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Kaaba

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The Oxford Dictionary of Islam What is This? Covers the religious, political, and social spheres of global Islam in the modern world

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    Kaaba

    Cube-shaped “House of God” located in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Focal point of the hajj pilgrimage and a world spiritual center that all Muslims face during prayer. Muslims believe that it was built by Abraham ( Ibrahim ) and Ishmael ( Ismail ); some believe Adam built it and Abraham and Ishmael only rebuilt it. Often called the earthly counterpart to God's throne in heaven. Circumambulated seven times during the hajj ritual in imitation of angels circumambulating God's throne. Contains the Black Stone, which pilgrims often try to touch or kiss during circumambulations, believing that it physically absorbs sin; all pilgrims salute the stone as a gesture of their renewed covenant with God. Covered with a cloth called kiswah, which is embroidered with verses from the Quran.

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