Sunday, January 26, 2020

Malaysia - Masjids and suraus

In all parts of Malaysia, there is no problem finding a Masjid or surau near by. In urban and rural settings, they are readily available. For medium to large masjids, there are a wide range of facilities available. Classes or talks are often given several times a day (in Malay language in most cases), typically after Fajr, during the day time, and after magrib. Visiting da'ees will usually give talks or khutbahs in masjids around Selangor when coming to give courses or when speaking at conferences.

Shopping centers, larger petrol stations, and offices will often have a surau within the building. So finding a place to perform solat is rarely an issue in Malaysia.


Are masjids normally located right within residential areas? In my experience, it seems like they are more like "drive to" type of places. Not walk to, if that makes any sense? Do all those countless tall apartment buildings have musollahs? What I mean more to the above, like in those places where I see row after row of apartment blocks, it seems like I never really see a medium to small size masjid anywhere. I just see larger masjids

I have lived in 3 different places over the last 2 years. Here is my experience with each

1) Normal housing area with a lot of undeveloped area around it. One house of the housing area was donated for use as a surau by its owner until a masjid was built within a 5 min drive. There were at least 2 other masjids of various sizes within 5-10 minutes in different directions.

2) Condo. There was a surau in the compound which had prayers as well as classes and other activities even though there was a masjid within a 10 min walk, or short drive down the road.

3) Housing area in a well developed area. There is a large masjid within a few minutes from my house (10 min walking). There is another surau in the same housing area, as well as several other surau's and another masjid all within 10-15 min away (due to traffic lights).

I would say most apartments and condos that I have seen have some type of surau either as a small separate building, or somewhere that may seem a bit less obvious somewhere on a ground floor. Housing areas usually have some type of surau or masjid within short distances or inside the housing area. The larger masjids may be more of a drive due to the larger need for parking.

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