*Understand Islam *
*If Islam Opposes Idol Worship, Why do Muslims Pray to Kaaba?*
Kaaba is the Qibla i.e. the direction Muslims face during their prayers. It is important to note that though Muslims face the Kaaba during prayers, they do not worship the Kaaba. Muslims worship and bow to none but Allah.
It is mentioned in Surah Baqarah: “We see the turning of thy face (for guidance) to the heavens: now shall We turn thee to a Qibla that shall please thee. Turn then thy face in the direction of the Sacred Mosque: wherever ye are, turn your faces in that direction.” [Qur’an 2:144]
The Kaaba was built by the prophet Abraham and his son Ishmael in response to God’s command over 4,000 years ago. Abraham consecrated the House for the worship of the one true God and invited all of humanity to visit it for that purpose. Even today Muslims who are physically and financially able are required to make a pilgrimage to it once in a lifetime. The Kaaba has remained at the center of a continuous tradition of worship and devotion up to the present day, symbolic of permanence, constancy, and renewal.
*Islam Believes in Fostering Unity:*
For instance, if Muslims want to offer Prayer (Salaah), it is possible that some may wish to face north, while some may wish to face south. In order to unite Muslims in their worship of the One True God, Muslims, wherever they may be, are asked to face in only one direction i.e. towards the Kaaba. If some Muslims live towards the west of the Kaaba, they face the east. Similarly, if they live towards the east of the Kaaba, they face the west.
*Kaaba is at the Centre of the World Map:*
The Muslims were the first people to draw the map of the world. They drew the map with the south facing upwards and north downwards. The Kaaba was at the center. Later, western cartographers drew the map upside down with the north facing upwards and south downwards. Yet, the Kaaba is at the center of the world map.
*Tawaf (Circumambulation) Around Kaaba for Indicating One God:*
When the Muslims go to Makkah, they perform tawaf or circumambulation round the Kaaba. This act symbolizes the belief and worship of One God, since, just as every circle has one center, so also there is only one Allah worthy of worship. The Kaaba symbolizes the unity of all true religion, the brotherhood of all the prophets, and the essential consistency of their message.
*Hadith of Umar:*
Regarding the black stone, hajr-e-aswad, there is a hadith (tradition), attributed to the illustrious companion of the Prophet Muhammed (PBUH), Umar. According to Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, book of Hajj, chapter 56, H.No. 675. Umar said, “I know that you are a stone and can neither benefit nor harm. Had I not seen the Prophet (ﷺ) touching (and kissing) you, I would never have touched (and kissed) you”.
*People Stood on Kaaba and Gave the Adhaan:*
At the time of the Prophet, people even stood on the Kaaba and gave the ‘adhaan’ or the call to prayer. One may ask those who allege that Muslims worship the Kaaba; which idol worshipper stands on the idol he worships?
For those who would like to know more about Islam: