There is something about athletes that inspire the best in people. Their lives have such compelling tales that capture the heart and imagination of fans and sports enthusiasts everywhere. Among the top players and fighters of all time are Muslim athletes who have served as inspiration to many. Here are five of the many great Muslim athletes out there.
Highlights: Nigerian-American professional basketball player whose career spanned roughly 18 years, touted as one of the greatest NBA players in history; received several accolades such as two-time Defensive Player of the Year, two-time NBA Finals MVP, Leading Shot-Blocker in NBA History, and more
Highlights: Pakistan’s greatest cricketer with a career that spanned 21 years. Imran Khan
Is an excellent all-around cricketer and considered to be one of the greatest of all time. He and his teammates at the Pakistan national team won the country’s first cricket World Cup in 1992. Among this accolades include the ICC Hall of Fame and three-time Player of the Year.
Highlights: One of the most recognizable names in NBA’s history. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has established his dominance on the court and was even known for his signature “sky-hook”. He retired at the age of 42 and has received numerous honors including six-time NBA Champion, six-time NBA MVP, 10-time All-NBA First Team, Five-time All-Defensive First Team. He is regarded as one of the greatest players in NBA History.
Michael Gerard “Mike” Tyson
Highlights: In 1986, the twenty-year old Mike Tyson became the youngest heavyweight boxing champion of the world. He served time in prison and later returned to boxing after his release. He went on to win the WBA and WBC heavyweight titles. He continued to struggle with issues like drug abuse in his personal life. His ability to bounce back allowed him to continue to become one of the best fighters in the world.
Highlights: Muhammad Ali is a world-renowned boxing athlete who was also an activist and philantrophist. He was a Light Heavy Weight Gold Medalist at the 1960 Olympics and a three-time World Heavyweight Champion. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005. His battle with Parkinson’s disease was widely known but he continued to be an inspiring sports figure over the years.
A Masjid or Mosque is not just a holy place for worship. It is also a great place to pray and experience the sense of community with others. There are many beautiful mosques in the world that feature impressive Islamic architecture. But there are mosques that stand out in their magnificence. Here are some of the most stunning mosques across the globe and where to find them.
Al-Masjid al-Haram (The Holy Mosque)
Location: Mecca, Saudi Arabia
Highlights: Also known as the Holy Mosque, Great Mosque of Mecca, or Grand Mosque. Al-Masjid al-Haram is said to be the first house of worship built according to the Qur’an. It is home to the Kaaba which is one of the most sacred spots in Islam. This massive and breathtakingly beautiful mosque is the gathers millions of worshipers from around the world during the Hajj.
Location: Medina, Saudi Arabia
Highlights: Al-Masjid an-Nabawi is also referred to as the Prophet’s Mosque. It is located on the site of the mosque built by the Prophet Muhammad. It is the second most sacred mosque in the world. The mosque has many remarkable features but the most significant of which is the Green Dome where the tomb of the Prophet can be found.
Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock
Location: Temple Mount, Jerusalem
Highlights: Al-Aqsa Mosque is the third holiest site in Islam after Mecca and Medina. It is comprised of more than just one masjid with the dome of Rock close by. Masjid Al Aqsa has many interesting features including a special mimbar or pulpit which was built without using any nail.
Location: Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia
Highlights: The Masjid Kristal (Crystal Mosque) is located at the Islamic Heritage Park on Wan Man Island in Malaysia. What makes it stunning apart from its beautiful architecture is the use of glass and steel in building it. This makes it unique and breathtaking in its own right. The interior illumination makes for a breathtaking sight at night and the reflections on the glass and steel façade creates a mesmerizing spectacle.
Grand Mosque of Bursa
Location: Bursa, Turkey
Highlights: Also known as the Ulu Cami is the largest mosque in the area. It is an impressive sight with its twenty domes flanked by two towering minarets. Its architecture displays Seljuk style influences. Its interior pillars and walls feature over a hundred calligraphy works.
Hassan II Mosque
Location: Casablanca, Morocco
Highlights: Hassan II Mosque is Casablanca’s top tourist attraction. It is a magnificent mosque and the largest one in Morocco. The mosque stands on a platform overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Its 210-meter high minaret is purported to be the tallest in the world and features a light beam that shines towards Mecca at night. It has many notable features one of which is the glass floor at a certain section of the building where the faithful can kneel and worship over the sea.
Shah Faisal Mosque
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan
Highlights: The Shah Faisal Mosque or Faisal Mosque is the biggest in the country. Its unique shape and design is said to be inspired by Bedouin’s tent. The striking and stunning architecture sits magnificently with the Margalla Hills serving as a scenic backdrop.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
Location: Abu Dhabi
Highlights: Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque features a stunning architecture. It can easily accommodate up to 40,000 worshippers. To call it grand may seem like an understatement. The mosque boasts of more than 1,000 columns, over 80 domes, and shining chandeliers gilded with 24 carat gold. Its façade and surroundings add to the splendor with its reflections and colors whether seen at day or night.
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Highlights: The Süleymaniye Camii (Süleymaniye Mosque) is named after Sultan Süleyman the Magnificent. It sits on top of the third hill in the city and is one of the biggest mosques in the area. It was built by Mimar Sinan – a legendary architect of the Ottoman Empire. Its stunning architecture and breathtaking interiors makes it one of the must-see places when in Istanbul.
The Blue Mosque
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Highlights: The Sultan Ahmed Mosque is more popularly known as the Blue Mosque. It has been often referred to as the latter because of the distinctive blue tiles used in building its interior walls. The mosque’s six minarets are among its striking features along with its cascading domes, blue-tiled interiors, and historical significance among many others.