Many websites claim that some school children in Holland had to learn "how to pray in a mosque".

Is this claim true?

  • 7
    Is it really true that in some countries educated people don't know how to place their forehead on the floor?
    – Jon Hanna
    Mar 21, 2017 at 10:59
  • 3
    @JonHanna The key is bowing in the direction of the Black Stone in Mecca en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Stone "bowing to or kissing such sacred objects is repeatedly described in the Tanakh as idolatrous". So for Jews and Christians it may be against their conscience to bow toward Mecca.
    – DavePhD
    Mar 21, 2017 at 11:51
  • @DavePhD Sure, but on the other hand Jerusalem is pretty sacred to both Jews and Christians; and in Netherland and rest of Central and Northern Europe - as well in the USA - I think both Mecca and Jerusalem would be in the same general direction... A few degrees off, and God alone knows where you're facing. Mar 21, 2017 at 18:35
  • @BaardKopperud It's true that Daniel prayed in the direction of Jerusalem (Daniel 6:6-10), but this was in defiance of being told to pray only to Darius. The conscience of some will require them to resist as Daniel did, and not bow in the direction of the Black Stone and Kaaba of Mecca.
    – DavePhD
    Mar 21, 2017 at 19:10
  • You mean they were not forced to learn how to pray in a christian church? Mar 28, 2017 at 13:09

1 Answer 1


Children from Openbare basisschool (obs) Vinkenbuurt were taken (in the sense of a field trip) to Gulzar-e-Madina Mosque in Zwolle.

See the article OBS Vinkenbuurt maakt kennis met andere culturen :

Als onderdeel van het project ‘andere culturen’ hebben leerlingen van OBS Vinkenbuurt een bezoek gebracht aan de Ghulzar-e-Madina moskee in Zwolle. Daar gaf imam Mawlana Tahier Wagid Hosain Noorani een rondleiding in zijn moskee. Alle vragen die de leerlingen hadden werden op een leuke en begrijpelijke manier beantwoord. De leerlingen van OBS Vinkenbuurt probeerden ook het Arabische alfabet na te zeggen. Ook hebben ze ervaren hoe het is om te bidden. Ze hebben tijdens het bezoek veel geleerd over de Islam.


As part of the project 'other cultures', pupils at OBS Vinkenbuurt have visited the Ghulzar-e-Madina mosque in Zwolle. There, Imam Mawlana Tahier Wagid Hosain Noorani gave a tour of his mosque. All the questions the pupils had were answered in a fun and understandable way. The pupils of OBS Vinkenbuurt also tried to say the Arabic alphabet. They also experience what it is like to pray. They have learned a lot about Islam during the visit.

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A video of the visit shows that the students are learning/practicing the physical aspect of how to bow and kneel in a mosque. Three girls (see at 1:39) do not participate in the bowing and kneeling.

  • 10
    Did they learn a prayer, or just perform the motions of a prayer? Mar 20, 2017 at 19:13
  • 3
    @iamnotmaynard according to Al Arabiya, the children are "being taught how to pray" english.alarabiya.net/en/media/digital/2016/12/31/…
    – DavePhD
    Mar 20, 2017 at 19:49
  • 77
    On a field trip to a fire station, children are also taught how to use the firehose, but they aren't actually "learning" to put out fires.
    – user23048
    Mar 20, 2017 at 20:29
  • 7
    The bottom of the video, at the beginning, says "gr 5-6". In Holland gr 1 is age 4, so gr 5-6 are aged about 8-9 years old, which is about how old they look to me. So, "not permitted to" for that reason doesn't seem likely. "Not required to" seems more likely.
    – ChrisW
    Mar 21, 2017 at 1:40
  • 7
    Just want to point out that they are not "required", they have been given a tour and shown how to pray but I don't see any evidence that they've been required to learn the prayer. Also, unrelated to the claim, the muslim prayer is pretty much like any other prayer - a bunch of praises/admiration for God, it's not like they've been indoctrinated to join ISIS...
    – ventsyv
    Mar 21, 2017 at 13:40

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