysia:
PS: For those of you who are wondering what the title of the post is all about, I was trying to make it sound similar to the latest game “Call of Duty – Modern Warfare 2” that hit the stores a few days back.