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Everything you need to know about Islam

Updated on June 5, 2009




Islam is a very beautiful and massive religion. Unfortunately it also very misunderstood and people have many misconceptions about it. There is much, much to say about Islam but I have briefly put together the main facts about it and I hope it will help you get a better understanding of Islam and its true beauty.

What is Islam and what does it mean?

Islam is not only a religion but also a complete way of life. Contrary to popular belief Islam does not literally mean peace. Islam is derived from the Arabic root "Salema": peace, purity, submission and obedience. In the religious sense, Islam means submission to the will of God and obedience to His law.

What are the followers of Islam called?

A person who follows Islam is called a Muslim, (sometimes the term Muslimah is used to describe a Muslim women) and this means "one who surrenders to God."

When does Islam date back to?

Islam dates back to the age of Adam and its message has been conveyed to man by God's prophets and messengers, including Abrahim, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad (peace and blessings be up on them all).

Who and what do they believe in?

Islam is a monotheistic religion so they believe in one God; Allah. Allah is an Arabic word that describes God. "Allah" comes from the Arabic word "elah"a god' or something worshiped. This word (elah) can be made plural (gods), as in "aleha" and it can be male or female just as the word in English can be "goddess." "Allah" comes from "elaha" but it brings more clarification and understanding.
Allah = Has no gender (not male and not female)
"He" is used only out of respect and dignity - not for gender
Allah = Always singular - Never plural
"We" is used only as the "Royal WE" just as in English for royalty
Allah = Means "The Only One to be Worshipped"

Allah has 99 names or attributes.

Click on the link below to find the meaning and explanations of these attributes.

Also watch the beautiful video below.

99 Names of Allah

What is their holy book?

The holy book of Islam is called the Qur’an (also spelt as Koran or Quran). Muslims believe the Qur’an to be the book of divine guidance and direction for mankind, and consider the original Arabic text to be the final revelation of God. Muslims believe that the Qur’an was revealed to the prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) through angel Jibreel (Gabriel) (peace be upon him). Muslims believe that the Qur’an is the word of God word for word.

What are the main articles of faith?

  1. A Muslim believes in One God, Supreme and Eternal, Infinite and Mighty, Merciful and Compassionate, Creator and Provider.

    God has no father nor mother, no sons nor daughters. He has not fathered anyone nor was He fathered. None equal to Him. He is God of all mankind, not of a special tribe or race.

    God is High and Supreme but He is very near to the pious thoughtful believers; He answers their prayers and helps them. He loves the people who love Him and forgives their sins. He is their source peace, happiness, knowledge and success.

    God is the Loving and the Provider, the Generous and the Benevolent, the Rich and the Independent, the Forgiving and the Clement, the Patient and the Appreciative, the Unique and the Protector, the Judge and the Peace. God's attributes are mentioned in the Quran.

    God creates in man the mind to understand, the soul and conscience to be good and righteous, the feelings and sentiments to be kind and humane. If we try to count His favours upon us, we cannot, because they are countless.

    In return for all the great favours and mercy, God does not need anything from us, because he is Needless and Independent.

    God asks us to know Him, to love Him and to enforce His Law for our own benefit and our own good.
  2. A Muslim believes in all the Messengers and Prophets of God without any discrimination.

    All messengers were mortals, human beings, endowed with Divine revelations and appointed by God to teach mankind. The Holy Quran mentions the names of 25 messengers and prophets and states that there are others. These include Noah, Abrahim, Ishmael, Isaac, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon them all). Their message is the same and it is Islam and it came from One and the Same Source; God, and it is to submit to His will and to obey his law, ie, to become a Muslim.
  3. A Muslim believes in all scriptures and revelations of God, as they were complete and in their original versions.

    Revelations were given to guide the people to the right path of God. The Quran refers to the books revealed to Abrahim, Moses, David, Jesus and Muhammad.

    Today, the books before the Quran do not exist in their original form. They are lost or corrupted or concealed. Weakness in the early period of Judaism and Christianity are partly responsible.

    Today the Quran is the only authentic and complete book of God. No scholar has questioned the fact that the Quran today is the same as it was more than 1400 years ago. Muslims till today memorize the Quran word by word as a whole or in part.

    God who revealed the Quran is protecting it from being lost, corrupted, or concealed.
  4. A Muslim believes in the angels of God.

    They are purely spiritual and splendid beings created by God. They require no food or drink or sleep. They have no physical desires nor material needs.

    Angels spend their time in the service of God. Each charged with a certain duty. Angels cannot be seen by the naked eyes. Knowledge and truth are not entirely confined to sensory knowledge or sensory perception alone.
  5. A Muslim believes in the day of Judgement.

