Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - August 29th, 2014

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - August 29th, 2014 (part 2)

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

French Prime Minister calls on ECB to go further to help economy

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

South Africa: Four men guilty of shooting Rwandan exile

Read more

WEB NEWS

France: fighting political corruption with transparency

Read more

WEB NEWS

Using the web to further the cause: ISIS vs USA

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

  • Iraqi forces free Armeli in biggest victory over IS militants since June

    Read more

  • Anti-government protesters storm Pakistan's state TV

    Read more

  • PSG trounce Saint-Etienne 5-0 with Ibrahimovic hat trick

    Read more

  • Putin calls for 'statehood' talks on eastern Ukraine

    Read more

  • Rescue efforts under way after French apartment block blast

    Read more

  • Poland marks 75 years since German invasion of WWII

    Read more

  • Israel appropriates large tracts of West Bank land

    Read more

  • Tension rises in Hong Kong as Beijing rejects open elections

    Read more

  • French police stop 'teenage jihadist' from flying to Syria

    Read more

  • Kidnapped Yazidi women 'sold to Islamists' in Syria

    Read more

  • Confusion reigns after Lesotho 'coup'

    Read more

  • France's Simon beats Ferrer to advance to last 16 in US Open

    Read more

  • French PM vows to safeguard 35-hour work week

    Read more

  • Inside Novoazovsk – the pro-Russians' latest conquest

    Read more

  • Filipino UN troops escape Islamists in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • Fugitive British killer returns to French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

Middle east

'Virtual Haj' allows Internet users to make 'pilgrimage'

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2009-11-26

For anyone who wanted to make the sacred Haj pilgrimage to Mecca, but can't, Islam Online offers the Virtual Haj - a 3D, interactive virtual experience of the pilgrimage.

This year’s Haj commenced on Wednesday, attracting 2.5 million worshippers to the Saudi Arabian city of Mecca. For those who can’t make the trip, however, the “Virtual Haj” – found on the Islam Online site - allows Internet users a way to pay virtual homage to the fifth pillar of Islam.

According to the Islam Online website, “Virtual Haj” is for those who “ever dreamed of being able to be part of the full Hajj experience without leaving your home.”


Islam Online offers the site as part of the popular Second Life reality universe.


Ahmed Fathi, one of the directors of Islam Online, told FRANCE 24, “The majority of the 500 daily visitors are non-Muslim.”

According to one of the programme’s designers, Awatef Mohammed, “Our first goal was to teach Muslims the correct way to make a pilgrimage. Our second goal was to introduce the Haj and Islam in general to non-Muslims. For non-Muslims, it is indeed the only way to see Mecca, which is forbidden to them.”


As with other Second Life universes, the "Virtual Haj" is a three-dimensional, interactive experience that allows the user to assume an avatar (a virtual identity). The users “walk” their avatars through Mecca, allowing them to look at the city, enter sacred buildings, and even kneel and pray. They can talk to other virtual visitors – be they fellow pilgrims or the merely curious.

Click here for a sample of a few users’ “Virtual Haj” experiences.

Date created : 2009-11-25

COMMENT(S)