Basic Beliefs and Practices:
not righteousness that you turn your faces towards the East
and the West, but righteous is the one who believes in
Allah, and the Last Day, and the angels and the Book and the
prophets, and gives away wealth out of love for Him to the
near of kin and the orphans and the needy and the wayfarer
and to those who ask and to set slaves free, and keeps up
prayer and pays the Zakaat; and the performers of their
promise when they make a promise, and the patient in
distress and affliction and in the time of conflict. These
are they who are truthful, and these are they who keep their
duty." (The Holy Quran 2:177)
10. Is there a list
of basic Muslim beliefs?
Yes. The Kalima itself
is known as the 'brief expression of faith'. It summarizes
the basic Muslim beliefs, which are five in number. These
are belief in:
1. God, Who possess
the most perfect and excellent qualities.
2. Angels, who act upon the
heart of each person, inspiring him to do
3. Prophets and Messengers of
God, sent to all the nations of the world, who taught
virtue by their own high moral example.
4. Books of God, which were
revealed to all the nations through their respective
prophets, containing guidance on how man should live and
5. Life after death, when
each person shall become conscious of all the deeds, good
or bad, he/she did in this life, and shall face the
11. What is the
most important point Islam teaches about
It is this, that belief does
not just mean believing something in one's heart, but also
acting on the belief. Mere faith counts for nothing if not
carried into practice. The purpose of belief is to show us
what to do in practice. No 'belief' by itself can bring
12. How does this
apply to the five beliefs of Islam?
It applies as
Means we should:
Try to perfect ourselves
and acquire the best qualities.
Follow our good thoughts
Try to model our lives on
the examples of the righteous ones in all the
nations on earth.
Books of God.
Follow all the truths, in
whatever scripture or religion they may be
Remember that all our
actions, good and bad, open and secret, will be
13. What are the
basic practices a Muslim has to perform?
In order to submit to God, and
to be at peace with fellow beings, a Muslim has to perform
certain duties to God and to fellow-beings. The duties to
Pilgrimage to Makka (hajj).
The duty to fellow beings is to spend
one's resources, time, energy, money, etc. for the welfare
of others; in particular, to give a part of one's wealth to
help those in need (known as giving zakaat, a charity-tax).
14. What is the
main point to remember about these practical duties?
It is that the purpose of
performing these duties is to draw us closer to God, and to
lead us to do good to others and refrain from wrong-doing in
our daily lives. Therefore, we should carry out these
duties, not as rituals, but remembering God from the bottom
of our hearts. Performing these acts of worship can only
benefit us if we use them as the basis for improving our
character and conduct in daily life. If a person prays and
fasts, but fails to do good and give up bad habits, his
prayer and fasting will be useless.
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