FAQs about Islam - I

FAQs about Islam - I
  • Publish date:28/07/2010
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What is Islam?

The word "Islam" means submission and peace. Submission  is to the will of God and peace means to be at peace with yourself and your surroundings. A broader meaning of the word "Islam" is to achieve peace by submitting to the will of God.
This is a unique religion, with a name which signifies a moral attitude and a way of life. Judaism takes its name from the tribe of Juda, Christianity from Jesus Christ, Buddhism from Goutam Buddha and Hinduism from the Indus River. However, Muslims derive their identity from the message of Islam, rather than the person of Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) (may Allah exalt his mention), thus it is wrong to call them "Muhammadans”.

Who is Allah?
Allah means God. It is a personal name, which Allah calls Himself in the Quran. That is where Muslims take this name . It can also be found in an Aramaic copy of the Bible, and even Christian Arabs say “Allah” when referring to ‘God’.
 Who is a Muslim?
The word "Muslim" means one who submits to the will of God. The first principle of Islam is known as the "Testimonies of Faith" and is as follows...
"I testify that none is worthy of being worshipped except Allah (God) and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah"
In a broader sense, anyone who willingly submits to the will of God is a Muslim. Thus, all the Prophets, may Allah exalt their mention, preceding the Prophet Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) are considered Muslims. The Quran specifies about Ibraaheem (Abraham), may Allah exalt his mention, who lived long before Moosaa (Moses) and ‘Eesaa (Jesus), may Allah exalt their mention, that (what means): "…he was not a Jew or a Christian but a Muslim." [Quran 3:67] because he had submitted to the will of God. Thus, there are Muslims who are not submitting at all to the will of God and there are Muslims who are doing their best to live an Islamic life. One cannot judge Islam by looking at those individuals who have a Muslim name, but in their actions they are not living or behaving as Muslims. Muslims are ordinary people like other humans; among them are the good and the bad. They are not infallible creatures and, therefore, make mistakes.
Who was Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )?
In brief, Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) was born into a noble tribe of Makkah in Arabia in the year 570 CE. His ancestry goes back to Prophet Ismaa’eel (Ishmael), may Allah exalt his mention, son of Prophet Ibraaheem (Abraham) may Allah exalt his mention. His father died before his birth and his mother died when he was six. He did not attend a formal school; initially, he was raised by a nurse as it was the custom those days, and then by his grandfather and uncle. As a young man, he was known as a righteous person. At the age of forty, he was given the prophethood, when the angel Gabriel appeared in the cave where Prophet Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )  used to meditate, and revealed the first verses of the Quran to him. Subsequently, the revelations came over a period of 23 years and were compiled in the form of a book called the Quran, which Muslims consider as the final and the last word of God. The Quran has been preserved, unchanged, in its original form.
Do Muslims worship Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )?
No. Muslims do not worship Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) or any other prophet(s), may Allah exalt their mention. Muslims believe in all prophets including Aadam (Adam), Nooh (Noah), Ibraaheem (Abraham), Daawood (David), Sulaymaan (Solomon), Moosaa (Moses) and 'Eesaa (Jesus), may Allah exalt their mention. Muslims believe that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) was the last of the prophets. They believe that God Alone is to be worshipped, not human beings or idols etc.
What do Muslims think of Jesus, may Allah exalt his mention?
Muslims think highly of Jesus, may Allah exalt his mention, and his worthy mother, Mary. The Qur’an tells us that Jesus was born of a miraculous birth without a father. He was given many miracles as a prophet. These include speaking soon after his birth in defense of his mother's piety. God's other gifts to him included healing the blind and the sick, reviving the dead, making a live bird out of clay and, most importantly, the Divine message he was carrying. These miracles were given to him by God to establish him as a prophet. According to the Quran, he was not crucified but was raised into Heaven (which means):
“And [for] their saying: “Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah.” And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain  Rather, Allah raised him to Himself. And ever is Allah Exalted in Might and Wise. ” [Quran 4: 157-158]
Who were Jesus' parents?
Jesus, may Allah exalt his mention, is the son of the Virgin Mary, and he had no father. Allah created Jesus. The Quran says (what means):
Indeed, the example of Jesus to Allah is like that of Aadam. He created him from dust; then said to him: “Be” and he was.”[Quran 3:59]
Is Allah the same as what Christians call The Father?
Allah is the Creator Whom Jesus, may Allah exalt his mention, worshipped. He is the Creator Who spoke to Moses, may Allah exalt his mention, and split the sea for him and his followers. That is Allah. But Allah tells us about Himself (what means): "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 112:1-4]
Is there a Trinity in Islam?
No. Allah is Perfect. The Quran Says (what means): “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…”[Quran 2:255]
Do we believe that Allah created the heavens and earth in 6 days?
Yes, but He did not rest on the seventh day, because He did not get tired. Allah is Perfect. He does not get tired, nor does He sleep, feel pain, or die.
Can we see Allah?
Allah is not like the sun. Anyone can see the sun. Moreover, Allah is the Most Beautiful. Nothing is as beautiful as Allah. Actually looking at Allah is the greatest pleasure of the people of Paradise. This pleasure is not granted by Allah to anyone but the believers. So no one will see Allah before he dies.

Does Allah see us?
Allah sees us and knows everything about us. He knows us better than we know ourselves. There is not a leaf on a tree that blows away, or stays in its place except that He knows it. There is not a dry spot or  wet spot, nor a grain in the depths of the earth except that Allah knows it.
 Do Muslims believe in the Hereafter?
God is Just and manifests His Justice, He established the system of accountability. Those who do good will be rewarded and those who do wrong will be punished accordingly. Thus, He created Heaven and Hell and there are admission criteria for both. Muslims believe that the present life is a temporary one. It is a test and if we pass the test, we will be given a life of permanent pleasure in the company of righteous people in Heaven.
 

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