Friday, October 21, 2005

Dome of the Rock Mosque in Jerusalem: Holy to Jews & Christians as well as Muslims

Dome of the Rock (mosque)
* built before 700 AD in Jerusalem, according to Great Architecture of the World.
* Islam's earliest monument.
* celebrates the prophet Muhammad's ascension into heaven.
* also the site where Abraham prepared to sacrifice his son, Isaac.
* built on Mount Moriah, site of the ancient Jewish temple.
* gilt dome; underneath it is the raw rock that is held holy because of these events.
* octagonal building.

Sadly, it is a site of past and potential conflict between fanatical Jews and Muslims over "ownership" of the site.

Overview of the world's Muslim Nations:

* All of SW Asia except Israel (Jewish state).
* All North Africa.
* Most of the rest of the continent of Africa (an exception: South Africa).
* Most of Central Asia, such as Pakistan and Bangladesh. India is Hindu but with a significant Muslim population.
* Some of SE Asia, including Indonesia and Singapore.

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