In what ways does Islam encourage submission (To God) - Essay Example

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The Islamic Way of Submission to God First Name, Middle Initial, Last Name Institutional Affiliation The Islamic Way of Submission to God Submission to God Islam was introduced by the Arabs during the 600 A.D. It means “to turn oneself over, to resign oneself, or to submit” (Murata & Chittick, 2006)…
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Download file to see previous pages Muslims do not use symbols in the way other religions do, but where a symbol is needed, a star and crescent moon is the one most often used (Penny 1999). According to Murata and Chittick (2006), “submission to god”, in the Islamic view, has four basic connotations. In the broadest sense, it refers to the fact that every living creature submits to God by being His handiwork; thus no choice is involved. In the next three senses, men have the option whether or not to follow. In the second sense, islam means obedience to God’s guidance as brought by the prophets, in the third where Islam is used as a proper noun, it denotes compliance to the guidance of God as stated in the Qur’an, and in the last and narrowest sense, it means observing the Five Pillars in general and the Shariah in particular (Murata & Chittick, 2006). The Five Pillars of Islam The five pillarsof Islam are not real pillars, but are doctrines that supports the religion (Penny, 1999). They are the core beliefs that shape Muslim thought, deed, and society.  A Muslim who fulfills the Five Pillars of Islam, remains in the faith of Islam, and sincerely repents of his sins, will make it to paradise ( 2010). However, if he performs the Five Pillars but does not remain in the faith, he will not be saved. 1. Shahadah. The first pillar demands acceptance of the most important thing that Muslims believe in. It means “there is no other God but Allah, and Muhammad is the prophet of Allah.” These are the words first taught to a baby, or are spoken last by a dying Muslim. They are uttered upon waking up in the morning, before going to sleep at night, and in every prayer. 2. Salah. The second pillar is the name for the obligatory prayers that are performed five times a day, and a direct link between the worshipper and God. Followers pray in the morning, three times during the day, and at night. They break off from any activity and face in the direction of Makkah when the time for prayer comes. Muslims do not necessarily have to be in a mosque, but must come to a clean place to pray. 3. Zakah. The third pillar upholds giving to the poor and needy. An important principle of Islam is that everything belongs to God, and that wealth is therefore held by human beings in trust. Muslims are expected to give about 2.5 percent of the amount they have left after all basic necessities are acquired. They believe that this is a part of their duty to Allah and their fellow Muslims, and that being tight-fisted is immoral. 4. Sawm. The fourth pillar stipulates fasting—abstaining from food, drink, and sexual relations with their spouses. This is practiced every year in the month of Ramadan. It is mainly a method of self-purification and self-restraint. By cutting oneself from worldly comforts, even for a short time, a fasting person focuses on his or her purpose in life by constantly being aware of the presence of God. 5. Haji. The fifth pillar promotes pilgrimage to Makkah, the holy city. Every Muslim who is physically and financially able is expected to visit Makkah at least once in their life. The annual hajj begins in the twelfth month of the Islamic year. Pilgrims wear special clothes: simple garments that strip away distinctions of class and culture, so that all stand equal before God. Shari’ah: The Islamic Religious Laws The term shari’ah is an Arabic expression for “track” ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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