Islam: Meaning of the Five Pillars of Islam

the Five Pillars of Islam

The Word Islam

Islam is an Arabic term which literally means ‘surrender or submission’. The religion sent down by Allah and brought into this world by His Prophets is called al-Islam (Islam, for short). It is called as such for the simple reason that a Muslim surrenders himself completely and unconditionally to the power and will of the Lord of all the worlds. He obeys Him wholeheartedly, and obedience becomes the cardinal principle of his life.

Islam is built on Five Pillars:

Allah’s Messenger (pbuh) once said, “Islam is built upon five [pillars]: ‘Testifying that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, establishing the [obligatory] prayers, giving the zakaat, making the Pilgrimage to the House, and fasting in Ramadhaan”

(al-Bukhaaree and Muslim)

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Surat al-lnshiqaaq – The Sundering

Learn Quran - Surah Al-Inshiqaq

This surah was revealed in Makkah and consists of twenty-five verses. In fact, its was revealed after surot ol-lnfitoor [surah eighty-two). The main theme of this surah is the Day of Resurrection.

This surah may be divided into four sections.

  1. It begins with a graphic description of the coming of the Last Hour (verses 1 -5).
  2. People are reminded of their own condition on the Day of Judgment. They will either be given their records of deeds in their right hands and thus will be happy, or in their left hands behind their backs and will be doomed.

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Belief in the Divine Decree (al-Qadar)

essential part of eemaan

It is an essential part of eemaan to believe in al-qadar.

The word ‘al-Qadar’

Al-qadar is an Arabic word which originally means ‘measure or amount whether of quantities or qualities’. The verb form of this word means, among other things, ‘to measure or decide the quality, quantity, or position of something before one actually makes it.’

It is obligatory upon every Muslim to believe in al-qadar. Once ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab swore by Allah and said, “If anyone who does not believe in the Divine Decree had with him gold equal to the bulk of [Mount] Uhud of gold and then he should spend it [in the way of Allah], Allah would not accept that from him unless he affirms his faith in the Divine Decree.” {Saheeh Muslim, English Translation, Vol. 1, p. 2)

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Belief in the Last Day (Part 2)

Belief in the Last Day


Belief in the Last Day Consists of the Following

  1. Belief in the Resurrection: After the second blowing of the Trumpet, people will be resurrected before Allah.

The Prophet (pbuh) said, “O people! You will be gathered together before your Lord, barefooted, naked and uncircumcised. The first one to be clothed will be Ibraaheem. Some of my followers will be taken to the left. I will say, “O Lord! These are my followers.” Allah will say, “You do not know what new things they introduced [in religion] after you.”

(al-Bukhaaree and Muslim)

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Surat ‘Abasa (He Frowned)

Learn Quran - Surah 'Abasa

This surah was revealed in Makkah early in the Prophet’s mission and consists of forty-two verses. It takes its name from the word ‘abasa with which the surah begins.

One day the Prophet (pbuh) was engrossed in a conversation with some of the most influential chieftains of pagan Makkans, hoping to convince them to accept Islam. At that crucial moment, a blind man among his noble companions whose name was ‘Abdullah ibn Umm Maktoom, who had accepted Islam earlier, came with a request for a repetition of explanation of certain earlier passage of the Quran. Annoyed by this interruption of what he then regarded as a more important endeavour, the Prophet (pbuh) frowned and turned away from the blind man.

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Belief in the Messengers of Allah

The Reason behind Raising Muhhamad (pbuh)

The fourth article of faith is the belief in the Messengers of Allah.

To believe in Allah’s Messengers means to believe with certainty that Allah sent a messenger to each nation, calling them to worship Allah alone and not to associate any partners with Him in worship.

All Messengers were Human Beings

All the prophets and messengers were human beings chosen by Allah to receive revelations from Him. They were commanded to pass on these revelations to people of their time. A person cannot by himself attain Prophethood or Messengership through spiritual exercises or personal efforts. It is Almighty Allah alone who chooses His Messengers and He alone knows best whom to choose.

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Belief in Allah’s Books -The Story of a Jew

Belief in Quran

Al-Qurtubee mentions a marvellous story in his Tafseer. He says: The Caliph al-Ma’moon used to hold occasional debates on various issues at his court where all scholars were invited. It so happened once that a Jew came to attend one of these debates. By his looks, dress, speech and manners, he seemed to be an elegant person. His speech during the debate was excellent and brilliant. When the meeting was over, al-Ma’moon called him and asked him if he was a Jew, which he confirmed. To test him, al-Ma’moon asked him to accept Islam, in which case he could hope to receive the best possible treatment from him. The Jew said that he was not willing to abandon the religion of his forefathers. The matter ended there, and the man went away.

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Belief in Allah’s Books

Belief in Quran

Belief in Allah’s Books: The Third Article of Faith

Belief in Allah’s Books is the third article of faith. It refers to the revelations Allah sent down to His Messengers. These revelations were a mercy and guidance from Allah. Their main objective was to bring mankind from the darkness of ignorance and disbelief to the light of faith as well as success in this life and eternal happiness in the hereafter. The Quran, which is Allah’s Speech, is the final revelation.

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