Islam basically means submission to Allah (The one and only God) and Belief in all the Prophets and their books. Islam teaches that one can only find true peace in one’s life by submitting to the one and only God (Allah) in heart, soul and deed. One who submits to the one and only God and follows Islam, is called a Muslim.
There are 6 pillars of faith in Islam.
The belief in the one and only God, Allah.
The belief in God’s Angels (They are not his partners or equals).
The belief in the Holy Scriptures
The belief in the Messengers
The belief in life after death and the Resurrection
The belief in divine decree (Qadr’)
Please download an “Illustrated Guide to Understanding Islam” which includes the basics on Islam, Allah, Muhammad (pbuh) and also Scientific Miracles in the Quran.
Allah means the one and only God who is worthy of worship. We believe God is one, indivisible, has no associates and has no partners. He is the First and the Last. He is the creator and owner of all things in the entire universe and He is the only One worthy of worship. There is nothing like Him.
The attributes of Allah are described in the Holy Quran, whereby Allah says:
“Allah – there is no deity except Him, the Ever-Living, the Sustainer of [all] existence. Neither drowsiness overtakes Him nor sleep. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. Who is it that can intercede with Him except by His permission? He knows what is [presently] before them and what will be after them, and they encompass not a thing of His knowledge except for what He wills. His Kursi extends over the heavens and the earth, and their preservation tires Him not. And He is the Most High, the Most Great.” [Quran 2:255]
There is also other examples included Chapter 112 of the Holy Quran, whereby Allah says:
Say, “He is Allah , [who is] One, Allah , the Eternal Refuge. He neither begets nor is born, Nor is there to Him any equivalent.” [Quran 112]
We believe the greatness of God is something we cannot imagine, because he was the creator of everything in this universe and more. We believe Allah is the God of all people, the same God of Jesus, the same of God of Abraham, the same God of all Muslims and Christians today, because God is One. Allah is the pinnacle and there is nothing before Him. Allah says in the Quran:
“Allah is He, than Whom there is no other god; Who knows (all things) both secret and open; He, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.”
“Allah is He, than Whom there is no other god; the Sovereign, the Holy One, the Source of Peace (and Perfection), the Guardian of Faith, the Preserver of Safety, the Exalted in Might, the Irresistible, the Supreme: Glory to Allah! (High is He) above the partners they attribute to Him.”
“He is Allah, the Creator, the Evolver, the Bestower of Forms (or Colours). To Him belong the Most Beautiful Names: whatever is in the heavens and on earth, doth declare His Praises and Glory; and He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.”
[Quran 59: 22-24]
We don’t say God is human, because the “human” is a creation, we say God cannot not have children because God does not have attributes of humans nor animals. Allah teaches us that there is nothing like Him at all.
“There is nothing like Him, and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer” [Quran 42:11]
We believe that all Prophets received divine inspiration to propagate the message of “One God”. This includes Adam, Moses, Noah, David, Abraham, Jesus and Muhammad (being the final and seal of all prophets). We do not worship any of the prophets, nor do we say they wrote the messages, they are simply messengers chosen by God to spread the message.
Muhammad is the final Prophet and seal of all Prophets. And was a mercy to mankind, and a man of the highest moral standard.
“And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a mercy to the worlds.” Quran 21:107.
“And indeed, you are of a great moral character.” Quran 68:4
We don’t worship our Prophets, we just follow their teachings, as they are not acting from their own interest, but from what God has inspired them.
“Say (O Mohamed): I am only a man like you. I have been inspired that your God is One God (Allah). So whoever hopes for the meeting with his Lord, let him work righteousness and associate none as a partner in the worship of his Lord.”
What Non Muslim Scholars have said
Sir George Bernard Shaw:
“I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he would succeed in solving the problems in a way that would bring the much needed peace and happiness. Europe is beginning to be enamored of the creed of Muhammad. In the next century it may go further in recognizing the utility of that creed in solving its problems.”
Michael H. Hart of USA, compiled a ranking list of the 100 most influential persons in the history of the entire humanity, who authored book ?The 100 most influential persons”, published in 1978 by Hart Publishing Company Inc. He ranked Muhammad peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, as the number one, at the top of his list.
Following are brief excerpts from the chapter on Muhammad peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. “My choice of Muhammad to lead the best of the world?s most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the religious and secular levels.
