Alḥamdulillāh… All praise belongs to Allah who has guided us to Islam. Had He not guided us, we would never have found the way. Complete blessings and salutations go to the final Prophet, Sayyidinā Muhammad, his household, his companions, and all those who follow his guided path till the end of time.
This article is not going to tell you that Muslims represent 1.6 billion of the world’s population. It’s also not going to inform you that studies predict Islam will be the leading religion in the world by 2050. Nor will the article narrate the history of Islam. This article is a brief reflection on some practical meanings of Islam. We seek to live them on daily basis, but by jotting them down it is hoped that we can appreciate them in a better way.
What is Islam?
Islam is a religion. Regardless of how many religions there are in existence, Islam is one of the five most dominant religions in the world. Muslims believe it is the religion chosen by God for humankind through which they can reach Him.
Islam is the religion of Adam, Nūh (Noah), Ibrāhīm (Abraham), ‘Īsā (Jesus), Dāwūd (David), Zakariyyā (Zachary), Muhammad and all the chosen Prophets and Messengers of God, may peace and blessings be upon them all. Many of the prophets, are mentioned in the Quran, Islam’s holy book.
Islam is the only religion that makes it a requirement to believe in Prophet Moses for your belief in the Prophet Muhammad to be valid. You must also believe in Prophet Jesus, for your belief in Prophet Moses and Prophet Muhammad to be accepted. You must believe in Prophet Solomon, for your faith in Prophet Moses, Prophet Jesus and Prophet Muhammad to be accepted. [Read also: The Prophet Muhammad].Similarly, you must believe in the prophethood of all those who were sent by God, before your Islam becomes valid. This is because Islam is the same religion that was adhered to, by all the chosen Prophets and Messengers of God. Since they all came from the same source, these prophet all taught the same essential message of submission to God.
Similarly, you must believe in the prophethood of all those who were sent by God, before your Islam becomes valid. This is because Islam is the same religion that was adhered to, by all the chosen Prophets and Messengers of God. Since they all came from the same source, these prophet all taught the same essential message of submission to God.Islam is a religion with meaning. A meaning with countless implications and impressions. What does Islam mean?
Islam is a religion with meaning. A meaning with countless implications and impressions. What does Islam mean?
Some Practical Meanings of Islam
The word Islam is an Arabic word, that essentially means submission. Submission to the will, commands and boundaries of God.
The meaning of peace can also be derived from the word Islam. With Islam, one should prioritize peace over violence, unless in an extreme situation where one must defend themselves, their religion or their nation from all forms of oppression and servititude, such as slavery, for Islam values freedom. Freedom to worship, freedom to enjoy one’s life and to live up to one’s full potential.
Islam also means moderation. From the teachings of Islam, we learn moderation. Moderation in which we don’t abandon the worldly goods that God has created and subjected to us for our sustenance. A moderation with which we don’t emerge as greedy in accumulation of worldly materials, the way Qārūn and Abū Lahab, two people mentioned in the Quran, did.
Islam means moderation in opinion. Therefore, I may agree with you on a topic or issue, but that doesn’t make you an angel and sinless. Likewise, when I disagree with you, that doesn’t render you evil and a devil.
Islam means perseverance. Perseverance in times of trials and calamities. Perseverance in times of confusion. Perseverance is times of delusion and misguidance. Perseverance in times of intolerance. Perseverance in times of hate, bigotry, racism, discrimination, injustice and the prevalence of immorality.
Islam means acceptance. Although we stand by our loved ones, they have the right and freedom to choose and be different from us. Moreover, they are aware that there are consequences to any choice that is made.
Thus, Islam also means responsibility. You are responsible for your choices. Your choice of path. Your choice of faith. Your choice of acceptance or rejection. Your choice of love and hate. Your choice of agreement and disagreement. Your choice of judgement. Your choice of lifestyle, nutrition and even physical activeness (fitness).
Islam means living with a purpose and a with a destination in mind. You’re a traveler. A traveler on a voyage. A voyager in transit. With that realization, you are aware of how limited and precious your time is. And no matter how long you spend in this life, are delayed, or lost your way, you shall move on. Willingly or not, it is going to happen.
Islam means that you realize your purpose and destination, but also know that others may not have the same purpose that helps them reach an awareness of their natural destination. We can guide them, invite them and be patient with them. After all, they too have the right of choice and will be held be responsible.
Islam means, once you have determined your destination, you have taken all measures based on your personal strengths and weaknesses. It’s, therefore, absurd to compare yourself with others. It is also absurd to change your route so as to follow your friend’s or relatives’ choice of route. Remember, that people of the same destination can vary in routes and plans. How much more so with people of different destinations?! Therefore, you choose and run your own race. Run according to your pace; not according to mine or anyone else’s pace. But your race must fall within the rules set by the chosen Prophet of God.
Islam means you should not spread corruption and evil on earth. You should rather be part of spreading good and positive change or any beneficial reform which makes this world a better place to live. At the same time, life on this earth shouldn’t be your ultimate focus, as it’s nothing but a transition point. Therefore, a true Muslim is, by default, working towards the next life, and not to seek a permanent residence here.
When you ask me what Islam means, this is what Islam means. You may also ask, how to convert to Islam. This is how to convert to Islam.
Allah knows best.
Allahu Hafiz 🙂