The Masjid: Status and Etiquette of the House of Allah

By Dr. Marwan Ibrahim Al-Kaysi

The masjid is where Muslims should pray five times every day, where they seek refuge from the troubles of this world, from its everlasting daily demands, its complications and its vanities.


1- A mosque should be built in every residential district.

2- The design of the masjid should be characterized by simplicity, as must be its furnishings.

3- The masjid should be devoid of any lavish kind of ornamentation, representation of anything, pictures or images.

4- Extravagance in spending large sums of money to build luxurious mosques should be avoided.

5- Members of the Muslim society should neither vie with one another about the virtues or beauties of any particular mosque nor compete in building ostentatious mosques.

6- Attaching pieces of gold or silver to any part of the masjid or its furnishings is forbidden.

7- The carpets and walls of the mosque should be devoid of a multiplicity of colors for that distracts the concentration of the worshippers.

8- Writing on the walls of the mosque, inside or outside, including Qur’anic verses or God’s attributes, should be avoided. The names of the Prophet and the first four
rightly-guided caliphs likewise should not be written.

9- The minbar should not be placed in the middle of the mosque. Its height should not exceed three steps.

10- Every mosque should have two entrances, one for men and one for women.

11- Lavatories should be sited as far from the masjid as practicable, and from the fountains or basins for ritual ablution.

12- Raising flags inside the masjid is an innovation.

Cleanliness and Tidiness

The masjid deserves to be the cleanest place on earth. Therefore:

1- Muslims must be sure before entering the masjid that their body and clothes are clean and do not smell bad.

2- Filth must be removed from shoes and the shoes removed before entering the masjid.

3- Although it is not forbidden to eat anything in the masjid, it is not a place for taking meals and drinks.

4 Whoever brings in or causes dirt in the masjid has a duty to clean it up and remove it. It is not the duty solely of the mosque caretaker to keep the mosque clean and tidy; it is also the responsibility of every Muslim entering the masjid and seeing any uncleanliness, to remove this from the mosque.

5- The masjid should be sprayed or sprinkled with perfume to give a pleasant odour.
The article is excerpted from the author’s book Morals and Manners in Islam (A Guide to Islamic Adab) published by The Islamic Foundation- 1986.

Dr. Marwan Al-Kaysi is Lecturer of Islamic Culture at Yarmouk University, Irbid, Jordan.

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