Written by Sulaiman Razvi
The Holy Kaba was built by Prophet Adam A.S and was rebuilt Ibrahim A.S. It is known as Baith Allah or the House of Allah. The Kaaba is a direction for prayer. However some Islamophobes especially some Hindus allege that Muslims worship the Kaaba or the Black Stone and they accuse Muslims of being idolaters. First of all they have to know what exactly is Idol worship, only then they should accuse Muslims of Idolatry. Idol worship is a veneration or worship of the Idol of any God. Islam is known for its staunch monotheistic stand. Islam prohibits Idol worship, It is mentioned in the Qur’an,
22:30 ”…so shun the abomination of idols, and shun the word that is false.”
14:35 Remember Abraham said: “O my Lord! make this city one of peace and security: and preserve me and my sons from worshipping idols.
5:90 O ye who believe! Intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination― of Satan’s handiwork: eschew such (abomination), that ye may prosper.
It is mentioned in Hadith,
Sunan Abu Dawood (Kitab Al-Aqdiyah) [24:3592] Narrated Khuraym Ibn Fatik: The Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) offered the morning prayer. When he finished it, he stood up and said three times: False witness has been made equivalent to attributing a partner to Allah. He then recited: “So avoid the abomination of idols and avoid speaking falsehood as people pure of faith to Allah, not associating anything with Him.
Muslims do not believe the Kaaba or Black Stone to be God. Kaaba is a direction,
”…when a person making supplication (du’a) faces the sky–just as those performing the prayer (Salat) face the Ka’bah, since the sky is the qiblah of those who supplicate, as the Ka’bah is the qiblah of those who perform the prayer…”-(Sahih Muslim bi Sharh al-Nawawi. 18 vols. Cairo 1349/1930. Reprint (18 vols. in 9). Beirut: Dar al-Fikr, 1401/1981, 5.24)
‘‘Allah’s direction of prayer is the Ka’bah. (And if thou shouldst follow their desires) their religion and direction of prayer (after the knowledge which hath come unto thee) that the Religion of Allah is Islam and His direction of prayer is the Ka’bah”– Tanwir al Miqbas min Tafsir ibn Abbas 2:120
People used to stand on the Kaaba and give Azaan. Kaaba has been rebuilt several times, it was brought down by the Sahabas. Can any Hindu even think of destroying idol of their god? Ibn Az Zubayr brought Kaaba down to rebuild it and later it was again brought down and rebuilt by Ibn Hajjaj,
”he (Ibn Az Zubayr) decided to bring the Ka`bah down. The people hesitated to bring it down, fearing that the first person to climb on the House would be struck down. A man went on top of the House and threw some stones down, and when the people saw that no harm touched him, they started doing the same. They brought the House down to ground level…`Abdul-Malik wrote back, `We do not agree with Ibn Az-Zubayr’s actions. As, for the Ka`bah’s height, leave it as it is. As for what he added from the Hijr, bring it down, and build the House as it was before and close the door.’ Therefore, Al-Hajjaj brought down the House and rebuilt it as it was.”- Tafsir Ibn Kathir [Source]
Idolaters won’t stand on their idols nor they will destroy their Idols. How can such claims be made that Muslims worship the Kaaba or Black Stone when Quran and Hadiths clearly prohibit any form of Idol worship? Hazrat Umar R.A said,
”…No doubt, I know that you are a stone and can neither benefit anyone nor harm anyone. Had I not seen Allah’s Apostle kissing you I would not have kissed you.” Sahih Bukhari, Kitab al Hajj 26, Hadith no 667.
Muslims do not believe the Kaaba to be God. Muslims do not worship the Kaaba. When some Hindus are told these facts they say,
”They too, whom you call Idol worshippers, do not regard the image as God. They profess to worship God behind the Idol/image”
How true it is, let’s analyse. Hindu scriptures clearly states that ‘You should establish an Idol of God and worship it for the Idol is God himself’. Whatever we or the Islamophobes says carries no weight unless it is backed by some evidence, let’s have a look at what Hindu scripture have to say about it because if they are accusing us of Idolatry then our way of worship must be similar with idol worshippers.
