Allaahu Akbar, Allaahu Akbar, Allaahu Akbar, Laa ilaaha il-lAllaah, Allaahu Akbar Allaahu Akbar, Wa Lil-laahil-hamd

(Allaah is the Greatest, Allaah is the Greatest, Allaah is the Greatest,there is no god but Allaah; Allaah is the Greatest and to Allaah be all praise)

introduction to Islam



In The Name of ALLAH, The Most Beneficent and The Most Merciful.
 
 What is Islam...?
Islam is derived from the word "salaam" meaning "peace".
Islam-Submission to the Will of Allah  (subhanahu wa ta'ala) i.e. "God Almighty".
Muslim– One who submits his will to Allah.
 
The religion of worshiping one true God is named in Arabic, "Islam".
Now you may have questions like, "Who is the founder of Islam?", and "How old is Islam?".
It is not true that Islam was founded by Muhammad(pbuh), nor that it is 1400 years old. Islam has been here since the time of Adam (may peace be upon him). Actually it has been here even before Adam (may peace be upon him), because all creatures-except humans and jinn- follow Islam. The whole universe obeys Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala); the sun, the moon, the galaxy, everything obeys its creator. Everything submits to the Will of Allah`(subhanahu wa ta'ala).
God has sent numerous prophets. No one knows the exact number but Him alone. According to a hadith, Allah(swt) has sent more than 124,000 prophets to the Earth. The Qur'an says "To every nation was sent a guide or a messenger "[Al-Qur'an 35:24].  [Al-Qur'an 13:7]. They were sent to Earth with one message: " There is only one God, worship Him alone". So, starting from Adam, Moses, Jesus, Noah, Joesph, Zachariah,Solomon, Ibrahim, Looth till Muhammad, the last prophet (peace be upon them all), including the prophets we don't have knowledge of, all came with one message: " There is only one God. worship him alone"
In fact, people of the earlier times were named according to their prophets, or their ancestors, but none had a specific name of a religion but Muslims. For instance,the word "Jew", in Hebrew, "Yehudi", is derived from the name "Judah", which was the name of one of Jacob's twelve sons. The word, "Buddhist", was also derived from the name of its founder, Buddha.
But Muslims were not named "Muhammadans", or anything of the like, because they didn't choose that name. God/Allah chose it long ago for those who submit to His will in any time before or after the Prophet, Muhammad.
At the time of Moses, to become Muslim one has to testify that
"there is no God but Allah and Moses is his slave and messenger".
.At the time of Noah, to become Muslim one has to testify that 
"there is no God but Allah and Noah is his slave and messenger".
.
At time of Jesus, to become Muslim one has to testify that 
"there is no God but Allah and Jesus is his slave and messenger".
Muhammed is the last prophet of God. So because of this, if one wants to become Muslim, one has to testify that  
"there is no God but Allah and Muhammed is his slave and messenger".
.
One may think, "How can it be that all prophets taught Islam (submitting one's will to God)?".
Let's see what the Qur'an has to say.
In chapter 26, verse 105 to 107, it says:
"The people of Noah rejected the messengers. Behold, their brother Noah said to them: Will ye not fear (Allah)? I am to you an messenger worthy of all trust: ".
To the people of Noah, Allah(swt) had sent only Noah as the messenger , but still the Qur'an says,
"The people of Noah rejected the messengers". Some may think this is an error in the Qur'an, but here is the beauty of the Qur'an .
By rejecting Noah, it is as if they have rejected all messengers who came before Noah and who came after Noah
because all prophets came with one message: "There is only one God. Worship Him alone.".
By accepting Muhammed(pbuh) to be the messenger of God, one must also accept all the prophets who came before him.
So, let us look at the five pillars of Islam.
I will explain each pillar and we will see what Christianity and other religions say about the pillars of Islam.
It is narrated under the authority of 'Abdullah, son of 'Umar, that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: "(The superstructure of) al-Islam is raised on five (pillars), testifying (the fact) that there is no God but Allah, that Muhammad is His bondsman and messenger, and the establishment of prayer, payment of Zakat, Pilgrimage to the House (Ka'ba) and the fast of Ramadan." ( Muslim :: Book 1 : Hadith 20 )
Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) said within here that the religion of Islam consists of 5 pillars which are:
1- The 2 testimonies of Faith -  I bear witness that there is no God but Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah 

2- Establishing prayers 

3- Paying the Zakah    

4- Fasting in the month of Ramadan 

5- Pilgrimage to the House
 
1) Two Testimonies of Faith
 
Arabic: ((أشهد ان لا إله إلا الله و أشهد ان محمدًا رسول الله ))
Transliteration: (( Ash-hadu ana la ilah ila Allah, wa ash-hadu ana Muhammadan rasool Allah ))
Translation: (( I bear witness that there is no God but Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah ))
So there is two parts in the testimony of faith:
1
    There is no God but Allah(swt)
2
    Muhammed is the messenger of Allah(swt)
Let's study first part, testimony of faith:  
"There is no god but Allah(swt)
."
According to Islam, there is only one God and He has power over all creation. So the best way to describe the "oneness" of Allah is given in the Qur'an, chapter 112.
"In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
Say: He is Allah the One and Only; Allah, the Eternal, Absolute; He begetteth not, nor is He begotten; And there is none like unto Him.
"
The above chapter from the Qur'an clearly explains  the "oneness" of Allah.
Let's examine what the Bible and Old Testament or Torath say about the "oneness" of God
.
The First Commandment explains that God is One.   
"Shama Israelu Adonai Ila Hayno Adonai Ikhad."
This is a Hebrew quotation, which means:
"Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord."
[The Bible, Mark 12:29]
Jesus (pbuh) thus reiterated the message of monotheism that was given by all earlier prophets of the Almighty God.
NOTE: All quotations of the Bible are taken from the King James Version.
 Concept of God in the Old Testament:
1. God is One
The following verse from the book of Deuteronomy contains an exhortation from Moses (pbuh):
"Shama Israelu Adonai Ila Hayno Adna Ikhad".
It is a Hebrew quotation which means:
"Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord"
[The Bible, Deuteronomy 6:4]
  
2.  Unity of God in the Book of Isaiah
   
The following verses are from the Book of Isaiah:
      
(i) "I, even I, am the Lord; and beside me there is no saviour."
[The Bible, Isaiah 43:11]
      
(ii) "I am Lord, and there is none else, there is no God besides me."
[The Bible, Isaiah 45:5]
      
(iii) "I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me."
[The Bible, Isaiah 46:9]
  
3. Old Testament condemns idol worship
     
(i) Old Testament condemns idol worship in the following verses:
"Thou shalt have no other Gods before me."
"Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heavens above, or that is in the Earth beneath, or that is in the water under the Earth:"
"Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God."
[The Bible, Exodus 20:3-5]
      
(ii) A similar message is repeated in the book of Deuteronomy:
"Thou shalt have none other Gods before me."
"Thou shalt not make thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that in the Earth beneath, or that is in the water beneath the Earth."
"Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them; for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God."
[The Bible, Deuteronomy 5:7-9]
 
Lets see what does Hinduism says about "oneness of God".
UPANISHADS:
The Upanishads are considered sacred scriptures by the Hindus.
The following verses from the Upanishads refer to the Concept of God:
1.  "Ekam evadvitiyam"
"He is One only without a second."
[Chandogya Upanishad 6:2:1]
2.  "Na casya kascij janita na cadhipah."
"Of Him there are neither parents nor lord."
[Svetasvatara Upanishad 6:9]
3.  "Na tasya pratima asti"
"There is no likeness of Him."
[Svetasvatara Upanishad 4:19]

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