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Qur’an on Walls + Open Thread Sunday 6/14/09




While taking AlMaghrib Institute’s Uloomul Qur’an class (Sciences of the Qur’an) this past January, Shaykh Yasir Qadhi went on one of his famous tangents and began discussing the history of Muslims in China and their struggles. A brother from the audience raised his hand and mentioned how he visited a masjid in China where the Muslims were not allowed to have any written copies of the Qur’an so out of their love and need for this Book, they carved the whole Qur’an on the walls of their masjid, and it is still there to this day.

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SubhanAllah, have we ever thanked Allah for the easy access we have to His Book? We can go to our shelf and pick up one of our many copies and read the Qur’an without any problems. Without any worry of being persecuted only for saying: Laa ilaaha il Allah, Muhammad Rasool Allah. May Allah grant victory to our brothers and sisters in China, Ameen.

I was very fascinated by this masjid and I did some research (which means, using the internet =)) to learn more about it. If anyone has any more info, please do share.

This is what I gathered from my search:

It’s called the Great Mosque of Xi’an and it is one of the oldest and largest masajid in China.

This article mentioned : “At the eastern end of the mosque precincts is a broad elevated courtyard, beyond which lies a hall reserved for Muslim prayer. It is roofed with turquoise tiles and upon its walls are 600 wooden boards carved with all the verses of the Qur’an.”

This article gives a really nice description of the masjid: The Great Mosque of Xian is the largest and best preserved of the early mosques of China.

Another great article here mentions: “The prayer hall is decorated with intricate bas-relief woodwork and Quranic inscriptions. ”

Some pictures are up on Wikipedia here. “Najmudeen” from Flikr has a few close ups of the walls and of the masjid here.

Some videos:

A small tour of the masjid:

A tour in Urdu, anyone care to translate? You can see the pieces of wood throughout the video.

Imam of the masjid hafidhahullah :)

May Allah azza wa jal make the Qur’an an intercessor for those who carved on these walls out of their love for Him and His Book, Ameen.

From Amad:
On quite a different note, Pakistan is turning towards “sufis” to help fight extremism. I am sure many who do consider themselves to be sufi’sh would find this initiative greatly troubling and offensive, because of the “who” [is behind it] and “why” questions. This would be especially true for those who argue for “sufi mujahideen”.

Pakistan announced the creation of a seven-member Sufi Advisory Council (SAC) that is meant to combat the Taliban insurgency by spreading Sufi “thoughts and teachings.”

In this article, Eteraz argues that such a move is destined to fail. Actually, foolish initiatives like this, under the (dis)able leadership of Zardari don’t need much discussion to know that they are foolish. Just some window-dressing to please the RAND-godfathers in the West. Ultimately, the religious practices of everyday Pakistanis isn’t affected by these councils… in fact, whenever certain efforts are supported by the corrupt government, then that is a sign for common Pakistanis to run away from it. Instead of a Sufi Council, Pakistan needs a “Get-rid-of-all-current-politicians-and-start-afresh Council”.

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The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Amatullah is a student of the Qur'an and its language. She completed the 2007 Ta'leem program at Al-Huda Institute in Canada and studied Qur'an, Tajwid (science of recitation) and Arabic in Cairo. Through her writings, she hopes to share the practical guidance taught to us by Allah and His Messenger and how to make spirituality an active part of our lives. She has a Bachelors in Social Work and will be completing the Masters program in 2014 inshaAllah. Her experience includes working with immigrant seniors, refugee settlement and accessibility for people with disabilities.



  1. Abu Sauleh

    June 14, 2009 at 2:06 AM

    May Allaah reward you immensely for posting this. I cannot describe how moving it is to see our brothers in China. Jazaak Allaah khayr for reminding us of the things we take for granted. May Allaah preserve these brothers who’re struggling to preserve His Deen and may Allaah elevate and honor them as they’re honoring and elevating His Speech..
    My only complaint is that you didn’t make this a separate post by itself and mixed the political issues with it. Now I’m reluctant to forward this link to others.
    Again, words cannot express my emotions at seeing these images.
    Jazaak Allaah khayr for posting them.

  2. Umm Maryam

    June 14, 2009 at 7:48 AM


    Mashaallah .Excellent pictures and videos of the masjid.I saw the picture of the masjid when I was doing a project for my son -“masjids around the world”.I didn`t know that Quran was carved on the walls.It`s really amazing..
    Here is a article about India`s first masjid “Cheraman Juma Masjid” .

    Jazakumallahu khairaa.

  3. Ikram Hadi

    June 14, 2009 at 8:51 AM


    The West doesn’t understand Islam. It never will.

  4. midatlantic

    June 14, 2009 at 10:14 AM

    MashaAllah, very interesting

  5. Dawud Israel

    June 14, 2009 at 10:51 AM

    Much respect to the Chinese brothers. Those are the actions that come right from the heart.

    “…Whosoever honors that sacred things of Allah, for him it is good in the sight of his Lord…” “And whoever holds in honor the symbols of Allah, such honor comes truly from the piety of the hearts.” (al-Hajj 22: 30, 32).

    As far as Pakistan goes their are two divisions there: Islamic and alcoholic.

