Everyone has vivid memories of enjoying their time at the masjid in Ramadan. It might be when we were kids, helping put a date and samosas on each iftar plate and handing it to people as they walked in. It might be hanging out with our friends and breaking fast together as a student at the masjid close to campus. We can reminisce back to the powerful and emotional du'a that the imam made on khatm night and how it moved us. The masjid, particularly in America, serves as the ultimate community center. For many of us, a random night at the masjid could have been a major turning point in our lives – anything from taking shahadah, to meeting someone that would later become a close friend, to feeling an unmatched level of faith (iman) as we stood to pray.

This month we wanted to do something special and highlight our masajid. With that in mind, we've got a special photo contest with 4 prizes. Here's how it breaks down:

Simply take a photo (or a few) at your masjid and submit in the appropriate category-

  1. Inside your mosque
  2. Outside your mosque
  3. With the imam
  4. At Taraweeh prayers.

Write a short caption about what makes your masjid yours and let us know what's in the photo.

*Contest is for masjids in the United States.

Once you've submitted a photo, make sure to let your friends know so they can vote. A winner with the top 3  votes in each category will be randomly selected for the prize. Each category has a prize of $1,500 – that's $1,000 to your masjid, and $500 to you. And yes, you can enter multiple photos in multiple categories.

To get started with the contest, like the Guidance Residential page and submit your photo!

We'll be highlighting random photos throughout the contest, and in the end we hope to have a great photoblog of masjids across the US.

Contest ends August 15th. Click here and get ready to win!

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11 Responses

  1. A Fellow Sister Who is Deeply Concerned About You

    Oh no….Please!!! They’re actually trying to do something good. Don’t do the contest if you think it’s haram!

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    • Muhammad

      Sister, be concerned for every Muslim, but most of all “save your self and family” – http://goo.gl/5UR9rW.

      I love photography myself, and do take a lot of photographs of Allah’s creations from different perspectives and they’re really beautiful, not photographs of creatures though – it’s haram.

      I’m not thinking it’s haram, I’m taking it from the scholars (with evidence), who’re taking it ultimately from Allah’s messenger salallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam.

      Tell me where I’m wrong and give me evidence from the Quraan and Sunnah. I’m willing to learn, unlike some ignorant disbelievers I’ve come across, who’re so bigoted for whatever reason..

      And Allah knows best.

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      • M

        Salam,
        Ok so maybe it is haram according to some scholars. But ‘haram’ is a very strong word, you should have been more polite and should have explained why you said so in your earlier comment (rather than simply leaving a link). Maybe that’s why you got so many thumbs down.

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      • Muhammad

        Wassalaam, Jazakallahu khairan bro, I’ll heed your advice next time (hopefully there won’t be a next time) insha Allah.

        Rather than explaining in my own words, I directed those who want to seek knowledge, to the link where it’s explained in the words of Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan – the renowned scholar.

        Thumbs down or up do not really matter to me here. But the people who clicked down should really think about why they did it.

        May Allah guide us all.

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  2. Amna

    A great idea. Mashallah. But isn’t randomly selecting winners a form of (prize) draw which is haraam in Islam? Please correct me if I am wrong.

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  3. Ahmad

    Let’s pause the Fatwas for just a second. This business is actually doing an amazing job marketing themselves. Great promotion and branding identity mashAllah. May Allah (swt) empower the Muslims with success in this dunya and the next.

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  4. Tulips

    Very, very bad and wrong idea!

    I have been following Muslims Matters for a while and I am quite impressed of all the efforts and articles, MashaAllah. I don’t usually comment but this compelled me to share my thoughts, I know that some people will disagree which is fine with me as everyone is entitled to their opinions.

    1. First of all as Brother Mohammad pointed out that Islamically, we should not be encouraging to take pictures of people, especially in the blessed month of Ramadan.

    2. Ramadan is so precious that even the people who are not regular in prayers, start praying and attending mosque and we know that it’s not for worldly gains but to get closer to our Lord. All of us need more encouragement and support to concentrate better in all kinds of worship during this special month.

    But, in my view, this competition is a cause for distraction from the purpose of going to the mosque. I know that no one is forcing anyone to participate but those who want to participate would be rather concentrating on how to take the best photos? Which angle to sit or stand? Which row will give me the best view of Imam, congregation and the mosque? Also, it can be distracting to others who really would be trying to concentrate and enjoy their acts of worship.

    Now a days, we already see people getting back to their phones as soon as they finish praying. I think that at least in this blessed month, we should try to engage to Zikkar and Astaghfaar before & after the prayers and not engage ourselves in taking the best shots.

    3. I really think that photography and the use of phones in mosques should not be allowed. I have seen people taking photos, using phone calls & Skype while doing tawaaf! Imagine how blessed they are to be in that place and how easily they are letting those precious moments slipped away. Similarly, in my opinion, this competition is encouraging the distraction from the concentration in worship.

    4. Also, I don’t think that it is appropriate or a Islamically accepted practice to take other people’s photos without their permission, especially in the House of Allah. Is the photographer going to ask each and everyone of the congregation, including the Imam for their permission? Why encourage anyone to do a wrong, however minor it may be, while they have come to the mosque to get rid of their past wrongs?

    I am sorry for being too long but I felt that as a fellow muslim we should remind each other to evaluate and correct ourselves as we have been told in Sura Al-Assar (chapter:103). I sincerely hope that Muslim Matters will take this matter seriously and reconsider the requirements for this competition . I am sure that other suitable criteria can be set with plenty of other ideas and suggestions.

    May Allah S.W.T. give all of us suitable knowledge and wisdom to practice our Deen in the rightful way.

    A very happy and blessed Ramadan to all of us.

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