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Medina, the Jewish City

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Sarah
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« on: May 12, 2007, 05:38:15 am »

Overview

It currently has a population of more than 1,300,000 people (2006). Madina is located at 24.28° N 39.36° E. Madina was originally known as Yathrib, but later the city's name was changed to Madīnat al-Nabī (مدينة ﺍﻟﻨﺒﻲ IPA: [męˈdiːnęt ęˈnːębiː] "city of the prophet") or Al Madīnah al Munawwarah ("the enlightened city" or "the radiant city"), while the short form Madīnah simply means "city". Madina is the second holiest city of Islam, after Mecca (Makkah).


Medina's religious significance in Islam

Medina's importance as a religious site derives from the presence there of the 'Tomb of Prophet Muhammad' inside 'Masjid-e-Nabawi' or 'The Mosque of The Prophet'. The Mosque was built on a site adjacent to Muhammad's home and as Muslims believe[citation needed] that Prophets must be buried at the very same place that they die, and accordingly, Muhammad was buried in his house. The tomb later became part of the mosque when it was expanded by the Umayyad Caliph Al-Walid I. The first mosque of Islam is also located in Medinah and is known as Masjid Quba, (the Quba Mosque).

Like Mecca, the city of Medina only permits Muslims to enter. Both cities' numerous mosques are the destination for large numbers of Muslims on their annual pilgrimage. Hundreds of thousands of Muslims come to Medina annually to visit the 'Tomb of Prophet' and to worship at mosques in a unified celebration. Muslims believe that praying once in the Mosque of the Prophet is equal to praying at least 1000 times in any other mosque.


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