"There is no true god but God, and Muhammad is
the Messenger (Prophet) of God".

Frequently Asked Questions:


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How Can we Prove There is a God?
CONGRATULATING AN ATHEIST
Normally, when I meet an atheist, the first thing I like to do is to congratulate him and say, " My special congratulations to you", because most of the people who believe in God are doing blind belief - he is a Christian, because his father is a Christian; he is a Hindu, because his father is a Hindu; the majority of the people in the world are blindly following the religion of their fathers. An atheist, on the other hand, even though he may belong to a religious family, uses his intellect to deny the existence of God; what ever concept or qualities of God he may have learnt in his religion may not seem to be logical to him. My Muslim brothers may question me, "Zakir, why are you congratulating an atheist?" The reason that I am congratulating an atheist is because he agrees with the first part of the Shahada i.e. the Islamic Creed, ‘La ilaaha’ - meaning ‘there is no God’. So half my job is already done; now the only part left is ‘il lallah’ i.e. ‘BUT ALLAH’ which I shall do Insha Allah. With others (who are not atheists) I have to first remove from their minds the wrong concept of God they may have and then put the correct concept of one true God.

LOGICAL CONCEPT OF GOD
My first question to the atheist will be: "What is the definition of God?" For a person to say there is no God, he should know what is the meaning of God. If I hold a book and say that ‘this is a pen’, for the opposite person to say, ‘it is not a pen’, he should know what is the definition of a pen, even if he does not know nor is able to recognise or identify the object I am holding in my hand. For him to say this is not a pen, he should at least know what a pen means. Similarly for an atheist to say ‘there is no God’, he should at least know the concept of God. His concept of God would be derived from the surroundings in which he lives. The god that a large number of people worship has got human qualities - therefore he does not believe in such a god. Similarly a Muslim too does not and should not believe in such false gods. If a non-Muslim believes that Islam is a merciless religion with something to do with terrorism; a religion which does not give rights to women; a religion which contradicts science; in his limited sense that non-Muslim is correct to reject such Islam. The problem is he has a wrong picture of Islam. Even I reject such a false picture of Islam, but at the same time, it becomes my duty as a Muslim to present the correct picture of Islam to that non-Muslim i.e. Islam is a merciful religion, it gives equal rights to the women, it is not incompatible with logic, reason and science; if I present the correct facts about Islam, that non-Muslim may Inshallah accept Islam. Similarly the atheist rejects the false gods and the duty of every Muslim is to present the correct concept of God which he shall Insha Allah not refuse. (You may refer to my article, ‘Concept of God in Islam’, for more details)

QUR’AN AND MODERN SCIENCE
The methods of proving the existence of God with usage of the material provided in the ‘Concept of God in Islam’ to an atheist may satisfy some but not all. Many atheists demand a scientific proof for the existence of God. I agree that today is the age of science and technology. Let us use scientific knowledge to kill two birds with one stone, i.e. to prove the existence of God and simultaneously prove that the Qur’an is a revelation of God. If a new object or a machine, which no one in the world has ever seen or heard of before, is shown to an atheist or any person and then a question is asked, " Who is the first person who will be able to provide details of the mechanism of this unknown object? After little bit of thinking, he will reply, ‘the creator of that object.’ Some may say ‘the producer’ while others may say ‘the manufacturer.’ What ever answer the person gives, keep it in your mind, the answer will always be either the creator, the producer, the manufacturer or some what of the same meaning, i.e. the person who has made it or created it. Don’t grapple with words, whatever answer he gives, the meaning will be same, therefore accept it. SCIENTIFIC FACTS MENTIONED IN THE QUR’AN: for details on this subject please refer to my book, ‘THE QUR’AN AND MODERN SCIENCE – COMPATIBLE OR INCOMPATIBLE?

THEORY OF PROBABILITY
In mathematics there is a theory known as ‘Theory of Probability’. If you have two options, out of which one is right, and one is wrong, the chances that you will chose the right one is half, i.e. one out of the two will be correct. You have 50% chances of being correct. Similarly if you toss a coin the chances that your guess will be correct is 50% (1 out of 2) i.e. 1/2. If you toss a coin the second time, the chances that you will be correct in the second toss is again 50% i.e. half. But the chances that you will be correct in both the tosses is half multiplied by half (1/2 x 1/2) which is equal to 1/4 i.e. 50% of 50% which is equal to 25%. If you toss a coin the third time, chances that you will be correct all three times is (1/2 x 1/2 x 1/2) that is 1/8 or 50% of 50% of 50% that is 12½%. A dice has got six sides. If you throw a dice and guess any number between 1 to 6, the chances that your guess will be correct is 1/6. If you throw the dice the second time, the chances that your guess will be correct in both the throws is (1/6 x 1/6) which is equal to 1/36. If you throw the dice the third time, the chances that all your three guesses are correct is (1/6 x 1/6 x 1/6) is equal to 1/216 that is less than 0.5 %. Let us apply this theory of probability to the Qur’an, and assume that a person has guessed all the information that is mentioned in the Qur’an which was unknown at that time. Let us discuss the probability of all the guesses being simultaneously correct. At the time when the Qur’an was revealed, people thought the world was flat, there are several other options for the shape of the earth. It could be triangular, it could be quadrangular, pentagonal, hexagonal, heptagonal, octagonal, spherical, etc. Lets assume there are about 30 different options for the shape of the earth. The Qur’an rightly says it is spherical, if it was a guess the chances of the guess being correct is 1/30. The light of the moon can be its own light or a reflected light. The Qur’an rightly says it is a reflected light. If it is a guess, the chances that it will be correct is 1/2 and the probability that both the guesses i.e the earth is spherical and the light of the moon is reflected light is 1/30 x 1/2 = 1/60. Further, the Qur’an also mentions every living thing is made of water. Every living thing can be made up of either wood, stone, copper, aluminum, steel, silver, gold, oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen, oil, water, cement, concrete, etc. The options are say about 10,000. The Qur’an rightly says that everything is made up of water. If it is a guess, the chances that it will be correct is 1/10,000 and the probability of all the three guesses i.e. the earth is spherical, light of moon is reflected light and everything is created from water being correct is 1/30 x 1/2 x 1/10,000 = 1/60,000 which is equal to about .0017%.

The Qur’an speaks about hundreds of things that were not known to men at the time of its revelation. Only in three options the result is .0017%. I leave it upto you, to work out the probability if all the hundreds of the unknown facts were guesses, the chances of all of them being correct guesses simultaneously and there being not a single wrong guess. It is beyond human capacity to make all correct guesses without a single mistake, which itself is sufficient to prove to a logical person that the origin of the Qur’an is Divine.

CREATOR IS THE AUTHOR OF THE QUR’AN
The only logical answer to the question as to who could have mentioned all these scientific facts 1400 years ago before they were discovered, is exactly the same answer initially given by the atheist or any person, to the question who will be the first person who will be able to tell the mechanism of the unknown object. It is the ‘CREATOR’, the producer, the Manufacturer of the whole universe and its contents. In the English language He is ‘God’, or more appropriate in the Arabic language, ‘ALLAH’.

