03 August, 2011

Makkah Clock Tower Is Beaming

Makkah Clock Tower
The Makkah Clock Tower, also known as the Abraj Al'Bait Towers, which had a trial run and began ticking during last year's Ramadhan, is ready. Ticking and beaming. It is now announcing the beginning of Ramadhan and emitting 16 light beams upwards; to a height of 10 kilometers. The powerful lights can be seen from a distance of 30 kilometers; and they will be blinking at each time for call for prayers, which will be helpful for those with hearing difficulties. And the loudspeakers at its top, will carry the sound of adhaan for up to a radius of 7 kilometers.

Abraj Al'Bait Towers
The complex that has the tower is south of Masjid Al Haraam and very close to it. With shopping malls, an expensive hotel and expensive apartments; and all kinds of shops within the tower and so close to the Ka'aba, I wonder how pilgrims would feel the spiritualism of Makkah. I celebrate and congratulate the completion of the Clock. But I find the very opulent hotel, the shopping mall and the luxurious apartments, rather unappealing; I find these not as humbling as what The Hajj is meant to be. Having the clock with all its technologically advanced parts and structure, is fine; but the materialism and commercialism displayed around this very holiest and spiritual of places, is out of place, going too far and maybe getting out of hand.

+ Makkah Clock Tower on Flickr