Visiting Turkey, I have come across many majestic mosques with minarets so slender that they seem to want to touch the sky. But what impressed me was the sincere prayers of the Muslims. They pray five times a day, with great zeal.
In my hometown most of the congregation consists of old women, while in the mosques there are many young men that pray zealously.
Seeing them praying with such ardor, I wanted to pray with them. So I entered a mosque and asked a man to teach me how to pray. He said, “Our prayers are in Arabic, even though Arabic is not our mother tongue. All Muslims must pray in Arabic, for the Koran can’t be spoken in a language different from the original.”
“How can I pray?” I asked.
He answered, “Start your prayer by saying Allah Akbar (God is most great). However, if the imam is present, follow him. He will guide you.”
Then he gave me a few booklets about Islam. I accepted his gift gladly. I will read them when I come back to my hometown.
Ettore Grillo, author of these books:
– A Hidden Sicilian History
– The Vibrations of Words
– Travels of the Mind