One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The one-night ascent of the prophet Muhammad through the seven heavens to the presence of God, following his nocturnal transportation to Jerusalem from Mecca, to which, on the same night, he was then taken back.
Mid 19th century. From Arabic miʿrāj, lit. ‘ladder’ (in this context, al-miʿrāj the ascent), noun of instrument from ʿaraja to ascend.
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