Ever since Isaac Newton first described the laws of gravity in 1687, scientists have known that the quickest route between two points is along a straight line through the Earth’s interior. Through the magic of gravity, any object dropped into such a “chord tunnel” at one end will emerge exactly 42 minutes later at the other end, no matter the distance.
Zero gravity and a ninety-minute orbital day created so many questions for Muslim astronauts that a “Guideline of Performing Ibadah at the International Space Station” was drafted. Rather than require Muslim astronauts to pray five times during each ninety-minute orbit of Earth, the guidelines allowed them to go by the twenty-four-hour cycle of the launch location. Wipes (“not less than 3 pieces”) could be used for preprayer cleansing. And since the orbiting Muslim who began his prayer while facing Mecca was likely, by prayer’s end, to be mooning Mecca, provisions were made allowing him to simply face the Earth or “wherever.” Lastly, instead of lowering the face to the ground, a trying maneuver in zero gravity, prostrating oneself could be approximated by “bringing down the chin closer to the knee,” “using the eye lid as an indicator of the changing of posture” or—in the vein of “wherever”—simply “imagining” the sequence of movements.
« Older Black and White and Hebrew All Over.... | Random Acts of Genealogical Ki... Newer »
This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments
Buy a Shirt