Climbing Mount Sinai: 2,285m, the last 750 steps are the hardest. At 6.20am standing on those rocks overlooking this breath-taking scenery, words are missing to describe the view. If magic is real then the sunrise on the top of this mountain was a complete fantasy. The pictures do not do it justice. The feeling of having conquered one of the highest peaks in Egypt was overwhelming. Knowing that Prophet Moses had stood here and perhaps even Prophet Haroon as well as Elijah and Elisha made it a very spiritual experience. I knew they had looked at the same scenery and must have felt the same way as I did when they saw the sun rise. Even after so many centuries walking in their footsteps was incredibly rewarding. A mosque and a chapel are found at the top of the mountain. The chapel is closed to the public, whereas the mosque is open. Muslims observe a 40 nights meditation, in particular time over the year. Some Pilgrims who could not afford to go on Hajj, would instead perform a pilgrimage to Mount Sinai and feel closer to God," if we could not make it to Prophet Muhammad we made it to Prophet Moses". Bedouins living there give them a warm welcome and host a festival to celebrate the pilgrimage.  This tradition ended twenty years ago after the Israelis took over the peninsula. With the rise of Wahhabism, Sinai has lost its allure.  Astonishingly, most Bedouins speak over 6 languages due to the countless tourists who have visited the mountains.  Sadly, the decrease of tourism has made things difficult for them. There are too many morals from this journey, but the one I must share the most is:

The story of Moses is one of the most detailed story found in holy scripture, found baby in a basket on the River Nile by the wife of the most powerful Pharaon at the time, this young Hebrew grew up with comfort and luxe, at a middle age, he found himself guilty of murder and run away to finally be a shepherd for a while. Until he accounter the burning bush where he discuss with God. He understood that he was responsible to free the Hebrew from Egypt and reach the promised land. With the help of his brother, Prophet Haruun, and various miracles that supported his words of peace and the belief of a unique God, Prophet Moses kept warning the Pharaons of 7 different pledges of a severe punishment from God. Pharaons yield to free the Hebrew, and after sometimes with anger and grief, he run after Prophet Moses and his community who walk across Sinai. Historians believed that Moses stood in Nuweiba and tap with his stick on the floor, to separate the sea in two, to cross over. Pharaons and his army followed and at soon as the last Hebrew arrived on the other side, the sea closed up again, lost and drown was Pharaon and his army. Moses reach Petra where he split the rock and water spurt out, then went to Mount Nebo and finally so the Promised land. It is believed that due to his previous sin of killing, Moses was not allowed to reach Jerusalem and it is around Mount Nebo that Prophet Moses return to God.

They say "مصر ام الدنيا  ", Egypt is the mother country of all countries, a powerful expression being used for over 500 years, which has given me a strong wish to familiarise myself with its wonders. The research of Maurice Bucaille, a scientist who autopsied the body of Ramses II, was left intrigued with these words: " This day shall We save this body, that it might be a sign to those who come after him! But verily, many among mankind are heedless of Our Signs!’” S. 10:90-92"  Being in the West the stories of the Qur'an and Hadith are like fairy-tale stories. Such we know all about Disney and cartoons characters, rather most Muslims know all about the stories of the Holy family of Ibrahim, instead of Prince Charming as an ideal figure of beauty there is Prophet Yusuf ibn Yaqub  sent to jail for his beauty or Prince Eric  saved from sea by Ariel, but rather Prophet Yunus saved by God instead. It can be found in the National Egyptian museum, the mommy of Ramses II, with its arms crossed placed as if its petrified, and the tissue cells of its abdomen filled with salt. The autopsy from Maurice Bucaille was exactly corresponding the Qur'anic description, this was the main reason of his conversion to Islam. 



Taiba Riaz holds a BA (hons) of Arabic and Islamic Studies at SOAS University of London. Currently a Master student of Civilisation studies at Ibn Haldun University in Istanbul. Her travels are detailed throughout this website, she provides a depth understanding of the Muslim community. The range of theological perspectives within the Islamic dogma. In addition to the various historical sites that recalls the narration of Prophets and Saints in the Holy Qur'an.


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