Moslems praying at the Grand Mosque in the Saudi western town of Makkah will be able to see the sun straight above them on Saturday, the second and last such phenomenon this year, according to Saudi astronomers.
The sun will set vertically above the holy city on Saturday at 12.27 pm Saudi time (13.27 UAE time) and the phenomenon will help Moslems around the world to determine the exact direction of Makkah in their prayers, said Majid Abu Zahira, head of the Jeddah Astronomy Association.
“This is the second event of its kind this year after the sun set directly above Makkah in May…it will also be the last this year,” he told local newspapers.
“The phenomenon will help Moslems worldwide to locate the exact direction lf Makkah, Islam’s holiest shrine, including those in Europe, Africa, Russia, China and other areas….the best time for this is around sunset by looking at the sun.”
He said Makkah’s direction can be set by placing a stick or any other object vertically on the ground at that time.
“Its shadow will point accurately towards Makkah…this applies to distant areas not in areas close to Makkah like Jeddah,” he said.