Universal Beliefs of Al-Islam…
Note: Throughout this information you will notice the name of the Creator spelled “G-d.” This is in order to show due reverence to the Name of G-d Almighty, that we not use any spelling that could in the reverse mean “dog.”
Who is Allah? Allah is the Creator with no partners. Allah is the Arabic word for G-d. Arabs who are Christians call G-d, Allah, because Arabic is their language. Muslims have 99 popular attributes for Allah. We have the principle of “tauheed” or oneness; and the first principle in our religion is, “Laa ilaaha illallah, there is only One Allah, One G’d! Muhammadar Rasul Lallah”. That’s to say, “Muhammad (pbuh) is not G’d! he is the messenger of G’d!” We don’t believe in G’d, manifest. We don’t believe that any man can be G’d. The concept of G’d is too big for creation, itself. As Suleiman (Solomon)(upon him be peace) said, when building the temple – “Oh G’d! This house can’t hold You, nor can the heavens and the earth hold You”.
So G’d, in Solomon’s eyes, was a concept too big for the temple that he built and also too big for the external world, the world all around us. We say, in expressing this idea, “Allahu Akbar”, “G’d Is Bigger!” Some people say that it means “G’d is the Greatest!” Well, that’s true by reasoning. But it’s, “G’d is Bigger! G’d is Greater!” indicating that two things are to be compared. If someone asks, “Then what is He bigger than?” Then I say, “That’s left to your imagination! Anything that u can imagine, He’s bigger than that!” Allahu Akbar!” That is what we say.
What is Al-Islam? Al-Islam is the complete way of life that reflects Submission to the Will of G-d. Islam means “submission,” derived from the Arabic word meaning “peace (Salaam).” Surrender our Will, which is accepting the Will of G-d to live by the principle or rule of peace under G-d, according to G-d’s Will; so, that we will have peace with G-d, peace with ourselves, our own souls and peace with our fellow man. Properly called in the Holy Quran, The surrender to peace, “Al Islam,” which the original language in the Holy Quran never had the word “Islam” by itself. G-d says that He is the Peace, “As Salaam”, one of the Divine names of G-d in the Quran. We are also told that the Paradise, the heaven that we are invited to work for and earn while we live in this world is the abode, place, home of peace or the destination of peace. We are told that when we get in Paradise, those who earned it, their greetings will be peace, salaam
Who is a Muslim? So, Muslims, if they live up to their religion, are peace-loving people – The very name, “Muslim”, suggests a peace-loving people. “Muslim”, “salaam”, “peace”, thus “Muslim” is one who has agreed to and accepted a life of peace. The Muslim life then should be motivated by peace, because that is the character of the Muslim community. A Muslim is anyone who submits to the Will of G-d. Everyone is born “Muslim, and their environment makes them otherwise.”
How does one become a conscious Muslim? To become Muslim is to make public declaration that “there is no god but Allah (the One G-d), and Muhammad is the Messenger of G-d.” This is called the Shahadatain. So, to ensure we live a complete life. We have the principle of tauheed, or oneness; and the first principle in our religion is, “Laa ilaaha illallah, there is only One Allah, One G’d! Muhammadar Rasul Lallah”. That’s to say, “Muhammad (pbuh) is not G’d! he is the messenger of G’d!”
Who is Muhammad? Muhammad the Prophet was born in Mecca, the holiest city to Islam in Arabia in the year 570 or in the 6th Century, to whom the Qur’an was revealed 14 centuries and more ago. He is (in scripture), the Seal of the Prophets. رَّسُولَ اللَّـهِ وَخَاتَمَ النَّبِيِّينَ Khatam (seal or finality) means the last part or portion of a thing that is the best, indicating finality combined with perfection and continuation of its blessings. Also says in the Quran, that he is not sent to be any except a mercy to all the worlds. It is to tell us that our Prophet, as given by Allah, as a mercy to all the worlds, that we, who follow him, must also have it in our spirits and in our hearts to be a mercy to all the worlds. We are to be, also, people with charity in our hearts for all people, with a desire in hearts to help all people to the best life that G-d created us for.
How many Muslims are there? Worldwide there are just over 1 billion Muslims, or one out of every five people on earth is a Muslim. In the United States, there are approximately 8 million Muslims; 2.5 million are recognized as indigenous, with the remainder by way of immigration.
