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Islam means "submission to God in peace". Islam teaches there is only One God, whose primary name is "Allah" in the Arabic language. Islam is the same essential message given to all the prophets, from Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and finally to the Last Prophet, Muhammad, (peace be upon them all). They all proclaimed the same basic Divine message: worship only God, stop worshipping human beings and other created things There's a different between Islam and Muslims!! What's the purpose of life? What Do You Know About Islam? Not what you have heard about Islam, not what you have seen in the actions of some Muslims, but what do you really know about Islam?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Yusuf Estes, Former Musician








Many people ask me how a preacher or priest in Christianity can ever go to Islam, especially considering all the negative things that we hear about Islam and Muslims everyday. I would like to thank everyone for their interest and offer my humble story, God Willing.


I was born into a very strong Christian family in the Midwest. Our family and their ancestors not only built the churches and schools across this land, but actually were the same ones who came here in the first place. While I was still in elementary we relocated in Houston, Texas in 1949 (I'm old). We attended church regularly and I was baptized at the age of 12 in Pasadena, Texas. As a teenager, I wanted to visit other churches to learn more of their teachings and beliefs. The Baptists, Methodists, Episcopalians, Charismatic movements, Nazarene, Church of Christ, Church of God, Church of God in Christ, Full Gospel, Agape, Catholic, Presbyterian and many more. I developed quite a thirst for the "Gospel" or as we say; "Good News." My research into religion did not stop with Christianity. Not at all. Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Metaphysics, native American beliefs were all a part of my studies. Just about the only one that I did not look into seriously was "Islam". Why? Good question.


Anyway, I became very interested in different types of music, especially Gospel and Classical. Because my whole family was religious and musical it followed that I too would begin my studies in both areas. All this set me for the logical position of Music Minister in many of the churches that I became affiliated with over the years. I started teaching keyboard instruments in 1960 and by 1963 owned my own studios in Laurel, Maryland, called "Estes Music Studios."


Over the next 30 years my father and I worked together in many business projects. We had entertainment programs, shows and attractions. We opened piano and organ stores all the way from Texas and Oklahoma to Florida. I made millions of dollars in those years, but could not find the peace of mind that can only come through knowing the truth and finding the real plan of salvation. I'm sure you have asked yourself the question; "Why did God create me?" or "What is it that God wants me to do?" or "Exactly who is God, anyway?" "Why do we believe in 'original sin?" and "Why would the sons of Adam be forced to accept his 'sins' and then as a result be punished forever. But if you asked anyone these questions, they would probably tell you that you have to believe without asking, or that it is a 'mystery' and you shouldn't ask.


And then there is the concept of the 'Trinity.' If I would ask preachers or ministers to give me some sort of an idea how 'one' could figure out to become 'three' or how God Himself, Who can do anything He Wills to do, cannot just forgive people's sins, but rather and had to become a man, come down on earth, be a human, and then take on the sins of all people. Keeping in mind that all along He is still God of the whole universe and does as He Wills to do, both in and outside of the universe as we know it.


Then one day in 1991, I came to know that the Muslims believed in the Bible.


I was shocked. How could this be? But that's not all, they believe in Jesus as:

* a true messenger of God;
* prophet of God;
* miracle birth without human intervention;
* he was the 'Christ' or Messiah as predicted in the Bible;
* he is with God now and most important;
* He will be coming back in the Last Days to lead the believers against the 'Antichrist.'

This was too much for me. Especially since the evangelists that we used to travel around with all hated Muslims and Islam very much. They even said things that were not true to make people afraid of Islam. So, why would I want anything to do with these people?

My father was very active in supporting church work, especially church school programs. He became and ordained minister in the 1970s. He and his wife (my stepmother) knew many of the TV evangelists and preachers and even visited Oral Roberts and helped in the building of the "Prayer Tower" in Tulsa, OK. They also were strong supporters of Jimmy Swaggart, Jim and Tammy Fae Bakker, Jerry Fallwell, John Haggi and the biggest enemy to Islam in America, Pat Robertson.


Dad and his wife worked together and were most active in recording "Praise" tapes and distributing them for free to people in retirement homes, hospitals and homes for the elderly. And then in 1991 he began doing business with a man from Egypt and told me that he wanted me to meet him. This idea appealed to me when I thought about the idea of having an international flavor. You know, the pyramids, sphinx, Nile River and all that. Then my father mentioned that this man was a 'Moslem.'

