Some history on the existing Islamic shrine


Haram al-Sharif is a plaza built on a hill top in Jerusalem


AT THE HEART OF JERUSALEM is the Noble Sanctuary, Al-Haram al-Sharif, enclosing over 35 acres of fountains, gardens, buildings and domes. At its southernmost end is Al-Aqsa Mosque and at its centre the celebrated Dome of the Rock. The entire area is regarded as a mosque and comprises nearly one sixth of the walled city of Jerusalem.


The Noble Sanctuary is one of the three most important sites in Islam.Th

wpeF7.jpg (16227 bytes)


wpeFC.jpg (22173 bytes)

A plot of ' Haram al-Sharif ' on Mount Moriah

wpeF8.jpg (7338 bytes)


wpe101.jpg (15966 bytes)


Interior of the Dome

wpeF2.jpg (21175 bytes)

Noble Rock

The Noble Rock is the focus of the interior of the Dome of the Rock, situated directly beneath the lofty dome and surrounded by the highly ornate inner circular and outer octagaonal arcades.
Noble rock.jpg (31043 bytes) The Dome of the Rock, the first Muslim masterpiece, was built in 687 A.C. by Caliph Abd al-Malik, half a century after the death of the Prophet Muhammad .

The rock marks the site from where Prophet Muhammad   made his Miraaj or Night Journey into the heavens and back to Makkah








                              Al-Aska Mosque in 1930

The Al-Aska Mosque: The Al-Aska Mosque is the smaller of the domed Mosques on the temple mount. The local Moslems worship in this mosque and it is open for touring only after prayer times.

Built by the Caliph al-Walid (r. 705-715), of the Umayyad dynasty, El-Aksa is one of the largest and most important mosques in the Muslim world, and the earliest in Palestine.

Its construction was probably the architectural expression of the destination of Muhammad's Night Journey and of the place where his ascension to heaven occurred. The mosque was beautiful and vast twice the size of today's structure. The original mosque was destroyed in an earthquake in the middle of the eighth century and restored by the Abassids toward the end of that century. Other than a few pieces of wood bearing carvings of floral images, nothing remains of the decorations of the original mosque. Most of those in today's mosque date from medieval times.


Wailing Wall

The Jews believe this 'Haram al-Sharif' ' support wall is part of Solomon's temple


The Wailing Wall, or Western Wall, is held by most Jews to be the remnant of the Second

Temple, and thus has become an object of veneration. It forms the base of the Haram

al-Sharif, where stands the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa mosque.




This wall is also known to Muslims as al-Buraq, considered a holy place because it was here that

Muhammed tethered his winged steed on his journey to Jerusalem. Access to the wall was

through a passage in the Magrebi residential quarter, completely destroyed by Israel in 1967.


wpeF6.jpg (16931 bytes)



wpeFA.jpg (4877 bytes)

wpe106.jpg (7714 bytes)

wpeF0.jpg (20278 bytes)


Chronological History

1000 BC. King Solomon built the First Temple around 
586 BC The Temple was destroyed first by the Babylonian king, Nbouchath Nassar in
11 BC. Adomite who converted to Judaism,and built the Second Temple in
70 AD Titus, the Roman General occupied Jerusalem in and destroyed the Temple for the second time
135 AD Hadrian, the Roman, and completely removed all the ruins and traces of the Temple



wpe107.jpg (11673 bytes)

Map color legend

Early Muslim Jerusalem
Modern Jerusalem

Jews were bared from Jerusalem until the Muslim Khalif Omar lbn al Khattab entered Jerusalem in 635 AD and signed the Constitution with Patriarch Safronius who asked him to include a text that said that no Jews will live in Jerusalem, i.e. Jews were to be forbidden to live with Muslims and Christians in Jerusalem. It remained so until some Jews came from Spain and lived in Jerusalem in the sixteenth century.

According to the Jewish Encyclopaedia, under the title "Jerusalem", the Jews did not pray in front of the Buraq Wall (The Western Wall) prior to the sixteenth century, but they prayed at the Mount of Olives, i.e. the story of the Temple was not connected to the Western Wall. Jewish interest in this wall started in the twentieth century.


The Night Journey

Glory be to He
Who carried His servant by night,
from the Holy Mosque
to the Furthest Mosque,
the precincts of which
We have blessed.
so that We might show him                     some of Our signs.
Surely He is the All-Hearing,
the All-Seeing.
------------------Sura al-Isra'
------------------Qur'an 17:1

A Buraq

buraq.jpg (26301 bytes)

In the ninth year of the Prophet's mission, about 620 AD, Muhammad rose in the middle of the night to visit the Sacred Mosque in Makkah. After a time of worship he fell asleep near the Ka'aba. The angel Gabriel came to him and woke him from his slumber. He led the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, to the edge of the sacred Makkan mosque. Awaiting them was al-Buraq, a white winged beast "whose each stride stretched as far as the eye could see." Muhammad mounted al-Buraq and sped northwards with Gabriel to Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, the Furthest Mosque.

When they reached Jerusalem the Prophet dismounted and prayed near the Rock. Abraham, Moses, Jesus and other prophets, peace be upon them all, gathered together to pray behind him. Muhammad was presented a vessel of wine and a vessel of milk. The Prophet chose the milk and Gabriel said, 'You have chosen the true religion'.

The Prophet then embarked on the ascension (Miraj) in which he, peace and blessings be upon him, received the command to pray five times a day and the revelation encapsulating the beliefs of Islam:

"The Messenger believes in what was sent down to him from his Lord. And the believers; each one believes in Allah and His angels and in His books and His messengers. We make no division between any one of His messengers. And they say: We hear and we obey. Oh Lord, grant us Thy forgiveness; unto Thee we return." Qur'an II/285

Page three - The location of the Temple