QUR’AN IS A BOOK OF SIGNS AND NOT SCIENCE
Let me remind you that the Qur’an is not a book of Science, ‘S-C-I-E-N-C-E’ but a book of Signs ‘S-I-G-N-S’ i.e. a book of ayaats. The Qur’an contains more than 6,000 ayaats, i.e. ‘signs’, out of which more than a thousand speak about Science. I am not trying to prove that the Qur’an is the word of God using scientific knowledge as a yard stick because any yardstick is supposed to be more superior than what is being checked or verified. For us Muslims the Qur’an is the Furqan i.e. criteria to judge right from wrong and the ultimate yardstick which is more superior to scientific knowledge. But for an educated man who is an atheist, scientific knowledge is the ultimate test which he believes in. We do know that science many a times takes ‘U’ turns, therefore I have restricted the examples only to scientific facts which have sufficient proof and evidence and not scientific theories based on assumptions. Using the ultimate yardstick of the atheist, I am trying to prove to him that the Qur’an is the word of God and it contains the scientific knowledge which is his yardstick which was discovered recently, while the Qur’an was revealed 1400 year ago. At the end of the discussion, we both come to the same conclusion that God though superior to science, is not incompatible with it.

SCIENCE IS ELIMINATING MODELS OF GOD BUT NOT GOD
Francis Bacon, the famous philosopher, has rightly said that a little knowledge of science makes man an atheist, but an in-depth study of science makes him a believer in God. Scientists today are eliminating models of God, but they are not eliminating God. If you translate this into Arabic, it is La illaha illal la, There is no god, (god with a small ‘g’ that is fake god) but God (with a capital ‘G’).
Surah Fussilat:
"Soon We will show them our signs in the (farthest) regions (of the earth), and in their own souls, until it becomes manifest to them that this is the Truth. Is it not enough that thy Lord doth witness all things?"
[Al-Quran 41:53]
Reference: http://www.irf.net/irf/comparativereligion/index.htm


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Can we Prove Quran is From God?

Muslims have something that offers the clearest proof of all - The Holy Quran. There is no other book like it anywhere on earth. It is absolutely perfect in the Arabic language. It has no mistakes in grammar, meanings or context. The scientific evidences are well known around the entire world, even amongst non-Muslim scholars. Predictions in the Quran have come true; and its teachings are clearly for all people, all places and all times.

Surprisingly enough, the Quran itself provides us with the test of authenticity and offers challenges against itself to prove its veracity. Allah tells us in the Quran:

Haven't the unbelievers considered if this was from other than Allah, they would find within it many contradictions?
[Noble Quran 4:82]

Another amazing challenge from Allah's Book:

If you are in doubt about it, bring a chapter like it.
[Noble Quran 2:23]

And Allah challenges us with:

Bring ten chapters like it.[Noble Quran 11:13]

And finally:
Bring one chapter like it.[Noble Quran 10:38]

No one has been able to produce a book like it, nor ten chapters like it, nor even one chapter like it. It was memorized by thousands of people during the lifetime of Muhammad (peace be upon him) and then this memorization was passed down from teacher to student for generation after generation, from mouth to ear and from one nation to another. Today every single Muslim has memorized some part of the Quran in the original Arabic language that it was revealed in over 1,400 years ago, even though most of them are not Arabs. There are over nine million (9,000,000) Muslims living on the earth today who have totally memorized the entire Quran, word for word, and can recite the entire Quran, in Arabic just as Muhammad (peace be upon him) did 14 centuries ago.


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Did God Create Evil Too?

Is God Pure, Good, Loving and Fair?

If so, then where does evil, hatred and injustice come from?

Allah tells us He is Pure, Loving, and absolutely Just in every respect. He says He is the Best of Judges. He also tells us the life we are in here is a test. He has created everything existing and He created whatever happens as well. There is nothing in this existence except what He has created. He also says in the Quran He created evil (although He is not evil). He is using this as one of the many tests for us.

Consider people who do so much evil in the earth and then live to a ripe old age in the splendor and wealth of their ill-gotten gains and die without ever being taken to task for their deeds. Where is the justice or fairness in this? Allah provides a clear answer for us in Quran as to what is in store for these most evil of people:

A brief enjoyment in this world! - and then unto Us will be their return, then We shall make them taste the severest torment because they used to disbelieve [in Allah, belie His Messengers, deny and challenge His proofs, signs, verses, etc.]
[Noble Quran 10:70]

That Day mankind will proceed in scattered groups that they may be shown their deeds.
So whoever does good equal to the weight of an atom, shall see it.
And whoever does evil equal to the weight of an atom, shall see it.
[Noble Quran 99:6-8]

Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: "We believe," and will not be tested.

And We indeed tested those who were before them. And Allah will certainly make (it) known (the truth of) those who are true, and will certainly make (it) known (the falsehood of) those who are liars, (although Allah knows all that before putting them to test).

Or those who do evil deeds think that they can outstrip Us (i.e. escape Our Punishment)? Evil is that which they judge!

Whoever hopes for the Meeting with Allah, then Allah's Term is surely coming. And He is the All-Hearer, the All-Knower.

And whosoever strives, he strives only for himself. Verily, Allah is free of all wants from the 'Alamin (mankind, jinns, and all that exists).

Those who believe [in the Oneness of Allah (Monotheism) and in Messenger Muhammad peace be upon him , and do not apostate because of the harm they receive from the polytheists], and do righteous good deeds, surely, We shall remit from them their evil deeds and shall reward them according to the best of that which they used to do.

And We have enjoined on man to be good and dutiful to his parents, but if they strive to make you join with Me (in worship) anything (as a partner) of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not. Unto Me is your return, and I shall tell you what you used to do.

And for those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah and other items of Faith) and do righteous good deeds, surely, We shall make them enter in (the entrance of) the righteous (i.e. in Paradise).

Of mankind are some who say: "We believe in Allah," but if they are made to suffer for the sake of Allah, they consider the trial of mankind as Allah's punishment, and if victory comes from your Lord, (the hypocrites) will say: "Verily! We were with you (helping you)." Is not Allah Best Aware of what is in the breast of the 'Alamin (mankind and jinns)?

Verily, Allah knows those who believe, and verily, He knows the hypocrites [i.e. Allah will test the people with good and hard days to discriminate the good from the wicked (although Allah knows all that before putting them to test)].
[Noble Quran 29:2-11]

Reward and punishment are definitely a part of the Next Life on a very permanent basis. Those who suffer in this life and seemly have nothing to show for all their hard works, good deeds and sacrifices and maintaining the faith can look forward to a far greater reward in a place where these things will not be temporary but rather they will be for eternity. Those who corrupt, violate, injure and do evil and destruction seem to escape any justice here, yet in the Next Life they too will see the fruits of their labors, and certainly they will be paid according to what they have done as well.
As regards oppression, this is something Allah forbids for Himself to do to anyone and He hates it when anyone oppresses someone else. He does have absolute power over everything. He allows sickness, disease, death and even oppression so we can all be tested in what we do.