I couldn't believe my ears.

A 'Moslem?'
No way!

I reminded my dad of the various different things that we had heard about these people, how they are; terrorists; hijackers; kidnappers; bombers and who knows what else? Not to mention that: they don't believe in God; they kiss the ground five times a day and they worship a black box in the desert.


No. I did not want to meet this 'Moslem' man. No way.

My father insisted that I meet him and reassured me that he was a very nice person. So, I gave in and agreed to the meeting.


But on my terms, I agreed to meet him on a Sunday after church so we would be all prayed up and in good standing with the Lord. I would be carrying my Bible under my arm as usual. I would have my big shiny
cross dangling and I would have on my cap which says: "Jesus is Lord" right across the front. My wife and two young daughters came along and we were ready for our first encounter with the 'Moslems.'
When I came into the shop and asked my father where the 'Moslem' was, he pointed and said: "He's right over there." I was confused. That couldn't be the Moslem. No way.


I'm looking for a huge man with flowing robes and big turban on his head, a beard half way down his shirt and eyebrows that go all the way across his forehead.

This man had no beard. In fact, he didn't even have any hair on his head at all. He was very close to bald. And he was very pleasant with a warm welcome and handshake. This didn't make sense. I thought they are terrorists and bombers. What is this all about?

Never mind. I'll get right to work on this guy. He needs to be 'saved' and me and the Lord are going to do it. So, after a quick introduction, I asked him:

"Do you believe in God?" He said: "Yes." (Good!) Then I said: "Do you believe in Adam and Eve?" He said: "Yes." I said: "What about Abraham? You believe in him and how he tried to sacrifice his son for God?" He


said: "Yes." Then I asked: "What about Moses?" Again he said: "Yes." Then: "What about the other prophets, David, Solomon and John the Baptist?" He said: "Yes." I asked: "Do you believe in the Bible?"


Again, he said: "Yes." So, now it was time for the big question: "Do you believe in Jesus? That he was the Christ of God?" Again the said: "Yes."


Well, now, this was going to be easier than I had thought. He was just about ready to be baptized only he didn't know it. And I was just the one to do it, too. I was winning souls to the Lord day after day and this would be a big achievement for me, to catch one of these 'Moslems' and 'convert' him to Christianity. I asked him if he liked tea and he said he did. So off we went to a little shop in the mall to sit and talk about my favorite subject: Beliefs. While we sat in that little coffee shop for hours talking (I did most of the talking) I came to know that he was very nice, quiet and even a bit shy. He listened attentively to every word that I had to say and did not interrupt even one time. I liked this man's way and thought that he had definite potential to become a good Christian. Little did I know the course of events about to unravel in front of my eyes?

First of all, I agreed with my father that we should do business with this man and even encouraged the idea of him traveling along with me on my business trips across the northern part of Texas. Day after day we would ride together and discuss various issues pertaining to different beliefs that people have. And along the way, I could of course interject some of my favorite radio programs of worship and praise to help bring the message to this poor individual. We talked about the concept of God; the meaning of life; the purpose of creation; the prophets and their mission and how God reveals His Will to mankind. We also shared a lot of personal experiences and ideas as well.


One day I came to know that my friend Mohamed was going to move out of the home he have been sharing with a friend of his and was going to be living in the mosque for a time. I went to my dad and asked him if we could invite Mohamed to come out to our big home in the country and stay there with us. After all, he could share some of the work and some expenses and he would be right there when we were ready to go to out traveling around. My father agreed and Mohamed moved in.
Of course I still would find time to visit my fellow preachers and evangelists around the state of Texas. One of them lived on the Texas -- Mexico border and another lived near lived Oklahoma border. One preacher liked to a huge wooden cross that was bigger than a car. He would carry it over his shoulder and drag the bottom on the ground and go down the road or freeway hauling these two beams formed in the shape of a cross. People would stop their cars and come over to him and ask him what was going on and he would give them pamphlets and booklets on Christianity.


