Crash Course in Islam — Prayer
>>STEVE ST. GEORGE: Hello. I'm Steve St. George. And this is your crash course in Islam. Today we look at prayer. Every day millions of Muslims turn toward Mecca and pray. They are required to do so five times a day, at daybreak, noon, afternoon, sunset and evening, although there are some Muslims who combine prayers. Prayers are said in Arabic no matter what the person's native tongue. Prayer in Islam is ritualized with some critics saying the ritual takes away from the spiritual. But Muslims don't see it that way. The five prayers together with the movements involved in them are designed to combine meditation, devotion, moral elevation and physical exercise. The prayers can be said together at mosque or alone. The prayer is begun by saying Allah akbar or God is most great. Then Muslims recite the first seven verses of chapter one of the Quran. Before a prayer can be said though. Muslims must go through a ritual cleansing. This is to ensure they are both physically and spiritually pure before going before Allah.