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Does God Know Future?

Does God know everything that is going to happen? - Does He have absolute control on the outcome of everything? - If so, how is that fair for us? Where is our free will then?

Allah knows everything that will happen. The first thing that He created was the "pen" and He ordered the pen to write. The pen wrote until it had written everything that would happen. And then Allah began to create the universe. All of this was already known to Him before He created it. He does have absolute and total control at all times. There is nothing that happens except that He is in total control of it at all times.

..Allah accepts the repentance of whom He wills. Allah is All-Knowing, All-Wise.
[Noble Quran 9:15]

..Truly He! Only He, is the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.
[Noble Quran 12:100]

And Allah only, has Free Will, He Wills whatever He likes and it will always happen as He wills. We have something called, "Free choice." The difference is that what Allah "Wills" always happens and what we choose may or may not happen. We are not being judged on the outcome of things, we are being judged on our choices. This means that at the core of everything will always be our intentions. Whatever we intended, is what we will have the reward for. Each person will be judged according to what Allah gave them to work with, how they used it and what they intended to do with it.

As regards the actual "Judgment Day" - Allah tells us that everything we are doing is being recorded and not a single tiny thing escapes from this record. Even an atom's weight of good will be seen on the Day of Judgment and even a single atom's weight of evil will be seen too.

On That Day (of judgment) mankind will proceed in scattered groups and they will be shown their deeds.
So whoever does good equal to the weight of an atom, shall see it.
And whoever does evil equal to the weight of an atom, shall see it.

[Noble Quran 99:6-8]

The one who will bring the evidences against us will be ourselves. Our ears, tongue, eyes and all of our bodies will begin to testify against us in front of Allah on the Day of Judgment. None will be oppressed on that Day, none will be falsely accused.

He could have put everyone in their respective places from the very beginning, but the people would complain as to why they were thrown in Hell without being given a chance. This life is exactly that; a chance to prove to ourselves who we really are and what we would really do if we indeed had a free choice.

Allah Knows everything that will happen, but we don't. That is why the test is fair.


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What is Islam?
The word "Islam" itself means "Submission to Allah." The religion of Islam is not named after a person as in the case of "Christianity" which was named after Jesus Christ, "Buddhism" after Gutama Buddha , "Marxism" after Karl Marx, and "Confucianism" after Confucius.

Similarly, Islam is not named after a tribe like "Judaism" after the tribe of Judah and "Hinduism" after the Hindus. The Arabic word "Islam" means the submission or surrender of one's will to the will of the only true god worthy of worship, "Allah" (known as God "the Father" in Christianity).

Anyone who does indeed submit to the will of Allah as required by Islam is termed a "Muslim," which means one who has submitted to the will of Allah. Many people in the West have developed the sad misinformed trend of calling Islam "Muhammadenism" and it's followers "Muhammadins." This is a totally foreign word to Muslims and unrecognized by them. No Muslim has ever called his religion "Muhammadenism" or called himself a "Muhammadin."


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What is Quran About?
The Quran, the last revealed word of God, is the primary source of every Muslim’s faith and practice. It deals with all the subjects which concern human beings: wisdom, doctrine, worship, transactions, law, etc., but its basic theme is the relationship between God and His creatures. At the same time, it provides guidelines and detailed teachings for a just society, proper human conduct, and an equitable economic system.


Note that the Quran was revealed to Muhammad in Arabic only. So, any Quranic translation, either in English or any other language, is neither a Quran, nor a version of the Quran, but rather it is only a translation of the meaning of the Quran. The Quran exists only in the Arabic in which it was revealed.


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Is God the same as Allah?
Why the term "Allah" is used instead of "God"
Many people ask why the term "Allah" is used instead of "God" and assume it's use implies that Muslims worship a separate God. There is only ONE GOD - a belief held by followers of each of the three main world religions : Islam, Christianity and Judaism.

The Arabic term for "God"
The Arabic word for God is "illah". "Allah" is in fact a conjunction of two words (i.e. Al-Ilah):
1. "Al" which means "The"
2. "Illah" which means "God"

The reasons for using the term "Allah" in favour of "God" are threefold:
1. "Allah" has no gender. God can be male/female i.e. God/Goddess
2. "Allah" is ONE and literally means THE GOD. God may be singular and plural i.e. God/Gods and Goddess/Goddesses
3. "Allah" is the personal name of God as used in the Holy Qur'an


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Who is Allah?
In Arabic, Allah means literally the one God. It is pretty easy to understand how different languages give the same thing different names. Is it that unusual to hear Muslims call God another name, like "Allah", while you call him God or Lord? Some people have no minds; in the last decade, a growing phenomenon was seen on the internet and in published literature. Allah is said to be the “moon god” that Arabs worshiped, and Kaaba (The Muslims holiest place on Earth) is His temple. The evidence for this theory is the crescent that appears on the top of many mosques all over the world plus a fabricated picture of the "moon god".


This idea is very dangerous. If you believe that Muslims are worshiping an idol, then there is no basis even to talk to them. They are pagan idolaters like Hindus and Buddhists. It is alleged that although Islam is a monotheistic religion, the Muslims' only God is simply another idol that Muhammad (P.B.U.H.) chose (or in some versions of the story, he made it up).


To invalidate this foolish theory, one has to take the story from different angles.


The crescent is not a symbol of Islam, but of the Ottoman Empire. The Ottomans are those tribes that moved to Turkey from east and middle Asia. They converted to Islam and built a huge Muslim Empire that ruled the whole Muslim world for centuries. When they took Islam as a religion they started using the lunar calendar, the calendar that was used by Muslims, Jews and early Christians. Even today, the flag of Turkey has a crescent on it. There was no crescent on any mosque built before the Ottomans era.


Prophet Abraham built the Kaaba for people to worship God. While pagan Arabs admitted this fact and even kept the stone where he used to stand to build the Kaaba (Abraham's station), they brought idols to the Kaaba and worshiped them to get closer to Abraham's Lord, Allah, God of gods. Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H.) came with the monotheistic message of Islam. Arabs defended these idols and refused to give up the religion of their fathers and grandfathers. They offered to Muhammad a deal, that is to worship their gods for one year, and they worship Allah alone for one year. A chapter of the Quran came with the response from God to this evil invitation:


[Say : O ye that reject Faith! I worship not that which ye worship, Nor will ye worship that which I worship. And I will not worship that which ye have been wont to worship, Nor will ye worship that which I worship. To you be your Way, and to me mine. ]109:1-6


Later on, the Quran started calling Allah by other names. One of those holy names was Al-Rahman (the Gracious). Arabs wondered:"is this a new God?" The Quran responded again:


[Say: "Call upon Allah, or call upon Rahman: by whatever name ye call upon Him, (it is well): for to Him belong the Most Beautiful Names. ]17:110


It is not a new god; it is a new name for the same God. Allah has ninety nine names in Islam; all of them are holy and speak about different attributes of the same creator, almighty Allah. As an example, read these verses of the Quran:


[Allah is He, than Whom there is no other god; Who knows (all things) both secret and open; He, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.


