Pictorial Makkah: Safar 1430/1

Insha’Allah the next few posts will include photos taken in Makkah last week, basically appearing in the sequence they were taken.

The view upon flinging the curtains from the room in the Zamzam Tower. The heart felt a pang of disappointment when I saw the crane obstructing the Ka’abah, but Shukr quickly replaced such a feeling, Alhumdulillah. Even though it is an added bonus to be looking down upon it, one does not need to ‘see’ the Ka’abah.  Far more important to have the symbolism of its presence in the heart from wherever one may be, Insha’Allah.

The second level of the Masa’a, still under construction behind the blue canvas.

The windows are so dirty! I imagine this will be a perpetual problem with all of the new projects. The reality that the Haramain are in desert environments and no matter how elaborate the architecture may be the dust will dominate.

Walking out from the hotel entrance towards Masjid al-Haram.

The ‘poor’ storage system on the left with the ‘rich’ on the right!

An artists impression of the Jabal Omar project! The 670 number on the top indicates how many more days for estimated completion, Insha’Allah. So maybe in two years it will be ready. Two of these boards have been erected along the fence of the project.

It was impossible to capture the massive size of this complex.

This section represents about a quarter of the area under construction. I saw cattle trucks transporting labourers up the mountain. This is behind the Intercontinental Hotel which has now become the hub for taxis and cars to collect passengers to Jeddah and Madinah since the demolition on the Shamia side, see next photo for where they used to call for fares.

The Intercontinental on the left, the continuation of the Jabal Omar project. One year ago when I was in Makkah for a week I was staying in a hotel just to the right. It is amazing to see the changes since then, click here.

SubhanAllah! Makkah would be unrecognizable to our Beloved Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam and his esteemed family and Sahabah RadhiAllahu anahum. Tears fill the eyes.

Workers cleaning…and yet immediately to the left, below, is the constant dust from the extension work.

Side of the Masa’a….(one year ago)

Looking back towards Jabal Omar in the distant left, on the right, the vast empty area now devoid of more than a thousand hotels in readiness for the next Haram extension, which will occupy this entire area.

All of this area from the Haram walls….

…. including  where this has been taken will be incorporated into the extension of the Masjid.

The Abraj al-Bait Towers. The central building is to be 82 storeys high, while the side ones are about 34!! We were staying on the sixth floor of the one on the right, which is the only one functioning at the moment. They are hoping to have more ready for occupation soon.

The Marwa end of the Masa’a….

….with the Palace in the background. We were informed that there are plans to demolish this existing palace complex, and destroy the little that is left of Abu Qubais so this prime area can be incorporated into the Haram. (Abu Qubais has such an important role in our history. It was the first mountain created by Allah Ta’ala, the Black Stone was protected in it when Allah Ta’ala sent the flood upon Nuh Alaihis Salaam, Darul Arqam, where the early Muslims would secretly meet with the Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam was situated on it. Also it is where the Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam stood when he split the moon. Ibrahim and Ismail alaihunaa salam collected stones from there to build the Ka’abah. Bilal RadhiAllahu anhu made Adhan from there. And it is where Hajjaj fired the catapult into the Ka’aba, which resulted in the killing of Abdullah ibn Zubair RadhiAllahu anhu.)

Insha’Allah more to follow.

All good is from Allah Ta’ala whereas mistakes are from this humble speck. May Allah Ta’ala Bless all readers, bringing you all closer to Him and His Rasul SallAllahu alaihi wasallam.  May He accept our humble efforts and grant us the capacity to be good and do good. Ameen.

8 thoughts on “Pictorial Makkah: Safar 1430/1

  1. Muslimah

    Salam aunty,
    Mubarak on the Umrah, May Allah accept it from you.

    Which side of the masjid is the work taking place? is the work being done near the Bab Al Aziz or the opposite side?

    take care

  2. almiskeenah Post author

    Wa ‘alaikumus Salam Dear Muslimah,
    JazakiLlahu khairan for your Umrah Du’a. May Allah Ta’ala accept it from all, and continue to call His slaves to His Presence to wipe away sins, Ameen.
    I am not sure ‘which’ work you are referring to as there is work on virtually all sides, so I am in the process of trying to clarify your query in the next post, Insha’Allah. Am always touched by your inquiring mind about our glorious Deen, Masha’Allah.
    Wassalamu alaikum

  3. Abdul Muneer

    Assalamu Alaikum Dear Sister

    “SubhanAllah! Makkah would be unrecognizable to our Beloved Prophet SallAllahu alaihi wasallam and his esteemed family and Sahabah RadhiAllahu anahum. Tears fill the eyes.”

