When Islam is against idol worship why do the Muslims worship, and bow down to the Kaaba in their prayer? (Muslims worship the Kaaba)
Kaaba is the Qibla i.e. the direction Muslims face during their prayers. It is important to note that though Muslims face the Kaaba during prayers, they do not worship the Kaaba. Muslims worship and bow to none but Allah. It is mentioned in Surah Baqarah:
“We observe you turning your face, several times towards heaven (O dear Prophet Mohammed - peace and blessings be upon him); so We will definitely make you turn (for prayer) towards a qiblah which pleases you; therefore now turn your face towards the Sacred Mosque (in Makkah); and O Muslims, wherever you may be, turn your faces (for prayer) towards it only; and those who have received the Book surely know that this is the truth from their Lord; and Allah is not unaware of their deeds.” [Al-Qur'an 2:144]
1. Islam believes in fostering unity
For instance, if Muslims want to offer Salaah (Prayer), it is possible that some may wish to face north, while some may wish to face south. In order to unite Muslims in their worship of the One True God, Muslims, wherever they may be, are asked to face in only one direction i.e. towards the Kaaba. If some Muslims live towards the west of the Kaaba they face the east. Similarly if they live towards the east of the Kaaba they face the west.
2. Kaaba is at the Centre of the World Map
The Muslims were the first people to draw the map of the world. They drew the map with the south facing upwards and north downwards. The Kaaba was at the centre. Later, western cartographers drew the map upside down with the north facing upwards and south downwards. Yet, Alhamdullilah the Kaaba is at the centre of the world map.
3. Tawaaf around Kaaba for indicating one God
When the Muslims go to Masjid-e-Haram in Makkah, they perform Tawaaf or circumambulation round the Kaaba. This act symbolizes the belief and worship of One God, since, just as every circle has one centre, so also there is only one Allah Almighty worthy of worship.
4. Hadith of Umar (Allah be pleased with him)
Regarding the black stone, hajr-e-aswad, there is a hadith (tradition), attributed to the illustrious companion of the Prophet Muhammed, peace and blessing of Allah be upon him, Umar, Allah be pleased with him.
According to Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2, book of Hajj, chapter 56, H.No. 675. Umar, Allah be pleased with him, said, “I know that you are a stone and can neither benefit nor harm. Had I not seen the Prophet Muhammed, peace and blessing of Allah be upon him, touching (and kissing) you, I would never have touched (and kissed) you”.
5. People stood on Kaaba and gave the Adhaan (Call to prayer)
At the time of the Prophet Muhammed, peace and blessing of Allah be upon him, people even stood on the Kaaba and gave the ‘Adhaan' or the call to prayer. One may ask those who allege that Muslims worship the Kaaba; which idol worshipper stands on the idol he worships?