Rich mosque, poor mosque.

When I was little, I love to gaze at buildings - finished or otherwise. Abah oftentimes would bring me to nearby construction sites to see the trucks, bulldozers and excavators do their own thing. I was obsessed with these sort of things that my parents thought that I would be an architect growing up.

Live oftentimes take a different course of course, but even till now, I just love looking at buildings just to see their architecture, design and frame work.

Now a mosque is one structure that has so much variety in design that I can't help but take pictures of it every now and then. But that begs the question, how are these buildings managed? How come some mosques be crowded whilst others deserted? Many more questions come to mind but one thing is for sure - people simply do not know what the place really is.

Rich Mosque, poor mosque - 19

This was taken inside the Steel Mosque in Putrajaya. I have to say that this is one of the most beautiful mosque in the world.

Another one which amazed me was Shah Alam's mosque. I was surprised at how big this place really is. Infact calling it big is an understatement. The place is massive. It can hold up to 24,000 people at a time in its enormous prayer hall.


These impressive mosques are symbols, not to boast - but to illustrate and establish that Islam is in fact the country's main religion.

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But the mosque is a very enigmatic place when you think about it. In Malaysia atleast. Outside from being a place of worship, what else is there to do? Is there any reason to go there at all? 

For such a serene and calmful place it is quite an intimidating place to enter, which is oxymoronic.

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In a way it is also ironic because we have such romantic expectations for the place as well. 

Tingkat 21

There are too many variables and scenarios that we have to factor to.

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The mosque near my place in Johor Bharu for example, can be considered one that is well managed enough that it can support itself. Income wise they are stable enough to start their own businesses which includes a grocery shop, locker services, their own dialysis centre among others.

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From my limited observation there are more than 300 people performing Subuh prayer there everyday. Of course it doesn't cover even 1/20th of the mosque's capaciy but you know what, that is still an impressive number of people.

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But sadly not many mosques are brilliantly managed like that. And some even with a brilliant management team, cannot do well enough simple because they lack the resources needed.

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Take this mosque for example. I stopped by here when I was on my way to Besut. It was Friday.

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Transparencies like this is very refreshing to see because every donator has the right to know where their money are being spent on. I'm hoping more mosques would follow suit with this.

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Inside the mosque. Filled with locals, and several dozens foreign workers. The mosque looks very nice, very clean, well managed and you know as soon as you entered it that the place is a hub for the villagers.

kolah Air1

After the prayer I went to the toilet and sadly, out of I think 6 toilets there, only 1 was usable. The toilet was clean,  but there were broken pipes, disfigured doors etc that need to be repaired.

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Another glance at the notice board and you know that it is not because the mosque's management doesn't want to repair it - they simply don't have the money for it. Look at the picture and you can see on average, they collect about RM1000 a month. 

Take into consideration that they need to pay the bills and other various things, and there must not be much money left to spent. 

Masjid Penarik 1

The mosque near my place as a comparison, can get donations up to RM4000 per week. Add that with their business branches and they can get more than RM20,000  a month. 

You can see for yourself just how active the mosque is. The surplus in money can be used to call guest speakers regularly to attract the locals. As much as we hate to admit it, money does play a huge role.

High Building London.

Eleven thousand kilometres away from Terengganu and the weather was chilly. The city is surrounded by huge and modern buildings.

High Building London 2.

London is a city with the highest amount of millionaire per population. It is followed by Tokyo and Singapore.

Autumn London

This huge opportunity attracts people all over the world from all walks of life. And in circumstances like these, the mosque is the natural hub that Muslims should look for if they were to settle down here.

The Walkway.1

The park was filled with people from all walks of life. Some are having a picnic, some are reading newspapers, many are jogging.

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Near the park is a mosque, the largest one in London in fact. It can hold up to 5000 people at a time.

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The name of the place is Regent Mosque. Construction cost of this mosque is 6.5 million pound. Amazing isn't it?

London Mosque

It is not only used for prayers, but there's also a library, conference halls, amongst others to accommodate local Muslims. Surely the mosque has a solid financil security to realise all these. 

The mosque was not yet opened when I got here, so unfortunately I missed the opportunity to go inside.

Shop near London Mosque 2

You can expect to see various Muslim related shops nearby as well. 

Shop near London Mosque 1

I bought 2 whole chicken and 2 kilos of rice here if memory serves me correctly.

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But of course like the scenario before, there are also small and humble mosques to be considered. Like this one at Gants Hill for example. Do note that they call it a masjid, not a mosque.

Masjid Gants Hill 2

The place is very small, but it was filled with people every single time I was here. Not just middle aged men, but the younger ones as well.

There's one thing that my father said that stuck out to me. To paraphrase it, he said no matter how we view the arabs, one good thing about them is they know how to develop and flourish the muslim community. They do not sit still and be silent about it. This is something that I think we should take note of.

Masjid Gants Hill 1

You can see here that there are classes arranged everyday - from fiqh to arabic courses to reading the Quran and Hadiths.

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Honestly I think we should try to somehow and someway contribute to our local mosques. And try to develop a sense of dedication to it. After all how can we love something that we don't even know?

Inspirations, passions & motivations.
1. It is nice to have all my roommates back. I think everyone in the house realises that this will be our last year together so there's an increasing amount of activity that we do together. I love it.
2. I had been wanting to write this topic since last year. The inspiration came when I had a talk with my father when I asked him "where does the money from the surau goes to?" He explained that it was used to pay the muezzin, the bills, the invited speakers, etc - something that should be obvious but did not occur to me before. And that made me realise how every mosque are managed and being attended by different types of people so I think that it is an interesting topic to write about.
3. Aren't We All Running by 65daysofstatic is an instrumental that everyone should hear.
4. Have a listen to Guide Me All The Way. Maher Zain's best song in my opinion.
5. I'll start my London travelogue next. There will be many and I mean many pictures in the upcoming entries.