Garuda Purana 12.17 Then the son should place upon the bed a golden image, and having worshiped it…
Devi Bhagavatam 3.24.19 O sinless one! Establish my image in this city and worship it
three times, morning, mid-day and evening carefully and with devotion
Devi Bhagavatam 3.13.49 These Saktis, capable of bestowing all the desires, will be worshipped in Pratimas(images of clay, etc.) in the whole of India.
Vishnudharmottara Purana, Kanda 3, Adhyay 93, 2 in the former three ages, Krta, Treta, and Dvapara men were able to see a god directly but in the Kali age ment have lost that faculty; therefore they have to worship them (the gods) in an image.
Devi Bhagavatam 11.23.21-33 … one is to worship one’s own Deity in front
of fire or the image of any god…
This shows that the Idol must be in front of the worshipper.
BhrGhSuPari Grihasutra 2.14.2 Having prepared the image of the god and worshipping it with the unbroken rice and flowers as available…
”It (clay) should be washed well and pasted with scented poweder and milk. The idol should be made with the hands on a raises platform. All the limbs, joints, etc. should be perfectly shaped with the respective weapons of the deity concerned. It should be seated on Padmasana (lotus pose) and worshipped respectfully”.-Shiva Purana 22.214.171.124-7, Tr. J.L. Shastri
”O my child, one should worship the beautiful and universally auspicious idol (of Devi) which is the destroyer of great demons placing it on a car (chatior)”.-Devi Purana 30.6cd-7ab, Tr. R.S. Bhattacharya
Harivamsa Purana, Vishnu Parva 2.74.52 Those who make my idol with stones taken from you and worship [it] daily with devotion shall eventually attain my path.
These verses clearly commands Hindus to worship the Idol of their god, but Quran nor any Hadith tells us to worship the Kaaba. Hindu texts and Scholars say that Idol is God himself. Pratima means Idol, image, picture of god but Swami Prabhupada the founder of ISKON translates Pratima as Deity Form or Deity because he considers the Idol to be another form or incarnation of God. This fact is enough to prove that Muslims do not worship the Kaaba as Quran, Hadiths nor Muslims says Kaaba is Allah (S.W.T). Let me quote few verses from Hindu scriptures and passages written by Hindu scholars on this issue,
”…think of the name as Brahman, and meditate upon it, just as people worship the idol, thinking it to be Vishnu Himself.- Chandogya Upanishad Commentary by Shankarcharya on 12.1.4 ,The Upanishads and Sri Sankara’s Commentary, Volumes 4-5, p.200.
It is mentioned in Srimad Bhagvatam (Bhagavad Purana),
dravyaiḥ prasiddhair mad-yāgaḥ pratimādiṣv amāyinaḥ bhaktasya ca yathā-labdhair hṛdi bhāvena caiva hi
Bhagavat Purana (Srimad Bhagvatam) 11.27.15 One should worship Me in My Deity forms [Pratima/Idol] by offering the most excellent paraphernalia. But a devotee completely freed from material desire may worship Me with whatever he is able to obtain…
śailī dāru-mayī lauhī lepyā lekhyā ca saikatī mano-mayī maṇi-mayī pratimāṣṭa-vidhā smṛtā
Bhagavat Purana (Srimad Bhagavatam) 11.27.12 The Deity form[Idol] of the Lord is said to appear in eight varieties — stone, wood, metal, earth, paint, sand, the mind or jewels.
Swami Prabhupada states: Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī explains that certain Deity forms, such as those made of sand, are manifested for a brief time to fulfill a personal desire of the worshiper. Those, however, who desire to attain pure love of God should worship the permanent form of the Deity (made, for instance, of marble, gold or brass), and they should maintain continual worship. In Kṛṣṇa consciousness there is no scope for neglecting the worship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Bhagwat Purana (Srimad Bhagavatam) 11.27.48 Whenever one develops faith in Me in My form [Idol] as the Deity or in other bona fide manifestations one should worship Me in that form. I certainly exist both within all created beings and also separately in My original form, since I am the Supreme Soul of all.