One day my friend with the cross had a heart attack and had to go to the Veterans Hospital where he stayed for quite a long while. I used to visit him in the hospital several times a week and I would take Mohamed with me with the hopes that we could all share together in the subject of beliefs and religions. My friend was not very impressed and it was obvious that he did not want to know anything about Islam. Then one day a man who was sharing the room with my friend came rolling into the room in his wheelchair. I went to him and asked him his name and he said that it didn't matter and when I asked him where he was from he said he was from the planet Jupiter. I thought about what he said and then began to wonder if I was in the cardiac ward or the mental ward.


I knew the man was lonely and depressed and needed someone in his life. So, I began to 'witness' to him about the Lord. I read to him out of the book of Jonah in the Old Testament. I shared the story of the prophet Jonah who had been sent by the Lord to call his people to the correct way. Jonah had left his people and escaped by boat to leave his city and head out to sea. A storm came up and the ship almost capsized and the people on board threw Jonah over the side of the ship. A whale came up to the surface and grabbed Jonah, swallowed him and then went down to the bottom of the sea, where he stayed for 3 days and 3 nights. Yet because of God's Mercy, He caused the whale to rise to the surface and then spit Jonah out to return back home safely to his city of Nineveh. And the idea was that we can't really run away from our problems because we always know what we have done. And what is more, God also always knows what we have done.


After sharing this story with the man in the wheel chair, he looked up and me and apologized. He told me he was sorry for his rude behavior and that he had experienced some real serious problems recently. Then he said that he wanted to confess something to me. And I said that I was not a Catholic priest and I don't handle confessions. He replied back to me that he knew that. In fact, he said: "I am a Catholic priest." I was shocked. Here I had been trying to preach Christianity to a priest. What in the world was happening here? The priest began to share his story of being a missionary for the church for over 12 years to south and Central America and Mexico and even in New York's 'Hell's Kitchen.' When he was released from the hospital he needed a place to go to recover and rather than let him go to stay with a Catholic family, I told my dad that we should invite him to come out and live with us in the country along with our families and Mohamed. It was agreed by all that he would so, he moved out right away.


During the trip out to our home, I talked with the priest about some of the concepts of beliefs in Islam and to my surprise he agreed and then shared even more about this with me. I was shocked when he told me that Catholic priests actually study Islam and some even carry doctors degrees in this subject. This was all very enlightening to me. But there was still a lot more to come.


After settling in, we all began to gather around the kitchen table after dinner every night to discuss religion. My father would bring his King James Version of the Bible, I would bring out my Revised Standard Version of the Bible, my wife had another version of the Bible (maybe something like Jimmy Swaggart's 'Good News For Modern Man." The priest of course, had the Catholic Bible which has 7 more books in it that the Protestant Bible. So we spent more time talking about which Bible was the right one or the most correct one, than we did trying to convince Mohamed about becoming a Christian.


At one point I recall asking him about the Quran and how many versions of it there were in the last 1,400 years. He told me that there was only ONE QURAN. And that it had never been changed. Yet he let me know that the Quran had been memorized by hundreds of thousands of people, in it's entirety and were scattered about the earth in many different countries. Over the centuries since the Quran was revealed millions have memorized it completely and have taught it to others who have memorized it completely, from cover to cover, letter perfect without mistakes.


This did not seem possible to me. After all, the original languages of the Bible have all been dead languages for centuries and the documents themselves have been lost in their originals for hundreds and thousands of years. So, how could it be that something like this could be so easy to preserve and to recite from cover to cover.


Anyway, one day the priest asked Mohamed if he might accompany him to the mosque to see what it was like there. They came back talking about their experience there and we could not wait to ask the priest what it was like and what all types of ceremonies they performed. He said they didn't really 'do' anything. They just came and prayed and left. I said: "They left? Without any speeches or singing?" He said that was right.


A few more days went by and the Catholic priest asked Mohamed if he might join him again for a trip to the mosque which they did. But this time it was different. They did not come back for a very long time. It became dark and we worried that something might have happened to them. Finally they arrived and when they came in the door I immediately recognized Mohamed, but who was this alongside of him? Someone wearing a white robe and a white cap. Hold on a minute! It was the priest. I said to him: "Pete? -- Did you become a 'Moslem?' He said that he had entered into Islam that very day. THE PRIEST BECAME A MUSLIM!! What next?
(You'll see).


