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M.S. (Ophthalmology)            Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
2         Understanding Islam: An Introduction                                © All rights reserved.   No part of this boo...
Understanding Islam: An introduction      3                      VÉÇàxÇàá01.   Islam: The primordial religion             ...
4     Understanding Islam: An Introduction                  ÇáÑ|Ütà|ÉÇSay you, ‘Come I will rehearse to you what your Lord...
Understanding Islam: An introduction       5 In the name of Allah, Extremely Compassionate, The MercifulIslam is a volunta...
6      Understanding Islam: An Introductionpeople have the misconception that Islam is a new religion thatcame into existe...
Understanding Islam: An introduction         7about Allah       , angels, paradise, hell, etc. can not beanswered without ...
8      Understanding Islam: An IntroductionOne of the beautiful names of Allah           is Al Salaam (     )which means t...
Understanding Islam: An introduction         9geographical or racial considerations, as long as there is nooppression agai...
10      Understanding Islam: An Introductionby Allah       and descended in verses. Gods messages are notconveyed by sound...
Understanding Islam: An introduction         11Hebrew and Arabic are all Semitic languages with commonorigins.            ...
12      Understanding Islam: An Introduction      given in this chapter are unique, false gods and pretendersto divinity c...
Understanding Islam: An introduction          13But those who obey Allahs orders and keep away from what He has forbidden ...
14      Understanding Islam: An IntroductionAs a matter of fact, Islam does not think much of mere ritualswhen they are pe...
Understanding Islam: An introduction          15           Religion Islam: The objectivesSo bring yourself to the upright ...
16      Understanding Islam: An IntroductionThe purpose of our life is to please Allah  . To attain this weneed to develop...
Understanding Islam: An introduction        17without having knowledge of Hinduism and remain a Brahmin.But a sane and adu...
18      Understanding Islam: An IntroductionMoreover, Allah            has made everything in the Universesubservient to u...
Understanding Islam: An introduction         19When we look carefully at the religion of Islam we find that carehas been t...
20      Understanding Islam: An Introduction The Prophet                said, “The religion (of Islam) is easy, and whoeve...
Understanding Islam: An introduction         21Islam provides moral guidance in all walks of life. That is whyIslamic valu...
22      Understanding Islam: An Introductionagainst Islamic teachings, but we can repent and pray to Allah       for forgi...
Understanding Islam: An introduction         23We must not abuse or speak ill of other religious leaders, norsay anything ...
24         Understanding Islam: An IntroductionSince its inception, Islam has placed a high value on humanrights. Privacy,...
Understanding Islam: An introduction          25own lives. Islam has always been about moderation, balance,and taking the ...
26      Understanding Islam: An Introduction                  Mankind was one community      (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 –...
Understanding Islam: An introduction       27this world and there will not be a single human being who diesof hunger. A pe...
28      Understanding Islam: An Introductionworships Muhammad             . Muslims revere him but donot worship Prophet M...
Understanding Islam: An introduction         29entrenched in his heart and he gives practical credence to thesethrough his...
30      Understanding Islam: An Introduction    Does man (a disbeliever) think that We are not capable ofreassembling his ...
Understanding Islam: An introduction           31hand, the evil deeds whose effects and consequences blight thelives of mi...
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  1. 1. M.S. (Ophthalmology) Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  2. 2. 2 Understanding Islam: An Introduction © All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying or recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without permission in writing by the publisher.UNDERSTANDING ISLAMCompiled By: Maulana Usaidul Haq QadriEdited & Dr. Amirul HaqueTranslated by:First Edition: 2010Publisher: TAJUL FUHUL ACADEMY BUDAUNDistributor: MAKTABA JAAM-E-NOOR 422, Matia Mahal, Jama Masjid, Delhi-6 For more information, please contact: TAJUL FUHUL ACADEMY Madarsa Alia Qadria, Maulvi Mahalla, Budaun-243601, (U.P.) India Phone : 0091 9358563720 Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  3. 3. Understanding Islam: An introduction 3 VÉÇàxÇàá01. Islam: The primordial religion ….. 502. Role of Prophets ….. 603. Islam: What does it mean? ….. 704. Islam: The religion of peace ….. 805. Components of Islam ….. 906. Allah: the proper name of God ….. 1007. Islam rejects philosophy of ….. 11 anthropomorphism08. The concept of God in Islam ….. 1109. Islamic concept of worship ….. 1310. Ideology of Islam ….. 1411. Objectives of Islam ….. 1512. Message of Islam ….. 1613. Significance of acquiring knowledge in Islam ….. 1714. Islam: Easy approach ….. 1815. Islam: Easy by nature ….. 1916. Purpose of life: An Islamic perspective ….. 2017. Islam: A guideline for successful life ….. 2018. Islamic way of life: Dos and Donts ….. 2119. Human rights in Islam ….. 2320. Islam favours free will and choice ….. 2421. Freedom of thought and expression in Islam ….. 2522. Islam preaches universal brotherhood ….. 2623. Muhammedanism: a misnomer ….. 2724. Muslim: The believer ….. 2825. Life after death ….. 2926. Conclusion ….. 31 Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  4. 4. 4 Understanding Islam: An Introduction ÇáÑ|Ütà|ÉÇSay you, ‘Come I will rehearse to you what your Lord hasforbidden to you, ‘that you associate not anyone with Him,and that you do good to parents, and that you kill not yourchildren because of poverty. We shall provide for you andfor them, and that you approach not shameful deedswhichever in them is open and whichever is hidden; andslay not unjustly the life which Allah has made sacred.This has He ordered you that you may understand.And do not approach the property of the orphans but in thebest way, until he reaches the maturity and fill up themeasure and weight with justice. We burden no soul but toits capacity, and when you speak, then say just, eventhough it be a matter of your relative, and fulfil thecovenant of Allah. This He has enjoined you strictly thathaply you may accept admonition.And that, this is My straight path, then follow it andfollow not other paths for they will deviate you from Hispath. This He has ordered you that haply you may beselfrestrained.(The Holy Qur’an, Chapter – 6 Al-Anam, V. 151-153) Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  5. 5. Understanding Islam: An introduction 5 In the name of Allah, Extremely Compassionate, The MercifulIslam is a voluntary relationship between an individual and hisCreator – Allah the Gracious One, who is Absolute, All-Powerful, the All-Wise, the All-Knowing, the All-Hearing, theMost Merciful, the Sustainer, the Giver. Islam refuses to acceptany form of creation whatsoever as a deity worthy of worship. And do not set another as an object of worship with Allah… (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 51 – Al Zāriyāt, Verse 514)Allah wants every human being to choose to believe inHim. He has placed in the Universe numerous pointers andindicators testifying to His existence, oneness and overallsovereignty in the Universe. These indicators and pointers aresufficient to guide anyone who contemplates and thinkslogically to the ultimate conclusion of Allahs existence andmans need to worship Him alone. Islam: The primordial religionIslam is not a new religion, but the continuation andculmination of preceding monotheistic religions. The firstProphet was Prophet Adam . Complete submissionbefore Almighty Lord is the one and only faith consistentlyrevealed by Allah from the very beginning through variousProphets to humankind. Nooh, Sulaiman, Ibraheem, Ismail,Ishaaq, Yaqoob, Moosa, Isa were a few of the manyprophets who appeared at different times and places – allpropagated the same faith and conveyed the same message.Islam is a re-presentation of the same message and guidancethat Allah revealed to all of His prophets. Allah says: I have chosen Islam for you as a religion… (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 5 – Al Maidah, Verse 3)This statement of Allah is not only for the followers ofProphet Muhammad but all humanity. Many Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  6. 