Prayer is an act of worship that combines intellectual meditation, spiritual devotion, and moral elevation.
The prayer space shown on this site was conceived as a gesture of friendship to promote a better understanding of Islam in the West, with the message that this religion, rooted in a 1400 year tradition, co-exists with the modern world. It was designed by architect Farouk Noormohamed.
At the entry portal the name of God (Allah) is celebrated in mirrored calligraphy, symbolising the balanced nature of the divine. The stylized calligraphy on the entry panel reads "Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim" - In the name of God, the most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.
Entering this space, the believer is at the beginning of a spiritual journey.
The geometric patterns play an important part in the design. They not only decorate, but also impart spiritual and philosophic grace, balance and unity to the prayer space. The carved glass panel brings people together in prayer. The carving is a section of "Sura Nur," the verse of divine light from the Holy Qur'an:
"Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth.
The Parable of His Light is as if there were a Niche
And within it a Lamp: the Lamp enclosed in Glass:
the glass as it were a brilliant star:
Lit from a blessed Tree,
an Olive, neither of the east nor of the west,
Whose oil is well-nigh luminous, though fire scarce touched it:
Light upon Light
Allah doth guide whom He will to His Light:
Allah doth set forth Parables for men: and Allah doth know all things."
The design of this prayer space draws on the rich heritage of Islam. It is expressed in a western contemporary idiom through its use of local materials and modern technology. It is a place of peace, of understanding and respect.