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The Quran => Q&As with Joseph Islam - Information Only => : IjazAhmad August 10, 2014, 12:33:58 AM

: The Earth is Spherical - How do some face the Ka3ba?
: IjazAhmad August 10, 2014, 12:33:58 AM
Salamun Alaikum, Br. Joseph!

The earth is spherical, thus how are some people facing the ka3ba? If the earth was flat it would be possible for all to face it.

(http://wikiislam.net/wiki/uploads/thumb/f/f0/Praying_towards_the_Ka%27aba.JPG/250px-Praying_towards_the_Ka%27aba.JPG)

Top-left: Due to the sphericity of the earth, a prayer in any direction will point towards the sky/outer-space, not Mecca.

Top-right: People who are located on the opposite 'side' of the earth would have to pray vertically down towards the center of the earth, and would also blaspheme against Allah, because they defecate toward the direction of the Ka'aba when they answer the call of nature. 

Bottom-left: If we use the traditional Muslim method of determining qiblah (i.e. a great circle) this would still be blasphemous because you would be simultaneously praying with your face and backside aimed towards the Ka'aba. 

Bottom-right: There is one point on the opposite 'side' of the earth where any direction for all 360 degrees would be facing 'towards' Mecca and consequently, there would be no one direction that would be the correct one.

Wassalam!
Ijaz, A.

: Re: The Earth is Spherical - How do some face the Ka3ba?
: Joseph Islam August 11, 2014, 10:42:21 PM
Wa alaikum assalam brother Ijaz Ahmad,

In my humble view, the Quranic prescription requires a simple extrapolation. If one is asked to face a particular direction on earth, it is arguably understood as the shortest distance (understood by best endeavours) from point A to point B from a perspective of land travel. The curvature of the Earth is a given.

For example, a student in a classroom is asked to face the blackboard. Theoretically, the student can face the opposite direction and argue that they are still facing the blackboard, due to the curvature of the earth. Would this be an acceptable response from the perspective of the one parting the instruction?

The Quran simply spoke in the language of a people and parted with simple instructions / guidance. I do not believe the Quran's intention is to become unduly complicated over simple commandments.

I hope this helps, God willing
Joseph


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