Guwahati, 28 June-2014, Shazida Khatun: Higher educated women for Muslim community normally face some annoyed queries from their counter parts from other community either work places or homes. Normally, The queries are listed bellow because I too face similar question from my counterparts from other community , specially Hindu Community. The observance of Ramadan is one of the five core pillars of Islam and this year’s Ramadan will begin on the evening of the 28 June in the UK, depending on the sighting of the new crescent moon, and end on the evening of 28 July.
The word “Ramadan” is derived from an Arabic word for intense heat, scorched ground and shortness of food and drink. It is considered to be the most holy and blessed month in the Islamic calendar. Here’s a look at the ways people are preparing for Ramadan now and how they observed it last years.
So my this post can help to understand such queries and easy to reply them about Islam and Muslim community.
1. What is Islam?
Answer: Islam is not a new religion, but the same truth that God revealed through all His prophets to every people. For a fifth of the world’s population, Islam is both a religion and a complete way of life. Muslims follow a religion of peace, mercy, and forgiveness, and the majority has nothing to do with the extremely grave events, which have come to be associated with their faith.
2. What does Islam mean?
Answer: The Arabic word Islam simply means ‘submission’, and derives from a word meaning ‘peace’. In a religious context it means complete submission to the will of God. ‘Mohammedanism’ is thus a misnomer because it suggests that Muslims worship Muhammad (peace be upon him) rather than God.
3. How do we know Islam is the truth?
Answer: a- It is the only religion that holds Allah as One, Unique, and Perfect.
b- It is the only religion that believes in the sole worship of Allah, not Jesus, not an idol, and not an angel, only Allah.
c- The Quran does not contain contradictions.
d- The Quran contains scientific facts, which are 1300 years ahead of their time. The Quran, while revealed 1400 years ago contains scientific facts, which are only now being discovered. It is not in contradiction to science.
e- Allah has challenged the world to produce the like of the Quran. And He says they won’t be able to.
f- Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was the most influential man in history. In the book “The 100 most influential men in History”, written by non-Muslim, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was #g. Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) was #3. It should be noted that even the Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) was a prophet sent by Allah. Would Allah allow a false prophet to be so successful? No. Even the Bible refers to this in Deuteronomy 18:19. A false prophet would die!!! Yet Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) did not die till he completely conveyed, and taught Allah’s religion.
h- He had many prophecies, and all of his prophecies have come true, or are still coming true.
4. Why does Islam often seem strange?
Answer: Islam may seem exotic or even extreme in the modern world. Perhaps this is because religion does not dominate everyday life in the West today, whereas Muslims have religion always uppermost in their minds, and make no division between secular and sacred.
5. Do Islam and Christianity have different origins?
Answer: Together with Judaism, they go back to the prophet and patriarch Abraham, and their three prophets are directly descended from his sons-Muhammad (peace be upon him) from the eldest, Ishmael, and Moses and Jesus, from Isaac. Abraham established the settlement, which today is the city of Makkah, and built the Kabah towards which all Muslims turn when they pray.
6. Who are Muslims?
Answer: One billion people form a vast range of races, nationalities and cultures across the globe, from the southern Philippines to Nigeria, are united by their common Islamic faith. About 18% live in the Arab world; the world’s largest Muslim community is in Indonesia; substantial parts of Asia and most of Africa are Muslim, while significant minorities are also to be found in the Soviet Union, China, North and South America, and Europe.
7. What do Muslims believe?
Answer: Muslims believe in One, Unique, Incomparable God in the Angels created by Him, in the prophets through whom His revelations were brought to mankind; in God’s complete authority over human destiny and in life after death. Muslims believe in a chain of prophets starting with Adam and including Noah, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Job, Moses, Aaron, David, Solomon, Elias, Jonah, John the Baptist and Jesus, (peace be upon them). But God’s final message to man, a reconfirmation of the eternal message and a summing-up of all that has gone before was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) through Gabriel.
8. Who is Allah?
Answer: It is a known fact that every language has one or more terms that are used in reference to God and sometimes to lesser deities. This is not the case with Allah. Allah is the personal name of the One true God. Nothing else can be called Allah. The term has no plural or gender. This shows its uniqueness when compared with the word god which can be made plural, gods, or feminine, goddess. It is interesting to notice that Allah is the personal name of God in Aramaic, the language of Jesus and a sister language of Arabic.
The One true God is a reflection of the unique concept that Islam associates with God. To a Muslim, Allah is the Almighty, Creator and Sustainer of the universe, Who is similar to nothing and nothing is comparable to Him. The Prophet Muhammad was asked by his contemporaries about Allah; the answer came directly from God Himself in the form of a short chapter of the Quran, which is considered the essence of the unity or the motto of monotheism. This is chapter 112 which reads:
“In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
Say (O Muhammad) He is God the One God, the Everlasting Refuge, who has not begotten, nor has been begotten, and equal to Him is not anyone.”
9. Does Allah look like us?
Answer: No, Allah is perfect. He is not like any of His creations. He has told us that He has hands, eyes, a face, and feet, but all of these attributes are befitting to His might and glory. A Muslim does not say a single thing about Allah other than what Allah says about Himself. Allah is Perfect and Unique.
10. What does it mean to believe in Allah?
Answer: To believe in Allah means to believe in total perfection, and uniqueness.
It means to believe in His prophets because they are His, and He sent them. We can not pick and choose. A Muslim must believe in all the prophets of Allah.
It means to believe in the Angles! We must love them all. We cannot hate an Angel say, for example, Michael to whom rain and the vegetation of the Earth are attributed or Gabriel to whom revelation (bringing down the scriptures to the prophets) is attributed.
It means to believe in Allah’s predestination of good and bad.
Itmeans to believe in the last day: The day of Judgment.
Holy Ramadan On Holy Q’ran:-
Quranic Verses on the Holy Month of Ramadan and Fasting, Please read and try to follow -Ameen
“Ramadan is the (month) in which the Quran was sent down, as a guide to mankind and a clear guidance and judgment (so that mankind will distinguish from right and wrong)..” (Q 2:183)
Oh you who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, that you many learn piety and righteousness” (Q 2:183)
Fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may attain taqwaa.” (Q2:183)
The most honored by Allah amongst you are those best in taqwaa.”(Q 49:13)
..And it is better for you that ye fast, if ye only knew.” (Q 2:184)
“Indeed We have revealed it (Qur’an) in the night of Power. And what will explain to you what the night of Power is? The night of Power is better than a thousand months. Therein descends the Angels and the Spirit (Jibreel) by Allah’s permission, on every errand: (they say) “Peace” (continuously) till the rise of Morning!” (Q 97:1-5)
We sent it (this Qur’an) down on a blessed Night. Verily, We are ever warning (mankind of Our Torment). Therein (that Night) is decreed every matter of ordainment. Amran (i.e. a command or this Qur’an or His Decree of every matter) from Us. Verily, We are ever sending (the Messenger). (As) a Mercy from your Lord. Verily! He is the All-Hearer, the All-Knower.” (Ad-Dukhaan 44: 3-6)
Editor’s Note: Shazida Khatun is an academic as well as blogger and channel partner of Indilens. This article is taken from her Kalgachia & Indian Muslim