The Grand Mosque Oman

 The Grand Mosque of Oman is the creation of the current ruler of Oman, Sultan Qaboos. In the early 1990's, the Sultan decided that his country should have a grand mosque to compete with those of other Muslim countries. A nationwide competition was held for its design in which hundreds of applicants submitted their designs for the building of the mosque. After the winner and a building site were chosen, construction on the mosque commenced in 1995. It took almost six and a half years for the project to be completed. However, in May of 2001, it was completed and christened by the Sultan. Constructed from Indian sandstone, the mosque cuts an imposing figure. However, it is a beloved house of worship for many Muslims.
 The main prayer hall, which is called a musalla, can house up to seven thousand worshippers at once. There is also a woman's musalla which can hold almost seven hundred and fifty worshippers. In addition to these prayer halls, there are also covered passageways, meeting halls, and a library. The library is currently filled with almost 20,000 books. All in all, the mosque can house 20,000 worshippers at any one given time. The outer courtyard of the mosque allows for the accommodation of 8,000 worshippers alone. The passageways and the inner courtyard also offer room for pilgrims to practice their religious faith.
 The craftsmanship and detail that cover the interior of the mosque is truly astounding. The interior is constructed almost entirely of marble in colors of gray and off white. Tile work, in various floral patterns, adds a sense of elegance to the many murals that are found in the hallways of the mosque. Verses from the Koran, framed in gold, adorn the walls of the two prayer halls. Two of the most prominent, and most famous, features of the Grand Mosque are its Persian carpet and its chandelier. The Persian carpet is used as a prayer carpet. It is the largest hand-woven carpet in the world. Weighing over 21 tons, it took four years to complete. Over six hundred women from various provinces in Iran were involved in its making.
The chandelier in the men's prayer hall is another point of interest to visitors. It is comprised mostly of gold plated metal work, and it also is covered in Swarovski crystals. The chandelier is over fourteen meters tall. In addition to its primary purpose as a house of worship, the Grand Mosque is also used as an epicenter of Islamic learning. It has built a reputation as a prominent institute of advanced Islamic studies, with educational facilities and housing accommodations available onsite. The primary form of Islam that is studied at the Grand Mosque is Ibadi. One of the most ancient sects of Islam, Ibadi is tolerant of many other religions and it shows respect towards women, elevating them even to the highest levels of government available. Because of this religious toleration, people of all faiths are welcome to worship at the Grand Mosque of Oman.

Mariyah is an online business woman, who writes fulltime. She loves to travel, and the country of Oman is close to her heart. You can read more about Oman at - a site set up to help connect business owners in Oman with visitors to the country.