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Guest Impressions

The Importance of Masjid al Aqsa to Muslims

The Importance of Masjid al Aqsa to Muslims

From: Idris Bakri This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In The Name of Allah, the Most Beneficient, the Most Merciful

Glorified be He Who took His servant (Muhammad) for a journey by night

from Al-Masjid Al Haram (at Mecca) to the Al-Aqsa Mosque (in

Jerusalem), the neighborhood whereof We have blessed, in order that We

might show him some of Our signs. Verily, He is the All-Hearer, the

All-Seer. The Qur'an 17:1.

With these eternal verses, Allah (God), stated in the heart of

the Muslim scripture, the Qur'an, the never diminishing significance

of Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem to Islam and Muslims. Al-Aqsa, right in

the heart of the Muslim world, is to where our prophet Muhammad (peace

and blessings be unto him) journeyed at night in a miraculous manner

from the city of Mecca, where his call to Islam (submission to God)

was still in its earliest stages. At Al-Aqsa Mosque, he led all of the

prophets of Allah that came before him in prayer and then ascended to

heaven to receive Allah's command to the Muslims to pray five times a


Eversince, Al-Aqsa Mosque and the city of Jerusalem have been very

special to Muslims all over the world. They pray for it and long to

pray in it. And today, with Al-Aqsa being under the Israeli occupation

for thirty years, all Muslims pray for its liberation and for the

freedom of their Palestinian brothers, who have become the soldiers at

the front line of the battle to redeem Al-Aqsa.

Occupation, burning, successive agression, closure and martyr after

martyr have become Al-Aqsa'a story in the last thirty years. Al-Aqsa

is really a deep wound right in the heart of the Muslim world. In

today's unfair reality and materialistic world, Al-Aqsa has become a

symbol of the undesired existence of the trouble-making Palestinians,

Arabs and Muslims (so they say!).

No wonder then, that when the dream of a historical parasite of

opening a tunnel to undermine the foundation of Al-Aqsa Mosque finds

its way to reality, Palestinians of all ages and all beliefs spring to

the rescue. They are Muslim Palestinians defending their very basic

right of existence. Some are Christian Palestinians, also, fighting

for the Muslim shrine. Al-Aqsa is more than a building with historical

and religious significance, it is an idea, a creed even, that we all

have to stand up for what is right and true.

Muslims love Al-Aqsa, pray for it, fight for it and die for it

because, as they see it, they are fighting for the promise of a new

and higher reality. A reality of peace, justice and mutual

respect. This promised reality is not an imaginary one. It did exist

when the Muslims liberated Al-Aqsa from the European Crusaders,

allowing them to evacuate Jerusalem peacefully with their belongings

and families. This was the Muslims' response to the brutality of the

Crusaders when they massacred the Arab inhabitants of Jerusalem,

Muslims and Christians alike.

It is in this spirit of a higher reality, that we can understand why

Palestinian soldiers were carrying a wounded Israeli soldier, and were

trying to get him to the closest medical team. This was their response

to the brutality of the Israeli military machine, which did not

hesitate to deploy helicopters against unarmed civilians, trying to

kill them and to kill their dream, of freeing Al-Aqsa Mosque.

We will continue to believe in Islam's message and its symbol,

Al-Aqsa. We can see our promised reality of peace and justice to all,

in the eyes of the innocent Palestinian children, as they die for

Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Idris El Bakri

Jerusalem, Palestine

Muslim Student Association

Brigham Young University

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