So, I went upstairs to think things over a bit and began to talk to my wife about the whole subject. She then told me that she too was going to enter into Islam, because she knew it was the truth. I was really shocked now. I went downstairs and woke up Mohamed and asked him to come outside with me for a discussion. We walked and talked that whole night through. By the time he was ready to pray Fajr (the morning prayer of the Muslims) I knew that the truth had come at last and now it was up to me to do my part. I went out back behind my father's house and found an old piece of plywood lying under an overhang and right there I put my head down on the ground facing the direction that the Muslims pray five times a day.


Now then in that position, with my body stretched out on the plywood and my head on the ground, I asked: "O God. If you are there, guide me, guide me." And then after a while I raised up my head and I noticed something. No, I didn't see birds or angels coming out of the sky nor did I hear voices or music, nor did I see bright lights and flashes. What I did notice was a change inside of me. I was aware now more than ever before that it was time for me to stop lying and cheating and doing sneaky business deals. It was time that I really work at being an honest and upright man. I knew now what I had to do. So I went upstairs and took a shower with the distinct idea that I was 'washing' away the sinful old person that I had become over the years. And I was now coming into a new, fresh life. A life based on truth and proof.


Around 11:00 A.M. that morning, I stood before two witnesses, one the ex-priest, formerly known as Father Peter Jacob's, and the other Mohamed Abel Rehman and announced my 'shahadah' (open testimony to the Oneness of God and the prophethood of Muhammad, peace be upon him).
A few minutes later, my wife follows along and gave the same testimony. But hers was in front of 3 witnesses
(me being the third).


My father was a bit more reserved on the subject and waited a few more months before he made his shahadah (public testimony). But he did finally commit to Islam and began offering prayers right along with me and the other Muslims in the local masjid (mosque).


The children were taken out of the Christian school and placed in Muslim schools. And now ten years later, they are memorizing much of the Quran and the teachings of Islam.


My father's wife was the last of all to acknowledge that Jesus could not be a son of God and that he must have been a mighty prophet of God, but not God.
Now stop and think. A whole entire household of people from varying backgrounds and ethnic groups coming together in truth to learn how to know and worship the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. Think. A catholic priest. A minister of music and preacher. An ordained minister and builder of Christian schools. And they all come into Islam! Only by His Mercy were we all guided to see the real truth of Islam without any blinders on their eyes any longer.


If I were to stop right here, I'm sure that you would have to admit that at least, this is an amazing story, right? After all, three religious leaders of three separate denominations all going into one very opposite belief at the same time and then soon after the rest of the household?

But that is not all. There is more! The same year, while I was in Grand Prairie, Texas (near Dallas) I met a Baptist seminary student from Tennessee named Joe, who also came to Islam after reading the Holy Quran while in BAPTIST SEMINARY COLLEGE!

There are others as well. I recall the case of the Catholic priest in a college town who talked about the good things in Islam so much that I was forced to ask him why he didn't enter Islam. He replied: "What? And loose my job?" - His name is Father John and there is still hope for him yet.


More? Yes. The very next year I met a former Catholic priest who had been a missionary for 8 years in Africa. He learned about Islam while he was there and entered into Islam. He then changed his name to Omar and moved to Dallas Texas.


Any more? Again, yes. Two years later, while in San Antonio, Texas I was introduced to a former Arch Bishop of the Orthodox Church of Russia who learned about Islam and gave up his position to enter Islam.
And since my own entrance into Islam and becoming a chaplain to the Muslims throughout the country and around the world, I have encountered many more individuals who were leaders, teachers and scholars in other religions who learned about Islam and entered into it. They came from Hindus, Jews, Catholics, Protestants, Jehovah's Witnesses, Greek and Russian Orthodox, Coptic Christians from Egypt, non-denominational churches and even scientists who had been atheists.


Why? Good question. May I suggest to the seeker of truth do the following NINE STEPS to purification of the mind:


1.) Clean their mind, their heart and their soul real good. 2.) Clear away all the prejudices and biases 3.) Read a good translation of the meaning of the Holy Quran in a language that they can understand best. 4.) Take some time. 5.) Read and reflect. 6.) Think and pray. 7.) And keep on asking the One who created you in the first place, to guide you to the truth. 8.) Keep this up for a few months. And be regular in it. 9.) Above all, do not let others who are poisoned in their thinking influence you while your are in this state of "rebirth of the soul."
The rest is between you and the Almighty Lord of the Universe. If you truly love Him, then He already Knows it and He will deal with each of us according to our hearts.


