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Andrei Zadorozhniy

LBST 2301
Mosque Visitation Word Count: 845

For my visitation assignment I attended the Muslim American Society(MAS). I attended

MAS on April. 30, 2018. MAS is located fifteen minutes away from UNCC campus which is the

main reason I chose to attend MAS. The address is 4301 Shamrock Dr, Charlotte, NC 28215.

During the visitation, I have interviewed the principal of MAS, followed by attending the

service. The questions I asked Dr. Adnan Alghorani were What is a good life? How is a good life

achieved? and What do you think about our current political situation?

When I first arrived at the MAS I did not know where to go. I walked around and later

was greeted by a lady. I asked her where I could find Dr. Alghorani, the principal of the school,

and she kindly pointed me in the correct direction. The principal gave me a warm welcome and

he told me some background information about MAS, what they do there (mainly detailed

version of how the prayer service worked.) I asked Dr. Alghorani if I could interview him and he

gladly sat down and told me to ask away.

The first question I asked Dr. Alghorani was What is a good life? He responded” A good

life is one that is done in the service of god first and his worship. It is also in actively

participating in the community and working to improve the lives of everyone around you.” I

realized that the true quarrian promotes peace and harmony and these words confirmed that.

The second question I asked Dr. Alghorani was How is a good life achieved? He

responded” First and foremost work hard, and act actively in your faith. Work to help everyone

and treat everyone with the utmost respect and love.” I really like how he emphasized on helping

and treating everyone with the utmost respect and love. This core value was obviously passed

down since the Abrahamic faith.

The third question I asked Dr. Alghorani was What do you think about our current

political situation? He responded “We do our best to project a positive image to all people and

try to correct any misconceptions we have of Islam. What is happening right now is unfortunate,

but we keep up the positivity hopefully we can find peace.” I really liked and respected Dr.

Alghorani after the interview, he was genuinely a good man, satisfied with life. After

interviewing Dr. Alghorani, I attended the prayer.

For the prayer, we were required to take our shoes off. I did not ask why, but I would

guess that the sanctuary is considered as a sacred and holy place in which shoes are needed to be

taken off, similarly to how Moses needed to take his shoes off when speaking to God in the form

of the burning bush. I very much liked this core belief and norm when praying in a mosque

sanctuary. I also noticed that many of the men washed their feet before attending the prayer

service, this shows how serious they take their religion and that they intend to keep their sacred

sanctuary pure.

When I sat down on the bench there was one obvious detail I could not ignore. There

was a small wall between the men and woman. The man sat in the front, while the boys sat

behind the men, and woman behind the wall which males were in front of. This reminded me of

the brief discussion we had in class about the topic. In the Old Testament, men are the dominant

sex and woman are inferior. However, the 21st-century ideas have caught up with the Muslim

youth and this tradition is not very sacred. I say this because I have seen the little girls crossing

the wall and to gossip with the little boys. Their teachers were calling their names and yelling at

them, which I personally found comical.

The service was incredibly interesting and enjoyable. Like all good things, the

preaching’s came to an end. They started to pray and bow towards the front of the sanctuary,
which must have been constructed in a way to show the direction of Mecca. Once the group

dispersed, Dr. Alghorani was busy so I slipped the thank you note I have written prior to

attending under his office door. I went on my way and decided to hold the door to a man and he

decided to give me lunch. I was very pleased with the overall experience. I have learned many

concepts about the Islamic faith and Muslim culture during this visit. It was a unique experience

which I will likely never forget.

After attending MAS, I realized that this experience showed me how religion can cause

happiness to many people. This was the most relatable aspect learned from this course that

applies to this attendance. The Muslim community are openly oppressed in this nation, however

these people all had genuine smiles on their faces. All the children were laughing and smiling.

The atmosphere was enlightening, it made me feel like I could fit in. Dr. Alghorani and the rest

of the people at MAS have truly found a good life.