Religious Influences: Descriptions of Core Beliefs, Rites and Rituals -
Mosque Etiquette

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Mullah calling Muslims to PrayerAs stated in a previous lesson on the Five Pillars of Islam, Muslims are required to pray five times a day -- after sunrise, mid-morning, noon, afternoon, and at sunset. Originally, the prophet Muhammad commanded prayer only three times a day. Not until a hundred years after Muhammad's death did praying five times a day become mandatory. Shi'a Muslims may pray only three times a day, but will combine five prayers into three prayers. People who are travelling are only required to pray three times a day [11].

Muslims typically spend about seven to eight minutes in prayer at each interval and can pray alone or in a group. Praying can be done in any clean area but is preferably done in a mosque. Mosques play an important role in religious rituals in Pakistan. You will find at least one mosque (masjid) in every village. A village mosque serves other purposes. In addition to being a house of prayer, it is used as a school room for traditional Islamic education of young boys prior to their formal education. It may also be used for local meetings and occasionally as a guest house. Travelers often stay overnight in mosques while villagers provide them with food and drink. Foreigners may also be invited to a mosque to meet with local leaders.

Always respect mosque etiquette. Here are some rules to remember when visiting a mosque:


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