November 16, 2010


Being in a huge crowd for a shared experience feels almost surreal. It gives you a tangible feeling of the importance of right now. I experienced this in downtown Chicago when Obama was elected President and to a lesser extent when I marched with WTO protesters. You look around and  just sort of feel amazed at the power and electricity of the crowd. When Obama won at most there were a quarter million people in Grant Park celebrating. During this year's annual Hajj in Mecca, Saudi Arabia they are expecting 3.4 million Muslims to come together in their pilgrimage. That's like every single person in Chicago going downtown to the rally. That is an amazing number and I can't imagine the intensity of feeling that must be taking place in those individuals as they peacefully march towards the same place for the same purpose. I'd love to experience that feeling someday but I'd feel a little disingenuous being an atheist and all, so I'll just wonder. Below are a few photos I took from here.


  1. great pic - mind you there have been a few instances of people being crushed to death at Mecca

  2. wow, that is a hefty group,

    I have experienced this at rallies, it is quite the feeling to know so many people are there for the same purpose, and you might not know anyone but you are all connected.

  3. :O Wow, all those people! The town must go absolutely INSANE for Hajj. That feeling is awesome, its why I love watching the new year fireworks in the Octagon. 3-2-1 HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

    Mmmmm everything is alright with enough vodka. Except for alcohol poisoning, but that just proves the rule, amiright?

  4. I've seen many photos taken by friends of Mecca and the new building there. To say it's spectacular doesn't even begin to describe it. I would like that experience too, Chris, although I'm afraid I might develop a little bit of claustrophobia. lol

  5. Wow. That's incredible. I have never been in such a massive crowd for a cause, but I have a feeling it would be an extremely emotional experience. These photos are amazing.

  6. Amazing. I look at those pictures and the only thing that comes to my mind is WOW!!
    Awesome pictures.

  7. Wow! All those people. Those people, I think, are trying to set up or break world records. You know those silly records like the most people who did aerobics together. Hmm...

    Or maybe they're just tooooo religious, which I find scary.

  8. David: Yea, that doesn't surprise me at all. If people can get stomped to death at Wal-Mart I'm sure it's happened there.

    Penny: Yea, I can see how the mob mentality develops. Now I just need to get involved in a good riot.

    Peridot: It's not just the town, every Muslim in the world is supposed to make the pilgrimage at least once if I understand correctly. And yes, vodka is cool.

    Robyn: Ha! Yea I like my personal space. I get the feeling the closer-talkers would be unavoidable.

    Jennifer: Yea, it's gotta be incredibly intense!

    Choleesa: Yea, they look really incredible. Just a sea of people.

    Oliver: Yes, well after the pilgrimage they're all going to cram into a phone booth.


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