6. 6 Understanding Islam: An Introductionpeople have the misconception that Islam is a new religion thatcame into existence over 1400 years ago and that ProphetMuhammad was the founder of the religion. Infact, Islam has been here since man set foot on this earth andProphet Muhammad is not the founder of thereligion of Islam but is the last and final messenger of Allah . The Role of Prophets …then know that the duty of our messenger is only to deliver the message clearly. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 5 – Al Maidah, Verse 92)The basic message of all the prophets from Allah was tofurther the unity of mankind, along with guidance on howhuman beings should live in this world in order to bring peaceand security, and hence ensure our survival and stability. Theydemonstrated the Divine Administrations complete sense ofjustice, and evaluated punishment in this world andrecompense in the Hereafter. They explained what theindividuals conduct should be; they put their people on theright path for success in this life and the hereafter, and theydemonstrated how non-believers would meet their end. Thiswas the religion they brought, and it was the religion (course ofaction) which the God wanted mankind to adopt.…nor does he speak of (his own) desire. It is only the Revelation with which he is inspired. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 53 – An-Najm, Verses 3-4)Every prophet states clearly that what he receives is not fromhim but from Almighty Allah for the well-being ofmankind. He also confirms what was revealed before him andwhat may be revealed after him. A prophet does this to showthat he is simply conveying the message which is entrusted tohim by the One True Lord (Allah ) of all people in all ages.Prophets are necessary for conveying Allahsinstructions and guidance to mankind.We have no way of knowing why we were created. What willhappen to us after death? Is there any life after death? Are weaccountable for our actions? Is there any reward or punishmentfor our deeds in this life? These and so many other questions Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  7. 7. Understanding Islam: An introduction 7about Allah , angels, paradise, hell, etc. can not beanswered without revelation from the Creator and Knower of theunseen. It is not for a human being that Allah should speak to him except as revelation… (The Holy Qur’an: Chapter 42 – Al Shura, Verse 51)The message revealed to Prophet Muhammad isIslam in its comprehensive, complete and final form. Islam isnothing but genuine acceptance of the teachings and guidanceof Allah as revealed to His Prophet, Muhammad . A man must consciously and deliberately acceptwhat has been taught by the Prophet and actaccordingly. Whosoever does this is a Muslim. Islam: What does it mean?The Arabic word ‘Islam’ means peace, submission, andobedience. Every thing and every phenomenon in the world,other than humans and jinns, is administered totally by Allah’slaws, they are obedient to Allah and submissive to Hislaws, i.e. they are in the state of Islam. Man possesses thequality of intelligence and choice, thus he is invited to submit tothe good Will of Allah and obey His law (i.e. become aMuslim). Submission to the Will of Allah , together withobedience to His beneficial law, is Islam. This submission, andthis only, is salvation according to the Holy Qurān. Whoever submits himself entirely to Allah and he is the doer of good to others, he has his reward from the Lord... (The Holy Qur’an: Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 112)This submission requires a fully conscious and willing effort tosubmit to the one Almighty God. One must consciously andcarefully give oneself to the service of Allah . This means toact on what Allah enjoins all of us to do (in the HolyQurān) and what His beloved Prophet Muhammadencouraged us to do in his Sunnah (Hadith). Once we humbleourselves, rid ourselves of our egoism and submit totally andexclusively to Allah , both in faith and in deeds, we willcertainly feel peace in our hearts which in turn will bring aboutpeace in our external conduct as well. In short, Islam meanspeace acquired by submitting your will to Allah . Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  8. 8. 8 Understanding Islam: An IntroductionOne of the beautiful names of Allah is Al Salaam ( )which means the Provider of Peace. It means more than that:submission to the One God, and to live in peace with theCreator, within ones self, with other people and with theenvironment. Thus, Islam is a total system of living. A Muslim issupposed to live in peace and harmony with all these segments;hence, a Muslim is any person anywhere in the world whoseobedience, allegiance, and loyalty are to Allah , the Lord ofthe Universe.The Qurān declares that those who follow and practice theguidance of the Qurān will be called ‘Muslims’ and their way oflife will be ‘Islam’ i.e. living in full peace and harmony withpeople of the world and also with the environment. Thetraditional use of the terms Islam and Muslim for thefollowers of the Prophet Muhammad is acontradiction with the Qurān. Both these terms are universal inconnotation and are meant for entire humanity through all theages of the history. Thus, according to the Qurān, Allahsreward is not reserved for any particular group but is open toanyone who consciously accepts the oneness of Allah ,surrenders himself to his Will, and by living righteously givespractical effect to this attitude. Verily the most honoured among you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you….. (The Holy Qur’an: Chapter 49 – Al Hujurāt, Verse 13) Islam: The religion of peace Allah calls towards the abode of peace. (The Holy Qur’an: Chapter 10 – Yoonus, Verse 25)Islam is the religion of peace: its meaning is peace; one of Godsnames is peace (Al Salam); the daily greeting of Muslims andangels is ‘peace’ (‘As Salamo Aleikum’, meaning peace be onyou); paradise is the house of peace (Dar Al Salam). Peace is thenature, the meaning, the emblem and the objective of Islam.Every being is entitled to enjoy the peace of Islam and thekindness of the peaceful Muslims, regardless of religious or Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  9. 9. Understanding Islam: An introduction 9geographical or racial considerations, as long as there is nooppression against Islam or the Muslims. If non-Muslims arepeaceful with the Muslims or even indifferent to Islam, therecan be no justification to interfere in their affairs or declare waron them. There is no religion or constitution that guaranteespeaceful freedom of religion and forbids compulsion in religionexcept Islam. There is no compulsion in religion. