Hijrah: Walking the path of Prophet Muhammad on the migration’s 1,400-year anniversary

To mark the occasion, the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (ithra) in Dhahran is celebrating the Islamic New Year in the Hijrah Exhibition. (Photos/Ahmed Al-Thani)
1 / 3
To mark the occasion, the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (ithra) in Dhahran is celebrating the Islamic New Year in the Hijrah Exhibition. (Photos/Ahmed Al-Thani)
Hijrah: Walking the path of Prophet Muhammad on the migration’s 1,400-year anniversary
2 / 3
To mark the occasion, the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (ithra) in Dhahran is celebrating the Islamic New Year in the Hijrah Exhibition. (Photos/Ahmed Al-Thani)
Hijrah: Walking the path of Prophet Muhammad on the migration’s 1,400-year anniversary
3 / 3
To mark the occasion, the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (ithra) in Dhahran is celebrating the Islamic New Year in the Hijrah Exhibition. (Photos/Ahmed Al-Thani)
Short Url
Updated 07 August 2022

Hijrah: Walking the path of Prophet Muhammad on the migration’s 1,400-year anniversary

Hijrah: Walking the path of Prophet Muhammad on the migration’s 1,400-year anniversary
  • The story of the great event has been one of the region’s most continuous narratives

DHAHRAN: For the last 1,400 years, the story of the great migration that Prophet Muhammad undertook has been one of the region’s most continuous narratives, a tale that has been fondly repeated by Muslims for centuries.

To mark the occasion, the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) in Dhahran is celebrating the Islamic new year with a new exhibition called Hijrah: In the Footsteps of the Prophet.

While the actual Hijrah is arguably the most important historical event in Islam, this journey from the past remains relevant to this day because of migration and forcible movement.

Many people have had to move from one land to another to escape conflict or find greater freedom. Many have settled in a land that was not their own and establish a new community.

The journey the prophet took between Makkah and Madinah shaped the beginning of Islam and was the launch of a civilization that now includes 1.5 billion Muslims globally.

HIGHLIGHTS

• The journey the Prophet took between Makkah and Madinah shaped the beginning of Islam and was the launch of a civilization that now includes 1.5 billion Muslims globally.

• The 400-kilometer distance between the two holy cities in those eight days has created an immeasurable impact on the social, political, and economic landscape of the Arab Peninsula.

• The significance of the Hijrah can be defined as the transition from the practice of Islam as an act of worship to a way of life, and the Ithra exhibition presents that journey to modern audiences.

The 400-kilometer distance between the two holy cities in those eight days has created an immeasurable impact on the social, political, and economic landscape of the Arab Peninsula.

The significance of the Hijrah can be defined as the transition from the practice of Islam as an act of worship to a way of life, and the Ithra exhibition presents that journey to modern audiences.

On the exhibition’s opening night last month, curator Dr. Idries Trevathan offered tours with tidbits and anecdotes to bring the story of the prophet’s journey to life.

He was particularly excited to share insights with non-Muslim visitors to educate and inform them of what the experience was like.

A nasheed that the Ansar chanted for the prophet upon his entrance into Madinah was recited by vocalists in Arabic, English, Urdu, and Indonesian.

Trevathan has been with Ithra over the last eight years and is its expert on Islamic art history. He studied at the Prince’s Foundation School of Traditional Arts and built the center’s Islamic art collection from the ground up.

Historical artifacts and contemporary pieces help to breathe life into an event that took place centuries ago.

Featuring about 70 academics and artists from 20 countries, the inclusive and immersive experience celebrates the journey itself and also commemorates the occasion of the 1444 Hijri New Year.

“This is a very special exhibition because it's three years in the making—we started just before the COVID-19 pandemic. What's been extraordinary about this journey for us is that we were able to bring extraordinary minds together,” Trevathan told Arab News.

This exhibition exemplifies Ithra’s wider mission to tell the world’s defining stories through art, heritage, culture, and research.

Abdullah Al-Rashid, Ithra director

“We started by working closely with Dr. Abdullah Alkadi, who's considered the authority on the Hijrah route, the exact Hijrah route that they took. What's amazing about his work is that he's corrected all previous narrations or previous research on the Hijrah route. When we did some background research, we realized that, despite its importance, no one has ever attempted to do an exhibition on the Hijrah.”

Among the must-see installations are a recreation of the spiderweb, the caves, and even a life-sized replica of the camel upon which the prophet rode into Madinah.

Documentaries and videos are spread throughout the exhibition, with accompanying Arabic and English audio, recounting the route based on narrations.

Using language, poetry, and recordings of the call to prayer, the exhibition offers visitors an opportunity to be transported to the holy lands. Many things on display are being shown publicly for the first time.

“The Hijrah route is inaccessible by car. You literally have to walk it. It goes through meandering little valleys, and it's very rocky. I think a lot of you when you think of Hijrah abroad, people outside Saudi Arabia think of the sand dunes. It's not. It's mountainous and it's a really difficult terrain,” added Trevathan.

Dr. Abdullah Hussein Alkadi, professor of urban and regional planning at Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, is considered an expert for his groundbreaking research on the travel routes that the prophet and his companions took.

The Hijrah route is inaccessible by car. You literally have to walk it. It goes through meandering little valleys, and it’s very rocky.

Dr. Idries Trevathan, Curator

His books are among the most valued in the field, and Trevathan was adamant about including the works of his academic hero. He was thrilled when Alkadi agreed to be part of the project.

“My life has been determined by my quest to study and experience not only the exact route the prophet and his companions took across the desert but also the wider story, life, and legacy of this journey,” Alkadi said.

