Introduction to Islam
Islam is a Semitic religion, which has over one billion adherents all over the world. Islam means “submission to the will of God”. Muslims accept the Qur’an, as the word of God revealed to His last and final prophet, Mohammed (peace be upon him). Islam states that Allah sent messengers and prophets throughout the ages with the message of Unity of God, and accountability in the Hereafter. Islam thus makes it an article of faith to believe in all the earlier prophets, starting with Adam, and continuing with Noah, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, John and Jesus amongst many others (may peace be on them all).
What is Islam?
The Arabic word ‘ Islam’ stands for ‘Submission’ or ‘Peace’. In a religious context, it implies the peace that reaches out to one when one completely submits oneself to the will of Almighty God. This is achieved only when the individual acts in accordance with the direction of his Creator in all spheres of life.
Who is the founder of Islam?
The Almighty God who created the universe, endowed man with a special gift of intelligence and thought, to enable him to discriminate between good and bad. Man has also been given, the freedom to choose his own path by either accepting or rejecting the instructions of the Almighty Creator. The divine revelations were conveyed by God to mankind through numerous prophets who preached the ideals to all communities during different periods of human history. The thousands of prophets whom God selected for human guidance have promulgated the basic doctrine with remarkable similarity. The belief in and the profound reverence for all messengers and revealed scriptures from God forms an integral part of Islamic faith. Islam is not a religion founded by Prophet Mohammed, (Peace Be Upon Him). The Qur’an has most emphatically corroborated the fact that the Islamic conception of life was revealed to man by a long chain of prophets chosen by the Almighty Creator.
Who is Muslim?
The word ‘Muslim’ means one who has submitted oneself to the Omnipotent Creator. A true Muslim is one who has disciplined his life in accordance with the instructions conveyed by God through His messengers. A person becomes a Muslim not by birth alone, but by his faith and deeds.
How can one be a Muslim?
“I testify that there is none who deserves to be worshipped but Allah. I testify that Mohammed is the messenger of Allah”. By taking this solemn oath sincerely and endeavoring to regulate one’s life following the instructions conveyed by Allah through his messengers, one becomes a true Muslim. By declaring that there is none worthy of worship save Allah, and that Mohammed is the Prophet of Allah, the believer announces his or her faith in God’s oneness, His sole right to be worshipped and that Muhammed is the last of the prophets. It also confirms his or her belief in all prophets and the scriptures they brought.
“O people! Worship your Guardian Lord, Who created you and those who came before you that you may become righteous. Who has made the earth your couch, and the heavens your canopy; and sent down rain from the heavens; and brought forth therewith fruits for your sustenance; Then set not up rivals unto Allah when you know (the truth).” Holy Qur’an 2:21, 22
What are the Islamic beliefs?
Muslims believe in one, unique, incomparable God, in the angels created by Him, in the revealed Scriptures, in the prophets through whom His revelations were made to mankind, in the Day of Judgement and life after death, individual accountability for actions, and in God’s complete authority over human destiny.