    This world as we know it will come to an end and the dead will rise to stand for their final and fair trial. Everything we do, say, make, intend and think are accounted for and kept in accurate records. They are brought up on the day of Judgement.

    People with good records will be generously rewarded and warmly welcomed to God's Heaven. People with bad records will be fairly punished and cast into Hell.

    The real nature of Heaven and Hell are known to God only, but they are described by God in man's familiar terms in the Quran.

    If some good deeds are seen not to get full appreciation and credit in this life, they will receive full compensation and be widely acknowledged on the Day of Judgement.

    If some people who commit sins, neglect God and indulge in immoral activities seem superficially successful and prosperous in this life, absolute justice will be done to them on the Day of Judgement.

    The time of the Day of Judgement is only known to God and God alone.
  6. A Muslim believes in "Qadaa" and "Qadar".

    "Qadaa" and "Qadar" means the Timeless Knowledge of God and His power to plan and execute His plans. God is not indifferent to this world nor is He neutral to it.

    God is Wise, Just and Loving and whatever He does must have a good motive, although we may fail sometimes to understand it fully.

    We should have strong faith in God and accept whatever He does because our knowledge is limited and our thinking is based on individual consideration, whereas His knowledge is limitless and He plans on a universal basis.

    Man should think, plan, and make sound choices, but if things do not happen the way he wants, he should not lose faith and surrender himself to mental strains or shattering worries.
  7. A Muslim believes that the purpose of life is to worship God.

    Worshipping God does not mean we spend our entire lives in constant seclusion and absolute meditation. To worship God is to live life according to His commands, not to run away from it.

    To worship God is to know Him, to love Him, to obey His commands, to enforce His laws in every aspect of life, to serve His cause by doing right and shunning evil and to be just to Him, to ourselves and to our fellow human beings.
  8. A Muslim believes that man enjoys an especially high ranking status in the hierarchy of all known creatures.

    Man occupies this distinguished position because he alone is gifted with rational faculties and spiritual aspirations as well as powers of action.

    Man is not a condemned race from birth to death, but a dignified being potentially capable of good and noble achievements.
  9. A Muslim believes that every person is born "Muslim".

    Every person is endowed by God with spiritual potential and intellectual inclination that can make him a good Muslim.

    Every person's birth takes place according to the will of God in realization of His plans and in submission to His commands.
  10. A Muslim believes that every person is born free from sin.

    When the person reaches the age of maturity and if he is sane, he becomes accountable for all his deeds and intentions. Man is free from sin until he commits sin.

    There is no inherited sin, no original sin. Adam committed the first sin, he prayed to God for pardon, and God granted Adam pardon.
  11. A Muslim believes that man must work out his salvation through the guidance of God.

    No one can act on behalf of another or intercede between him and God.

    In order, to obtain salvation a person must combine faith and action, belief and practice. Faith without doing good deeds is as insufficient as doing good deeds without faith.
  12. A Muslim believes that God does not hold any person responsible until he has shown him the Right Way.

    If people do not know and have no way of knowing about Islam, they will not be responsible for failing to be Muslim. Every Muslim must preach Islam words and in action.
  13. A Muslim believes that faith is not complete when it is followed blindly or accepted unquestioningly.

    Man must build his faith on well-grounded convictions beyond any reasonable doubt and above uncertainty.

    Islam insured freedom to believe and forbids compulsion in religion. (one of the oldest synagogues and one of the oldest churches in the world are in Muslim countries).
  1. A Muslim believes that the Quran is the word of God revealed to prophet Muhammad through the Angel Gabriel.

    The Quran was revealed from God on various occasions to answer questions, solve problems, settle disputes and to be man's best guide to the truth.

    The Quran was revealed in Arabic and it is still in its original and complete Arabic version until today. It is memorized by millions.

A Muslim believes that the Quran is the word of God revealed to prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) through the Angel Gabriel (peace be upon him). The Quran was revealed from God on various occasions to answer questions, solve problems, settle disputes and to be man's best guide to the truth. The Quran was revealed in Arabic and it is still in its original and complete Arabic version until today. It is memorized by millions.A Muslim believes in a clear distinction between the Quran and the Traditions of the Prophet Muhammad. Whereas the Quran is the word of God, the Traditions of Prophet Muhammad (his teachings, sayings, and actions) are the practical interpretations of the Quran. Both the Quran and the Traditions of the Prophet Muhammad are the primary sources of knowledge in Islam.

What are the 5 Pillars of Islam?

Islam is built on five pillars. These acts are obligatory on every Muslim adult. Some are done daily, monthly, anually, while one is only required once in a lifetime.


To do this one must simply state publicly "Ashadu alla ilaha illa Allah, wa ashadu anna Muhammed ar-rasool Allah".