Swami Prabhupada states: The Supreme Personality of Godhead is worshiped according to the faith of a particular worshiper. The Deity form, arcā, is specifically mentioned here because Deity worship is essential for spiritual progress. Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura mentions that inexperienced persons may think that the Deity [Idol] is meant for the sense gratification of the worshiper, since superficially the Deity [Idol] is made of external substances such as marble or brass. But through the process of installing the Deity by chanting of authorized mantras, one invites the Supreme Personality of Godhead to enter the Deity form [Idol]. By regulated, faithful worship one gradually understands that the Deity [Idol] is completely nondifferent from the Supreme Lord Himself…
”But, greater is the difficulty of those whose minds cling to the Unmanifested; for the goal of the Unmanifested is hard for the embodied being to reach.” Gita 12:5
Swami Prabhupada writes on this verse ”Therefore, the bhakti-yogi accepts the Deity of Krishna as worshipable because there is some bodily conception fixed in the mind, which can thus be applied. Of course, worship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His form within the temple is not idol worship. There is evidence in the Vedic literature that worship may be saguna and nirguna—of the Supreme possessing or not possessing attributes. Worship of the Deity in the temple is saguna worship, for the Lord is represented by material qualities. But the form of the Lord, though represented by material qualities such as stone, wood or oil paint, is not actually material. That is the absolute nature of the Supreme Lord…God has an authorized representation in the Deity form [Idol], which is called arca-vigraha. This arca-vigraha is an incarnation of the Supreme Lord”.
Swami Prabhupada on Bhagwad Purana (Srimad Bhagavatam) 4.30.27:
The form of the Lord as worshiped in the temples is called arca-vigraha or arcavatara, the worshipable form [Idol Worship],
the Deity incarnation. This facility is offered to neophyte devotees so that they can see the real form of the Lord face to face and offer their respectful obeisances and sacrifices in the form of arca. Through such facilities the neophytes gradually invoke their original Krsna consciousness. Deity worship in the form of temple worship is the most valuable benediction given by the Lord to beginners. All neophytes must therefore engage in the worship of the Lord by keeping the arca-vigraha (arcavatara)[Idol] at home or in the temple.
Another Hindu scholar named Swami Sivananda writes,
”Though the image is worshipped, the devotee feels the presence of the Lord in it and pours out his devotion unto it.…When you worship an image, you do not say: “This image has come from Jaipur. It was brought by Prabhu Singh. Its weight is 50 lbs. It is made of white marble. It has cost me Rs. 500/-.” You superimpose all the attributes of the Lord on the image and pray: “OAntaryamin (Inner Ruler)! You are all-pervading. You are omnipotent, omniscient, all-merciful. You are the source for everything. You are self-existent. You are Sat-Chit-Ananda. You are eternal, unchanging. You are the Life of my life, Soul of my soul! Give me light and knowledge! Let me dwell in Thee for ever.” When your devotion and meditation become intense and deep, you do not see the stone image. You behold the Lord only who is Chaitanya. Image-worship is very necessary for beginners…For a beginner, Pratima is an absolute necessity. By worshipping an idol, Isvara is pleased…Even so, the Lord is highly pleased when a small portion of His Virat (cosmic) body is worshipped. An idol is a part of the body of the Lord. The whole world is His body, Virat form. The devotion goes to the Lord. The worshipper superimposes on the image the Lord and all His attributes. He does Shodasopachara for the idol, the sixteen kinds of paying respects or service to the Lord…The idol speaks. It will answer your questions and solve your problems. The God in you has the power to awaken the latent Divinity in the idol…The awakened Divinity in the idol
acts as a guardian angel blessing all, conferring the highest good on those who bow to it…
The image in the temple at Tirupati assumed human form and gave witness in the court to help His devotees.- All About Hinduism, By Sri Swami Sivananda, p.70-4
”To the worshipper who believes the symbol, any kind of image is the body of the Lord under the form of stone, clay, brass, picture, Saligrama, etc. Such worship can never be idolatry. All matter is a manifestation of God. God is present in everything which exists. Everything is an object of worship, for all is a manifestation of God who is therein worshipped.” – All About Hinduism, By Swami Sivananda, p.72
Muslims do not believe the Kaaba to be Allah nor do we adore the Kaaba as the Hindus does to their Idols thinking it to be god himself,
Bhagavat Purana (Srimad Bhagvatam) 11:30:7 There we should bathe for purification, fast, and fix our minds in meditation. We should then worship the demigods by bathing their images, anointing them with sandalwood pulp, and presenting them various offerings