Allah is He, than Whom there is no other god; the Sovereign, the Holy One, the Source of Peace (and Perfection), the Guardian of Faith, the Preserver of Safety, the Exalted in Might, the Irresistible, the Supreme: Glory to Allah! (High is He) above the partners they attribute to Him.


He is Allah, the Creator, the Evolver, the Bestower of Forms (or Colours). To Him belong the Most Beautiful Names: whatever is in the heavens and on earth, doth declare His Praises and Glory; and He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.]59:22-24


When Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) came back to Mecca, he entered the city peacefully on the top of an army of 10,000 men, exactly as the Bible described him "pre-eminent above ten thousand." (Solomon 5:10). He did not burn a single home; he did not harm a single person; he just went to the Kaaba and destroyed all the gods Arabs had there. He kept nothing in the Kaaba. Where is this picture of the moon god coming from? I don't know. Did anyone of the pagan Arabs have a digital camera by then?


There is evidence that the word Allah existed before the birth of Muhammad PBUH for thousands of years. It is probably the oldest name man used to call God. Most likely, Adam used the word Allah to call the Lord. On the other hand, the word "GOD" was born with the English language, less than ten centuries ago. Can we say that all English speaking nations are pagans because they use the word "God"? What about Chinese monotheists? How should they call God?


Prophet Muhammad's father’s name was Abdullah (The slave of Allah). This name was common among Arab pagans and Jews. Abdullah bin Salam was one of the first Jews to convert to Islam in Medina. When Arabs call Allah in prayer they say: “Ya Allah” or “Allahoma”. Aren't these words familiar to you? “Alleluia” and “Elohim” are the words used to call Allah in the Bible. In Hebrew, the suffix im means many. So Elohim literally means many Allah(s). This is a known way to express dignity and respect to almighty Allah by calling Him pleural. This phenomenon is known in Hebrew, Arabic, English and other languages. In Quran, the same pattern is seen many times. For example, God says in the holy Quran:


[ We have, without doubt, sent down the Message; and We will assuredly guard it (from corruption). ]15:9.


In the English translation of the Bible, you read, "Let us make man in our image”-Genesis 1:26-KJV.


The word Allah is used in all Arabic translations of the Bible. It was used in some English translations of the Bible like the original "Scofield Reference Bible"-reference: what is his name? by Deedat. In the New Testament, Jesus is believed to cry before his death "ELOI, ELOI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?” Eloi is the exact Arabic word "Elahi" which comes from the same root as Allah.


I have no doubt that the word "Allah" is the oldest known name man called God with. For those who choose to ignore this fact and transgress, Muslims have nothing to offer. Allah says in the holy Quran:


[If any, after this, invent a lie and attribute it to Allah, they are indeed unjust wrong-doers.] 3:94


For Muslims, Allah is perfect. He has no partners. We worship Him and Him alone. Our faith is summarized in the holy Quran:


[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.]112:1-4


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Who is Muhammad (PBUH)?
Muhammad was born in Makkah in the year 570. Since his father died before his birth and his mother died shortly thereafter, he was raised by his uncle who was from the respected tribe of Quraysh. He was raised illiterate, unable to read or write, and remained so till his death. His people, before his mission as a prophet, were ignorant of science and most of them were illiterate. As he grew up, he became known to be truthful, honest, trustworthy, generous, and sincere. He was so trustworthy that they called him the Trustworthy.1 Muhammad was very religious, and he had long detested the decadence and idolatry of his society. At the age of forty, Muhammad received his first revelation from God through the Angel Gabriel. The revelations continued for twenty-three years, and they are collectively known as the Quran.



As soon as he began to recite the Quran and to preach the truth which God had revealed to him, he and his small group of followers suffered persecution from unbelievers. The persecution grew so fierce that in the year 622 God gave them the command to emigrate. This emigration from Makkah to the city of Madinah, some 260 miles to the north, marks the beginning of the Muslim calendar.


After several years, Muhammad and his followers were able to return to Makkah, where they forgave their enemies. Before Muhammad died, at the age of sixty-three, the greater part of the Arabian Peninsula had become Muslim, and within a century of his death, Islam had spread to Spain in the West and as far East as China. Among the reasons for the rapid and peaceful spread of Islam was the truth and clarity of its doctrine. Islam calls for faith in only one God, Who is the only one worthy of worship.


The Prophet Muhammad was a perfect example of an honest, just, merciful, compassionate, truthful, and brave human being. Though he was a man, he was far removed from all evil characteristics and strove solely for the sake of God and His reward in the Hereafter. Moreover, in all his actions and dealings, he was ever mindful and fearful of God.


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What is the Status of Women in Islam?
Islam sees a woman, whether single or married, as an individual in her own right, with the right to own and dispose of her property and earnings without any guardianship over her (whether that be her father, husband, or anyone else). She has the right to buy and sell, give gifts and charity, and may spend her money as she pleases. A marriage dowry is given by the groom to the bride for her own personal use, and she keeps her own family name rather than taking her husband’s. Islam encourages the husband to treat his wife well, as the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: { The best among you are those who are best to their wives. }4


Mothers in Islam are highly honored. Islam recommends treating them in the best way. A man came to the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and said: “O Messenger of God! Who among the people is the most worthy of my good companionship?” The Prophet (PBUH) said: { Your mother. } The man said: “Then who?” The Prophet (PBUH) said: { Then your mother. } The man further asked: “Then who?” The Prophet (PBUH) said: { Then your mother. } The man asked again: “Then who?” The Prophet (PBUH) said: { Then your father. }1


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Why do Woman Cover?
It is the general consensus among the Muslims that a Muslim woman is required to cover her head leaving only her face showing as part of an overall dress code and behaviour which Islam prescribes. It is therefore part of the social system of Islam, and a manifestation of important general Islamic principles. Firstly, an educated Muslim woman does this because she is following guidance from God and His prophet Muhammad recorded in the Qur'an, and in the Sunnah (the knowledge about the practice and example of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him)). For example, one translation of the meaning of the specific ayat (verse) of Qur'an that mentions the head covering is as follows:


Surah 24 Al-Nur (The Light); ayat 31 (part of)
And say to the believing women......that they should draw their head-coverings over the neck opening (of their dresses) , and not display their ornaments except to their husbands, their fathers.....(etc)


This guidance she regards, as by definition a Muslim should do, as being revealed by the 'All-Knowing' the 'Most Wise', The 'Most Merciful', 'All-Mighty' God who created all human beings and whose Power controls everything. She is doing it because she believes that God with His nature knows best what is in the true best interests of human beings, far more than a human can know, with his or her fallibility, and weaknesses.


