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What is Islam?


The name of this religion is Islam, the root of which is S-L-M, which
means peace. The word "Salam," derived from the same root, may also
mean greeting one another with peace.

One of the beautiful names of God is that He is Peace. But Islam means
more than that: it means submission to the One God, and it means
living in peace with the Creator -- peace within one's self, peace
with other people, and peace with the environment.

Thus, Islam is a total system of living. A Muslim is supposed to live
in peace and harmony with all these segments. It follows that a Muslim
is any person, anywhere in the world, whose obedience, allegiance, and
loyalty are to God, the Lord of the Universe.

The followers of Islam are called Muslims. Muslims are not to be
confused with Arabs.

Muslims may be Arabs, Turks, Persians, Indians, Pakistanis,
Malaysians, Indonesians, Europeans, Africans, Americans, Chinese, or
other nationalities.

An Arab could be a Muslim, a Christian, a Jew or an atheist. Any
person who adopts the Arabic language is called an Arab.

The language of the Qur'an (the Holy Book of Islam) is Arabic. Muslims
all over the world try to learn or improve their Arabic, so that they
may be able to read the Qur'an and understand its meaning. They pray
in the language of the Qur'an, Arabic. Islamic supplications to God
could be (and are) delivered in any language.

There are one billion Muslims in the world; there are about 200
million Arabs. Among those two hundred million Arabs, approximately
ten percent are not Muslims. Thus Arab Muslims constitute only about
twenty percent of the Muslim population of the world.
"Allah" was the Arabic word for God long before the birth of Muhammad,
peace be upon him.

Muslims believe that Allah is the name of the One and Only God. He is
the Creator of all human beings. He is the God for the Christians, the
Jews, the Muslims, the Buddhists, the Hindus, the atheists, and all
others. Muslims worship God, whose name is Allah. They put their trust
in Him and they seek His help and His guidance.
Muhammad was chosen by God to deliver His Message of Peace, namely
Islam. He was born in 570 C.E. (Common Era) in Makkah, Arabia. He was
entrusted with the Message of Islam when he was at the age of forty
years. The revelation that he received is called the Qur'an, while the
message is called Islam.

Muhammad is the very last Prophet of God to mankind. He is the final
Messenger of God. His message was and is still to the Christians, the
Jews and the rest of mankind. He was sent to those religious people to
inform them about the true mission of Jesus, Moses, Jacob, Isaac, and

Muhammad is considered to be the summation and the culmination of all
the prophets and messengers that came before him. He purified the
previous messages from adulteration and completed the Message of God
for all humanity. He was entrusted with the power of explaining,
interpreting and living the teaching of the Qur'an.
Muslims are required to respect all those who are faithful and God
conscious people, namely those who received messages. Christians and
Jews are called People of the Book. Muslims are asked to call upon the
People of the Book for common terms, namely, to worship One God, and
to work together for the solutions of the many problems in the

Christians and Jews lived peacefully with Muslims throughout centuries
in the Middle East and other Asian and African countries. The second
Caliph, Umar, chose not to pray in the church in Jerusalem, so as not
to give later Muslims an excuse to take it over. Christians entrusted
the Muslims, and as such the key of the Church in Jerusalem is still
in the hands of the Muslims.

When Jews fled from Spain during the Inquisition, they were welcomed
by the Muslims. They settled in the heart of the Islamic Caliphate.
They enjoyed positions of power and authority. Throughout the Muslim
world, churches, synagogues and missionary schools were built within
the Muslim neighborhoods. These places were protected by Muslims
during bad times and good, and have continued to receive this
protection during the contemporary crises in the Middle East

================================================== =============
What is the Qur'ān?
The Qur'ān is the name given to Allah's speech that He revealed to His
servant and Messenger Muhammad (peace be upon him); speech that is
recited as an act of worship, is miraculous, and cannot be imitated by
man. It is the name of Allah's Book, and no other book is called by
this name.