“The idea of the unity of God proclaimed amidst the exhaustion of the fabulous theogonies, was in itself such a miracle that upon it’s utterance from his lips it destroyed all the ancient temples of idols and set on fire one-third of the world. His life, his meditations, his heroic revelings against the superstitions of his country, and his boldness in defying the furies of idolatry, his firmness in enduring them for fifteen years in Mecca, his acceptance of the role of public scorn and almost of being a victim of his fellow countrymen… This dogma was twofold the unity of God and the immateriality of God: the former telling what God is, the latter telling what God is not; the one overthrowing false gods with the sword, the other starting an idea with words.”
“Philosopher, Orator, Apostle, Legislator, Conqueror of Ideas, Restorer of Rational beliefs…. The founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one spiritual empire that is Muhammad. As regards all standards by which human greatness may be measured, we may well ask, is there any man greater than he?”. Alphonse de LaMartaine in ‘Historie de la Turquie,’ Paris, 1854.
Sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh)
The most perfect of the believers in faith are the best of them in morals. And the best among them are those who are best to their wives.
None of you believes (completely) until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.
The merciful are shown mercy by the All-Merciful. Show mercy to those on earth, and God will show mercy to you.
Smiling at your brother is charity…
Whoever believes in God and the Last Day (the Day of Judgment) should do good to his neighbor.
God does not judge you according to your appearance and your wealth, but He looks at your hearts and looks into your deeds.
For starters, Muslims are Christians – if “Christian” means someone following the teachings of Christ, so by learning about Islam you are not disobeying Jesus.
For example the Quran forbids Swine, (Holy Quran 2:173) and so too does the bible (Deuteronomy 14:8). This is also the case with interest whereby it is forbidden in the Quran 3:130 and also in Deutronomy 19:20. This is the case of many others aswell. So why is it that Muslims are the only one’s forbidding swine and forbidding Interest – as Jesus taught?
Muslims are following the teachings of Jesus, while most Christians have began to follow the Church – this is why the Quran needed to be revealed. (Holy Quran 9:31)
Does son of God mean begotten son of God?
For starters the word begotten has officially been removed from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible.
John (5:7) For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.
John (3:16) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
(These verses do not exist anymore in the RSV).
In the bible it also states that God has many sons (Luke 3:38), and in my opinion there is nothing wrong with this. As long as you are referring to sons as in followers of God. What makes Jesus more of a miracle than Adam? (who had no father nor mother). To God it is simple “be and it is” (Holy Quran 2:117).
For example, Jesus never said I am God worship me, rather he would say statements such as “OUR father who art in heaven”, and not MY father. I have also posted the link to one of the first Bible’s which states that Jesus is the servant of God.
This verse is also found in the Quran.
“I am a servant of Allah. He will reveal the Book to me and make me a prophet. He blessed me wherever I am. In the rules revealed to me there will be a special attention given to prayers and charity. Allah predestined that I will be kind to my mother and not a tyrant with a bad ending. Peace was on me the day I was born, peace will be on me on the day I will die, and on the day I am raised alive again!”
Holy Qur’an, Chapter 19 Maryam, verse 30-33
Did Jesus ever speak of Muhammad?
Jesus has said that “Every spirit (meaning every prophet) that confesses that Jesus Christ is come in flesh is of God (John 4:2). Muhammad did indeed confess Jesus Christ as a messenger of God.
Muhammad is also mentioned by name in (Song of Solomon 5:16). In the original Hebrew transcript it clearly states the word “Muhammad” when Solomon is talking about His “friend” and “how sweet his words are”.
Also in the prophecy of Jesus he states that a spirit is to come after him and reside as “The comforter”.
Many Christians claim that due to the presence of the word spirit, we must conclude that it is reffering to the Holy Spirit. However in Revelation 1:4, Seven spirits are mentioned. As there is only one “Holy spirit” (according to Christian belief), we cannot conclude on this statement so easily.
Also the comforter is described with 8 masculine pronouns (“He”), nowhere else in the bible is the Holy Spirit referred to in such terminology as the “Holy Spirit” is neither male nor female and is regarded as “it”. Therefore the assumption that it is referring to a man, would be quite possible.
Let’s take a further look.
When the Comforter comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me” John 15;26
Muhammad testified that Jesus was of God.
“But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Comforter will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment” John 16; 7,8
Muhammad came after Jesus and did indeed convict righteousness and judgement, while the Holy Spirit was present the entire time even during the birth of Jesus and his ministry. (Elizabeth in Luke 1:41 and Zechariah in Luke 1:67). If Christians still want to argue that it is indeed the Holy Spirit, then they must admit their bible has been corrupted as there is a clear inconsistency.