So, now you have the introduction to the story of my coming into Islam and becoming Muslim. There is more on the Internet about this story and there are more pictures there as well. Please take the time to visit it and then please take the time to email me and let us come together to share in all truths based on proofs for understanding our origins and our purpose and goals in this life and the Next Life.
And once again I thank you for your email today. If you hadn't sent it, I probably would still not have completed this task of putting down the story once and for all of how "Priest and Preachers Are Coming to Islam."


May Allah guide you on your journey to all truth. Ameen. And May He open your heart and your mind to the reality of this world and the purpose of this life, ameen.
Peace to you and Guidance from Allah the One Almighty God, Creator and Sustainer of all that exists. Your friend,



Monday, October 29, 2012

A Call to the Real Salvation






This is an invitation to observe, to ponder and to be with us, aware and certain that it is our duty and moral obligation to convey the message of our Creator.
 
 
In the search for truth, it is indispensable that we take some time and effort to know the basis of our faith, and as true believers, we must follow the purest essence of our belief as exemplified by the messengers of God.
 
 
Who else can give us the guidance but those whom God chose and entrusted with the mission of proclaiming glad tidings to the believers and warnings to those who deviate from the way of our Creator and refuse to believe?
 
 
Religion for some may simply be a field of academics, to others it’s a medium solely for spiritual enrichment, and to a lot more various aspects or views people may find fitting on their level of desires or caprices.
 
 
But for us, our religion is a complete way of life as shown by all the prophets of God (Peace and blessing be upon them all) and as epitomized by the last Prophet (Peace and blessing be upon him) in orders to attain salvation.
 
 
There is no doubt that this temporary life is only a probationary period, a transitory phase to the next and final one. As such, it should offer everyone the necessary requirements instrumental in paving the way for our last destination, where belief in the lone Creator and obedience to His command (doing what is right and forbidding what is wrong) will be the only acceptable means to merit salvation.
Thus, knowing the true teachings of God is tantamount to knowing life! That’s how important it is!
 
With due respect and love to Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him) as one of God’s mightiest prophets who was sent to the lost sheep of Israel, we cannot discount the teachings he brought to establish the way, the truth and the life.
 
We regard and accept him as a real messenger of God whose ways and belief inevitably coincide with ours as illustrated by the last Prophet including all the Prophets before him
 (Peace and blessing be upon them all).
 
Yes, Prophet Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him) was not a Christian for he did not introduce Christianity to the world, as evidenced by what he said in Matthew 5:17 “Do not think that I have come to destroy the Law or the prophets. I have come not to destroy, but to fulfill.”
 

Instead, he confirmed the teachings preceding him, which was the Law set by Prophet Moses (Peace and blessing be upon him). A guidance that is sanctioned by and is also analogous with that of Islam, having been anchored upon monotheism, its inherent bedrock which happens to be every other prophet's battlecry and message.
 
Moreover, Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him) further uttered words which prove that his mission was not yet complete and that another Prophet was to come after him to finalize the message, the guidance or the revelation itself, when he prophesied in John 16:7-14.
 
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you, and when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in me; of righteousness, because I go to my father and you see me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of the world is judged. I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth. For He will not speak of his own authority; but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify me. He will take what is of mine and declare it to you.”
 
The concluder of this message was neither The Holy Spirit nor Paul himself, as some Christians believe or were made to believe. He was Muhammad (Peace and blessing be upon him), the only true Prophet who succeeded Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him).
 
Muhammad (Peace and blessing be upon him) was the sole Prophet who brought with him a complete, comprehensive and final revelation from the Creator.
 
This divine manifestation has been preserved as it was revealed to him originally, challenging the whole world to come up with even just one chapter like it. Such is the provocation and appeal, which frustrated those who were at the other end of the moral and spiritual spectrum during the Prophet’s time including the rest of their kind today. As God said in Chapter 2:2-5 of the Holy Qur’an
(which is translated as follows)
 
 
“This is the Book: In it is guidance sure, without doubt, To those who fear Allah; Who believe in the Unseen, Are steadfast in prayer, and spend out of what We Have provided for them; And who believe in the Revelation Sent thee, And sent before thy time, And (in their hearts) Have the assurance of the Hereafter, They are on (true guidance). From their Lord and it are these who will prosper.”
 