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 256) Components of IslamIslam consists of two components: beliefs and practices. Thebeliefs have been stated in the Holy Qurān while the practicesare embodied in both the Qurān and the Sunnah (Hadith). And We have sent down this Qurān on you in which everything is clearly explained and as guidance and mercy and good tidings for those who have surrendered (to Allah). (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 16 – An-Nahl, Verse 89)The Qurān is a book to guide mankind to the way in which wemust live on this planet with the least possible conflict (i.e. withbalance and harmony) not only with the people of the world butalso with the natural world. The Qurān is the Final Testamentof the Allah revealed to mankind. It is the only DivineBook which exists today in its original language and form,preserved word for word. The Holy Prophet taughtthe Qurān to his Companions . This Book has beentransferred from the Companions of the Holy Prophet , uninterrupted, through successive generations ofMuslims. Hadith is mandatory to perceive the essence of HolyQurān. The Qurān and the Hadith hold a pivotal place as thesources for understanding Islam. The Hadith and the Qur’an donot abrogate each other. Hadith does not add to the content ofreligion; it offers an explanation of the Holy Qur’an and dictatessense and reason.The Holy Qur’an is the collection of divine verses. The HolyQur’an is the last and final revelation until the end of humanexistence on earth (i.e. final message to humanity) from Allah . The words are in Arabic. A human being did not arrangethese words. The words of the Holy Qur’an have been revealed Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  10. 10. 10 Understanding Islam: An Introductionby Allah and descended in verses. Gods messages are notconveyed by sound which is heard by the human ear, but canonly be received by the inner, ‘spiritual’ senses possessed byProphets. An angel named Jibraeel (Gabriel) recited the verseswith these words and letters to the Holy Prophet ,who then recited the verses to his Companions. The Qur’anbegan revelation on the Night of Power (Laylat Al Qadr, a nightin the last ten nights of the month of Ramadan) and continuedto be revealed for 23 years (during the years 609-632 AD). TheHoly Prophet and a majority of Companionsmemorised the whole Qur’an.The Muslims of the early centuries of Islam were blessed withgreat honour by Allah because they loved and applied theHoly Qur’an. Because of this meaningful attachment with theHoly Qur’an, they made great achievements in religious andworldly spheres. Those who neglected the teachings of Islamwere disgraced and humiliated. May Allah guide andenable us to re-establish our contact with the Qur’an so that wecan regain our past glory.In literal terms, ‘Sunnah’ means to pave the way or make a patheasy to walk on, so that it becomes a commonly followed way byeveryone afterwards. Thus, the Sunnah is the way of theProphet , a law that he brought and taught as anexplanation or further clarification of a divinely revealed book.Normally, the prophetic way includes references to the prophet’ssayings, actions, physical features and character traits. Fromthe Islamic standpoint, Sunnah refers to anything narrated orrelated about the Prophet Muhammad ,authentically traced to him regarding his speech, actions, traits,and silent approvals, before and after the revelation. Allah: the proper name of GodThe word ‘Allah’ is the common word used to refer to God inArabic. It is a unique term and has no plural or feminine forms.Arabic speaking Jews and Christians refer to the SupremeBeing as ‘Allah’. It is interesting to note that the Aramaic word‘El’, which is the word for God in the language that Jesusspoke, is certainly more similar in sound to the word ‘Allah’than the English word ‘God’. This also holds true for the variousHebrew words for God, which are ‘El’ and ‘Elah’, and the pluralform ‘Elohim’. The reason for these similarities is that Aramaic, Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  11. 11. Understanding Islam: An introduction 11Hebrew and Arabic are all Semitic languages with commonorigins. Islam rejects philosophy of anthropomorphismThe Holy Qur’an speaks against all forms of anthropomorphism.The Glorious Qur’an says in the following verse: There is nothing whatever like unto Him (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 42 – Al Shura, Verse 11)Many religions, directly or indirectly, embody the philosophy ofanthropomorphism i.e. God becoming a human being. Theircontention is that Almighty God is so pure and holy that He isunaware of the hardships, shortcomings and feelings of humanbeings. In order to set the rules for human beings, He camedown to earth as a human. Some may argue that God does notbecome a human being but only takes a human form. If Godonly takes a human form but does not become a human being,He should not possess any human qualities. We know that allthe ‘God-men’ have human qualities and failings. They have allthe human needs such as the need to eat, sleep, etc. Thisdeceptive logic has fooled countless millions through the ages. The concept of God in Islam Say: He is Allah, the One and Only. Allah, the Eternal, the Absolute1. He begets not, nor is He begotten. And there is none like unto Him. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 112 – Al Ikhlas, Verses 1-4)This four-line definition of Almighty God serves as thetouchstone of the study of the God. Any candidate to divinitymust be subjected to this acid test. Since the attributes of Allah1 The Arabic word ‘Samad’ has a deeper meaning than the closestEnglish word ‘Absolute’. It means ‘absolute existence’, which can beattributed only to Allah , all other existence being temporal orconditional. It also means that Allah is not dependant on anyperson or thing, but all persons and things are dependant on Him. Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  12. 12. 12 Understanding Islam: An Introduction given in this chapter are unique, false gods and pretendersto divinity can be easily dismissed using these verses.The concept of God as it appears in the Qur’an would mean abeing who is supreme but remains hidden from human eyes;before whose dignity and grandeur human perceptions becomedazed; whose sovereignty extends over the entire Universe;obedience to whom is obligatory. By accepting Him, one mustaccept His sovereignty and obey His laws provided in the HolyQur’an. No vision can grasp Him but His grasp is over all vision: He is above all comprehension, yet is acquainted with all things. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 6 – Al An’ām, Verse 103)God is different from anything that human senses can perceiveor the human mind can imagine. God according to Islamencompasses all creation, but no mind can fully encompass orgrasp Him. Islam teaches the highest conception of God, anddoes not accept any limitation to His power and knowledge. TheIslamic deity is not merely a god (Ilah) but ‘the God’ (Allah). Heis not merely an object of ritualistic worship, but the possessorof all the dimensions of highest excellence and of absoluteperfection. He is the Omnipotent (All-Powerful), the Omniscient(All-knowing), the Infinite, and the Absolute One. He neitherincarnates (in human form) nor has He any partner or son orpeer. He is the Creator, the Sustainer, the Nourisher and theEvolver of everything that constitutes the cosmos. He is Allah besides Whom there is no God, the Knower of the invisible and the visible. He is the Beneficent, the Merciful. He isAllah besides Whom there is no God; the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One, the Architect of Peace, the Granter of Security, Guardian Over All, the Mighty, the Supreme, the Possessor ofGreatness…… He is Allah, the Creator, the Shaper out of naught, the Fashioner. His are the most beautiful names. Whatever is in the heavens and the earth declares His glory; and He is the Mighty, the Wise. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 59 – Al Hashr, Verses 22-24)Islam rejects depicting God as favouring certain individuals ornations on the basis of wealth, power, colour, race and creed.He created human beings equal. They may distinguishthemselves and get His favour through virtue and piety only. Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  13. 13. Understanding Islam: An introduction 13But those who obey Allahs orders and keep away from what He has forbidden will be above them (disbelievers) on the Day of Resurrection. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 212)The unique usage of Allah as the personal name of God isa reflection of Islam’s emphasis on the purity of the belief inOne God, the essence of the message of all the prophets.Because of this, Islam considers associating any deity orpersonality with Allah as a deadly sin that Allah willnever forgive, despite the fact that He may forgive all other sins. Islamic concept of worshipWorship is an all inclusive term for all that Allah loves ofexternal and internal sayings and actions of a person. In otherwords, worship is everything one says or does for the pleasureof Allah . This, of course, includes rituals as well as beliefs,social activities, and personal contributions to the welfare ofone’s fellow human beings.Islam does not teach or accept mere ritualism, but ratheremphasizes intention and action. To worship Allah is toknow and to love Him, to obey His law in every aspect of life, toenjoin goodness and forbid wrong-doing and oppression, topractice charity and justice, and to serve Him by servingmankind. The Qur’an presents this concept in the followingsublime manner: It is not righteousness that you turn your faces to the East or theWest, but righteous is he who believes in Allah and the Last Day and the angels and the Books and the prophets; and gives his wealth for 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. Andthose who keep their treaty when they make one, and the patient in tribulation and adversity and time of stress, such are those who are sincere. Such are the God fearing. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 177) Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  14. 14. 14 Understanding Islam: An IntroductionAs a matter of fact, Islam does not think much of mere ritualswhen they are performed mechanically and have no influenceon one’s inner life.The concept of worship in Islam is a comprehensive conceptthat includes all the positive activities of the individual. This, ofcourse, is in agreement with the all-inclusive nature of Islam asa way of life. It regulates human life on all levels: individual,social, economic, political and spiritual. That is why Islamprovides guidance in the smallest details of one’s life on allthese levels. Thus, following these details is following Islamicinstructions in that specific area. It is a very encouragingelement when one realises that all his activities are consideredby Allah as acts of worship. This should lead theindividual to seek Allah’s pleasure in his actions and always tryto do them in the best possible manner. Ideology of IslamIslam has laid down some universal fundamental rights forhumankind as a whole, which are to be observed and respectedunder all circumstances. Whatever leads to the welfare of theindividual or the society is morally good in Islam and whateveris injurious is morally bad. This is the standard by which aparticular mode of conduct is judged and classified as good orbad. Before laying down any moral injunctions, Islam seeks tofirmly implant in mans heart the conviction that his dealingsare with Allah , who sees him at all times and in all places;that he may hide himself from the whole world, but not fromHim; that he may deceive everyone but cannot deceive Allah ; that he can flee from anyone else, but not from hisaccountability to Allah . Thus, by setting Allahspleasure as the objective of mans life, Islam has furnished thehighest possible standard of ethics. It stipulates for mankind asystem of life that is based on all that is good and is free fromall that is evil. It encourages the people not only to practicevirtue, but also to establish virtue and eradicate wickedness.To attain eternal happiness in the Hereafter by following theideology of Islam as revealed in the Holy Qur’an, it is necessaryto believe in it first, and then to follow it consciously andintentionally. Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  15. 15. Understanding Islam: An introduction 15 Religion Islam: The objectivesSo bring yourself to the upright natural religion of Allah, the onewhich He created people upon (fitrah). There is no change (in thelaws of) Allahs creation, and that is the right religion, but most people are not aware. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 30 – Al Rum, Verse 30)Every child is born with a natural belief in Allah and aninclination to worship Him alone. In Arabic, this naturalinclination is called ‘fitrah’. If the child were left alone, he wouldworship Allah in his own way, but his parents try to makehim follow their own way and the child is not strong enough inthe early stages of his life to resist or oppose the will of hisparents. The religion which an innocent child follows at thisstage at the behest of his parents is one of custom andupbringing and Allah does not hold him to account orpunish him for this religion. Throughout mans life fromchildhood until the time of death, signs are shown to him in allregions of the earth, until it becomes clear that there is only onetrue God (Allah ). Prophets were sent to every nation andtribe to support man’s natural belief in Allah and man’sinborn inclination to worship Him as well as to reinforce thedivine truth in the daily signs revealed by Allah . We have made all the signs manifest unto people who are endowed with inner certainty. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 118)The fundamentals of Islam act as a reminder for human beings.A reminder about things and concepts which, deep inside, he isalready aware of but tends to forget due to the influence of theexternal world, his society and surroundings, the daily chaos ofa fast and busy life. Islam is a direction finder and influencesour way of thinking and steers us to the right path. Have we not shown him the two ways [so that he could understand the good and the evil]? (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 90 – Al Balad, Verse 10) Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  16. 16. 16 Understanding Islam: An IntroductionThe purpose of our life is to please Allah . To attain this weneed to develop purification. This includes positiveenhancement (conquest of the lower self) and moulding of thegood in our soul and shunning of the bad. The purpose of Islamis to help us attain purification; both in our individual andcollective lives. Message of IslamWorship Allah alone and avoid the worship directed to anyperson, place or thing other than Allah – this is simple andvital message of Islam. Since everything other than Allahis Allah’s creation; it may be said that Islam, in essence, callsman away from the worship of creation and invites him toworship only its Creator.The message of Islam as brought by the prophets of Allahis to worship only Allah and to avoid the worship of hiscreation either directly or indirectly. It is the belief that theessence of Allah is everywhere in His creation or that Hisdivine being is present in some aspects of His creation. Thisbelief provided the justification for the worship of creation;however, such worship may be called the worship of Allahthrough his creation (indirect worship). Allah rejects thisconcept of indirect worship and says in the Holy Qurān: And verily, We have sent in every nation a messenger, (proclaiming): Serve Allah and shun false gods. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 16 – An-Nahl, Verse 36)The next fundamental message of Islam is one of pursuingknowledge. It was ignorance that Islam sought to end. Significance of acquiring knowledge 1. Knowledge of religion (i.e. Qur’an and Hadith)Every Muslim must honour his obligation towards theknowledge of Qur’an and the Hadith. A man can be a Brahmin Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  17. 17. Understanding Islam: An introduction 17without having knowledge of Hinduism and remain a Brahmin.But a sane and adult person cannot be a true Muslim withoutacquiring the knowledge of Islam. This is because he does notbecome a true Muslim just by being born in a Muslim familybut from acquiring the knowledge of Islam and practicing itstenets. Unless he comes to know the teachings of Holy ProphetMuhammad , he can not affirm faith in it and hecannot act according to it. And if he has not affirmed faithknowingly and after a complete understanding of it, how can hebecome a true Muslim? It’s clear that it is impossible to becomea true Muslim and remain a true Muslim while in a state ofignorance. If someone is born in a Muslim home, has a Muslimname, dresses like a Muslim, and calls himself a Muslim,doesn’t become a Muslim. A true Muslim is a person who knowswhat Islam stands for and affirms faith in it with fullconsciousness. 