The eternal and universal religion of more
than one billion people from every race and nationality.
U.K.I.M. DAWAH CENTRE
Freepost, 401, Alum Rock Road
Birmingham, 88 3DT (UK)
Tel/Fax: 0121-326 9936
IN A NUTSHELL
“Say: We believe in Allah (God
Almighty) and that which was revealed to Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and
Jacob and the tribes and that which was given to Moses and Jesus
and to the Prophets from their Lord; we make no distinction between any of
them, and to Him (God) we submit.” (Holy Qur′an 3:83)
MUSLIMIslam is an Arabic word which means peace, purity, acceptance and
commitment. The religion of Islam is the complete acceptance of the
teachings and the guidance of God, (i.e. surrender to the Will of Allah).
A Muslim is one who accepts freely and
willingly the supreme power of Allah and strives for total re-organisation
of his life according to the revealed teachings of God. He also works
towards the establishment of a just social order which would totally
reflect the guidance of God. CONTINUITY
OF MESSAGEIslam is not a new religion. It is in essence the same message and
guidance which Allah revealed to all His Prophets.
believe in Allah and that which was revealed to Abraham and Ishmael and
Isaac and Jacob and the tribes and that which was given to Moses and Jesus
and to the Prophets from their Lord; we make no distinction between any of
them, and to Him we submit.′ (Holy Qur′an 3:83)
The message which was revealed to
Muhammad, the last Prophet, is Islam in its comprehensive, complete and
PILLARS OF ISLAMEvery action which is done with the awareness that it fulfils the
will of Allah is considered an act of worship in Islam. Nevertheless, the
specific acts of worship, termed the pillars of Islam, provide the framework
of spiritual life.
They are the following:
1. The declaration of faith: I
bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that
Muhammad is His servant and messenger; the prophethood of Muhammad
obliges the Muslims to follow his exemplary life in every way.
2. Prayers are prescribed five times a
day as a duty towards Allah. They strengthen and enliven the belief in
Allah and inspire man to a higher morality. They purify the heart and
control the temptation towards wrong doing and evil. It should be stressed
that while Allah does not need our prayers we cannot survive without His
blessings and guidance. “0 you who believe! Seek help with patient
perseverance and prayer, for Allah is with those who patiently persevere.”
(Holy Qur'an 2:153)
3. Fasting is observed once each year
during the month of Ramadaan. This means abstention from food, drink and
intimate marital relationship from dawn to sunset. and also from evil
intentions and desires. It teaches love, sincerity and devotion. It
develops a sound social conscience, patience, unselfishness and willpower.
When we fast by choice. Allah remembers our sacrifice.
4. Zakaat - payment annually of 2.5%
of one's net savings as a purifying sum to be spent on the poor and needy.
Zakaat implies that everything man possesses belongs to Allah and
therefore anyone in need has a share in it.
5. Pilgrimage (Hajj) to Makkah - once
in a lifetime provided one has the means to do so. Hajj implies man's
temporary suspension of all worldly activities and his realisation of
himself as a naked soul in front of Allah alone.
ONENESS OF GODIslam enjoins faith in the Oneness and Sovereignty of God, which
makes man aware of the meaningfulness of the Universe and his place in it.
This belief frees him from all fears and superstitions by making him
conscious of the presence of Almighty Allah and of man's obligations towards
Him. Belief in one God requires that we look upon all humanity as one family
irrespective of colour, class, race or territory, under the Omnipotence of
Allah the Creator and Nourisher of all. Islam rejects the idea of a chosen
people, making faith in Allah and good action the only way to Heaven. Thus a
direct relationship is established with Allah, open to all alike, without
MAN, THE FREE
AGENTMan is the highest creation of Allah and chooses his own way.
Created with the highest potentialities, man is left relatively free in his
will, action and choice. Allah has shown him the right path and the life of
Prophet Muhammad provides a perfect example. Man's success and salvation
lies in following them. Islam teaches the sanctity of the human personality
and confers equal rights upon all without any distinction of race or sex.
The law of Allah, enunciated in the
Qur'an′ an and exemplified in the life of the Prophet, is supreme in all
cases. It applies equally to the highest and the lowest, the prince and
the peasant, the ruler and the ruled.
DEATHThe world according to Islam, is a place of trial and man is being
judged in it. Man is accountable to Allah for all that he does herein. Life
on earth will, one day, come to an end: and after that a new world will be
resurrected. It will be in this Life after Death that man will be rewarded
or punished for his deeds and misdeeds. Allah will judge man on the day of
existence which leads to further blessings. or to Hell, a stage of suffering
Qur′an is the last revealed Word of Allah and as such affirms and
completes the total process of revelation which has come from the Divine
Guidance for the human race. The Qur′an is the basic source of Islamic
teachings and laws and deals with the bases of creed, morality, history of
humanity, worship. knowledge, wisdom, the God-man relation, and human
relationship, in all aspects. Comprehensive teachings on which sound
systems of social justice, economics, politics, legislation,
jurisprudence, law and international relations can be built, are important
contents of the Holy Qur′an. Prophet Muhammad himself was an unlettered
man who could not read or write. The Holy Qur′an was revealed to him
piece-meal over a period of 23 years and committed to memory and writing
by his followers under his supervision during his lifetime. The original
and complete text of the Qur′an is available to everybody in Arabic, the
language in which it was revealed. Translations of the meaning into many
languages are widely used.