The main principle reason for the hijab is modesty, which is not wishing to receive unnecessary attention from people, such as admiration and flattery, envy, or, most importantly, sexual attraction from those other than her husband. Great care is taken to keep sexual thoughts, feelings and interactions to within the boundaries of the marital relationship.


These types of attention may boost the 'ego' for the short term, but all have the potential to lead to disastrous consequences in the long term, for example leading to confused feelings, competition, suspicions, affairs, break-up of marriages and other relationships, disturbed children, and ultimately a community where people are insecure, unhappy, and divided amongst themselves.


From this it can be seen that the hijab is a manifestation of another important principle in Islam, which is valuing benefits which are permanent above those which are temporary. What is permanently beneficial is, for example, a happy marriage between two people who aim to learn, teach and apply Islam to the best of their ability in their lives. This is seen as that which brings about the true happiness of the soul for eternity, by purifying and keeping it in its pure, natural, God-created state, filling it with peace and contentment, patience, gratefulness, love and compassion. What is temporary are the momentary pleasures derived from, for example, people's opinions of you, leading to your own self-satisfaction, or, even more basically, those derived from physical sensations.


A strong marriage, and a peaceful, cooperative, happy community, where people's feelings towards one another are good, will not only provide the true happiness that the soul needs, but also, in moderation, the good opinion, physical, and other pleasures that the ego requires.


Therefore, the freedom and benefit of the soul is encouraged, requiring a corresponding disciplining and moderating of the ego, but not a total denial or repression of it.


Besides following modest dress codes appropriate to the different natures of a man and woman, both Muslim men and women should abide by a certain modest and respectful code of conduct when interacting with the opposite sex.


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What Do Muslims Believe about Jesus? (PBUH)
Muslims respect and revere Jesus (peace be upon him). They consider him one of the greatest of God’s messengers to mankind. The Qur’an confirms his virgin birth, and a chapter of the Qur’an is entitled ‘Maryam’ (Mary). The Qur’an describes the birth of Jesus as follows:

(Remember) when the angels said: “O Mary, God gives you good news of a word from Him (God), whose name is the Messiah Jesus, son of Mary, revered in this world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near (to God). He will speak to the people from his cradle and as a man, and he is of the righteous.” She said: “My Lord, how can I have a child when no mortal has touched me?” He said: “So (it will be). God creates what He wills. If He decrees a thing, He says to it only, ‘Be!’ and it is.” (Qur’an, 3:45-47)


Jesus was born miraculously by the command of God which had brought Adam into being without a father. God has said: The case of Jesus with God is like the case of Adam. He created him from dust, and then He said to him, “Be!” and he came into being. (Qur’an, 3:59)


During his prophetic mission, Jesus performed many miracles. God tells us that Jesus said: “I have come to you with a sign from your Lord. I make for you the shape of a bird out of clay, I breathe into it, and it becomes a bird by God’s permission. I heal the blind from birth and the leper. And I bring the dead to life by God’s permission. And I tell you what you eat and what you store in your houses....” (Qur’an, 3:49)


Muslims believe that Jesus was not crucified. It was the plan of Jesus’ enemies to crucify him, but God saved him and raised him up to Him. And the likeness of Jesus was put over another man. Jesus’ enemies took this man and crucified him, thinking that he was Jesus. God has said: ...They said: “We killed the Messiah Jesus, son of Mary, the messenger of God.” They did not kill him, nor did they crucify him, but the likeness of him was put on another man (and they killed that man)... (Qur’an, 4:157)


Neither Muhammad (PBUH) nor Jesus came to change the basic doctrine of the belief in one God, brought by earlier prophets, but rather to confirm and renew it.


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Mary In Islam?
Jesus and The Virgin Mary in Islam
By Juan Galvan


Many people may be surprised that Muslims love Mary, the mother of Jesus. In the Quran, no woman is given more attention than Mary. Mary receives the most attention of any woman mentioned in the Quran even though all the Prophets with the exception of Adam had mothers. Of the Quran's 114 chapters, she is among the eight people who have a chapter named after them. The nineteenth chapter of the Quran is named after her, Mariam. Mariam means Mary in Arabic. The third chapter in the Quran is named after her father, Imran. Chapters Mariam and Imran are among the most beautiful chapters in the Quran. Mary (peace be upon her) is the only woman specifically named in the Quran. An authentic Haddith states that the Prophet said, "The superiority of 'Aisha to other ladies is like the superiority of Tharid (i.e. meat and bread dish) to other meals. Many men reached the level of perfection, but no woman reached such a level except Mary, the daughter of Imran and Asia, the wife of Pharaoh." (Bukhari 4.643). Indeed, both Mary and Pharoah's wife are an example (Quran 66:11-12). The Virgin Mary plays a very significant role in Islam. She is an example and a sign for all people.


In the Quran, Mary's story begins while she is still in her mother's womb. The mother of Mary, said: "O my Lord! I do dedicate into Thee what is in my womb for Thy special service: So accept this of me: For Thou hearest and knowest all things." (Quran 3:35).


She wanted the baby in her womb to serve only the Creator. When Mary was delivered, she said: "O my Lord! Behold! I am delivered of a female child!" (Quran 3:36). She had expected her baby to be a male child who would grow up to be a scholar or religious leader. However, God had a better plan. God is the best of planners. Quran 3:36 continues "…and God knew best what she brought forth- 'And no wise is the male like the female. I have named her Mariam, and I commend her and her offspring to Thy protection from Satan, the Rejected.'" Mariam literally means "maidservant of God."


In Quran 3:37, God states that He accepted Mary as her mother had asked. He made Mary grow in purity and beauty. She was assigned to the care of a priest named Zacharias. This is interesting considering few women were given this opportunity.


"Every time that he entered (her) chamber to see her, he found her supplied with sustenance. He said: 'O Mary! Whence (comes) this to you?' She said: 'From God. for God provides sustenance to whom He pleases without measure.'" (Quran 3:37). Upon hearing Mary's answer, "There did Zakariya pray to his Lord, saying: 'O my Lord! Grant unto me from Thee a progeny that is pure: for Thou art He that heareth prayer!'" (Quran 3:38).


Although his wife was barren and he was very old, God blesses Zacharias and his wife Elizabeth with John. John is known as "John the Baptist" in the Bible. Zacharias was skeptical after the angels announced John's birth. The response to his skepticism was "Doth God accomplish what He willeth" (Quran 3:40). John would become a noble and chaste Prophet as the angels had stated (Quran 3:39).