2. Knowledge of modern scienceThe pursuit of knowledge is a never ending journey and life-longlearning is a responsibility upon every Muslim. It is not acoincidence that the first word revealed to Prophet Muhammad was ‘Read’. Knowledge, ‘ilm’ in Arabic, is praised inover 300 verses in the Holy Qur’an and is the second mostcommon word in the book, after Allah . The Prophet said “Seeking knowledge is a (religious) duty onevery Muslim” and advised his companions to seek knowledgewherever it may be. Learning is obligatory for both men andwomen. Moreover, education is not restricted to religious issues;it includes all fields of knowledge, including Arts, Commerce,Science and Technology.There are important branches of knowledge and it is essentialthat individuals in every Muslim community should specialisein these and attain a standard of excellence in diversedisciplines. To suggest, however, that religious sciences are theonly disciplines of knowledge required by Muslims is wrong. Wecannot achieve any degree of excellence in these branches ofknowledge unless we also acquire a standard of excellence inother fields and, indeed, in all branches of knowledge. TheQurān invites people to look around them in the Universe andto try to fathom its secrets. How can they do that unless theyacquire appropriate knowledge? Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  18. 18. 18 Understanding Islam: An IntroductionMoreover, Allah has made everything in the Universesubservient to us. He wants us to use these in order to improvehuman life. This is the task required of mankind. How couldthey improve human life without knowledge? Moreover, Allah calls on people to reflect on His signs all around them. Forthem to appreciate these signs requires good knowledge of theUniverse around them. That again requires an in-depth study ofthe world and everything relevant to it. If we were to abandonall branches of knowledge under the pretext that we shouldconcentrate only on the Qurān and the Hadith, then we shrinkinto a little shell. An ignorant person can cause only harm tohimself and to his community. If the community is composed ofignorant people, then they have no hope of a good future. Thetask of the Muslim community is to provide a model ofeverything good in life. That can only be achieved throughexcellence in all fields of knowledge. This was how the earlyMuslim generations understood their task. They were able, as aresult, to build a civilization which was unique in the history ofmankind. Islam opens all the horizons of knowledge for itsfollowers to excel in them, be they men or women. Islam: An easy approachThe true religion must lend itself to universal understandingand practice, not confined to any people, place or time.Whenever man comes to the realisation that God is one anddistinct from His creation, and submits himself to the true oneGod (Allah ), he becomes a Muslim. Thus, anyone atanytime in the most remote region of the world can become aMuslim, a follower of Gods religion, Islam, by merely rejectingthe worship of creation and by turning to Allah alone. Aperson’s declaration of faith is sufficient evidence of conversionto Islam and need not be confirmed by others or by religiousauthorities. Islam: Easy by natureAllah intends for you ease; and He does not want to make things difficult for you. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 185) Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  19. 19. Understanding Islam: An introduction 19When we look carefully at the religion of Islam we find that carehas been taken by Allah to make it easy for men to follow,without overstraining themselves. It takes into considerationthe different situations man finds himself in, and the conditionshe faces in different environments. The faith itself is based onconcepts which are easy to grasp; a single God; none like Him;He has created everything; He has guided everything to realisethe purpose of its existence; He has also sent prophets toremind people of their role in life and to call them back to theirLord who has created them. All obligations imposed by thisfaith fit in perfectly together; there are no conflicts, nocontradictions. People have to fulfill these obligations accordingto their abilities: there need not be any overstraining or heavyburdens. Prohibitions are also relaxed. The Holy Qurān states: .….save under compulsion of necessity. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 6, Verse119)These basic principles provide the limits within which theIslamic commandments and principles operate. He has laid on you no hardships in the observance of your religion. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 22 – Al Hajj, Verse 78)The aforementioned verse states one of the most fundamentalprinciples of faith and existence. It provides a link between thenature of the Holy Prophet , the nature of Islamand that of the whole Universe. It is a Universe created by Allah with ease; it follows its appointed way with ease and drawsnearer to its final objective with ease. The message of Islam ismade easy for people to follow since it takes into considerationthe limitations of human abilities. It imposes no burdens whichare too heavy. The easy nature of the religion of Islam is readilyidentifiable in its spirit as well as in its commandments. And We shall smooth your way to perfect ease. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 87 – Al Ala, Verse 8)The Prophet’s traditions urging the adoption of an easy, gentleand tolerant attitude in all matters, especially those whichconcern religious duties are numerous. Whenever the Prophet had a choice, he would always choose the easieralternative. Abu Hurairah reported: Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  20. 20. 20 Understanding Islam: An Introduction The Prophet said, “The religion (of Islam) is easy, and whoever makes the religion a rigour, it will overpower him. So, follow a middle course (in worship); if you cant do this, dosomething near to it and give glad tidings and seek help (of Allah ) at morning and at dusk and some part of the night.” (Al-Bukharee) Purpose of life: An Islamic perspectiveDid you then think that We had created you in vain and that you shall not be returned to Us? (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 23 – Al Mo’minoon, Verse 115) I created the jinn and humankind only so that they worship Me. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 51 – Az-Zariyat, Verse 56)The purpose of our life is to worship Allah . WorshippingAllah does not mean we spend our entire lives in constantseclusion and meditation. To worship Allah is to live lifeaccording to His commands, not to run away from it. Toworship Allah is to know Him, to love Him, to please Him,to obey His commands, to apply His laws in every aspect of life,to serve His cause by doing right and purging evil and to be justto Him, to ourselves and to our fellow human beings. Thus, thepurpose of human life is spiritual development of the individualwhich ultimately results in bringing order in human society. Islam: A guideline for successful lifeIslam provides specific guidelines for all people to follow in theirdaily lives. Any human activity to please Allah is Islam.Islam’s guidance is comprehensive and includes the social,political, economic, moral, and spiritual aspects of life. TheQur’an reminds man of the purpose of his life, of his duties andobligations toward himself, his family and relatives, hiscommunity, his fellow human beings, and his Creator. Man isgiven fundamental guidelines about a purposeful life and thenconfronted with the challenges of human existence so that hemay put these high ideals into practice. Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  21. 21. Understanding Islam: An introduction 21Islam provides moral guidance in all walks of life. That is whyIslamic values are not for the ascetic who renounces the world,but for him who actively participates in different spheres of life,and works within them. When man decides to submit to theWill of Allah , and accepts His law as the supreme law, andorganises his life in accordance with the wish of Allah asrevealed in the Holy Qur’an, the quality and character of his lifecannot be limited to the precincts of a mosque. It must extenditself to every sphere of his life. Islamic way of life: Dos and DontsIf we look carefully at the duties and prohibitions a Muslim isrequired to observe, we find that they fall into three maincategories. Related to basic beliefs, such as the duty of worshipping Allah alone, and the prohibition of associating any partner with Him. The acts of worship such as prayer, fasting, etc. These are meant to enhance the good character of a person. When we think of prayer and how it provides a real and continuous relationship with Allah , we are bound to recognise that it sharpens a Muslims sense of what is appropriate and what is not. The Holy Prophet says: “A faith which does not require its followers to pray is devoid of goodness.” Fasting moulds the character of a Muslim to be able to withstand any sacrifice which he may be called upon to make. Other duties and prohibitions of Islam are related either to moral values or to day-to-day transactions between people. They ensure that a Muslim does not take advantage of others or usurp their right or property. Together, they provide safeguards which ensure that every one of us receives what is due to him or her. Allah does not benefit by restricting our movements or our actions. The benefit of Islamic duties and prohibitions is reaped by us only.Islamic duties and prohibitions are not difficult to observe.There is nothing in them which is included arbitrarily. They allserve a common purpose of making human life easy, happy andfair. It is true that we may at times yield to temptations that go Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  22. 22. 22 Understanding Islam: An Introductionagainst Islamic teachings, but we can repent and pray to Allah for forgiveness. He is the Most Merciful, the MostForgiving. He finds no pleasure in punishing us for ourmistakes. Indeed, He loves that we repent and express ourregret for having committed a sin. When we do that, He forgivesus. When we declare that we believe in Him, we must always tryas hard as we can to observe His teachings. When we make anerror, as we all do, we must try to rectify it. Furthermore, weknow that our observance of what He requires of us will earn forus a great reward. The total sum of that reward is admittanceinto Heaven.Islam does not confine itself merely to purifying our spiritualand moral life but its domain extends to the entire gamut of life.It wants to mould individual life as well as the social order inhealthy patterns, so that universal brotherhood may be trulyestablished on earth and so that peace, happiness and well-being may fill the world. The Islamic way of life is based on thisunique approach to life.Islam does not allow living this life selfishly, with completedisregard for the sovereign Lord and Creator; nor does it allowneglecting the world and devote solely to ritual worship. God-fearing people should be the best in morals and manners. Islamforbids any action which infringes on the rights of others orharms oneself. Forbidden to Muslims are dishonesty, theft,murder, suicide, corruption, forgery, interest and usury,gambling, lottery, consumption of alcohol or pork, backbiting,maligning, destruction of property, cruelty to animals, adultery,fornication, etc. While forbidding these things, Islam enjoinsupon mankind the use of all clean, healthy and useful things,and asks us not to deprive our bodies of clean food and healthyamusement. Islam also encourages marriage and stable familylife, modesty, generosity, hospitality, respect for parents,honourable treatment of women, helping those in need, etc. Thelaw of Islam forbids public nudity and orders Muslims to dressup in a decent and dignified manner. Islam enjoins mankind tomanage his sexual desire with responsibility and seek itsfulfillment only within the bonds of marriage. Divorce, whilefrowned upon, is permitted in cases where the maritalrelationship is irrevocably damaged. In dealing with non-Muslims, Muslims are instructed not to be intolerant or narrow-minded. Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  23. 23. Understanding Islam: An introduction 23We must not abuse or speak ill of other religious leaders, norsay anything insulting. Qur’an says: Invite all to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautifulpreaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious… (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 16 – An-Nahl, Verse 125)Islam holds that all of creation must be respected and cared forwith love based on the sentiment that love the sinner but hatethe sin. Human rights in IslamWhen we speak of human rights in Islam we really mean thatthese rights have been granted by God; they have not beengranted by any king or by any legislative assembly. Islam haslaid down some universal fundamental rights for humanity as awhole, which are to be observed and respected under allcircumstances. These fundamental rights have been conferredby Allah Himself. No legislative assembly in the world orany government on earth has the right or authority to make anyamendment or change in the rights conferred by Allah . Noone has the right to withdraw them. Since Allah is theabsolute and the sole master of creatures and the Universe, Heis the sovereign Lord, and since He has given each man humandignity and honour, men are substantially the same and nodistinction can be made among them on account of theirnationality, colour or race.The Qurān very clearly states: O believers! Be steadfast in the cause of Allah, bearing witnessin equity; and let not the hatred of any people incite you that you should become unjust. Always do justice as it is nearer to piety. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 5 – Al Maidah, Verse 8)It is not permissible to oppress women, children, old people, thesick or the wounded. Women’s honour and chastity are to berespected under all circumstances. The hungry person must befed, the naked clothed and the wounded or diseased treatedirrespective of whether they are Muslim or not. Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  24. 24. 24 Understanding Islam: An IntroductionSince its inception, Islam has placed a high value on humanrights. Privacy, freedom, dignity and equality are guaranteed inIslam. The lives, property and privacy of all citizens in anIslamic state are considered sacred, whether or not the personis Muslim. Non-Muslims have freedom of worship and thepractice of their religions, including their own family law andreligious courts. They pay a different tax (jizyah) instead of theZakaat, and the state is obligated to provide both protection andgovernment services to them. Islam favours free will and choiceAllah has granted man free will to choose between goodand evil. In this way Allah lets go astray him that He wills (to go astray), and guides aright him that He wills (to be guided).And none cancomprehend his Sustainer’s forces save Him alone: and all this is but a reminder to mortal man. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 74 – Al Mudaththir, Verse 31)Allah wants every human being to choose to believe inHim. He has placed in the Universe numerous pointers andindicators testifying to His existence, oneness and overallsovereignty in the Universe. These indicators and pointers aresufficient to guide anyone who contemplates and thinkslogically to the ultimate conclusion of Allahs existence andmans need to worship Him alone.Islam specifically asks not to have blind faith, but rather useGod given gifts of reason and free will to study all of creation,understand its glory and realise that it was not an accident. Wefeel that by profoundly understanding any given discipline, onecould see the vast interconnectedness of our reality. The signsof Allah are all around us. Think about it. If the Earth was1% closer to the sun, we would all be burnt to a crisp and if wewere 1% farther would be freeze-dried. Our bodies are socarefully calibrated that in every second, with every heartbeatand every breath, all the systems of our anatomy work togetherto keep us alive. Everything in this world is in balance;everything exists in a perfectly delicate harmony. It is thisharmony and balance that we are called upon to imitate in our Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  25. 25. Understanding Islam: An introduction 25own lives. Islam has always been about moderation, balance,and taking the middle road. There is no compulsion in religion (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 256)It is up to each individual to investigate religion, and personallymake a decision as to its validity and their faith in it. Muslimsare not in a position to force anything on anyone; the job ofguidance belongs to Allah alone. Muslims are absolutelyforbidden from forcing their faith on others.If it had been your Lords Will, they would all have believed, allwho are on earth! Will you then compel mankind, against theirwill, to believe?! No soul can believe, except by the Will of Allah. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 10 – Yoonus, Verses 99-100)A man is free to choose and follow his course of life. If manfollows the course of piety and Godliness he will succeed in thisworld and in the next. In this world he will live a life of peaceand happiness, and in the Hereafter he will qualify himself forthe heaven of eternal bliss, Paradise (Jannah). And if hechooses to follow the other course, that of Godlessness and evil,his life will be one of corruption, disruption and frustration inthis world and he will meet misfortune in the life to come - thatabode of pain and misery which is called Hell (Jahannam). And whoso desires another religion than Islam, it shall not be accepted for him and he will be a loser in the Hereafter. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 3 – Al Imran, Verse 85) Freedom of thought and expression in IslamIslam gives the right of freedom of thought and expression onthe condition that it should be used for the propagation ofvirtue and truth and not for spreading evil and wickedness.Under no circumstances would Islam allow evil and wickednessto be propagated. It also does not give anybody the right to useabusive or offensive language in the name of criticism. Islam preaches universal brotherhood Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  26. 26. 26 Understanding Islam: An Introduction Mankind was one community (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 213)The above verse makes the purpose of Islam very clear: it is togather human beings into one united nation. And this is onlypossible under a true Islamic belief, based on the fundamentalguidance of the Qurān. The Believers are brothers, so make peace and reconciliation between your two (contending) brothers (The Holy Qur’an: Chapter 49 – Al Hujurāt, Verse 10)Since Allah is the absolute and the sole master ofcreatures and the Universe, He is the sovereign Lord, and sinceHe has given each man human dignity and honour, men aresubstantially the same and no distinction can be made amongthem, on account of their nationality, colour or race. Islamrejects the idea that human beings have been created in castesor in different levels. O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you mayknow each other (not that you may despise each other). Verily themost honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most Righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things). (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 49 – Al Hujurāt, Verse 13)The Islamic teaching that all Muslims are equal before Allah , provides the basis for a collective sense of loyalty to Allah that transcends class, race, nationality, and evendifferences in religious practice. Thus, all Muslims belong to onecommunity, the Ummah, irrespective of their ethnic or nationalbackground.Islam has prescribed a moral code in order to ensure thatuniversal brotherhood prevails in the world. If any person killsan innocent human being whether it is a Muslim or a non-Muslim (irrespective of the race, caste, colour or creed), it is asthough he has killed the whole of humanity. And if anyonesaves another human being, whether it be a Muslim or a non-Muslim (irrespective of any race, caste, colour or creed), it is asthough he has saved the whole of humankind. Islam has asystem of paying alms called Zakaat. If every human being inthe whole world gives Zakaat, poverty will be eradicated from Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  27. 27. Understanding Islam: An introduction 27this world and there will not be a single human being who diesof hunger. A person should not steal, a person should givecharity, a person should provide neighbourly assistance, aperson should not squander wealth – all these are moralconducts prescribed by Islam. Islam commands humans toabstain from intoxicants, alcohol, drugs, gambling, etc.Intoxicants are one of the main causes for various evils insociety. It obstructs universal brotherhood from prevailing.The best example of universal brotherhood is Hajj – thepilgrimage prescribed by Islam. Hajj is the biggest annualgathering of the world. Two and a half million people gatherevery year. Irrespective whether they are rich or poor, black orwhite and no matter which part of the world they have comefrom, all are dressed in the same attire. Men are dressed up intwo pieces of unsown cloth that is preferably white. One cannotidentify nor ascertain whether the person standing next to himhe is a king or a pauper.Muslims demonstrate universal brotherhood five times a day intheir congregational prayer. When we offer congregationalprayer, we practically demonstrate universal brotherhood.Irrespective of whether you are rich or poor, a king or a pauper,when you stand for prayers, you stand shoulder to shoulder, sothat brotherhood increases and it is practically demonstratedthat all are equal and the differences of race, caste, ethnicity,creed and wealth do not come between you. Muhammadanism: a misnomerEvery religion of the world has been given a name either afterthe name of its founder or after the territory in which thatreligion originated from. For instance, Christianity takes itsdesignation from the name of its prophet Jesus Christ;Buddhism from its founder Gautam Buddha, Hindu is referredto those people who lived in the area watered by the riverSindhu. Many non-Muslims call the Muslims ‘Muhammadans’,which they think is synonymous. The religion of Islam cannotbe termed as ‘Muhammadanism’ because it was not a religionthat was brought by Prophet Muhammad . Islamwas there since time immemorial. Prophet Muhammad was not the first prophet but he was the last andfinal prophet. The word ‘Muhammadan’ means a person who Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  28. 28. 