 
It is the last testament of faith addressed to the whole world embodying complete light and guidance as well as the conviction of sin, a revelation that embodies Islam.
 
Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him) thru Matthew, chapter 7 verse 15 of the Bible, cautioned people regarding the need to discern the false prophets from the genuine ones via a specific criterion, the same standard of measure that we ask you to gauge prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessing be upon him) and his teachings against with:
 
 
“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly, they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them.”
 
 
Give yourself a chance to know the true Religion of God including all His Prophets and discover the difference, for “Only the truth shall set you free”. You’ve got nothing to lose, but once you understand and accept, you’ve got your whole life to gain!
 

Biblical Excerpts as Proofs of Islam's Conformity with the Religion of Jesus

Here are some points to consider regarding Jesus, Muhammad (Peace and blessing be upon them) and the Muslims, which are indeed one in the essence of Islam. The following verses extracted from today's Bibles collectively support our claim as mentioned above.
 
We pray that such accounts will appeal to your senses as well as reconcile you with the truth, thus enlightening you in the process to the remaining facts still existent in the present versions of the Bible.
 
They are as follows:
 

I. Belief in the Oneness of God (Allah)


Jesus was very explicit in his words about the “Unity of God” instead of the “Holy Trinity” which he never said nor preached in his lifetime:
 
1. Matthew 4:10 Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you Satan! it is written:” you shall worship the Lord your God, and him only you shall serve”.
 

2. Mark 12:29 Jesus answered him. “The first of all the commandments is: Hear O Israel! The Lord our God, the Lord is one”.
 

3. Isiah 43:10-11 “Before me there was no God formed, nor shall there be after me. I, even I, am the Lord; and beside me there is no savior.”

4. John 17:3 “And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and of Jesus Christ whom you have sent”.

II. Good Deeds

A. Carrying out Prayer

 (Prostration):

The only people in the whole world today who pray like Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him), and all the other prophets are the Muslims:
 
1. Matthew 26:39 “He (Jesus) went a little farther and fell on his face, and prayed, O my father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will”.
 

2. Psalm 55:17 “Evening and morning and at noon, I will pray and cry aloud: and He shall hear my voice”.
 

3. Numbers 20:6 “So Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly to the door of the tabernacle of meeting, and they fell on their faces. And the glory of the Lord appeared to them”.

B. Fasting

Islam obliges Muslims to fast just as Jesus and the prophets did during their tenure in the world:
1. Matthew 4:2 “And when he (Jesus) had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward hungry”.
 

2. Exodus 34: 28 “And he (Moses) was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he neither ate bread nor drank water”.
 

3. Matthew 6:16 “Moreover when you fast, be not as the hypocrites, with a sad countenance; for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward”.

C. Charity:

Islam obliges Muslims to pay charity, just as Jesus urged his constituents in his time:
 
1. Matthew 6:3-4 “But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your father who sees in secret will himself reward you openly.”

D. Pilgrimage to Mecca

Muslims perform pilgrimage (Hajj) like the prophets before them to the first house of worship (Ka’bah) in Maca, also known as Baca, which was built by Abraham, the father of all the prophets and his son Ishmael.
 
1. Psalm 84:5-6 “Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, Whose heart is set on pilgrimage. As they pass through the valley of Baca, They make it a spring; the rain also covers it with pools”.

E. Greetings

Muslims greet each other by saying: Peace be with you (As-salam ‘Alaykum), the same way Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him) greeted people during his ministry on earth:
 
1. Luke 24:36 “Now as they said these things, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and said to them, “Peace to you”.
 

2. John 20:19 “Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, “Peace be with you”.

Conclusion

We abide with God (Allah) when He tells us in His Holy Book (Quran) that if anyone speaks THE TRUTH, let him produce THE EVIDENCE as mentioned in chapter 2:111
(which is translated as follows):
 
"…Say: Produce your proof if ye are truthful."
 
In the same breadth, we want you to realize that what we have just deliberated are but some of the many practices that the true believers emulate. They are ways and manners which are reflective as well as representative of the genuine teachings of Jesus (Peace and blessing be upon him) and even more so with Muhammad (Peace and blessing be upon him).
Likewise, the same very practices should serve as sound proofs to help you realize the truthfulness of our claim, that indeed, there is only one way leading to the true salvation, and that is ISLAM.
As Allah says thru chapter 5: Verse 19 of the Holy Quran (which is translated as follows):
“ O People of the Scripture (Jews and Christians)! Now has come to you Our Messenger (Muhammad) making (things) clear unto you, after a break in (the series of) Messengers, lest you say: “There came unto us no bringer of glad tidings and no Warner”. But now has come unto you a bringer of glad tidings and a warner. And Allah is able to do all things.”

