The Jumma is often a hectic affair. Many of us are coming in from places of work or education with only a limited amount of time to arrive, attend the Khutba, pray and then make it back to where we came from. It’s busy during normal parts of the year let alone being extra-busy during the school holidays. Roadblocks and beeping horns, crowded Wudu and Toilet areas and the sheer footfall are all part and parcel of the typical Jumma. The crowd is largely made up of people not found in the usual daily prayers and this is of course clear to see from the numbers that attend. It’s an opportunity for a large body of Muslims to gather together, receive inspirational guidance, boost the Iman and worship the Lord almighty. It’s also a chance to meet up with the friends and relatives we only get to see once a week at the typical, quick, 2 minute chat outside the Masjid where we make promises to try and see more of each other but are unfortunately seldom able to deliver.
However, what is even more remarkable is the nature and conduct of the Jumma crowd. Abysmal and neglectful parking, pushing, shoving and impatience over bottlenecks at exits are common place albeit something one would least expect at a place of worship. Crooked lines, gaps, general laziness in prayer and the almost weekly insistence by many to sit at the back or against a wall even when there is ample space at the front or middle of a given hall, are amongst the most consistent misdemeanours. The odd scratching of intimate areas not so sensitively and even the odd pick at a toenail or more seem as acceptable as a loud yawn and outstretched legs.