This means, "I bear witness that there is no God other than Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammed is His messanger."

It should be a genuine belief from one's heart. The witnessing of the Oneness of Allah is the rejection of any form of deity other than Allah, and the witnessing that Muhammad is His Messenger is the acceptance of him being chosen by Allah to convey His message of Islam to all humanity and to deliver it from the darkness of ignorance into the light of belief in, and knowledge of, the Creator.


In prayer, every muscle and bone of the body joins the soul and the mind in the worship and glory of Allah(swt).

Offering of prayers is obligatory upon every Muslim who is sane, mature and in the case of women free from menstruation and confinement due to child birth. some requirements must be met in oreder for the prayer to be valid. These include but are not limited to:

Performing wudu - ritually cleaning the body clothes and ground used for prayer.

Clothing - one must be covered in the manner according to his gender.

Facing the Ka'ba (referred to as the Qibla)

Intention - merely saying in your mind that you are attempting to pray and gain the benefits from it.

Prayers are required at least five times a day. Other obligatory prayer include the Friday congregational prayer, Eid prayers and the funeral prayer. Times of the five daily obligatory prayers:

   1.Fajr-Before sunrise.
   2.Zuhr-After the sun begins to decline from its zenith.
   4.Magrib-Just after sunset.

In addition one is also encouraged but not required to perform prayers during the day and night. Prayer should be offered in its due time, unless there is a reasonable excuse. Delayed obligatory prayers must be made up. In addition to the prescribed prayer, a Muslim expresses gratitude to Godand appreciation of His favours and asks for His mercy all the time. Especially at times of, childbirth, marriage, going to or rising from bed, leaving and returning to his home, starting a journey or entering a city, riding or driving, before or after eating or drinking, harvesting, visiting graveyards and at time of distress and sickness.


Obligatory charity giving is an act of worship and spiritual investment. Zakah does not only purify the property of the contributor but also purifies his heart from selfishness and greed. It also purifies the heart of the recipient from envy and jealousy, from hatred and uneasiness and it fosters instead good-will and warm wishes for the contributors. It also frees society from welfare, distrust and coruption. Zakah is paid on the net balance after paying personal expenses, family expenses, due credits, taxes, etc. Taxes paid to government do not substitute for this religious duty. The contributor should not seek pride or fame but if disclosing his name and his contribution is likely to encourage others, it is acceptable to do so.

The recipients of Zakah are:

- the poor, the needy,
- the new Muslim converts,
- the Muslim prisoners of war (to liberate them),
- Muslims in debt,
- employees appointed to collect Zakah,
- Muslims in service of research or study or propagation of Islam,
- wayfarers who are foreigners in need of help.

Note that Zakah is obligatory. Muslims can also go above and beyond what they pay as Zakah, in which case the offering is strictly voluntary (blessing will come to those who wish for his brother what he wishes for himself).


Fasting is abstaining completely from eating, drinking, and intimate sexual contacts from the break of dawn till sunset. It is a matchless Islamic institution which teaches man the principle of sincere love to God, creative sense of hope, devotion,patience, unselfishness, discipline, etc. Obligatory fasting is done once a year for the period of the month of Ramadan. Fasting during this time is obligatory on every muslim adult if he is mentally and physically fit and not on a journey. Women are allowed to skip a fasting day due to menstruation, and while nursing a baby.


It is obligatory to make the pilgrimage to Mecca, at least once in a lifetime. Muslims from all walks of life, from every corner of the globe assemble in Mecca in response to the call of Allah. It is to commemorate the Divine rituals observed by the Prophet Abraham and his son Ishmael, who were the first pilgrims to the house of Allah on earth: the Ka'bah. It is also to remember the great assembly of the Day of Judgement when people will stand equal before Allah. Muslims go to Mecca to glorify Allah, not to worship a man. The visit to the tomb of Prophet Muhammad at Madena is highly recommended but not essential in making the Hajj valid and complete.


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    • profile image


      9 months ago

      "Islam is the first and last religion of the world...." And the new religions?

    • aayankhan0 profile image


      2 years ago

      Islam is the best and perfect religion for the whole universe.

    • Abhaque Supanjang profile image

      Abhaque Supanjang 

      2 years ago from Kumango - Batusangkar - Sumatera Barat - Indonesia

      Nice hub, Queen...! This is the basic insight on Islam. Write more..! There are still many, so many things that you may write on Islam...!