The connection between the Creator and his Creation is by way of His
Messengers, and these Messengers only know what Allah wants from them
by way of revelation, either directly or indirectly. The rational mind
cannot dismiss the possibility of revelation, since nothing is
difficult for the all-powerful Creator

revelation is a communication between two beings: one that speaks,
commands, and gives, and another who is addressed, commanded, and
receives. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) - as with every Prophet
- never confused himself with the One who gave the revelation to him.
As a human being, he felt his weakness before Allah, feared Allah's
wrath if he should disobey, and hoped for Allah's mercy.

Proves why it is impossible that Mohammad (Pbuh) wrote the Quran :
1. No matter how brilliant or insightful a person might be, there is
no way that he could discuss the happenings of nations lost to
antiquity, issues of belief and Divine Law, the rewards and
punishments of Heaven and Hell, and future events, all in such great
detail without any contradiction and with a most perfect style and
literary form. The Prophet (peace be upon him) had never once read a
book nor met with any historian
2. The Qur'ān makes to the disbelievers a stern challenge that they
will never be able to produce a chapter similar to it. Such a
challenge would never have come from the Messenger (peace be upon him)
3. The Qur'ān, in some places, sternly rebukes Muhammad (peace be upon
him) where he acted upon his own judgment in something and did not
decide on what is best. The Qur'ān clarified the truth and showed the
error of the Prophet (peace be upon him).
4. Many verses of the Qur'ān begin with the imperative verb "Say!" As
a matter of fact, this occurs more than three hundred times,
addressing Muhammad (peace be upon him) and directing him with respect
to what he should say. He, thus, did not follow his own desires; he
followed only what was revealed to him.
5. Complete harmony exists between what the Qur'ān says regarding the
physical world and what has been discovered by modern science. This
has been a source of amazement for a number of contemporary western
================================================== ==
Who was Muhammad?

Muhammad (peace be upon him) was born in Makkah in the year 570,
during the period of history Europeans called the Middle Ages.
Muhammad was the son of Aamenah and Abdullah, from the tribe of
Quraysh. He was a direct descendant of Ishmael, the eldest son of
prophet Abraham. Muhammad's father died just before he was born, and
his mother passed away when he was six. He was raised by this
grandfather, the chief of Makkah; and upon his grandfather's death,
Muhammad came under the care of his uncle, Abu Talib.

Muhammad was a shepherd in his youth. As he grew up, he became known
for his truthfulness, generosity, and sincerity; earning the title of
al Amin, the trustworthy one. Muhammad was frequently called upon to
arbitrate disputes and counsel his fellow Makkans.

At age 25, Muhammad married Khadijah, an honorable and successful
businesswoman. They were blessed with two sons and four daughters. It
was an ideal marriage and they lived a happy family life.

Muhammad was of a contemplative nature and had long detested the
decadence and cruelty of his society. It became his habit to meditate
from time to time in the cave of Hira' near the summit of Jabal an-
Nur, the "Mountain of Light" on the outskirts of Makkah.
How did Muhammad become a Messenger of God?

At the age of 40, while engaged in a meditative retreat, Muhammad
received his first revelation from God through the Archangel Gabriel.
This revelation, which continued for twenty three years, is known as
the Qur'an

Muhammad began to share the revelations he received from God with the
people of Makkah. They were idol worshippers, and rejected Muhammad's
call to worship only One God. They opposed Muhammad and his small
group of followers in every way. These early Muslims suffered bitter

In 622, God gave the Muslim community the command to emigrate. This
event, the hijrah or migration, in which they left Makkah for the city
of Madinah, some 260 miles to the North, marks the beginning of the
Muslim calendar.

Madinah provided Muhammad and the Muslims a safe and nurturing haven
in which the Muslim community grew. After several years, the Prophet
and his followers returned to Makkah and forgave their enemies. Then,
turning their attention to the Ka'bah (the sanctuary that Abraham
built), they removed the idols and rededicated it to the worship of
the One God. Before the Prophet died at the age of 63, most of the
people of Arabia had embraced his message. In less than a century,
Islam had spread to Spain in the west, as far east as China.

May 6 '07 #1
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