I live in a city filled with choirs and churchbells. Harmonies fill the air while we walk through the town and bells ring melodiously from towers on holy days and Sundays – hopeful reminders that sacred connections can still be found and are, indeed, cherished and nurtured. And even more wondrous, whenever my ears catch these tones, my heart is reminded of another sacred sound.
Growing up, my only experience of hearing the adhan (the Muslim call to prayer) was at home or in the mosque. The adhan is what it says it is and announces that the time for one of the five daily prayers will soon begin. As children, my siblings and I would compete in reciting the adhan ourselves, memorised its translation and learned the best things to do when we heard it. It was simply a part of daily life and I never gave it any deep thought or even reflected on how it connected me to so many others.
In truth, millions of people around the world grow up hearing the adhan five times a day – soaring over their villages and cities, sweeping through their streets. I can never forget my first experience of reverberating adhans floating over and around me as I sat on the banks of a mountain river in the foothills of the Himalayas. At the top of each peak was a mosque and each mosque, it’s own muezzin and each muezzin calling to prayer and each mountain itself responding with it’s own echo.
Come to prayer. Come to prayer.
Come to success. Come to success.
Upon my return to normal everyday life, I found myself drawn to seeking out different recitations of the adhan. I loved how every place had its own unique way of expressing this call and it confirmed for me that Islam has no one expression or culture – as each community brings its own colour and harmonies to the faith.
This week we welcomed the beginning of the sacred month of Rajab and the official lunar calendar countdown to Ramadan. Never in the year is the adhan so welcomed than at sunset in Ramadan, when its first sweet words harken not only to prayer but also the breaking of the fast.
So with all this in mind, it is our pleasure to share with you the Mamanushka Adhan Playlist, featuring beautiful recitations of the Muslim call to prayer from around the world, including Liberia, Bosnia, Malaysia, America, Kosovo and Mali.
We hope they inspire and uplift you as they do us, so please share and enjoy. Have any favourites you’d like us to add? Let us know in the comments and, as always, may your every moment be blessed.
Image Credit: Ruman Hamdani
Main photograph – Man & Mosque In Srinagar, Kashmir
Soundcloud photograph – Dal Lake, Srinagar, Kashmir