    What sort of Islam one follows isn’t nearly as important as sort of character and person someone has- especially in leadership. That goes for anywhere really, because in my own personal experience, if a person is truly sincere and a good role model, it is very hard or impossible to distinguish what interpretation of Islam they follow and in fact, it becomes irrelevant, because their is too much khayr. I wouldn’t be surprised however, if all of these Sufi moulanas were bought off or end up causing more trouble.

  6. mirza

    June 14, 2009 at 11:03 AM

    may Allaah make us among those who appreciate what he has given us and give contentment in what he has not given us.

    jazakumullah kheir for posting Qur’an article and reminder of how truly we need to appreciate this ni’aymah from Allaah; may Allaah make us among mukhliseen, ameen

  7. umA

    June 14, 2009 at 1:40 PM

    As far as I can tell, the Urdu narration is pretty much what was mentioned in the Wikipedia link given above. I’ve pasted it here

    “The Great Mosque of Xi’an located near the Drum Tower (Gu Lou) on 30 Huajue Lane of Xi’an, Shaanxi province, China, is one of the oldest and most renowned mosques in the country.

    It was first built in the Tang Dynasty (reign of Emperor Xuanzong, 685-762), and renovated in later periods (especially during the reign of Emperor Hongwu of the Ming Dynasty). It remains a popular tourist site of Xi’an, and is still used by Chinese Muslims (mainly the Hui people) today as a place of worship. Unlike most mosques in Middle Eastern or Arab countries, the Great Mosque of Xi’an is completely Chinese in its construction and architectural style, except for some Arabic lettering and decorations, for the mosque has neither domes nor traditional-style minarets”

  8. umA

    June 14, 2009 at 1:51 PM

    In other news:
    Thinking of changing your corporate name?

  9. Touhid

    June 14, 2009 at 2:48 PM

    Assalamu alaykum
    thought this was noteworthy:

    “From a billion dollars sought for embassies in Pakistan and Afghanistan to May’s highest casualties for US forces in Iraq since September, the wars abroad are taking their toll on our nation…”


  10. Abdullah Zahir

    June 14, 2009 at 5:49 PM

    Sr. Amatullah,

    A great educational and spiritually uplifting post on a beautiful topic and connecting us to our brothers and sisters in Islam, jazakumullahu khairan.

    For the open thread:

    In their shameless hunt for whom they have named Taliban extremists, the US-backed and US-pressured Pakistani army targets the school of reknowned Hadith scholar Mufti Muhammad Amin al-Awrakza’i, killing him and numerous students and family:

    We should all make dua for Mufti Muhammad Amin rahimahullah and his family and students.

    Of course, the jewish-owned mass media buried the story and others like it behind stories about a new shadow arm of the Taliban bombing a luxury hotel in Peshawer and two mosques.

    This hotel bombing is something Holbrooke, Obama’s Af-pak hit man since March, wasted no time acting sad about while lamenting the nearly 3 million refugees he acts like he loves more than we do.

    US officials shamelessly state that they are pleased with the Pakistan army’s willingness to use intense force, that they are pleased that the suicide bombings are ‘galvanizing public opinion against the extremists’, and that, despite everything, as one US official puts it, ‘We haven’t seen anything to indicate a strategic reorientation in Pakistan thinking at this time.’

    Amad, you have filled muslimmatters with words of support for Obama, and words of defense of him when people criticize him harshly. You often couple such efforts of defense of Obama with your repeated declaration that you will not stop blogging against those you call extremists. In these same pages, you have also repeatedly written many critical words about the disaster that is Zardari.

    Amad, the US-backed Zardari, a man you have correctly called a western puppet, a man who has accepted Obama’s 1.5 billion dollar ‘aid’ bribe, is not a bigger enemy of Muslims than his puppet master, the Muslim-killing, shameless sweet-talking Obama and Obama’s jewish bossom budies like Holbrooke.

    I don’t like Obama and know he is a liar. I don’t like him lecturing us, in our lands, quoting from our book, while he is silent about his killing us and driving 3 million people from their homes in the war he told the world he would escalate. He says in his condescending speech to the Muslim world that he seeks no new bases, but doesn’t tell us about his 700 million dollar embassy plans in Pakistan. Even if he had, many of us would not have noticed because we are still entranced and appreciative that he greeted us with ‘assalamu alaikum’.

    I don’t like Obama. Do you like him, Amad? Yes or no.

    Is it allowed to say ‘I hate Obama for killing Muslims’ on Muslimmatters?

    If not, I will say here that I don’t like him.

    If so, I say here what I have put in quotes above.

  11. AsimG is NOT a sister

    June 16, 2009 at 12:22 AM

    When did we started imitating haraambook?

    I love facebook and such, but Shaykh Yasir for some reason doesn’t :P

  12. Umm Omar

    June 16, 2009 at 12:47 PM

    As Salamu alaykum wa rahmathullah,

    I dunno if it is the proper place to post the request here, but pls post it somewhere on your web to help me reach IlmSummit 2009. I am desperately in need of finances for IlmSummit 2009 and Iam one of those late students to apply. Pls PLs consider my case and spread the news to raise funds insha Allah. Hasbunallah wani’amal wakeel. Jazakumullah Khayr.

    pls see for more details. JZK.

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