But when he, the Spirit of Truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own, he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it know to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you. John 16:13-15
Muhammad did not speak of his own (Holy Quran 69:41-46). He also spoke of what he heard from Angel Gabriel, and he told us of what is yet to come. This verse is also clearly referring to a spirit that can speak, while the Holy Spirit is incapable of speech as it only groans and utters words which are in-comprehensive (Romans 8: 25-30). As mentioned before he did enforce what Jesus had enforced aswell, and did spread the same message as Jesus.
The comforter was also to reside with us forever. This is in tune with the Quran that Muhammad is the final messenger, the Quran is the final testament, and the message will remain forever.
His teachings are in tune with the Quran, the Quran IS the final testament. So what is stopping you from accepting Muhammad, when Jesus told you to. I hope I have shed light on this.
And (remember) when Allâh will say (on the Day of Resurrection): “O ‘?s? (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary)! Did you say unto men: ‘Worship me and my mother as two gods besides Allâh?’ ” He will say: “Glory be to You! It was not for me to say what I had no right (to say). Had I said such a thing, You would surely have known it. You know what is in my inner-self though I do not know what is in Yours, truly, You, only You, are the All-Knower of all that is hidden (and unseen). “Never did I say to them aught except what You (Allâh) did command me to say: ‘Worship Allâh, my Lord and your Lord.’ And I was a witness over them while I dwelt amongst them, but when You took me up, You were the Watcher over them, and You are a Witness to all things. – Holy Qur’an 5:116-117
Please remember Islam = following Jesus. Muhammad confirmed Jesus.
Have you ever wondered why a nun can be covered from head to toe and she’s respected for devoting herself to God, but when a Muslim woman covers, she’s viewed as “oppressed”? Or why a Jew can grow a beard and he’s just practicing his faith, and when a Muslim does that, he’s an “extremist”?
People in the west seem to have many misconceptions about Muslims and Islam. Many believe that the western world is advanced, enlightened and liberated, while Islam is just the opposite: primitive, ignorant and oppressed. One reason for this belief is that the media has time and again portrayed the Muslims in a way contrary to Islamic teachings. The key to understanding Islam and Muslims is to resist stereotypes and examine each situation according to Islamic teachings, and NOT some Muslims’ actions. For this reason, we have felt it our duty to address the most common misconceptions.
IS HIJAB OPPRESSIVE?
So what exactly is hijab? To observe the hijab, Muslim women are required to cover their body with modest clothes that don’t reveal their figure in front of male strangers. However, hijab is not just about outer appearances; it is also about noble speech, modesty, dignified and righteous conduct. It goes without saying that these manners are also required of men. There is nothing in hijab that restricts a Muslim woman’s freedom to express her views and opinion, to own property, to have an education and a career, or to choose a husband. The
hijab is an act of honour and dignity, an empowerment, and a guarantee that a woman will be judged according to her inner spiritual beauty rather than her outer superficial appearance. The hijab liberates and raises a woman’s status, and demands that she be judged according to her intellect rather than her sexuality. The reason Muslim women observe hijab is simply because Allah
(God) made it a compulsory act of worship for them, and Allah knows what is best for His creation. The hijab gives women the freedom to be active members of society, while maintaining their modesty. The hijab is meant for the public, as women do not have to observe hijab when they are at home with their family!
The hijab does not symbolize suppression, oppression or silence. Rather, it is a shield guarding against degrading remarks, unwanted advances and unfair
discrimination. Of all converts to Islam, 75% are women! Would you enter a religion that oppresses you? So the next time you see a Muslim woman, know that she covers her physical appearance, not her mind or intellect!
“Oh Prophet, tell your wives and daughters and the believing women to draw their outer garments around them (when they go out or are among men). That is better in order that they may be known (to be Muslims) and not abused” Quran 33:59
ISLAM OPPRESSES WOMEN
One of the most disturbing misconceptions is the negative portrayal of women in Islam – namely that Islam degrades and oppresses women. According to the teachings of Islam, the only thing that distinguishes people in the sight of God is their level of piety.
