Here in Europe, we take our umbrellas and hope the rain passes quickly….
In Dhofar, in the south of Oman, while the temperature in the Gulf countries hits 45 degrees and more, in Salalah, the second capital of the Sultanate, its 27 degrees. From mid June till mid September, the south west monsoon also called Khareef provides water for agriculture in the dry weather months coming up afterwards…Khareef turns the mountains in green paradises where exotic flowers comes alive…South west monsoon brings people together from the Gulf countries, India, Europe…and as tradition requires the yearly Salalah Tourism Festival is already announced…
There is always something happening in the sky. Next day’s coming up, not only in Oman, but in the whole Muslim world, the moon is focused. High-tech instruments will be in search of the Ramadan moon.
Although the date of 27th of May is already fixed by astronomy on the calendars, only when the crescent moon is visible by the naked eye, Ramadan will be announced.
During Ramadan the sky is also lighted up. In December 2014, scientists using a NASA-NOAA satellite announced that they had detected significant changes in the amount and distribution of nighttime lighting during holiday seasons in the Middle East and North America. For instance, nighttime lights in some Middle East cities were 50 to 100 percent brighter during the holy month of Ramadan. The change made sense because Muslims fast during daylight in Ramadan, pushing meals, social gatherings, commerce and other activities into nighttime hours. To confirm that the nighttime signal was not merely an instrument artifact, the team examined all of the nighttime data from spring 2012 through autumn 2014. They found that the peaks in light use closely tracked the Islamic calendar.
This year with the ‘Ramadan Kareem’ month ahead the same will happen again.
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Between 2013 and 2015 other groups and individuals tried to do their …’In the footsteps of’…
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But the first ever who crossed the Rub al Khali without the means the former travelers had was: Muhammad al Auf, Rashid guide who led Thesiger across the Empty Quarter. He had crossed the desert before-once alone….
In Salalah, as in Muscat, the crowning achievement of contemporary mosque architecture are the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosques. In 2009 the Friday mosque also open to non-muslims in Salalah was inaugurated.
Detail of beauty is the paneled wall decoration of the Mihrab in the main prayer hall. It took four months to fix 20.000 miniaturized pieces of different types of marble on panels by using water jet cutting and laser.