We are experiencing the happiness of celebrating Night of Miraj ...

I want to repeat an article I wrote about this blessed night before. There are some articles, and they are still up-to-date over the years. This article, which you will read below, tells about the "two hours I spent in the Masjid al-Aqsa", is a type of writing that will not be out of date for long.

The year is 1997. While working at Anadolu Agency Istanbul Regional Directorate, we received an invitation fax from a sports club to watch basketball game with Israel's Maccabi Tel Aviv team for news purposes. I was particularly suitors, and after a trip of about two hours we landed in Tel Aviv airport. The places and cars I saw until I got to the Hilton Hotel where we will stay from the airport attracted my attention. Israel was like a small America, the landscaped roads were wide and the cars were all crisp and new.

After a while we settled in the hotel, we started traveling around Tel Aviv with journalist friends. Tel Aviv is a modern city located in the west of the country, on the Mediterranean coast. Whatever you look for in America, Europe, you can find it in Tel Aviv, except for one thing; The traces of Islam. I could not see it at all, nor did I expect to see it. What I really wanted to see was Masjid al-Aqsa ...

We agreed with journalist friends, we would go to Al-quds the next day in the morning.

I slept with that excitement at night. When I woke up in the morning, I called my friends but they said they would continue to travel in Tel Aviv. I decided to go alone. Because it seemed very difficult for me to come again to this country where everything is so expensive ...

When I got down to the reception, I asked how I would go to Al-quds. I tried to express my problem in a little English. I was able to explain my desire to go somewhere, but the young people at the reception did not understand where this place was. As she was passing by me, a 50-year-old lady realized that I was Turkish and started to speak Turkish with me. She said that she was also a Turk of Jewish origin and immigrated from Istanbul to Israel a few years after the establishment of the State of Israel. That lady stated that especially the young generation do not know Al-quds and therefore they cannot understand where I want to go.


The State of Israel, which was founded in 1948, declared Al-quds as its capital since 1950, but Al-quds was not recognized internationally. So it will be that, the younger generation knows Al-quds as "Jerusalem".

I left the hotel to go to Jerusalem with the lady's description, but this time I faced another difficulty. There was a strike in urban transport services. Neither taxi nor dolmus worked. Jerusalem was about 70-80 kilometers from Tel Aviv. I was supposed to go to the bus station but also walking for about an hour. After 5-6 hours, I should have been in Tel Aviv. Because after watching the match concerned I should have sent news to Turkey.

I risked everything and set off for the second bus station. I didn't waste any time at the bus station. There were frequent bus services to Jerusalem. After reaching Jerusalem, I had to take the city bus from the bus station. I was able to explain my problem by saying “Masjid-i Aqsa”. I moved to "Al Aqsa", as they say, by another bus. Until this point, every part of Israel looked like a modern city. However, the view of the city was changing towards the east of Jerusalem. I remembered E-5 highway, that one side of the "average" neighborhood Şirinevler, the other side of the high standard of life of people found living in Atakoy. People's skin and clothing changed as they approached the Masjid al-Aqsa. Passing by a market, I felt like I was in my hometown, Şanlıurfa, for a moment. In East Jerusalem, where Muslims are concentrated, it is as if the service has stopped. Another factor that draws attention is the "rabbi", which is different in appearance and Jews who were devoted to their religion were the majority in the region.

Soon I learned that these people came to the region to pray to the "Wailing Wall", which is considered sacred to them.


When I got off the bus at the last stop, the first thing that caught my eye was 'Kubbet-Us Sahra', 'Dome of the Rock'. Although there was the Wailing Wall in the foreground, the magnificent dome of the 'Kubbet-Us Sahra', 'Dome of the Rock', where Hacer-i Mu'allak (the stone in the gap) is located, was immediately striking.

To visit the Masjid al-Aqsa, it was necessary to enter through a door where Israeli soldiers were on guard. Do not worry! I have not been subjected to any violence like on the Mavi Marmara Ship. At that time, relations between Turkey and Israel, was not present, such as lemony. Therefore, when I told the soldiers that I was a "Turkish and journalist", I was taken in without any problems. Inside, passing by the Israeli soldiers sitting in the garden, I first went to the Dome of the Rock, 'Kubbet-Us Sahra'.

Muslim officers were standing at the door. When they saw the camera, they told me it was forbidden to take pictures inside. I watched the Dome of the Rock in Saadettin Teksoy's program on Star TV. It is a very different feeling to watch the same values live with the naked eye. While watching the 18x13.5-meter-sized Miraculous Stone, I thought about the 'Miraj Miracle' that our Prophet (S.A.V) ascension experienced. The edges of the stone were attached to the side walls, but there were gaps at the bottom and top. I performed my prayer, and had a quick chat with the officers, while leaving from the Dome of the Rock. 

One of the officers immediately pointed to the bullet traces inside and said, "Israeli soldiers did these things." The other said they were offended to Turkey, because Turkey want to improve its relationship with the Israeli government. I tried to say that Turkey is with them, wholeheartedly, and the Palestinians misunderstood the Turks. I don't know, if I could have made them believe it. But I said bitterly goodbye to them ...


Then I went to Masjid al-Aqsa, about 100 meters from the Dome of the Rock. Again, the people at the door asked me not to take a photo. Our Prophet Muhammad (S.A.V) prayed in Masjid al-Aqsa either before or after the 'Miraj Miracle'. I approached the place where he prayed, I stood one step behind the place where the Prophet (S.A.V) prayed, I was just going to pray, but suddenly I started sobbing. I couldn't help myself. Maybe it was the first time I was sobbing and crying loudly in front of people. I sat down and cried until I was full. It did not go to anyone's weird, because all the people there lived almost the same feeling ...

My 2-hour period, which I will never forget in my life, was shrinking and I was very emotional. But I had to leave. I had almost no probability that a little more to this holy place. I walked in looking back. I took my last photos. I couldn't take my eyes off these sacred places until I got away by bus. After a while, the view of Masjid-i Aqsa and 'Dome of the Rock' disappeared. However I scraped these places too, like Masjid al-Haram, Masjid-i Nebi and Masjid Kuba, in my heart...