So it is evident from all these verses that the Idolaters indeed think their Idols to be God. Another bogus claim made by some Hindus is that Kaaba was actually a Hindu temple and the Black Stone is actually Shiva Lingam. There is nothing to refute as there is no evidence which proves their point. There is absolutely no evidence at all. This hoax was started by a self-proclaimed historian (popularly known as Mythistorian by experts) who believed that all religious monuments and religions are corrupted form of Hinduism and that Christianity is altered version of Kishna Neti and Islam is the altered version of the Sanskrit word Ishalayam. He gave fake reference from an imaginary book created by him. Surprisingly Hindus believes this book exis and even quote, well, Islam is such a beautiful religion that anyone would like to link their religion with it. The Mythistorian’s work is full of mistakes and does not contain a single fact. He was ignorant of history. He made such poor remarks on other religions, for example he claimed that the Muslim’s Namaz is originally a Sanskrit word called Namah. I wonder whether he did some research or just wrote his frustrations. The Arabic word for prayer is Salah. Namaz is an Urdu word originated from Farsi, the word Namaz is used by Muslims of Indian subcontinent for prayer. He and his claims have been refuted by Imran Khan in his Blog Kaba Is Not a Hindu Temple. Readers can go through the blog and see the idiotic claims made by Hindu nationalist. Shri Shri Ravi Shankar had also made such claims but later in a debate with Dr. Zakir Naik he honestly acknowledged that his claims are incorrect. There is no evidence at all that could suggest the Kaaba was a Hindu temple. There is also no preserved history which could suggest that Hindus lived in Makka or went there. Even a Muslim can make such claims. For example,
”Hindu God Ram was a normal Muslim, his name is altered version of the Arabic word Akram. His brother Luxman was also a Muslim his original name was Luqman, and his close disciple was Humam Bajar Ali which was changed to Hanuman Bajrang Bali. The Hindu God Krishna was also a Muslim his real name was Karim Shah. Shiva was also a Muslim his original name was Shuaa”.
So does it make them Muslims?
Another bogus claim made by Hindus is that the Black Stone is Shiva Lingam. How can this be so when both these have different meanings and their own origin. The meaning and origin of Shiva Lingam is discussed briefly in the article An Analysis of Lingam. As far as Black Stone is concerned. The Arabic word is Hajre Aswad. Hajr means stone, Aswad means black. While Lingam means make erected organ and Yoni denotes female genital organ. According to the tradition, the Hajre Aswad (Black Stone) was white and was sent from heaven,
Sunan Al Tirmizi Sayyidina Book of Hajj 9, Hadith 878 ”Ibn Abbas narrated that Allah’s Messenger (SAW) said, “The Black Stone was sent down from Paradise and it was more white than milk, but the sins of the children of Adam turned it black.”
Hindus try to link Yoni (Literally female genital which is the base of Shivling) with the silver frame of Hajre Aswad. They are not aware of the fact that the silver frame was not present during the time of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H). When the Black Stone was broken into pieces during a war, Its fragments were cemented into a silver frame by Abd Allah Ibn Zubayr. The Black Stone is from Heaven (Tirmizi 878) whereas Yoni (Female genital or Shivling’s base) worship was initiated after the curse. There are two stories concerning its origin. First one is when the Sage Bhrigu was dishonoured by Shiva as Shiva was busy with his wife Parvati so Bhrigu cursed him to be worshipped in Linga and Yoni form which he desired the most, another story is that Shiva was cursed by the sages to be worshipped in Penis form for seducing their wives, Shiva’s male organ fell down to earth and burned everything, Shiva told Brahma and Vishnu that it will become calm only when Parvati takes hold of it in Yoni (female genital) form. For more information, read the article Analysis of Lingam. So how can some people claim Black Stone is Hindu Idol when both these have their own origin and definition? Some Hindu brothers are easily deceived by Islamophobes. One should not blindly follow what the person is saying. It is incorrect to liken Shivling with Black Stone because ShivLingam is risen out from the Vulva shaped base known as Yoni whereas Black Stone is not and Shiva Lingam is not cemented into the walls of temple like the Black Stone. There is no evidence of Lingam worship in Arabia nor there is a mention of such Idol. I request the readers to read the Blog Kaba is Not a Hindu Temple as I don’t want to add any repetitive refutations.
Conclusion:- It is inappropriate to say that Muslims worship the Kaba or Black stone since Idol worship means worshipping the Idol thinking it to be God himself. Kaba is only a direction for worship. Quran nor the Hadith tell us to worship the Kaaba, Islam strictly prohibits idol worship.