    :-) Though our Rasool (S.A.) and Shabas (R.A.) lived in simple and humble ways their guests are being greeted with more and more comfort day by day. All the prosperity we see there come from the hospitality and prayers of Prophets and sahabas. Our prophet has specifically mentioned the prayers of Ibrahim Nabi (A) as a reason for the prosperity of that place.

    On the outer side it is good to see such convenience and facilities being built up for people. Along with the luxuries and comfort there is also a sad side that the lives of Sahabas are fading away from people’s hearts.

    There were so many small mosques built by so many Shabas. They were all demolished to create big Masjids over them. They could have preserved these Masjids. But apparently they were more interested in demolishing them lest people would attach importance to praying there!!! The authorities considered it ‘shirk’ if someone does so!

    Allama Iqbal (R.A.) said, “Rasm-e- Azan Reh gaya, Ruh-e-Bilali na rahi” (The words of Azan are still there, but the spirit of Bilal(R.A.) is missing.)

  4. almiskeenah Post author

    Wa ‘alaikumus Salam Dear Brother Abdul Muneer,
    ‘The words of Azan are still there, but the spirit of Bilal RadhiAllahu anhu is missing’
    So true…and I think this symbolizes the effect the transformation of the Haramain has on the heart. The more lavish and luxurious the surroundings become, the more money available to be spent as pilgrims take on the role of consumer while visiting, surely this affects the spirit in performing the religious duties. These ‘attractions’, ‘distractions’ seem to erode the Iman. I agree that convenient and clean accommodation is needed, but as many of the newer, and renovated hotels are advertising, a DAILY change of the floral feature in the reception area is not what pilgrims need, and I feel is not a justifiable way for money to be spent. This is a small example of how extravagance has crept into the facilities. Plasma TV, multiple framed prints, elaborate light fixtures etc add to the non essential list.
    I am not sure that we can call pilgrims/visitors ‘guests’. Yes, guests of Allah Ta’ala and His Habib SallAllahu alaihi wasallam, with the heart being honoured as only these Two Loves can bestow upon us. But the true notion of a ‘guest’ does not encompass having to ‘pay’ for that title, which is what pilgrims have to do, and the cost of being in the Two Holy Cities is becoming so prohibitive. Local families who may have been able to set out for Umrah a few years ago on a regular basis can no longer afford it. The options of staying in Makkah are no longer there, and even hotels in Jeddah, where people can commute to Makkah, are capitalizing on huge price hikes. Our religious rites are fast becoming for the rich only. This is a shame.
    And JazakumuLlahu for the insights you share on your blog :)

    Wassalamu alaikum

  5. Abdul Muneer

    Wa alaikumussalaam.
    I never thought that those structures that are being built around Haramain were commercial buildings! Subhanallah! I thought those were part of the initiative to accommodate the increasing number of people and would be offered as a service to the pilgrims by the ‘custodians’. After all it is their responsibility!
    It never occurred to me that those ‘developments’ were intended to milk money out of the rich pilgrims while possibly spoiling them with luxury and raising the expense bar even higher for the rest of the people in that process.
    I got some old photos of Haj from a friend and I posted it in my blog. They are very beautiful! For the very latest photos I have rightly given a link to your blog. :-)
    Please keep me in your Duas. Wassalam.

  6. almiskeenah Post author

    Assalamu alaikum Dear Brother Abdul Muneer,
    yes, all the projects in Makkah and Madinah are investments that are calculated to bring massive returns for the investor!!! If you were aware of some of the finer details about how they scrimp and save at every step of planning and development your hair would stand on end, as mine seems to have done when told of some of the dealings. And that is what makes it all the more shameful from an Islamic point of view. Not one Muslim should be denied the opportunity to fulfill their religious duties due to the prohibitive cost of fancy accommodation. May Allah Ta’ala save us all, Ameen.
    Wassalamu alaikum

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