“It has been a journey that has occupied me for some 40 years and, with this exhibition, we are presenting new research, methodologies, and findings based on extensive fieldwork that will redefine perspectives on this historic migration. The relevance of this story is just as strong today; it serves to demonstrate and remind us of the reasons why people choose to move from one place to another and asserts the right to practice your beliefs.”

The exhibition is presented in collaboration with the National Museum of Saudi Arabia in Riyadh, the House of Islamic Arts in Jeddah, the King Abdulaziz Complex for Endowment Libraries in Madinah, and Turquoise Mountain, a Prince of Wales charity supporting arts and heritage in the Middle East.

Contributors to the exhibition include internationally renowned Saudi artists, well-known photographers, scholars, academics, such as the president of Zaytuna College in Berkeley, which is the first accredited Muslim liberal arts college in the US, and the Turquoise Mountain Institute of Afghan Arts and Architecture in Kabul.

“As one of the most detailed studies ever of the history and topography of the Hijrah, this exhibition exemplifies Ithra’s wider mission to tell the world’s defining stories through art, heritage, culture, and research,” said Ithra director Abdullah Al-Rashid.

“This exhibition represents significant advances in academic research around the history of Islam while its focus on the human story surrounding the journey and our shared human values will also promote greater understanding, empathy, and tolerance.”

The exhibition will run at Ithra for nine months. It will then move on to other parts of the Kingdom. It will also head overseas.


Pilot dies after light aircraft crashes in Riyadh’s Al Thumamah Airport 

Pilot dies after light aircraft crashes in Riyadh’s Al Thumamah Airport 
Updated 7 sec ago

Pilot dies after light aircraft crashes in Riyadh’s Al Thumamah Airport 

Pilot dies after light aircraft crashes in Riyadh’s Al Thumamah Airport 
  • A team was sent to the site of the crash to investigate the cause and circumstances, the bureau said

A pilot died when a light aircraft crashed shortly after taking off from Riyadh’s Al Thumamah Airport, Saudi Arabia’s Aviation Investigation Bureau said on Tuesday. 

The pilot was the only person on board, the statement added. 

A team was sent to the site of the crash to investigate the cause and circumstances, the bureau said. 

The airport is located about 29 kilometers from the King Khalid International Airport. 


KSrelief mobile clinics provide treatment for displaced Yemenis in Walan camp

KSrelief mobile clinics provide treatment for displaced Yemenis in Walan camp
Updated 16 August 2022

KSrelief mobile clinics provide treatment for displaced Yemenis in Walan camp

KSrelief mobile clinics provide treatment for displaced Yemenis in Walan camp

RIYADH: The mobile medical clinics of King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSrelief) continued providing treatment services for the displaced in the camp of Walan in Haradh district in Yemen's Hajjah province, state-run Saudi Press Agency repoted. 
During the period from July 27 to Aug. 2, the clinics received 222 people with various health conditions, and provided them with the necessary medical services.
The clinics also provided 185 individuals with medications.
Moreover, KSrelief continued distributing food baskets in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province in Pakistan.
Some 1,856 food baskets were distributed to the needy people in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, benefiting 12,992 people.
This comes within the project to support food security, being implemented by the KSrelief in Pakistan, to alleviate the suffering of the needy and affected people.


Saudi man arrested  for shooting gun indiscriminately after video goes viral

Saudi man arrested  for shooting gun indiscriminately after video goes viral
Updated 16 August 2022

Saudi man arrested  for shooting gun indiscriminately after video goes viral

Saudi man arrested  for shooting gun indiscriminately after video goes viral
  • The culprit has been charged with ‘endangering the lives of others’ state news agency SPA reported

DUBAI: A Saudi national was arrested in Najran city on Tuesday after he fired random shots from a personal weapon.
The culprit has been charged with ‘endangering the lives of others’ state news agency SPA reported. 
Another man, also a Saudi national, was arrested for documenting and publishing a video of the incident on social media. 
The incident comes a day after SPA reported a similar incident, which occurred in a governorate near Riyadh, where a man fired a machine gun ‘indiscriminately’ in a public place – he was arrested and now faces prosecution.


Philippines’ foreign affairs minister meets with Saudi Arabia’s ambassador 

Philippines’ foreign affairs minister meets with Saudi Arabia’s ambassador 
Updated 16 August 2022

Philippines’ foreign affairs minister meets with Saudi Arabia’s ambassador 

Philippines’ foreign affairs minister meets with Saudi Arabia’s ambassador 
  • The two officials discussed issues of mutual concern

The Philippine Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Enrique Manalo, met with Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to his country Hisham bin Sultan Al-Qahtani, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

The two officials discussed issues of mutual concern and ways to enhance bilateral relations between the Kingdom and the Philippines, according to SPA. 

After Monday’s meeting, Manalo said on his official Twitter page: “I had a good meeting with the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, H.E. Hisham Sultan Al-Qahtani, where we exchanged views on points of collaboration beneficial to both our peoples.”

 


Saudi crown prince washes Holy Kaaba on behalf of King Salman

Saudi crown prince washes Holy Kaaba on behalf of King Salman
Updated 16 August 2022

Saudi crown prince washes Holy Kaaba on behalf of King Salman

Saudi crown prince washes Holy Kaaba on behalf of King Salman

RIYADH: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman washed the Holy Kaaba in Makkah’s Grand Mosque on behalf of King Salman, the Saudi Press Agency reported early Tuesday.

Prince Mohammed bin Salman performed Tawaf and prayed ahead of the washing ceremony.

(SPA)

He was accompanied by Saudi minister of sports, Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal. They were received by president of the General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques, Sheikh Abdulrahman Al-Sudais.

Senior officials also participated in washing the Kaaba.