Black Muslims : General Information on Islam

ABDULLAH

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The Family in Islam

The family, which is the basic unit of civilization, is now disintegrating. Islam’s family system brings the rights of the husband, wife, children, and relatives into a fine equilibrium. It nourishes unselfish behavior, generosity, and love in the framework of a well-organized family system. The peace and security offered by a stable family unit is greatly valued, and it is seen as essential for the spiritual growth of its members. A harmonious social order is created by the existence of extended families and by treasuring children.
 

ABDULLAH

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How Do Muslims Treat the Elderly?

In the Islamic world, one rarely finds “old people’s homes.” The strain of caring for one’s parents in this most difficult time of their lives is considered an honor and a blessing and an opportunity for great spiritual growth. In Islam, it is not enough that we only pray for our parents, but we should act with limitless compassion, remembering that when we were helpless children, they preferred us to themselves. Mothers are particularly honored. When Muslim parents reach old age, they are treated mercifully, with kindness and selflessness.


In Islam, serving one’s parents is a duty second to prayer, and it is their right to expect it. It is considered despicable to express any irritation when, through no fault of their own, the old become difficult.

God has said:

Your Lord has commanded that you worship none but Him, and that you be kind to your parents. If one of them or both of them reach old age with you, do not say to them a word of disrespect, or scold them, but say a generous word to them. And act humbly to them in mercy, and say, “My Lord, have mercy on them, since they cared for me when I was small.” (Quran, 17:23-24)
 

ABDULLAH

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What Are the Five Pillars of Islam?

The Five Pillars of Islam are the framework of the Muslim life. They are the testimony of faith, prayer, giving zakat (support of the needy), fasting during the month of Ramadan, and the pilgrimage to Makkah once in a lifetime for those who are able.

1) The Testimony of Faith:

The testimony of faith is saying with conviction, “La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammadur rasoolu Allah.” This saying means “There is no true god (deity) but God (Allah),1 and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God.” The first part, “There is no true god but God,” means that none has the right to be worshipped but God alone, and that God has neither partner nor son. This testimony of faith is called the Shahada, a simple formula which should be said with conviction in order to convert to Islam (as explained previously on this page). The testimony of faith is the most important pillar of Islam.

2) Prayer:

Muslims perform five prayers a day. Each prayer does not take more than a few minutes to perform. Prayer in Islam is a direct link between the worshipper and God. There are no intermediaries between God and the worshipper.

In prayer, a person feels inner happiness, peace, and comfort, and that God is pleased with him or her. The Prophet Muhammad said: {Bilal, call (the people) to prayer, let us be comforted by it.}2 Bilal was one of Muhammad’s companions who was charged to call the people to prayers.

Prayers are performed at dawn, noon, mid-afternoon, sunset, and night. A Muslim may pray almost anywhere, such as in fields, offices, factories, or universities.

(For detailed information on how to perform prayer, please refer to the links at How to Perform Prayer or refer to the book entitled A Guide to Salat (Prayer) by M. A. K. Saqib.3)


3) Giving Zakat (Support of the Needy):

All things belong to God, and wealth is therefore held by human beings in trust. The original meaning of the word zakat is both ‘purification’ and ‘growth.’ Giving zakat means ‘giving a specified percentage on certain properties to certain classes of needy people.’ The percentage which is due on gold, silver, and cash funds that have reached the amount of about 85 grams of gold and held in possession for one lunar year is two and a half percent. Our possessions are purified by setting aside a small portion for those in need, and, like the pruning of plants, this cutting back balances and encourages new growth.

A person may also give as much as he or she pleases as voluntary alms or charity.

4) Fasting the Month of Ramadan:

Every year in the month of Ramadan,4 all Muslims fast from dawn until sundown, abstaining from food, drink, and sexual relations.

Although the fast is beneficial to health, it is regarded principally as a method of spiritual self-purification. By cutting oneself off from worldly comforts, even for a short time, a fasting person gains true sympathy with those who go hungry, as well as growth in his or her spiritual life.