Hadith, the teachings, sayings and
actions of the Prophet Muhammad, meticulously reported and collected by
his devoted companions, explain and elaborate the Qur'anic verses.
WORSHIPIslam does not teach or accept mere ritualism. It emphasises
intention and action. To worship Allah is to know Him and love Him, to act
upon His laws in every aspect of life, to enjoin goodness and forbid evil
and oppression, to practice charity and justice and to serve Him by
serving mankind. Islam seeks to implant in man's heart the strongest
conviction that his every thought and action are known by Allah, Who sees
him at all times and in all places. |
The Qur′an presents this concept in the
following sublime manner: “It is not righteousness that you turn your
faces to the East or to the West, but righteous is he who believes in
Allah and the Last Day the Angels and the Books and the Prophets; and
gives his wealth for the love of Him to kinsfolk and to orphans and the
needy and the wayfarer and to those who ask, and to set slaves free; and
observes proper worship and pays the Zakaat. And those who keep their
treaty when they make one, and they are patient in the tribulation and
adversity and time of stress. Such are those who are God-fearing;”
(Holy Qur′an 2:177)
WAY OF LIFEIslam provides definite guidelines for all people to follow in all
walks of life. The guidance it gives is comprehensive and includes the
social, economic, political, moral and spiritual aspects of life.
The Qur′an reminds man of the purpose
of life on earth, and his duties and obligations towards himself, his kith
and kin, his community. his fellow human beings and his Creator. Man is
given fundamental guidelines about a purposeful life and then he is left
with the challenge of human existence before him so that he might put
these high ideals into practice. In Islam man is a wholesome, integrated
unit and not a collection of fragmented, competitive parts. The sacred and
secular are not separate parts of man; they are united in the nature of
PERSPECTIVEMuhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) was born in the year
570 A.C. in Makkah, Arabia. He came from a noble Arab family. He received
the first revelation at the age of forty. As soon as he started preaching
Islam, he and his followers were persecuted and had to face severe
hardships. He was therefore commanded to migrate to Madinah, another city
in Arabia. During a short span of 23 years, he completed his prophethood
and died at the age of 63. He was put to rest in the city of Madinah. He
left no wealth or property. He led a perfect life and set an example for
all human beings. His biography illustrates in real life. the meaning and
implications of the Qur′anic teachings.
RATIONAL APPEALIslam is a simple, rational and practical religion. The unity of
God, the Prophethood of Muhammad and the concept of life after death are
the basic articles of faith. There is no hierarchy of priests and there
are no complicated rites and rituals. Everybody may approach the Quran
directly and translate its dictates into practice.
Islam stands for the middle path and
the goal of producing a moral man in the service of a just society.
"Our Lord! Give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter"
(Holy Qur′an 2:201)
Islam guides towards a better and
complete life glorifying in all Its phases Allah, the Almighty Creator.
STATUS OF WOMEN
No discrimination is made on the basis of sex. Islam recognises that the
sphere of potential capabilities and hence responsibilities of men and
women are equally important in themselves but not exactly the same. The
roles of men and women are complementary to each other.
AND DIVORCEMarriage is a very important and sacred bond of relationship
between man and woman and a step towards a better, purer and happier life.
Islam gives both man and woman full right to divorce. Nevertheless divorce
is discouraged and is allowed as the last resort. Islam allows limited
polygamy only as a remedy subject to certain conditions.
JIHADJihad consists in exerting oneself to the utmost in order to
personally follow the teachings of Islam. A Muslim, therefore expends all
the powers of body and soul, his wealth, possessions and even life in the
fight against the evil forces of the world in order that injustice,
oppression and contumacy are annihilated and Allah's just order is
established. Therefore to struggle in the path of Allah with the pen;
speech or the sword is Jihad.
“What has happened to you? Why
don't you fight in the way of Allah in support of men, women and children,
whom finding helpless. they have repressed; and who pray, "0 Allah!
liberate us from this habitation which is ruled by tyrants.”
(Holy Qur′an 4:75)
Islam has come to liberate man from
the worship of man and establish the worship of Allah.
ISLAM - THE
SOLUTION FOR MODERN PROBLEMS
major problem which modern man faces is that of racism. The materially
advanced nations can send man to the moon but they cannot stop man from
hating and fighting his fellow man. Islam, over the last 1400 years, has
shown in practice how racism can be ended. Every year During the Hajj, the
Islamic miracle of the real brotherhood of all races and nations can be
seen in action.
THE FAMILYThe family which is the basic unit of civilisation is
disintegrating in all western countries. Islam's family system brings into
a fine equilibrium the rights of man, wife, children and relatives. Islam
nourishes human unselfishness, generosity and love in a well organised
Human beings live according to their
view of life. The tragedy of secular societies is that they fail to
connect the different aspects of life. The secular and the religious, the
scientific and the spiritual seem to be in conflict. Islam puts an end to
this conflict and brings harmony to man's vision of life.
CONCLUSIONWhat is the state of the world today? Has man
freed himself from all superstitions, imbecilities and absurd beliefs? Has
he discovered the man from within himself? Has he liberated himself from
the yoke of worldly tyrants indulging in the exploitation of man by man?
If such a millennium has not been achieved despite all the developments in
science and technology, then Islam has still a great and glorious part to