He further says in Verse 77 of the same chapter (which is translated as follows): “Say (O Muhammad): “O people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians)! Exceed not the limits in your religion (by believing in something) other than the truth, and do not follow the vain desires of people who went astray in times gone by, and who misled many, and strayed (themselves) from the Right Path.”
We in our capacity had presented the preceding facts in order to enlighten you only, and it is up to you to make the next move.
If you really treasure your salvation in the hereafter that much, and desire an eternal life of rewards over an eternal existence of punishment, then the choice must be clear by now. We advice you to act soon enough, before it’s too late, for no one ever knows when or where he or she is going to die---death being like a thief that comes in the middle of the night!
As for your guidance to the truth, you should ask directly from the CREATOR--- the One and Only, the Absolute, the Unlimited and the One who begets not, nor is He begotten. Seek it from Him who has no equal or no one comparable with. Pursue it from the Only One who Knows our intention and what we have in our hearts, with all your humility, sincerity and honesty. Turn your face to Him who is in the heaven, above His throne, ultimately seeking for His help and direction!
 

As they say: "Ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened up to you."

We will be looking forward to your Real SALVATION !!!
 

Dear Brother in Humanity


There is no compulsion for a person to accept the TRUTH, but it is certainly a shame upon the human intellect when a man or woman is not even interested in determining the TRUTH!
Islam teaches that our CREATOR has given human beings the faculty of reason. Therefore it is incumbent upon them to reason things out objectively and systematically for everyone to contemplate, to question and to reflect.
Nobody should press you to make a hasty decision to accept any of the teachings of Islam, for Islam teaches that human beings should be given the freedom to choose. Even when a person is faced with the TRUTH, there is no compulsion upon him to embrace it.
But before you begin to form an opinion about Islam, ask yourself whether your existing knowledge of it is thorough enough. Examine whether that knowledge has been obtained through third party sources who themselves have probably been exposed to only random glimpses of Islamic writings and have yet to reason on Islam objectively and systematically themselves.
Is it fair that one should form an opinion about the taste of a particular dish just by a mere hearsay from others who may not have actually tasted the dish themselves?
Similarly, you should find out for yourself about Islam from reliable sources and not only taste it, but rather digest it very well before you form an opinion of it. That would be an intellectual approach to the TRUTH.
In making your next move to the Religion of TRUTH, Islam will continually reassure you that your rights to freedom of choice and freedom to use that God-given faculty of thought and reason will be respected. For everyone has that individual will, no one else can take away that will and force you to submit to the will of our CREATOR, you have to find out and make that decision yourself.

May your intellectual journey towards the TRUTH be a pleasant one…
 
 
 

References


  1. Interpretation of the Meanings of the Noble Qur’an,
    Printed in 1993.
    Translated by: Dr. Muhammad Taqi-ud-Din Al-Hilal, Professor of Islamic Faith and Teachings Islamic University, Al-Madina, Al-Munawwara, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
  2. The Meaning of The Holy Qur’an
    Translated by: Dr. Abdallah Yusuf Ali
    New Edition with revised Translation, Commentary and Newly Compiled Comprehensive Index.
    Printed by: amana publications, Beltsville, Maryland, USA
    Ó 1409 A.H./1989 A.C. amana publication
  3. The Holy Bible,
    New International Version Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984,
    By: International Bible Society Used permission of Zondervan Publishing House Grand Rapids, MI 49530, USA
  4. The Amplified Bible,
    Expanded Edition Copyright 1987 by the Zondervan Corporation And the Lockman Foundation

[1] Taqwa, and the verbs and nouns connected with the root, signify: (1) the fear of Allah, which, according to the writer of Proverbs i:7 in the Old Testament, is the beginning of Wisdom; (2) restraint, or guarding one’s tongue, hand, and heart from evil; and (3) hence righteousness, piety and good conduct. All these ideas are implied where in the translation, only one or the other of these ideas can be indicated, according to the context. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Holy War !






