History of Masjid Al-Haram

Masjid al-Haram is the Grand Mosque of Mecca, which stands as a symbol of Islam and draws significant numbers of pilgrims worldwide. This Mosque is located in the heart of Mecca.

This sacred site holds an immense amount of historical significance, growing its roots back to the establishment of Islam. Also, it’s where pilgrims from all over the world come to conduct the pilgrimage of Hajj and Umrah via several travel packages like Hajj and Umrah packages. You should know that the Grand Mosque of Mecca is the largest in the world and the Islamic culture.

Let’s see now the thorough history of Masjid al-Haram:

Pre-Islamic Origins of Masjid al-Haram:

The history of the Grand Mosque comes before the arrival of Islam. In the past, Mecca was well-known as a trading destination and a central point for performing religious rituals. According to Islamic history, the Holy Kaaba, the sacred structure located within the vicinity of the Mosque, was built by the Prophet Ibrahim (A.S) and His son Ismail (A.S) as a house to worship one Allah (SWT). So, this location was considered sacred and the early part of Masjid al-Haram.

The Grand Mosque during the Era of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH):

With the emergence of Islam in the early 7th century, Masjid al-Haram emerged as the main point of the faith. During His lifetime, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) performed the migration from the city of Mecca to Medina, but Masjid al-Haram kept its importance as a sacred place in Islamic history. In 630 CE, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) cleansed the Holy Kaaba from idols and re-established the place to worship Allah (SWT). While no changes happened during the era of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), Muslims used this space for prayers and other Islamic acts.

Development of Masjid al-Haram throughout its history

Now, in this section, we will discuss the history of the Grand Mosque in depth. The points mentioned above were the origin and basics of the Grand Mosque.

In the time of Quraysh:

Muslims should know that Masjid al-Haram was a boundary of Kaaba in the early times as there were no proper boundaries of the Grand Mosque. During Quraysh, likely in 604/605 CE, significant changes happened in the Holy Kaaba. The Quraysh’s primary focus was on the Holy Kaaba’s structure.

Expansions by Caliph Umar (R.A) and Uthman (R.A):

Caliph Umar (R.A) and Uthman (R.A) also changed Masjid al-Haram. Islamic traditions generally hold that Caliph Umar (R.A) was the first to make changes in Masjid al-Haram and expand the area for the first time. He demolished the houses of Holy Kaaba. After that, Prophet Uthman (R.A) purchased more neighbouring houses and expanded the Grand Mosque area. Furthermore, He expanded the footprint of the Mosque prayer area.

Modern developments in Masjid al-Haram:

In recent eras (20th and 21st century), Masjid al-Haram has been through many renovations and improvements to resource the growing number of pilgrims. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the kings of KSA made many changes in Masjid al-Haram.

During the region of Kind Saud in 1955, four prominent minarets were added, and flooring was improved. His work completion ended in 1973. He also increased the total area of the Mosque to 152,000 square metres.

King Fahd, from 1982 to 1988, made the second Saudi expansion. He also increases the area to accommodate more pilgrims in Masjid al-Haram.

Lastly, King Abdullah initiated the 2011 Haram boundary. His main motive was to increase the indoor and outdoor praying space. He also enlarged the Mataaf area.

In conclusion, with its rich history and enduring significance, Masjid al-Haram remains a symbol of faith and unity for Muslims worldwide. Despite challenges and renovations, it is a testament to Islamic heritage and architectural prowess. Its importance in pilgrimage and spiritual devotion underscores its timeless significance in the hearts of believers.

Courtesy by: https://www.labbaikhajjumrah.co.uk