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About Islam

What is Islam? Islam is an Arabic Word, which means voluntary submission to the will of Almighty God. A Person who practices Islam is called a Muslim.

Islam is not a new faith, but it is a confirmation of the same message which was brought by all the Prophets including Adam, Noah Abraham, Moses and Jesus (peace be upon them all). The message which was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is Islam in its comprehensive, complete and final form.

The message of Islam is not reserved exclusively for people from any particular area of the world, the message of Islam is for everyone in every part of the world, every background and every race and nationality. Islam is more than a religion, nowadays when we use the word religion, it is usually referring to a person’s spiritual beliefs, as society is moving more and more towards secularism, and religion is something that is thought to be done in private or on a particular day of the week. However Islam is more a way of life. It covers every aspect of our lives from birth to death. Islam teaches us what to do from the moment we wake in the morning, until the moment we go to sleep. It teaches us how to interact with people around us, what to eat so we stay healthy, and how to conduct business so we are fair and honest. No situation in life is excluded. This is what makes Islam different, unique, and more than just a religion.

Muslims take their guidance from the Quran, the words of God revealed to the final prophet, Muhammad (peace be upon him), as well as from hadith. The Hadith is the teachings, sayings and actions of the prophet Muhammad. These were meticulously reported and collected by his devoted companions and elaborate on and help to explain the Quranic verses.

Five Pillars

Islam is found on five pillars and a practising Muslims life is centred on these pillars.

1. Declaration of Faith. This shows that an individual accepts Islam as their way of life, and the following statement must be made in Arabic, freely without compulsion, with belief and understanding. “I bear witness that there is no deity worthy to be worshipped but Almighty Allah, and I Bear witness that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger”.

2. Prayers. Daily prayers are offered five times a day as a duty towards God. These prayers strengthen and enliven ones belief in God and inspire the individuals to develop a higher morality.

3. Zakat. Charity. The literal meaning of zakat poor. This s an annual amount taken from the rich and given to the needy.

4. Fasting in Ramadan. During Ramadan Muslims abstain from food, drink and all sexual activities. In addition, they must refrain from evil intentions and desires throughout the whole day in general.

5. Hajj. Pilgrimage to Makkah. This is to be performed once in a Muslims life if it can be afforded financially and the person is physically able to do this. It is a spiritual quest of submission to God and purification of the heart.

Who is Allah?

Allah is simply the word for God in Arabic, and Muslims prefer, use this Arabic term Allah as it has no plural or gender. Allah is not the name of a ‘Muslim God’, it is the same One God mentioned by Noah, Abraham, Moses and Jesus and is the same God worshipped by Jews and Christians also.

The word Allah is also a reflection of the unique concept that Islam associates with God. To a Muslim, Allah is the Almighty, the reactor and the Sustainor of the Universe, who is similar to none and nothing is comparable to Him. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was asked by his contemporaries about Allah. The answer came direct from God Himself in the form of a short chapter in the Quran that is considered the essence of the Uniqueness of God and motto of monotheism,

“Say He is God, The One; God, The Eternal, Absolute; He begets not, nor is He begotten, and there is non like unto Him” (Holy Quran, chapter 112, ver 1-4)

Islam teaches that there is only One God who is eternal and has no partners or associates whatsoever in His Divinity. Simply put, He is One, in every sense.

Who was Muhammad?

Muhammad peace be upon him was born in Makkah in Saudi Arabia in the year 570 CE. His father, Abdullah, died a few months before Muhammad's birth, and his mother, Ameena, also passed away when he was sick. Muhammad was initially under the guardianship of his grandfather until his death, and thereafter was brought up by his uncle Abu Talib. At an early age Muhammad was a shepherd tending sheep, and at the age of nine was taken by his uncle on a caravan journey to Syria so he could learn the art of trade.

Muhammad made a reputation for himself as a hardworking, honest merchant. He was known as Al Ameen, meaning the trustworthy one.

At the age of 25, he married Khadeeja, who was a rich business women 15 years his senior. Khadeejah was impressed by the nature of this young man and had sent him a proposal for marriage. At this stage Muhammad was a man of substance, respected in his community, admired both for his generosity and his good sense, and his future seemed assured. But Muhammad was uneasy and uncomfortable with the decadence and idol worship he saw around him, and as time passed he turned to meditating by himself, away from the business of society, often in one of the surrounding peaceful caves.

Muhammad would spend many days in this cave, named Hira. It was on one of these occasions, when Muhammad was 40 years old, he received his first revelation from God via Angel Gibrael, who appeared before him and proclaimed “Iqra”, which in Arabic means read or recite. Muhammad however was illiterate, and replied in fear, “I am not able to read”. This instruction from Angel Gibrael was repeated again twice to the fear stricken Muhammad. This heralded the start of his Prophethood, and 23 years of revelations from God to Prophet Muhammad (via Angel Gabriel), which formed the exact words of the Quran as it is with us now.

Extremism in Islam?

Unfortunately, nowadays extremism is often linked with Islam. This is often fuelled by media misrepresentation. However, those that study Islam know that the Prophet Muhammad (may peace and blessings be upon him) warned Muslims not to be extreme in anything, whether the matter be for this world, or for religion. The Prophet said, "Religion is very easy and whoever overburdens himself in his religion will not be able to continue in that way. So you should not be extremists, but try to be near to perfection and receive the good tidings that you will be rewarded; and gain strength by worshipping in the mornings, the nights." (See Fath-ul-Bari, Page 102, Vol 1). [Sahih Al Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 2, Number 38]

Islam teaches Muslims to be in the middle ground, because this is where the balance and fairness lies, and Allah loves fairness. It was narrated that The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Those who go to extremes are doomed.” He said it three times” [Narrated by Muslim (2670)].

It is also a part of faith to believe that no religion should be thrust upon people, and that everyone has the right to choose which religion they follow. Allah says in the Holy Quran, “There shall be no compulsion in [acceptance of] the religion. The right course has become clear from the wrong. So whoever disbelieves in Taghut and believes in Allah has grasped the most trustworthy handhold with no break in it. And Allah is Hearing and Knowing.” [Al-Baqarah 2:256].

Furthermore, Allah commanded the Prophet Muhammad in the Holy Quran to say to those that did not believe in Islam and were not willing to accept it, “SayO disbelievers, I do not worship what you worship. Nor are you worshippers of what I worship. Nor will I be a worshipper of what you worship. Nor will you be worshippers of what I worship. For you is your religion, and for me is my religion." [Al Kafirun 109:1-6].

The above information was provided by Only1Purpose.  Please download brochure if you would like more information.

 Aberdeen Mosque, Aberdeen Muslims, Muslims in Aberdeen, Mosques in Aberdeen, Prayer time Aberdeen, Aberdeen Mosque, Islam Aberdeen, Islamic Centre