A prayer rug or prayer mat, (in Arabic,or musallah, in Persian: is a piece of fabric to keep the worshipper clean and comfortable during the sujud (prostration to God) of salah (prayer).
A Muslim must perform wudu (clean himself or herself) before prayer and pray in a clean place. Many new prayer mats are manufactured or made by weavers in a factory.
The design of a prayer mat is based on the village it came from and its weaver. When praying, a niche at the top of the mat must be pointed to the Islamic center for prayer, Mecca. All Muslims are required to know what direction Mecca is from their home or where they are.
Many Muslims believe that a prayer mat is the connection between God and a human being. It has a very strong symbolic meaning and traditionally taken care of in a holy manner. It is disrespectful for one to place a prayer mat in a dirty location or throw it around in a disrespectful manner.
The prayer mat is traditionally quilted in a rectangle design and within the rectangle one usually finds images of Islamic symbols and architecture. Decorations are not only important but also have a deep sense of value in the design of the prayer rug.
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