The Quran discusses Mary's miraculous conception as well. "Relate in the Book (the story of) Mary, when she withdrew from her family to a place in the East. She placed a screen (to screen herself) from them; then We sent her Our angel, and he appeared before her as a man in all respects." (Quran 19:16-17). After seeing the angel, she said: "I seek refuge from thee to (God) Most Gracious: (come not near) if thou dost fear God." (Quran 19:18). The angel Gabriel responded: "Nay, I am only a messenger from thy Lord, (to announce) to thee the gift of a pure son." (Quran 19:19). Her next response is expected. She asked: "How shall I have a son, seeing that no man has touched me, and I am not unchaste?" (Quran 19:20). The Angel Gabriel said: "So (it will be): thy Lord saith, 'That is easy for Me: and (We wish) to appoint him as a Sign unto men and a Mercy from Us.' It is a matter (so) decreed." (Quran 19:21). Mary then becomes pregnant.


Jesus is a Prophet and a Messenger. A Messenger is a Prophet who is given revelation from God. Whereas the Torah was revealed to Moses, the Gospel was revealed to Jesus. Messengers are a mercy, guidance, and sign from God. "And God will teach him (Jesus) the Book and Wisdom, the Torah and the Gospel, and (appoint him) as a messenger to the Children of Israel, (with this message):


'I have come to you, with a Sign from your Lord, in that I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure of a bird, and breathe into it, and it becomes a bird by God's leave. And I heal those born blind, and the lepers, and I bring the dead into life, by God's leave; and I declare to you what ye eat, and what ye store in your houses. Surely therein is a Sign for you if ye did believe. (I have come to you) to attest the Torah which was before me. And to make lawful to you part of what was (before) forbidden to you. I have come to you with a Sign from your Lord. So fear God, and obey me. It is God Who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is a Way that is straight.'" (Quran 3:48-51).


God appointed messengers to help us answer questions such as: What happens after I die? What's right and wrong? Does a supernatural world exist? What's the purpose of my creation? Jesus was calling people to the worship of only God. Only by God's leave was Jesus able to perform miracles.


"When Jesus found unbelief on their (the disciples) part he said: 'Who will be my helpers to (the work of) God?" Said the disciples: "We are God's helpers: We believe in God, and do thou bear witness that we are Muslims.'" (Quran 3:52).


After conceiving Jesus, Mary went away with the baby to a distant place (Quran 19:22). "And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm-tree. She cried (in her anguish): 'Ah! would that I had died before this! would that I had been a thing forgotten!'" (Quran 19:23). "But (a voice) cried to her from beneath the (palm-tree): 'Grieve not! for thy Lord hath provided a rivulet beneath thee; And shake towards thyself the trunk of the palm-tree: It will let fall fresh ripe dates upon thee. So eat and drink and cool (thine) eye. And if thou dost see any man, say, 'I have vowed a fast to (God) Most Gracious, and this day will I enter into no talk with any human being.'" (Quran 19:24-26).


Joseph, the magi, and manger are not mentioned in the Quran. God was Mary's only Provider. Muslims do not accept the virgin birth of Jesus as evidence of Jesus' divinity. "The similitude of Jesus before God is as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him: 'Be.' And he was." (Quran 3:59). Adam's creation was even more miraculous because he was born without father and mother. When she brings the baby to her people, they said: "O Mary! truly a strange thing has thou brought! O sister of Aaron! Thy father was not a man of evil, nor thy mother a woman unchaste!" (Quran 19:27-8). Mary then points to the baby. They said: "How can we talk to one who is a child in the cradle?" (Quran 19:29). Then a miracle occurs that is not mentioned in the Bible. In defense of his mother, Jesus said: "I am indeed a servant of God. He hath given me revelation and made me a prophet; And He hath made me blessed wheresoever I be, and hath enjoined on me Prayer and Charity as long as I live; (He hath made me) kind to my mother, and not overbearing or unblest; So peace is on me the day I was born, the day that I die, and the day that I shall be raised up to life (again)!" (Quran 19:30-33).


The virgin birth of Jesus was a sign. "And (remember) her who guarded her chastity: We breathed into her of Our spirit, and We made her and her son a sign for all peoples." (Quran 21:91). All previous Prophets confirmed the oneness of God, Tawheed. Whereas the Holy Trinity is the fundamental concept of God in Christianity, Tawheed is the fundamental concept of God in Islam. God exists independent of religion. Muslims do not believe in the concept of Holy Trinity (Quran 5:73). God is not Jesus (Quran 5:72). On the Day of Judgment, when Jesus is asked if he had called people to worship him and his mother as two gods, Jesus will say: "Glory to Thee! never could I say what I had no right (to say). Had I said such a thing, Thou wouldst indeed have known it. Thou knowest what is in my heart, Thou I know not what is in Thine. For Thou knowest in full all that is hidden." (Quran 5:116).


People should not worship any of God's creation, including Jesus and Mary. We must not assign any of God's creation His divine attributes and characteristics. "He is God the Creator, the Maker, the Shaper. To Him belong the Names Most Beautiful. All that is in the heavens and the earth magnifies Him; He is the All-Mighty, the All-Wise." (Qur'an 59:24).


Although God can do all things, He only does things that are consistent with His fundamental nature. Begetting a son is not consistent with God's magnificent nature (Quran 19:92, Quran 19:35). Consistent with His fundamental nature is forgiveness. Although Adam and Eve could no longer live in the Paradise, God forgave Adam and Eve for their sin after they sincerely repented (Quran 2:35-37). We are responsible for our own deeds and will not be punished for the deeds of another person (Quran 53:38-42). Therefore, Muslims reject the doctrine of original sin. Although Adam and Eve were punished, God would still be merciful by sending Guidance to mankind. "We said: 'Get down all of you from this place (the Paradise), then whenever there comes to you Guidance from Me, and whoever follows My Guidance, there shall be no fear on them, nor shall they grieve.'" (Quran 2:38).


When people hear the term Islam, they naturally tend to think of the organized religion of Islam which started in the 7th century CE with prophet Mohammed. However, in Arabic the word Islam comes from the root "salema" which means peace, purity, submission, and obedience. In the religious sense, Islam means peace and purity achieved by submitting to the will of God and obedience to His law. Muslims are those who submit. Muslims believe that all those who submitted to the will of God in line with divine revelation received before the advent of formal Islam with prophet Mohammed, were themselves also Muslim. So coming from this understanding, Muslims believe that we are part of one continuing faith community with Jesus and Mary. Mary, Jesus, and the disciples were all "Muslims" because they submitted to God.


"Behold! the angels said: 'O Mary! God hath chosen thee and purified thee - chosen thee above the women of all nations. O Mary! worship thy Lord devoutly: Prostrate thyself, and bow down (in prayer) with those who bow down.'" (Quran 3:42-43).


Another Prophet with a message similar to Jesus' would later be born in Arabia in the sixth century. He also called people to the worship of only God. Although unable to read and write, Muhammad (peace be upon him) would recite beautiful verses of the Quran as they were revealed to him. The Quran is a beautiful miracle, a sign, a mercy, a warner, and a guidance for all people. Muhammad is the last Prophet from a line of Prophets that included Noah, Abraham, Moses, and Jesus (peace be upon them). All Prophets were models for righteous living. Muhammad's sunnah, his sayings, example, and traditions, is also considered revelation. His sunnah is expressed in various books of Haddith.