    • Moslem Ali profile image

      الحمد لله 

      2 years ago

      thank you

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      You've given a one sided view of Islam . Pl read Qoran Hadees & other side will emerge

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      Islam is perfect Muslims can make mistakes.but isis shouldnt be considered as a religious community it must be seen as political and economical source for lots of capitalist and islamaphobic countries .you say we are muslims that are with isis then why isis made uncountable bombings over Muslim countries especcialy in the home of Muhammed pbuh . if they love and present Islam why they are attacking and not respecting the Messenger of this religion. Hope you got what i am saying because we clearly know why USA got in middle east as you know it too but hiding it,cant convince yourself. Its not only about USA .We know the hatred European countries has against the followers of this beautiful religion. Thanks and greetings from Türkiye!

    • bdn9385 profile image


      4 years ago

      Very informative. tnx.

    • Sufi Poet profile image

      John Evans 

      4 years ago from Idaho, USA

      A beautiful and informative post! I have learned from you and know my heart surrenders to God in obedience to his Divine will. I sincerely thank you for sharing and can only hope that peace will prevail. I am not certain if I write this correctly but please forgive my intellect of ignorance.

      Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim. May the peace of Allah be upon you!

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      thanks for everything.ı like islam and allah.I ma reading Q'ran

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      hay guys

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      there is a reason for Islam and we need it there for peaceful

    • profile image

      Islam is the best 

      5 years ago

      proud to be a Muslim u do the best Allah will do the rest

    • profile image

      Beauty of Islam 

      5 years ago

      Islam is a lovely religion and most of the Muslim are nice am not saying all but most and the person the made this website they are a good person for letting everyone know about how good Islam is.

    • profile image


      5 years ago


    • profile image


      5 years ago

      PLEASE!!! Give me a break. Are you people blind as to what muslims are doing around the world in the name of their religion? And don't give me the crusades comparison, because if you knew what you are talking about, you would know that the crusades were because the muslims were trying to tske ovet everyone. Sound familiar?? Guess its time for the crusades to start up again.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Salam Alaikum.... I was forced to post a comment! If and only if you know the true meaning of "propaganda", then and until then you will realise that there are some people in the garment of a masquerade trying to paint islam black, trying to defame islam, trying to tarnish her image! There is no justification that those you see in cameras beheading people are truly muslims... They could be normal "mercineries" who were hired by foes of islam to tarnish her image! .... We are peacefully peaceful!!!! Islam, ad-deen salam

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      wow that is truly beautiful. thank you

    • profile image

      salva ashif 

      5 years ago

      allah akbar........ i love allah and islam

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      thank you for this useful info i need to see what they do and dont to see if this girl is taking advantage of islam or not

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Greg- there are different types of Muslims. Would you call a German a Nazi even if they had no association with Hitler? ISIS are dictators and choose to represent Islam in a horrible manner. It is full of sick militants attempting to prove an unknown point.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      This is very true even im a muslim

      I go to the mass in town . I am nine and I show respect to allah the greatest

    • Greg Dean profile image

      Greg Dean 

      5 years ago

      Please excuse my lack of education, but if Islam is a peaceful religion, why have I seen Muslims in Iraq holding up the beheaded heads of fellow humans they have tortured and happily smiling at the camera? Why can an 18 year old girl be put to death for inappropriate sexual acts when she was raped?

      Thank you in advance for your kind reply

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I love islam

    • Michael Kovacs profile image

      Michael Kovacs 

      6 years ago

      Read this if you think it is so wonderful.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Islam is the first and last religion of the world....i love Muhammad(PBUH)

    • profile image


      6 years ago


    • profile image

      alaa samir youssef 

      6 years ago

      unfortunately islam is very beautiful religion but it is not common in eroupe . most unmuslim people don't a lot about it. i wish all people read only about it if they don't like to convert it. i'm a muslim and i'm proud. islam is very easy religion .i advise you to read about islam to enter the paradise.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I loved this, thank you Inshallah

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      This is stupid

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Islam Is beautiful.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      great :)

    • lovelyquran profile image


      7 years ago

      To Really understand Islam you should read Quran. Learn How to read Quran online with !

    • profile image

      a person 

      7 years ago

      it helped me too

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      i wish everyone around the world could read it and truly understand what islam is REALLY about and what is its PURPOSE

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      it is such a beautiful way of life

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      this has really helped me with my work at school

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      islam is the best. la illah ha illa law

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      a great words that gives light and direction towards a righteous way of life..A great hope to repent and clean our body and soul,,preparing ourselves to enter into the kingdom of our almighty GOD..preparing our selves to face our God with out shame and doubts...

      Ooh God, I am submitting my self to you..please open my eyes and my heart only into the goodness one..

      ...Ashadu alla illa Allah, wa ashadu anna Muhammed

      ar-rasool Allah...

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      WoW! Islam is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! ALLAHU AKBAR!

    • profile image


      10 years ago


    • afghanprincess profile image


      11 years ago

      Thank you for letting us know the facts about Islam. It truly is a great inspiration!


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