5) The Pilgrimage to Makkah:

The annual pilgrimage (Hajj) to Makkah is an obligation once in a lifetime for those who are physically and financially able to perform it. About two million people go to Makkah each year from every corner of the globe. Although Makkah is always filled with visitors, the annual Hajj is performed in the twelfth month of the Islamic calendar. Male pilgrims wear special simple clothes which strip away distinctions of class and culture so that all stand equal before God.



Pilgrims praying at the Haram mosque in Makkah. In this mosque is the Kaaba (the black building in the picture) which Muslims turn toward when praying. The Kaaba is the place of worship which God commanded the Prophets Abraham and his son, Ishmael, to build.

The rites of the Hajj include circling the Kaaba seven times and going seven times between the hillocks of Safa and Marwa, as Hagar did during her search for water. Then the pilgrims stand together in Arafa5 and ask God for what they wish and for His forgiveness, in what is often thought of as a preview of the Day of Judgment.

The end of the Hajj is marked by a festival, Eid Al-Adha, which is celebrated with prayers. This, and Eid al-Fitr, a feast-day commemorating the end of Ramadan, are the two annual festivals of the Muslim calendar.
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Footnotes:

(1) For more details on the word Allah, click here.

(2) Narrated in Abu-Dawood, #4985, and Mosnad Ahmad, #22578.

(3) To order this book, click here.

(4) The month of Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar (which is lunar, not solar).

(5) An area about 15 miles from Makkah
 

ABDULLAH

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How Does Someone Become a Muslim?

Simply by saying with conviction, “La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammadur rasoolu Allah,” one converts to Islam and becomes a Muslim (to hear it click here). http://www.islam-guide.com/testimony.ram This saying means “There is no true god (deity) but God (Allah),1 and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God.” The first part, “There is no true god but God,” means that none has the right to be worshipped but God alone, and that God has neither partner nor son. To be a Muslim, one should also:

n Believe that the Holy Quran is the literal word of God, revealed by Him.

n Believe that the Day of Judgment (the Day of Resurrection) is true and will come, as God promised in the Quran.

n Accept Islam as his or her religion.

n Not worship anything nor anyone except God.

The Prophet Muhammad said: {God is more joyful at the repentance of someone when he turns to Him in repentance than one of you would be if he were riding his camel in the wilderness, and it runs away from him, carrying his food and drink, so that he loses all hope of getting it back. He comes to a tree and lies down in its shade (awaiting death), for he has lost all hope of finding his camel. Then, while he is in that state (of desperation), suddenly it is there before him! So he seizes its halter and cries out from the depth of his joy, “O God, You are my servant and I am Your Lord!” His mistake comes from the intensity of his joy.}2

An important note:

If you are interested in converting to Islam or have a question regarding that, then it is highly recommended that you visit “Live Help” thorough chat that is found near the top of http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/204/ , so an advisor over there may help you in pronouncing the testimony right and to provide you with important resources for new Muslims.



The saying, “There is no true god but God, and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God,” inscribed over an entrance.


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Footnotes:

(1) As was mentioned previously, the Arabic word Allah means God (the one and only true God who created the whole universe). This word Allah is a name for God, which is used by Arabic speakers, both Arab Muslims and Arab Christians. For more details on the word Allah, click here http://www.islam-guide.com/ch3-2.htm#About_Allah .

(2) Narrated in Saheeh Muslim, #2747, and Saheeh Al-Bukhari, #6309.
 

Destee

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ABDULLAH ... Welcome Welcome Welcome ... :wave:

Thanks for joining us and sharing!

Please make yourself at home, because you are!

:heart:

Destee
 

abdurratln

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ABDULLAH ... Welcome Welcome Welcome ... :wave:

Thanks for joining us and sharing!

Please make yourself at home, because you are!

:heart:

Destee
Yeah. And, I thank you Destee. And, I join you in Welcomimng Sheik Abdullah. His contibutions to this forum and to the Naion n general have been immense, so far. I expect to see even greater things from him the future. We are all better people as result of what he has done for us.
 

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