Islamic Teaching

  • Islam

    Islam is the formal name of the religion of nearly 1.3 billion people of diverse races, languages, and geographies of earth. It is often said that Islam began in the seventh century. This is true, but only partially so. Islam is also considered an ancient religion owing to the fact that all the Prophets and Messengers of God, since Adam and Eve, taught people to believe in and worship the one and only God--the Creator of the heavens, the earth, and the seen and unseen creatures that inhabit the universe. This was the essential message of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad. It is also the core tenet of Islam, its heart and soul....[+]

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  • What About the Quran

    The Quran is the sacred scripture of Islam. It contains more than 6,200 verses organized into 114 chapters of unequal lengths. Muslims hold the Quran to be the word of God revealed to the Prophet Muhammad through the Angel Gabriel. It is the book Muslims turn to for spiritual insight, sacred law, worship, guidance, and assurance and tranquility. The Quran is unique in that ever since it was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad 14 centuries ago, not a single letter of it has been changed. It remains precisely as it was revealed and as it was committed to memorization and to writing in the time of the Prophet and shortly thereafter dispersed throughout the lands. Muslim families today have bound copies of the book in their homes, but several million Muslims around the world also have memorized the book’s entirety....[+]

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  • Praying (Salah) - Five Daily Prayers

    Praying (Salah) - Five Daily Prayers Salat, the obligatory Muslim prayer, is done at appointed times, fixed in relation to the sun's position throughout the day, and fluctuates depending on the season. The time of Fajr, the morning prayer, begins at dawn and ends at sunrise. The time of Zuhr, the midday prayer, begins immediately after the sun crosses the high noon point and begins to descend. The Asr prayer begins in the late afternoon when the sun descends halfway between high noon and sunset. The time of the Maghrib prayer begins immediately after sunset. The Isha prayer begins after dusk has completely disappeared, giving way to total darkness of the night....[+]

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  • What About Jesus

    Muslims love and revere Jesus, and believe in him as a Prophet and Messenger of God, a great teacher and guide for people. But Muslims do not believe that Jesus was God or the Son of God. Nor do Muslims believe that he was slain on the cross, as some early sects of Christians had once believed. Jesus was sent to the Children of Israel to revive faith and a spiritual connection with God. All the miracles that Jesus performed were indeed true: raising the dead, healing the blind and the leper, and more. These miracles, however, occurred through the auspices of God’s power and will, as it was with the splitting of the sea for Moses, Solomon understanding the utterances of animals, and many other suspensions of the natural order. God is the Creator, and when He determines something, He but says to it “Be” and it is! (as the Quran states). Muslims venerate Mary, the mother of Jesus. She indeed gave birth to Jesus though she was a virgin. She was a spiritual woman who was chosen among her people to the office of special contemplation and prayer. But Muslims do not hold her to be the “mother of God” and similar attributes. She too was fully human and was a beloved and important person in a remarkable series of miracles in a special time in human history. Every biology and miracle, the explainable and the inexplicable, whether it is the creation of Adam from clay or the conception of any given child of two parents, goes back to God. It is all the same to Him. All of it easy. All of it His. Muslims believe in all of the Prophets sent by God to humanity. This includes the major ones: Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and, finally, Muhammad. Whoever disbelieves in any of them cannot claim to be a Muslim....[+]

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  • Pilgrimmage (Hajj) - The Journey of a Lifetime

    Pilgrimmage (Hajj) - The Journey of a Lifetime The annual pilgrimage to Makkah - the Hajj - is an obligation only for those who are physically and financially able to perform it. Nevertheless, about two million people go to Makkah each year from every corner of the globe, providing a unique opportunity for those of different nations to meet one another. Although Makkah is always filled with visitors, the annual Hajj begins in the twelfth month of the Islamic year (which is lunar, not solar, meaning that Hajj and Ramadan rotate throughout every season). Pilgrims wear special clothes: simple garments which strip away distinctions of class and culture, so that all stand equal before God. The rites of the Hajj, which are of Abrahamic origin, include circling the Ka'ba seven times, and going seven times between the mountains of Safa and Marwa as Hagar did during her search for water. Then the pilgrims stand together on the wide plain of Arafat and join in prayers for God's forgiveness. In previous centuries the Hajj was an arduous undertaking. Today, however, Saudi Arabia provides millions of people with water, modern transport, and the most up-to-date health facilities. The close of the Hajj is marked by a festival, the Eid al-Adha, which is celebrated with prayers, slaughtering an animal to feed the needy, and the exchange of gifts in Muslim communities everywhere. This, and the Eid al-Fitr, a celebration commemorating the completion of the fasting of Ramadan, are the two holidays celebrated by Muslims worldwide....[+]

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