I would like to hear more about Jihad.
Jihad like I said it means 'stuggle' or detox. Sacrificing short-term pain for long-term benefit (like going through rehab and getting out of a drug addiction).
That's all I know about this concept.
Why wouldn't they? Mecca is certaintly a religious attraction, through its tradition,its light architecture and all the pious people visiting there as in the most holiest of places.
Pilgrimage is a very very busy time, there won't be any hotels you could stay. Even if you managed to find a room, you may not even be allowed to stay if they find out your not muslim -- as you're potentially taking the place of another muslim.
here are also a lot of strict rules (by the law enforcement), and if you don't have a guide you may get into problems. Even shias have problems going there for hajj -- some were even severally abused for now reason.
Thanks. Is a muslim obligated to do all this pillars? What risks are there if he doesn't?
Well these are the pillars of the shia school. But in general, when you become a muslim, you want to work hard to follow the moral code contained in the quran. The pillars are like a 'summary' of this moral code.
The more you work hard to be pious, the higher your chances of going to heaven. You are free to do what you want, but the Lord will judge your deeds on judgment day.
Nice. I use persian rugs in my home also. Tell me more about those prayer mats please.
The prayer mats can be anything that is made out of natural/organic fabric. In fact you can pray on grass if you want. It's not a big deal, and when your praying, your focus should be on the lord not on the material objects around you. In fact even the motions in the ritual should not be thought about. The focus should only be on the lord and the prayer you're requesting.
I was talking in terms of architecture(mosaics,etc).. What architecture and art do you use in your worship and at you mosques? What does Islam say of Icons?
Just like the prayer mat, architecture art is something that we're not really suppose to focus about. In fact I would argue that the Lord may not answer the prayers made in the mosques with the most exotic architecture!
Why? Because it's a huge waste of raw resources and capital, when building these exotic domes and pillars. The money should've been given to charity instead. A mosque should be simple, have a flat roof with some open space inside -- it could also be a tent. If you look at kaabba-- it has a very simple cubic shape, nothing exotic.
Today, unfortunately many of the rich Islamic nations (those in the oil-rich gulf regions) build these very shiny and exotic mosques-- with domes made out of precious metals like gold and silver. At the same time you have Muslims in poverty and destitution and they're starving. The prophet prophesied that this would happen during the time of the antichrist. It's all the work of the devil. In the end, the Lord will judge the financiers and architects of these mosques.
On the other hand however, using creativity and art in products that would contribute to society is encouraged. For example building a piece of technology that is beautiful and easy to understand intuitively. That is the type of art that is always encouraged.
Do you have any religious rules about shaving the hair body, probably even in intimate parts? Do you actually believe in chakras? Where is that coming from? Can you tell us more about that?
Hair on the top- If you are a male, it is encourage you always keep the length of your hair uniform. If you want to have a hair cut, either trim it all, or have the barber cut it out evenly.
We can not have haircuts that pagans display-
for example haircuts where the sides are short but the top has a lot is discouraged - http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_mDSaFFE4So8/TGaVtpnZ5SI/AAAAAAAAACs/dGpY57mUa_c/s1600/male-hairstyles.jpg
also haircuts where there is a tail at the end is strongly discouraged - http://www.mulletjunky.com/webimages/Tristanrat.jpg
Wearing a hat is encouraged.
The beard shouldn't be shaved, can be trimmed if necessary.
Body hair on men, I believe the rule is that they can be trimmed, but not shaved off completely. They have a reason to be on our body, by shaving them you may be affecting your health negatively.
I don't know about females, but I think they can do whatever they like in terms of body hair. Waxing is okay for them. For the hair on head, anything is acceptable just as long as it's uniform-- keeping it long is encouraged.