World Bulletin / News Desk
Muslims throughout Turkey celebrated Mawlid al-Nabi (Mevlid Kandili in Turkish) on Wednesday, marking the birth of the Prophet Muhammad.
Most of the country's Muslims went to mosques to commemorate the birth of the Prophet Muhammad, who was born in the month of Rabi' al-Awwal, the third month of the Islamic calendar, in A.D. 571. This year marks the 1,441th anniversary of his birth.
He is the last in a series of monotheistic religions' prophets and the person who presented Islam to the world. His personality and manners are seen as a sacred model to be emulated by all Muslims. The Prophet Muhammad died in 632.
Mevlid Kandili was first observed around the 13th century and was preceded by a month of celebration. The day is usually celebrated by a sermon, remembrance of the Prophet's life and mission, gift giving and a feast. İstanbul's Eyüp Sultan Mosque attracted large numbers of people. Programs were held in the mosque, and they ended with prayers and ilahis -- songs that praise God or extols the characteristics of the Prophet. The Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT) broadcast live program from the Mimar Sinan Mosque in İstanbul in the evening.
Twitter users posted large numbers of tweets under the hashtag #hayırlı kandiller (blessed Mavlid an-Nabi) to celebrate the birth of the Prophet Muhammad on internet.
Mehmet Görmez, head of the Religious Affairs Directorate, issued a message on the occasion of the Prophet Muhammad's birth. “Just as he enlightened humanity 14 centuries ago, may he bring blessings upon us today,” said Görmez. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan also issued a Mawlid al-Nabi message. "The world encountered a true blessing with the birth of the Prophet Muhammad. On this precious day on which the greatest gift of Allah was given to humanity, we should make the best of the day by praying,” said Erdoğan.