When Islam is against idol worship why do the Muslims worship, and bow down to the Ka`bah in their prayer?
Ka`bah is the qiblah i.e. the direction Muslims face during their prayers. It is important to note that though Muslims face the Ka`bah during prayers, they do not worship the Ka`bah. Muslims worship and bow to none but Allah.
It is mentioned in Surat Al-Baqarah:
We see the turning of thy face (for guidance) to the heavens: now shall We turn thee to a Qiblah that shall please thee. Turn then thy face in the direction of the Sacred Mosque: wherever ye are, turn your faces in that direction. (Al-Baqarah 2:144)
1. Islam Believes in Fostering Unity
For instance, if Muslims want to offer salah (Prayer), 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 Ka`bah. If some Muslims live towards the west of the Ka`bah they face the east. Similarly if they live towards the east of the Ka`bah they face the West.
2. Ka`bah 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 Ka`bah was at the centre. Later, western cartographers drew the map upside down with the north facing upwards and south downwards. Yet, Alhamdulillah (Praise be to God) the Ka`bah is at the centre of the world map.
3. Tawaf around Ka`bah for Indicating One God
When the Muslims go to Al-Masjid Al-Haram in Makkah, they perform Tawaf (circumambulation round the Ka`bah). This act symbolizes the belief and worship of One God, since, just as every circle has one centre, so also there is only one Allah (Exalted is He) worthy of worship.
4. Hadith of `Umar
Regarding the black stone, Al-Hajar Al-Aswad (the Black Stone), there is a hadith (tradition), attributed to the illustrious Companion of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), Umar (may Allah be pleased with him).
`Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said: ’I know that you are a stone and can neither benefit nor harm. Had I not seen the Prophet touching (and kissing) you, I would never have touched (and kissed) you’. (Al-Bukhari, Volume 2, book of Hajj, chapter 56, H. No. 675.)
5. People Stood on Ka`bah and Gave the Adhan
At the time of the Prophet, people even stood on the Ka`bah and gave the Adhan (the call to prayer).
Here one may ask those who allege that Muslims worship the Ka`bah; which idol worshipper stands on the idol he worships?
Taken with kind permission from www.irf.net.