This is a view underneath the Qibly mosque in the Masjid al-Aqsa platform. The stone pillars are believed by some to have been erected by jinnat in the time of Prophet Sulaiman (عليه السلام).
- In Surah Saba’ of the Quran Allah (ﷻ) mentions: “There were jinn that worked under his supervision by the leave of his Lord, and if any of them deviated from Our command, We made him taste of the Penalty of Blazing Fire. They worked for him as he desired, (making) arches, statues, basins as large as reservoirs, and (cooking) cauldrons fived (in their places): ‘Work , family of Dawud, with thanks! But few of My slaves are grateful!” [34:12-13]
- There is an adjacent room which contains a grille (above) through which you can see the floor below where oil was burnt to heat the mosque.
- Maymunah bint Sa’d (رضي الله عنه) relates that she asked the Prophet (ﷺ), “O Prophet (ﷺ)! Inform us about Bayt al-Maqdis”. He said, “Visit it for prayer”. She further asked, “If one of us cannot visit it, what shall we do?” He (ﷺ) said, “If you cannot go for prayer then send some oil to be used in its lamps; whosoever gives oil for its lamps, it will be as if he has prayed in it”. [Imam Ahmad, Ibn Majah, Sunan Abu Dawud and al-Tabarani]
- Jewish tradition holds that the site upon which Masjid al-Aqsa was constructed originally housed the Temple of Jerusalem. The destruction of the First Temple, known as the Temple of Solomon, is attributed to the Babylonians in 587 BCE., and there are no physical remains attesting to its presence or structure. Building of the Second Temple began during the rule of the Persian king Cyrus the Great, but this temple was destroyed by the Roman Emperor (then General) Titus in 70 CE. All that remains of it is the Western Wall, which is thought to be a remnant of this second temple’s platform.
- The basement also houses a library containing around 130,000 books. There are also some 4,000 manuscripts, which were donated from the private collections of Jerusalem families. UNESCO says the library contains “one of the world’s most important collections of Islamic manuscripts”.
- This video shows a walk through the basement of Masjid al-Aqsa:
References: Forty Ahadith concerning Masjid al-Aqsa – Ismail Adam Patel, Al-Quds – Mohammed Abdul Hameed AL-Khateeb,