“Verily the most honourable of you in the sight of God is the most God conscious” Qur’an 49:13
This verse proves that real honour and status is not attained because a person is rich or poor, black or white, male or female but attained through piety and devoutness. Therefore, it comes as no surprise to learn that for every male convert to Islam, four females convert. Some reasons for this overwhelming female conversion rate are due to the following rights enshrined in Islam:
• total control of their wealth;
• choose their spouse;
• keep their own surname when married;
• own property, operate a business, study, and receive equal pay for equal work;
• inherit property, and to have their marriage dissolved in the case of neglect or mistreatment;
• participate in all forms of worship that men participate in.
Islam guaranteed these rights, among many others, to women over 1400 years ago – rights that women in the West are still lacking.
“Whoever works righteousness whether male or female, while he (or she) is a believer – We will surely cause him to live a good life, and We will surely give them their reward (in the Hereafter) according to the best of what they used to do.” Quran 16:97
Without doubt, there are Muslim women who are oppressed and not given their rights. However, this is not the fault of Islam. The problem is that in many places in the world, culture and traditions have come to overshadow the teachings of Islam, either through ignorance or harmful cultural practices.
While Islam enshrines the rights of women, it also acknowledges the fact that men and women are not identical. Allah says: “And the male is not like the female…” (Qur’an: 3:36)
Islam has therefore ordained different roles for men and women to reflect this undisputable fact. Women have been granted the honour and tremendous responsibility of caring for the family and the household. While men have been given the responsibility of providing financial support, security and maintenance for the family and the household.
In conclusion, the noble position of women in Islam can be summarised by the following saying of the Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him):
”The world and all things in the world are precious, but the most precious thing in the world is a virtuous woman.”
MUSLIMS WORSHIP A NEW GOD CALLED ALLAH
Some non-Muslims incorrectly believe that Muslims worship a different God than Jews and Christians. This might be due to the fact that Muslims sometimes refer to God as “Allah”. In actuality, Muslims worship the God of Noah, Abraham, Moses and Jesus. The word “Allah” is simply the Arabic word for Almighty God – an Arabic word of rich meaning, denoting the One and only God. Allah is also the same word that Arabic speaking Christians and Jews use to refer to God. If you pick up an Arabic translation of the Christian Bible, you will see the word “Allah” where “God” is used in English.
However, although Muslims, Jews and Christians believe in the same God (the Creator), their concepts regarding Him differ significantly. For example, Muslims reject the idea of God having any partners or being part of a ‘trinity’, and ascribe perfection only to The Almighty.
ISLAM PERMITS TERRORISM
This is perhaps the biggest misconception about Islam, especially given the constant stereotyping by the media. The media portrays as a terrorist any Muslim who fights regardless of whether they fight justly or unjustly, or whether they are oppressing others or being oppressed. So the question that comes to mind is: Does Islam encourage terrorism? Certainly not! Islam totally forbids and condemns the misguided acts of vigilantes that target innocent civilians.
Of course, Islam does not remain silent in the face of oppression, injustice and humiliation. Any religion or civilisation that does, would never survive — but it certainly does not condone attacks against defenseless men, women and children.
Allah says: “Fight in thecause of Allah against those who fight you, but do not transgress limits. Allah does not love transgressors:’ Quran 2:190
Even during times of war, Islam lays down strict rules. For example, a Muslim is not allowed to harm or kill those in a peace treaty with Muslims, non-combatants, women, minors, servants, the blind, monks, the elderly, those physically incapable of fighting, and the mentally ill. In fact, Muslims are not even allowed to damage crops and vegetation during times of war! These noble ethics were, and still remain, unheard of in any army.
The Qur’an clearly demonstrates the seriousness of killing an innocent person, and emphasises the value of human life. At the same time it a/so instructs Muslims to treat people of other faiths with kindness.
“If anyone murders an (innocent) person, it will be as if he has murdered the whole of humanity. And if anyone saves a person it will be as if he has saved the whole of humanity.” Qur’an 5:32
“Allah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion, nor drove you out of your homes. Indeed, Allah loves those who deal with equity.” Quran 60:8
How, after reading these clear verses of the Qur’an, can Islam be blamed for what is done by terrorists?
So many attempts have been made to portray Islam as a religion that is both strange and foreign to people’s normal instincts and values. In deciding upon what to make of Islam, remember this:
• Who stands to gain from perpetuating such misconceptions and untruths?
• Have you researched about Islam yourself, as opposed to what you have heard from others and the media?
• Would millions of people all over the world embrace Islam if it was a harsh and inhumane way of life?
*Article courtesy of IDCA
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