comes from an Arabic root word meaning
"peace" and "submission.
The same Arabic root word gives us "Salaam
alaykum," ("Peace be with you"), the universal
Islam teaches that one can only find peace in
one's life by submitting to Almighty God (Allah) in
heart, soul and deed.
• A person who believes in and consciously
follows Islam is called a Muslim, also from the
same root word. So, the religion is called
"Islam," and a person who believes in and
follows it is a "Muslim."
• Arabia (Mecca & Medina)
• 7th century
• Pre-Islamic Religious Life
• Muhammad the Prophet
– Born about 570 C.E. in Mecca. Died 632.
– Member of the Quraysh tribe
– Messenger of God: About 610 C.E. receives visit
from angel Gabriel and begins recitation (the
• Means "recitation" in Arabic.
• The sacred text of Islam and the highest
authority in both religious and legal matters.
– Word of God (Not Muhammad)
– One god
– Ethical monotheism: God as just & judging
– Oral & written
– Most authoritative source of Islamic doctrine &
• The Quran consists of 114 Chapters (suras) of
different lengths, with a total of 6236 ayat
• It provides detailed guidelines on the day-to-
day living of a Muslim.
Six Articles of Islamic faith
• Six Articles of Islamic Faith (for the Sunni majority)
– In addition to Five Pillars of Islamic Practice
– Together, make up Aqidah (“creed”)
– Sunni/Shia’s beliefs differ
• Having Iman (“to fully observe one’s faith”)
– Belief in the heart
– Profession by the tongue
– Performance of the deeds
• Without the articles of faith, there is no context for the
pillars of practice
Six Articles of Islamic faith
• To Believe in God (Allah)
• To Believe in Unseen
• To Believe in Prophethood
• To Believe in Revelation
• To Believe in Day of Judgement
• To Believe in Divine Decree
To Believe in God (Allah)
• Monotheism (tawhid = “divine unity”)
– God is absolute, a single inseparable unity
– One God Same God for Jews, Christians, Muslims
– Allah: not a proper name, but the Arabic word for “God”
– “99 Names of God”: found throughout the Qur’an
• God has “no associate or partner”
– Muslims reject the Christian concept of “Trinity”
– God cannot become human; humans cannot be God
– Consider Jesus a great prophet, but not divine
To Believe in the Unseen
– God’s messengers; reveal messages to Prophets
• Ex: Angel Gabriel revealed the Qur’an to Muhammad
– No free will; sole purpose is serving God
– Accompany, guide, and protect people at all times
• Spirits (Jinn)
– Spiritual beings, with free will
– Thus can be good or evil
– Root of English word/concept: “genie”
To Believe in Prophethood
• Prophets (nabi ) and Messengers (rasul )
– Prophets speak God’s words to people orally.
– Messengers record God’s words in book form.
– So, not all prophets are messengers,
but all messengers are also prophets.
• Muslims believe in 1000’s of prophets
– “Chain of Prophets”: Adam was first; Muhammad was last
• Also incl. Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Moses, David, Jesus, etc.
– All transmit same basic message throughout history
To Believe in Revelation
• Holy Books
– Revealed scriptures; messages from God
– Different languages, different cultures, different eras
– But same basic message, culminating in the Qur’an
• Progressive Revelation
– Books of Moses, Psalms of David, Gospels of Jesus
– Ultimately the Qur’an, revealed thru Muhammad
– NOTE: Most Muslims do not read the interpretations believing ancient
Jews & Christians altered the messages God had revealed through
Moses, David, and Jesus
To Believe in the Day of Judgment
• Resurrection of the Dead
– At the end of time, all people will be raised
– Everyone is held accountable for his/her own deeds
• Judgment / Afterlife
– Everyone is judged based on one’s life/actions on earth
– If good deeds outweigh bad deeds:
• Reward eternal life with God in heaven/paradise/garden
– If bad deeds outweigh good deeds:
• Punishment in everlasting fires of hell
To Believe in the Divine Decree
• Human Nature / Free Will
– Everyone has knowledge & ability to choose between right
& wrong, and so is held responsible
– Yet God has correct fore-knowledge of everyone’s path
• Destiny / Fate / Predestination
– God wrote down our destiny in the “Preserved Tablet”
– God knows what our nature will cause us to do
• A person’s actions are not caused by what God has written
• But God is omniscient God knows in advance
• Sunnis’ : Sunnis have their historical roots in the majority
group who followed Abu Bakr, an effective leader, as
Muhammad's successor instead of the Prophet's cousin and
son-in-law Ali. The Sunnis are so named because they believe
themselves to follow the sunnah ("custom" or "tradition") of
the Prophet and base their religion on the Quran.
• Shias’: the second largest denomination of the Islamic faith.
Shias adhere to the teachings of Muhammad and the religious
guidance of his family (who are referred to as the Ahl al-Bayt)
or his descendents known as Shia Imams.
Five Pillars of Islam
• Five requirements are made of all Muslims. These are called the
‘FivePillars of Islam”. These are:-
(i) Kalma recitation: To declare that there is no God but Allah and that
Muhammad is His ‘Rasul’ (Prophet or messenger). Shahda is recitation
of the Kalma, which is in Arabic and recited by Muslims in its original
form. The Kalma reads as follows:
La ilaha ill-allah, Muhammadu-Rasul Allah
(ii) Namaz-e-Panjagana: Participation in five periods of prayer each day.
(iii) Zaqat: Payment of an obligatory tax (Zaqat) to the needy.
(iv) Roza: Mandatory fasting during the month of Ramadan.
(v) Hajj: Pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in the lifetime of a Muslim,
In Islam, faith and good works go hand-in-hand. A mere verbal
declaration of faith is not enough, for belief in Allah makes
obedience to Him a duty. The Muslim concept of worship is
very broad, they consider everything they do in life to be an
act of worship, if it is done according to Allah's guidance.
There are also five formal acts of worship which help strengthen
a Muslim's faith and obedience. They are often called the
"Five Pillars of Islam."