28 Understanding Islam: An Introductionworships Muhammad . Muslims revere him but donot worship Prophet Muhammad ; it is notpermitted in Islam. So the words ‘Muhammadan’ or‘Muhammadanism’ are misnomers. Muslim: The believer O you who believe! Enter into Islam wholeheartedly (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 2 – Al Baqarah, Verse 208)A Muslim, who has real faith in Allah , makes every aspectof his life subservient to the Will of Allah . His entire life isone of obedience and surrender and he never behaves in anarrogant or an autonomous way, except in a moment offorgetfulness. In case of a lapse, as soon as he becomesconscious of it, he re-addresses himself to his Lord and repentsfor his error. Similarly, a society which consists of true Muslimscan never break away from the Law of their Lord. Its political,social, cultural and economic policy, its legal system, and itsinternational strategy must all be in tune with the Code ofGuidance revealed by Allah and must not contravene it.And if ever, through error or omission, any contravention iscommitted, they must, on realising this, correct it immediatelyand return forthwith to the state of subservience to the Law ofAllah . He has named you Muslims (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 22 – Al Hajj, Verse 78)A person who is born in a Muslim family or community does notautomatically become a Muslim. He is a Muslim because ofaccepting Islam, and if he renounces Islam, he ceases to be aMuslim. The person who consciously believes in the oneness ofAllah , associating no partners with Him in any sense orform, and also believes in the fact that Prophet Muhammad is Allah’s Prophet, that he is a Messengerchosen by Him, and says this with the heart and believes thathe transmitted the information from Allah throughrevelations (wahee) and pronounces the Islamic creed (kalimat-e-shahadat) is a Muslim. In brief, a believer (mo’min) is one whobelieves in six fundamental tenets (principles) of faith (imaan);who admits to belong to the Islamic faith; his beliefs are firmly Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  29. 29. Understanding Islam: An introduction 29entrenched in his heart and he gives practical credence to thesethrough his actions.Every person is born Muslim. Every person is endowed by Allah with the spiritual potential and intellectual inclination thatcan make him a good Muslim. Every persons birth takes placeaccording to the Will of Allah in realisation of His plansand in submission to His commands. Every person is born freefrom sin. When the person reaches the age of maturity and if heis sane, he becomes accountable for all his deeds and intentionshenceforth. Man is free from sin until he commits sin. There isno inherited sin, and no ‘original’ sin. Sin means a trespasscommitted against Allah by means of breaking the rulesof Islam.A Muslim is one who is an honest and serious-minded man. Atrue Muslim always carries out the orders of Allah . Itwould be a sin if we did not obey even one of the orders of Allah . A Muslim tries to honour the rights a human has on him,and also his debts to the state. He never resists the laws of hisstate or nation. It would be a crime to violate the laws of one’smotherland. A Muslim commits neither sins nor crimes. He is agood law-abiding citizen, loyal to his nation. He is kind andgenerous to everyone. He advises those who act wrongly. SuchMuslims are loved both by Allah and by His Prophet . They lead a happy and peaceful life. Life after death From it (the earth) We created you, and into it We shall return you, and from it We shall bring you out once again. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 20 – Tā Hā, Verse 55) Say (O Muhammad ): He will give life to them Who created them the first time! (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 36 – Yā Seen, Verse 79) (The unbelievers say) Is this not strange that we should be brought back after dying and turning to dust? Such a return isimpossible. But We are fully aware of what the earth takes fromthem and with Us is a Book preserved (i.e. the Book of Decrees). (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 50 – Qāf, Verses 3-5) Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  30. 30. 30 Understanding Islam: An Introduction Does man (a disbeliever) think that We are not capable ofreassembling his decayed bones? We are able even to restore the tips of his fingers to their previous state. (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 75 – Al Qiyāmah, Verses 3-4)Every living creature is destined to die. This is the natural lawi.e. law of Allah . Human beings are no exception. Death isthe cessation of ordinary human existence. Prevailing Islamicdoctrine conceives death as a disengagement of the soul fromthe body, the outward sign of which is the cessation ofbreathing. This event marks the end of the predeterminedperiod of mundane life that is to be accounted for on the Day ofJudgment (Qiyamah), when the body and soul will be reunitedand resurrected for consignment to the splendid gardens ofParadise or the torturous fire of Hell. Thus death is a passingstate for human beings between earthly existence and immortallife in the Hereafter (Aakhirah). Between death and resurrection,individuals are subjected to a preliminary trial in the grave bythe angels Munkar and Nakeer and given a preview of theirdestiny in the Hereafter.The Qurān reveals that this Universe, which was created inaccordance with physical laws, will be demolished in one stroke.Allah will then resurrect all the human beings who wereborn from the beginning of creation down to its end, and willmake them appear (resurrect) before Himself on the day ofQiyamah. The records of all the deeds of individuals,communities, and mankind at large, will be there without theslightest error or omission. Also, there will be complete reportsof the effects and consequences of all human actions in thematerial world. All of the generations of men affected by themwill be present in the witness box. Every particle affected, in anyway, by the deeds or words of men will tell its own story. Andthe limbs, the ears, the eyes and all other parts of the humanbody will stand witness as to how they were used or abused inlife. On the basis of this unimpeachable evidence and thosecomplete records, Allah will decide each case with perfectjustice and pronounce the reward or penalty as the case maybe. The reward, as well as the punishment, will be of amagnitude that cannot even be estimated by the limitedstandards of the material world. The virtues whose beneficenteffects extend over several centuries in this world will be fullyrewarded there, and neither death nor illness, nor old age, willbe able to cut short the enjoyment of the reward. On the other Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in
  31. 31. Understanding Islam: An introduction 31hand, the evil deeds whose effects and consequences blight thelives of millions in this world for hundreds of years will bepunished fully, and neither death nor coma will be able torelieve the pain and suffering of the guilty. ConclusionIslam is the way of life for mankind wherein the supremeauthority belongs to Allah , the Sustainer of the Universe.Islam is a comprehensive institution which includes all theguidelines necessary for all aspects of life. Therefore, the bestway to understand Islam is to look at it as more than a religion– to see it as a complete way of life. Islam is a system whichregulates every aspect of life, dealing with all issues – social,economic, educational, judicial, health, and even defense. Thus,it is suitable for all human beings and for all times, since it isthe final religion.Islam is careful to remind us that it is not a religion of mere lipservice; rather it must be practiced continuously. The Muslimmust practice the five pillars of the religion: the declaration offaith in the oneness of Allah and the prophethood ofMuhammad , prayer, fasting the month ofRamadan, paying alms-tax, and the pilgrimage to Makkah; andbelieve in the six articles of faith: belief in God, the Holy Books,the prophets, the angels, the Day of Judgment and Godsdecree, whether for good or ill. There are other injunctions andcommandments which concern virtually all facets of onespersonal, family and civic life. These include such matters asdiet, clothing, personal hygiene, interpersonal relations,business ethics, responsibilities towards parents, spouse andchildren, marriage, divorce and inheritance, civil and criminallaw, fighting in defense of Islam, relations with non-Muslims,and so much more. The Prophet of Islam and hiscompanions developed and established a completemodel of Islam on this earth for mankind to follow. Surely, the true Religion in the sight of Allah is Islam (The Holy Qur’an, Chapter 3 – Al Imran, Verse 19) Visit Us @ www.Qadri.in

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