"Indeed in the Messenger of God you have a good example to follow for him who hopes for (the Meeting with) God and the Last Day, and remembers God much." (Quran 33:21).


God created all people to worship Him and to live life based on His teachings and guidance. "And hold fast, all together, by the Rope which God (stretches out for you), and be not divided among yourselves; and remember with gratitude God's favor on you; for ye were enemies and He joined your hearts in love, so that by His Grace, ye became brethren; and ye were on the brink of the pit of Fire, and He saved you from it. Thus doth God make His Signs clear to you that ye may be guided." (Quran 3:103).


"If anyone desires a religion other than Islam (submission to God), never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter He will be in the ranks of those who have lost." (Quran 3:85).


We accomplish this by bearing witness to God's oneness and accepting His final revelation in our daily lives. "O ye who believe! Fear God as He should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam." (Quran 3:102).


There is none worthy of worship but God, and Muhammad is His messenger.


* End Note: While writing about the Virgin Mary, I wanted to avoid as much confusion as possible among non-Muslims. My article was written with a non-Muslim audience in mind. Consequently, I used English terms and figures familiar to Christians rather than those in Arabic. For example, "Isa" means Jesus in Arabic, and "Yahya" means John in Arabic. I also avoided using terms of respectability commonly used among Muslims such as SWT, PBUH, SAWS, RA, and AS. I apologize if I have offended anyone.


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Is there Trinity in Islam?
No. Allah is one and perfect.

In the Name of Allâh, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.
1. Say (O Muhammad (Peace be upon him)): "He is Allâh, (who is) One,
2. Allâh, the Eternal Refuge.
3. He neither begets nor is born,
4. Nor is there to Him any equivalent." [Noble Quran : Surah Al-Ikhlas (Sincerity): 112]




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How do Muslims treat the Elderly?
In the Islamic world, one rarely finds “old people’s homes.” The strain of caring for one’s parents in this most difficult time of their lives is considered an honor and a blessing and an opportunity for great spiritual growth. In Islam, it is not enough that we only pray for our parents, but we should act with limitless compassion, remembering that when we were helpless children, they preferred us to themselves. Mothers are particularly honored. When Muslim parents reach old age, they are treated mercifully, with kindness and selflessness.


In Islam, serving one’s parents is a duty second to prayer, and it is their right to expect it. It is considered despicable to express any irritation when, through no fault of their own, the old become difficult.


God has said:
Your Lord has commanded that you worship none but Him, and that you be kind to your parents. If one of them or both of them reach old age with you, do not say to them a word of disrespect, or scold them, but say a generous word to them. And act humbly to them in mercy, and say: “My Lord, have mercy on them, since they cared for me when I was small.” (Qur’an, 17:23-24)


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What Are the Five Pillars of Islam?
The Five Pillars of Islam are the framework of a Muslim’s life. They are the testimony of faith, prayer, giving zakat (support of the needy), fasting during the month of Ramadan, and the pilgrimage to Makkah once in a lifetime for those who are able.


1) The Testimony of Faith:
The testimony of faith is saying with conviction, “La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammadur rasoolu Allah.” This saying means “There is no true god but God (Allah),1 and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God.” The first part, “There is no true god but God,” means that none has the right to be worshipped but God alone, and that God has neither partner nor son. This testimony of faith is called the Shahada, a simple formula which should be said with conviction in order to convert to Islam (as explained above on pages 52-53). The testimony of faith is the most important pillar of Islam.


2) Prayer: Muslims perform five prayers a day. Each prayer does not take more than a few minutes to perform. Prayer in Islamis a direct link between the worshipper and God. There are no intermediaries between God and the worshipper.


In prayer, a person feels inner happiness, peace, and comfort, and that God is pleased with him or her. The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: { Bilal, call (the people) to prayer, let us be comforted by it. }1 Bilal was one of Muhammad’s (PBUH) companions who was charged to call the people to prayers.


Prayers are performed at dawn, noon, mid-afternoon, sunset, and night. A Muslim may pray almost anywhere, such as in fields, offices, factories, or universities.


3) Giving Zakat (Support of the Needy):
All things belong to God, and wealth is therefore held by human beings in trust. The original meaning of the word zakat is both ‘purification’ and ‘growth.’ Giving zakat means ‘giving a specified percentage on certain properties to certain classes of needy people.’ The percentage which is due on gold, silver, and cash funds that have reached the amount of about 85 grams of gold and held in possession for one lunar year is two and a half percent. Our possessions are purified by setting aside a small portion for those in need, and, like the pruning of plants, this cutting back balances and encourages new growth.


A person may also give as much as he or she pleases as voluntary alms or charity.


4) Fasting the Month of Ramadan:
Every year in the month of Ramadan,1 Muslims fast from dawn until sundown, abstaining from food, drink, and sexual relations.


Although the fast is beneficial to health, it is regarded principally as a method of spiritual self-purification. By cutting oneself off from worldly comforts, even for a short time, a fasting person gains true sympathy with those who go hungry, as well as growth in his or her spiritual life.


5) The Pilgrimage to Makkah:
The annual pilgrimage (Hajj) to Makkah is an obligation once in a lifetime for those who are physically and financially able to perform it. About two million people go to Makkah each year from every corner of the globe. Although Makkah is always filled with visitors, the annual Hajj is performed in the twelfth month of the Islamic calendar. Male pilgrims wear special simple clothes which strip away distinctions of class and culture so that all stand equal before God.


The rites of the Hajj include circling the Kaaba seven times and going seven times between the hillocks of Safa and Marwa, as Hagar (The wife of Abraham, and the mother of Abraham's son Ishmael) did during her search for water. Then the pilgrims stand together in Arafat and ask God for what they wish and for His forgiveness, in what is often thought of as a preview of the Day of Judgment.


The end of the Hajj is marked by a festival, Eid Al-Adha, which is celebrated with prayers. This, and Eid al-Fitr, a feast-day commemorating the end of Ramadan, are the two annual festivals of the Muslim calendar.


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What does Islam say about Terrorism?
Islam, a religion of mercy, does not permit terrorism. In the Qur’an, God has said:
God does not forbid you from showing kindness and dealing justly with those who have not fought you about religion and have not driven you out of your homes. God loves just dealers. (Qur’an, 60:8)

The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) used to prohibit soldiers from killing women and children,2 and he would advise them: { ...Do not betray, do not be excessive, do not kill a newborn child. }3

And he also said: { Whoever has killed a person having a treaty with the Muslims shall not smell the fragrance of Paradise, though its fragrance is found for a span of forty years. }1

Also, the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has forbidden punishment with fire.2

He once listed murder as the second of the major sins,3 and he even warned that on the Day of Judgment, { The first cases to be adjudicated between people on the Day of Judgment will be those of bloodshed.4 }5

Muslims are even encouraged to be kind to animals and are forbidden to hurt them. Once the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: { A woman was punished because she imprisoned a cat until it died. On account of this, she was doomed to Hell. While she imprisoned it, she did not give the cat food or drink, nor did she free it to eat the insects of the earth. }6

He also said that a man gave a very thirsty dog a drink, so God forgave his sins for this action. The Prophet (PBUH) was asked: “Messenger of God, are we rewarded for kindness towards animals?”

