مسجد النور ليثونيّ
MASJID ANNUR OF LITHONIA
WHAT IS AL ISLAM
Al Islam is self surrender or submission to the One God, Allah. Allah says: Holy Qur’an Chapter 3: Verse 19: “Behold the only religion in the sight of Allah (the One God) is self surrender/submission to Him Alone.” The Torah was given to Prophet Moses, the Bible was given to Prophet Jesus and the Qur’an was given to Prophet Muhammad. All these scriptures subscribe to the worship of Allah, the One God. In the Holy Qur’an Chapter 5 Verse 3 Allah says: “today, I have perfected for you, your religion. I have completed My favor upon you and I am pleased with Islam as your religion”. Islam, submission to Allah is the basic law of all true religions. This self surrender is belief in Allah, it is believing Allah and it is obedience to Allah’s commands.
WHO IS ALLAH?
Allah says: Holy Qur’an Sura 21 Verse 92: “Truly this nation of yours is one nation and I am your Lord, so worship Me!. In Chapter 112, Allah names Himself: “Say, He is Allah, the eternal, the absolute (here everything is created by Allah, the Creator; hence everything is dependent on Allah for its’ beginning as well as for its’ continued existence). He begets not nor is He begotten and there is nothing that could be compared with Him”. Allah is one and unique in every respect without beginning and without end. Allah is not the God of the Muslims only. He is the one God of all creation, He is the Creator, the Sustainer.
WHO IS A MUSLIM?
Being a Muslim calls for one to surrender whole heartedly to the will of Allah. To abandon prejudices and practices. Anyone who willingly surrenders their will to the will of Allah is a Muslim. Prophet Abraham is mentioned specifically in the Qur’an as not being a Jew or a Christian, but as a Muslim, because he surrendered to the will of Allah.
WHO WAS MUHAMMAD?
Born in Mecca in Arabia, his ancestry goes back to Prophet Ishmael, son of Prophet Abraham. At the age of 40 years he was given the Qur’an and the Prophethood. Over a 23 year period he received revelations from Allah. The Qur’an has been preserved, unchanged in its original form and it confirms the truth in the Torah, the Psalms and the Gospel. Allah says: “the Prophet will enjoin on them the doing of what is right and forbid them the doing of what is wrong and make lawful to them the good things of life and forbid them the bad things in order to lift from them their burdens and shackles”.
DO MUSLIMS WORSHIP MUHAMMAD?
NO. Muslims do not worship Muhammad, or any other Prophet. Worship is for Allah alone. Muslims believe in all the Prophets including Adam, Noah. Abraham, David, Solomon, Moses and Jesus. We make no distinction among any of them. Muslims believe that Muhammad is the last of the Prophets. Muslim believe that Allah alone is to be worshipped, not any human being nor anything.
WHAT DO MUSLIMS THINK OF JESUS?
Allah tells us in the Qur’an Chapter 3 Verse 59: “Verily in the sight of Allah, the nature of Jesus is as the nature of Adam, whom He created out of dust and then He said to him BE and he is! This is the truth from their Lord, be not then among the doubters”. Muslims believe Jesus, son of Mary was given many miracles as a Prophet, these miracles were give to him by the permission of Allah to establish Jesus as a Prophet of Allah. Muslim believe that Jesus was not crucified, but was raised into the heavens Chapter 19.
WHAT PURPOSE IS WORSHIP IN ISLAM?
Allah tells us in the Qur’an, Chapter 51 Verse 56: “Allah says I have not created the Jinns (invisible beings) and humanity to any end except that they worship ME”. This is the reason for our existence. Worship represents for us consciousness of Allah and willingness to do the will of Allah. We must remember we need Allah, Allah does not need us. Allah is self sufficient. As Muslims we are striving to be conscious of Allah in our thoughts and our actions.
WHAT ARE THE PILLARS OF ISLAM?
There are five pillars—belief (iman) in Allah; prayer (Salat) 5 times a day— fasting (siyam) during the month of Ramadhan—charity (zakat) given to the needy by those who have excess once a year—pilgrimage (hajj) to Mecca once in a lifetime if one had the financial and physical means. These are the pillars or the aerobics which strengthens one with Taqwa or consciousness and remembrance of Allah. As Muslims we not only practice the five pillars, but we also strive to be the best of human beings.
DO MUSLIMS BELIEVE IN THE HEREAFTER?
YES! Allah has established a system of accountability. Those who do good will be rewarded and those who do wrong will be punished. Allah has created Heaven and Hell and the admission to either. We believe this life is a temporal one. It is a test and if we pass the test we will find a life of permanent pleasure in the company of good people in heaven.
WHAT IS THE DRESS CODE FOR MUSLIMS?
Islam emphasizes modesty. There are guidelines for men and women and their dress should be modest and comfortable. Women should lengthen their garments and cover their bosoms. And be known as Muslims when they go out in public. The veil is non essential, Chapters 33 and 24 in the Holy Qur’an.
WHAT DIETARY PROHIBITIONS ARE IN ISLAM?
Allah tells Muslim in the Qur’an not to eat pork, meat of animals who died before being slaughtered or the carnivorous animals, nor drink the blood or intoxicants.
WHAT IS JIHAD?
Jihad means struggles, striving in the cause of Allah. Any struggle done in day to day life to please Allah is considered Jihad. One of the highest levels of Jihad is to stand up for right and speak a word of truth even if it is against yourself. Self control from evil is Jihad. The idea of sacrificing ones life for a principle is a reality in most religions including Christianity and Judaism. Samson in the Bible sacrificed himself with the Philistines.
DOES ISLAM PROMOTE VIOLENCE & TERRORISM?
NO! Allah tells us in the Qur’an the story of Cain and Abel a true act of violence. Allah tells us in the Qur’an Chapter 6 Verse 32: “We ordained for the Children of Israel that if anyone kills a person unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land it would be as if they killed the whole of humankind and if anyone saved life it would be as if they saved the life of the whole of humankind. Islam is a religion of submission and stresses the importance and sacredness of human life. This is universal morality. Islam condemns all violence. Anyone who is doing violence is not practicing their religion at that time, also those who oppose peace can be of the same religion, as has been illustrated in history.
DOES ISLAM OPPRESS WOMEN?
NO! There are some men who oppress women regardless of their religion, die to cultural habits or their ignorance about their religion. Religion belongs to Allah alone. Allah must be worshipped without fear of persecution and none is compelled to bow down in awe before another human being. The word deen in Arabic is best translated as worship—our faith as well as our obligations to that faith is worship. Men and Women in Islam are equal.
HOW SHOULD MUSLIMS TREAT JEWS & CHRISTIANS?
The Jews and the Christians are “People of the Book”. We are told by Allah to treat them with respect, kindness and justice. Do not fight them unless they initiate hostilities or ridicule our faith. Our ultimate hope is that the Jews and Christians will join us in worshipping one Allah and submitting to His will. Allah tells us in Chapter 3 Verse 64: “That we shall worship none but Allah and that we shall not ascribe divinity to none besides Him”.