MULTI-PURPOSE USE OF THE MOSQUE IN ISLAM
Is-haq Olanrewaju Oloyede
Visiting Professor, National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), and Immediate Past Vice-Chancellor,
University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Nigeria.
Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs
Since the primary assignment of man on earth is to worship Allah, the whole of the earth has been declared a mosque for the Muslims (Bukhari, 7: 1). This implies that worshipping of Allah especially salat can take place anywhere except in seven places: dunghills, slaughterhouses, graveyards, middle of the road, bathhouses, watering places where the camels drink and rest, and on the roof of the house of Allah [the Ka’bah in Makkah] (Ibn Majah). Any place where one prostrates oneself could therefore be regarded a mosque or masjid. At the initial stage of Islam in Makkah, the Muslim community had no special place of worship. The prophet (S.A.W) used to perform the salat (prayer) in secret in the narrow valleys of Makkah with his first male companion ‘Ali bin Abi Talib’ and other early companions.
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