He said: { There is a reward for kindness to every living animal or human. }7

Additionally, while taking the life of an animal for food, Muslims are commanded to do so in a manner that causes the least amount of fright and suffering possible. The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: { When you slaughter an animal, do so in the best way. One should sharpen his knife to reduce the suffering of the animal. }8

In light of these and other Islamic texts, the act of inciting terror in the hearts of defenseless civilians, the wholesale destruction of buildings and properties, the bombing and maiming of innocent men, women, and children are all forbidden and detestable acts according to Islam and the Muslims. Muslims follow a religion of peace, mercy, and forgiveness, and the vast majority have nothing to do with the violent events some have associated with Muslims. If an individual Muslim were to commit an act of terrorism, this person would be guilty of violating the laws of Islam.


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What Does Islam Say about the Day of Judgment?
Like Christians, Muslims believe that the present life is only a trial preparation for the next realm of existence. This life is a test for each individual for the life after death. A day will come when the whole universe will be destroyed and the dead will be resurrected for judgment by God. This day will be the beginning of a life that will never end. This day is the Day of Judgment. On that day, all people will be rewarded by God according to their beliefs and deeds. Those who die while believing that “There is no true god but God, and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God” and are Muslim will be rewarded on that day and will be admitted to Paradise forever, as God has said:

"And those who believe and do good deeds, they are dwellers of Paradise, they dwell therein forever." (Quran, 2:82)

But those who die while not believing that “There is no true god but God, and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God” or are not Muslim will lose Paradise forever and will be sent to Hellfire, as God has said:

"And whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will not be accepted from him and he will be one of the losers in the Hereafter." (Quran, 3:85)

And as He has said:
"Those who have disbelieved and died in disbelief, the earth full of gold would not be accepted from any of them if it were offered as a ransom. They will have a painful punishment, and they will have no helpers." (Quran, 3:91)

One may ask, ‘I think Islam is a good religion, but if I were to convert to Islam, my family, friends, and other people would persecute me and make fun of me. So if I do not convert to Islam, will I enter Paradise and be saved from Hellfire?’

The answer is what God has said in the preceding verse, “And whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will not be accepted from him and he will be one of the losers in the Hereafter.”

After having sent the Prophet Muhammad to call people to Islam, God does not accept adherence to any religion other than Islam. God is our Creator and Sustainer. He created for us whatever is in the earth. All the blessings and good things we have are from Him. So after all this, when someone rejects belief in God, His Prophet Muhammad , or His religion of Islam, it is just that he or she be punished in the Hereafter. Actually, the main purpose of our creation is to worship God alone and to obey Him, as God has said in the Holy Quran (51:56).

This life we live today is a very short life. The unbelievers on the Day of Judgment will think that the life they lived on earth was only a day or part of a day, as God has said:

He (God) will say, “How many years did you stay on the earth?” They will say: “We stayed a day or part of a day....” (Quran, 23:112-113)

And He has said:
"Did you then think that We had created you in jest (without any purpose), and that you would not be returned to Us (in the Hereafter)? So, God is exalted, the True King. None has the right to be worshipped but Him..." (Quran, 23:115-116)

The life in the Hereafter is a very real life. It is not only spiritual, but physical as well. We will live there with our souls and bodies.

In comparing this world with the Hereafter, the Prophet Muhammad said: {The value of this world compared to that of the Hereafter is like what your finger brings from the sea when you put it in and then take it out.} 1 The meaning is that, the value of this world compared to that of the Hereafter is like a few drops of water compared to the sea.


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Human Rights and Justice in Islam?
Islam provides many human rights for the individual. The following are some of these human rights that Islam protects. The life and property of all citizens in an Islamic state are considered sacred, whether a person is Muslim or not. Islam also protects honor. So, in Islam, insulting others or making fun of them is not allowed. The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: { Truly your blood, your property, and your honor are inviolable. }1 Racism is not allowed in Islam, for the Qur’an speaks of human equality in the following terms:

O mankind, We have created you from a male and a female and have made you into nations and tribes for you to know one another. Truly, the noblest of you with God is the most pious.2 Truly, God is All-Knowing, All-Aware. (Qur’an, 49:13)

Islam rejects certain individuals or nations being favored because of their wealth, power, or race. God created human beings as equals who are to be distinguished from each other only on the basis of their faith and piety. The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)

d: { O people! Your God is one and your forefather (Adam) is one. An Arab is not better than a non-Arab and a non-Arab is not better than an Arab, and a red (i.e. white tinged with red) person is not better than a black person and a black person is not better than a red person,1 except in piety. }2

One of the major problems facing mankind today is racism. The developed world can send a man to the moon but cannot stop man from hating and fighting his fellow man. Ever since the days of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), Islam has provided a vivid example of how racism can be ended. The annual pilgrimage (Hajj) to Makkah shows the real Islamic brotherhood of all races and nations, when about two million Muslims from all over the world come to Makkah to perform the pilgrimage.

Islam is a religion of justice. God has said:
Truly God commands you to give back trusts to those to whom they are due, and when you judge between people, to judge with justice.... (Qur’an, 4:58)

And He has said:
...And act justly. Truly, God loves those who are just. (Qur’an, 49:9)


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How to Become a Muslim?
Simply by saying with conviction, “La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammadur rasoolu Allah,” one converts to Islam and becomes a Muslim. This saying means “There is no true god but God (Allah), and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God.”

The first part, “There is no true god but God,” means that none has the right to be worshipped but God alone, and that God has neither partner nor son. To be a Muslim, one should also:

  • Believe that the Holy Qur’an is the literal word of God, revealed by Him.
  • Believe that the Day of Judgment (the Day of Resurrection) is true and will come, as God promised in the Qur’an.
  • Accept Islam as his or her religion.
  • Not worship anything nor anyone except God.

The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: { God is more joyful at the repentance of someone when he turns to Him in repentance than one of you would be if he were riding his camel in the wilderness, and it runs away from him, carrying his food and drink, so that he loses all hope of getting it back. He comes to a tree and lies down in its shade (awaiting death), for he has lost all hope of finding his camel. Then, while he is in that state (of desperation), suddenly it is there before him! So he seizes its halter and cries out from the depth of his joy: “O God, You are my servant and I amYour Lord!” His mistake comes from the intensity of his joy. }1

The saying, “There is no true god but God, and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God,”