Aren’t all Muslims Arabs? No. Most Muslims live east of Karachi; 30% of Muslims live in the Indian subcontinent; 20% in Sub-Sahara Africa; 17% in Southeast Asia; 18% in the Arab world; 10% in the states of the former Soviet Union/Russia. There is a significant Muslim population in China, Latin America and Australia. Aren’t All Arabs Muslim? No.
What is the Qur’an? The Qur’an is the last revealed Scripture from G-d and the primary source of the Muslim’s Faith.
What are Sunnah and Hadith? Prophet Muhammad was described by his wife, Aishah, as the Qur’an walking and his life examples and practices constitute the second most important source for Muslims. These life examples are called Sunnah and are compiled in Hadith.
What are the Five Pillars of Al-Islam? Belief in One G-d (Allah), Prayer five times a day to the One G-d, Fasting in the Month of Ramadan, Charity giving (called Zakaat), and Hajj or the Pilgrimage to the Sacred House, the Kaa’bah, in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, at least once.
What else do Muslims believe? Muslims believe in all the prophets to Muhammad, the Last. Muslims believe in all the Scriptures that the Prophets came with from G-d. Muslims believe in the Angels, the most notable in the Qur’an being Jibril (Gabriel). Muslims believe in Life after Death or the Resurrection. Muslims believe in the Day of Judgment, when everyone will be called to reckon for their deeds before G-d.
What about terrorism? We strongly condemn and continue to be shocked and pained by these futile, savage attacks against humanity caused by terrorist and terrorist groups such as ISIL/ISIS, Al-Qaedah and the likes and they must be stopped. We extend our heartfelt prayers and condolences to the families of innocent lives taken, whom we see these victims as unwilling martyrs to be honored.
While some of these killers claim allegiance to a particular terrorist group that identifies with the religion of Al-Islam, our position, the position of Al-Islam, is that it doesn’t matter who the attacker is or what misguided sentiment in the society ill-inspired them or what they claim, their actions are criminal, inhumane, and are an outright betrayal of and not condoned by Islam, Christianity, Judaism or any of the other beautiful faith traditions they may claim. These groups are far from Islamic as their actions are not the actions of Muslims, the followers of Prophet Muhammad (saw) who taught and lived that we are never to the take the life of the innocent, that we are to respect and protect religious freedom and the houses of worship for Christians, Jews, and others, that we are to always seek peace over aggression and never be the aggressor, and that we are not to let the hatred of others cause us to swerve from just behavior. The Holy Qur’an states: O ye who believe! Be upright firmly for Allah (G-d), as witnesses to equity and justice, and let not the enmity and hatred of others cause you to result to wrong or criminal behavior and depart from justice. Be just: that is close to G-d consciousness: and fear Allah. For Allah is well-aware of what you do.
Any person or group, no matter how desperate their situation, no matter what their cause, no matter how much their hearts are paining because of wrong that has been done to them, whether real or perceived, there is no justifica¬tion for them to murder and make helpless, vulnerable, or innocent humans the target of their hate or their inhumane actions. The Qur’an states that ALL life is sacred, and that the value of one life is equal to all of humanity. In the words of the great humanitarian, man of peace, the people’s champ, the late Muhammad Ali (may the Almighty rest his beautiful soul):
I’m a Muslim. I’ve been a Muslim for 20 years. . . . You know me. I’m a boxer. I’ve been called the greatest. People recognize me for being a boxer and a man of truth. I wouldn’t be here representing Islam if it were terrorist. . . . I think all people should know the truth, come to recognize the truth. Islam is peace.
Al-Islam is not to be seen as a religion separate from Christianity and Judaism. The Prophets of Judaism are also our Prophets. The Prophets of Christianity are also our Prophets. God did not send prophets and messengers to fight and disagree with each other. They all are in harmony with each other, and they all were advancing the way of God for mankind, the way of Peace, and return to the inherent goodness of the human soul and the common values shared by so many Muslims, Christians, Jews and others.
Terrorist, are and have joined the worse among us, those who have killed their innocent good healthy human sentiments and have become hard, insensitive, apathetic, void of love and kindness for and toward humanity. They have lost both, their human identity as well as their religious identity, with the worst being to lose our common identity, the human identity and behave as cruel beasts devouring each other, human life and property.
It’s encouraging to see that the majority of Muslims all throughout this world are standing up on the principle of Islam, the principle of peace, mercy, intelligent behavior, the conduct established for Muslims in the Qur’an and the life example of the prophet, and are letting the world hear us condemning those who are guilty.