Introduction to Islam

Root Word:
The word Islam comes from the three letters of Arabic “س” Seen, “ل ” Laam, and “ م” Meem [سلم] which can be read as:
“Salm”, which means ‘Peace’
“Silm”, which means ‘Submission’.

Islam means Peace acquired by submitting to the will of God Almighty.

A Muslim is a person who submits his will to God Almighty – Allah.
(Female: Muslima)

It is book revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in the span of around 23 years and preserved as it is in its true form. This book is the base of Islam and proves itself to be from God Almighty. It contains 114 Chapters which are known as “Surahs”.

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is the last and the final Messenger of God Almighty. He is not the founder of Islam. When he was 40 he received the first revelation of the Glorious Quran and completed his Mission in the span of 23 years. He passed away when he was 63 and handed over his Mission to his followers.

Ahaadeeth (sing.: Hadeeth) is a collection of the sayings, actions and approval of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Saheeh Hadeeth is segregated from the falsehood attributed to the Prophet (peace be upon him).

Hadeeth is basically classified in four categories:
>> Saheeh (Authentic),
>> Hasan (good),
>> Daeef (weak),
>> and Maudu (fabricated).

The scholars of Islam has taken utmost care in preserving the Ahaadeeth and used various techniques in preserving it. The hadeeth of the first category is utmost valued, the second category is accepted in the absence of first category, the third and the fourth categories is rejected.

Ahaadeeth are the commentary of the Quran. Islam is incomplete without the treasure of Ahaadeeth. The minute details of the 'way of life'  is mentioned in the ahaadeeth.

What is Islam:
Islam is a practical way of life which has a set of beliefs in unseen world and set guidelines to follow in this life and secure the next. A Muslim has to believe in One God – the supreme powerful – with no partners in what so ever the matter, which is known as ‘Tawheed’. He should believe in all the Prophets including Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and accept his teachings wholeheartedly. There are fundamentals of faith which a Muslim has to believe in: Faith in Allah, Angels, Books, Messengers, Day of Judgment, and Destiny.

After accepting the belief, a Muslim has to testify that “There is no god (worthy of Worship) but Allah”, Pray minimum five times a day, regular prayer; Fast in the month of Ramadaan; Give alms once in a lunar year, and Perform Hajj once in a life time (if possible). These are the pillars of Islam.

A Muslim should strictly adhere to the teachings of Quran and Saheeh Ahaadeeth and practically demonstrate the true teachings of Islam in his life.

The Teachings of Islam:
Islam stands for peace and promotes peaceful activities. It elevates Human values and care for every individual’s life as sacred. It has also given the women their due rights and uplifted status in their own way – Mothers, sisters, wives and daughters. Islam opened the path ways of women becoming scholars, and excel in professional field of their own. Even Islam gives the guidelines to protect the rights of animals.

Islam gives the guidelines to each and every individual to lead his life and achieve success in the hereafter. It has the framework of life right from Birth, Childhood, Education, Adulthood, Marriage, Sex, Maintaining a relationship, Tying up with neighbors, and Comprising a society; to Old age and Death. Islam is the light in all ways of life.

Misconceptions about Islam:
Though Islam is the fastest growing religion, it is also the most misunderstood religion. There are various misconception that prevails in the society is due to media misrepresentation, lack of education, behaviour of Muslims, illiterate leaders, etc. Islam promotes terrorism and killing, degrades women, an intolerant and rigid religion, spread by sword are some of the common misconceptions of Islam which is totally baseless. In fact,  Islam is not merely a religion, but a complete system of life which gives the solution to Humanity.

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