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Never-Seen-Before Images of Black Stone Released

High resolution photos have been revealed for the first time of an ancient Black Stone in the Grand Mosque in Makkah.

The project used a technique called focus stacking, which combines multiple photos with different focus points to keep the finished product sharp, according to Digital Photography School.

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“It’s significant because in a sense this is unprecedented,” Afifi al-Akiti, a fellow in Islamic studies at the University of Oxford, who wasn’t involved in the project, told CNN.

“One sees that it’s not actually black, for example… As I understand it, it’s the first time there is a magnified digital photo of the stone and one can see the stone up close and personal,” al-Akiti said.

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“In the Muslim tradition, this is considered to be a holy relic, but reason plays a major role in the Muslim tradition… So while it is unprecedented to see a picture of the stone, I think Muslims are down to Earth and science plays a major role in the religion,” he added.

Significance of the Black Stone

The Black Stone, also known as Hajr-e-Aswad, is a stone bestowed down from the heaven. It is not an ordinary stone; Muslims have affiliations with it.

The stone is located at the eastern cornerstone of the Holy Ka’bah.

Muslims around the world try to kiss it and see it whenever they visit Makkah for Hajj or Umrah. The stone is now held safe in a silver frame.

Visitors can see through the opening of the frame. It is considered sacred as it was set by the Holy Prophet (PBUH) and is blessed from heavens. It is also known as the foundation stone of Holy Ka’bah.

“The stone originally was apparently white, not black. It’s thought mankind touching the stone and seeking forgiveness from God is the reason the stone is black, reflecting the sins of humanity, according to Muslim sources,” said al-Akiti.