 




What is Jihad?

Islamic Holy War? Muslims Killing Jews & Christians?

 
That is what we are told - by the western media. But what is the real truth behind this word JIHAD?

Does Jihad mean Holy War?

In Islam, there is no such thing as holy war. This terminology was generated in Europe during the Crusades and their war against Muslims. Islam recognizes Jews and Christians as the "People of the Book" because they all follow the Prophet Abraham, believing in Moses' and Jesus' teachings. For many centuries, Muslims have peacefully coexisted with Christians, Jews, and people of other faiths, maintaining social, business, political and economic treaties. Islam respects all humans and faiths as long as there is no religious oppression, forbidding Muslims from serving Allah, preventing others from learning about Islam, and not respecting treaties. For more information on the topic of Jihad see the brochure Jihad Explained or request brochure #18 from the III&E, the publisher of this article.

Jihad Explained

by Dr. Amir Ali, Ph.D. (May Allah have Mercy on him)
In the linguistic sense, the Arabic word "jihad" means struggling or striving and applies to any effort exerted by anyone. In this sense, a student struggles and strives to get an education and pass course work; an employee strives to fulfill his/her job and maintain good relations with his/her employer; a politician strives to maintain or increase his [1] popularity with his constituents and so on. The term strive or struggle may be used for/by Muslims as well as non-Muslims; for example, Allah, the One and Only True God says in the Quran:

"We have enjoined on people kindness to parents; but if they STRIVE (Jahadaka) to make you ascribe partners with Me that of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not..."

 [Noble Quran 29:8; also see 31:15]

 

In the above two verses of the Quran, it is non-Muslim parents who strive (Jahadaka) to convert their Muslim child back to their religion.

In the West, "jihad" is generally translated as "holy war," a usage the media has popularized. According to Islamic teachings, it is UNHOLY to instigate or start war; however, some wars are inevitable and justifiable. If we translate the words "holy war" back into Arabic, we find "Harbun Muqaddasatu," or for "the holy war," "Al-Harbu Al-Muqaddasatu." WE CHALLENGE any researcher or scholar to find the meaning of "jihad" as holy war in the Quran or authentic Hadith collections or in early Islamic literature. Unfortunately, some Muslim writers and translators of the Quran, the Hadith and other Islamic literature translate the term "jihad" as "holy war," due to the influence of centuries-old Western propaganda. This could be a reflection of the Christian use of the term "Holy War" to refer to the Crusades of a thousand years ago. However, the Arabic words for "war" are "Harb" or "Qital," which are found in the Quran and Hadith.


For Muslims the term JIHAD is applied to all forms of STRIVING and has developed some special meanings over time. The sources of this development are the Quran (the Word of God revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). The Quran and the Hadith use the word "jihad" in several different contexts which are given below:


1. RECOGNIZING THE CREATOR AND LOVING HIM MOST

It is human nature to love what is seen with the eyes and felt with the senses more than the UNSEEN REALITY. The Creator of the Universe and the One God is Allah. He is the Unseen Reality which we tend to ignore and not recognize. The Quran addresses those who claim to be believers:

"O you who believe! Choose not your fathers nor your brethren for protectors if they love disbelief over belief; whoever of you takes them for protectors, such are wrong-doers. Say: if your fathers, and your children, and your brethren, and your spouses, and your tribe, and the wealth you have acquired, and business for which you fear shrinkage, and houses you are pleased with are dearer to you than Allah and His Messenger and STRIVING in His way: then wait till Allah brings His command to pass. Allah does not guide disobedient folk."

[Noble Quran 9:23, 24]

 

It is indeed a struggle to put Allah ahead of our loved ones, our wealth, our worldly ambitions and our own lives. Especially for a non-Muslim who embraces Islam, it may be a tough struggle due to the opposition of his family, peers and society.


. RESISTING PRESSURE OF PARENTS, PEERS, AND SOCIETY

Once a person has made up his mind to put the Creator of the Universe above all else, he often comes under intense pressures. It is not easy to resist such pressures and STRIVE to maintain dedication and love of Allah over all else. A person who has turned to Islam from another religion may be subjected to pressures designed to turn him back to the religion of the family. We read in the Quran:

"So obey not the rejecters of faith, but strive (Jahidhum) against them by it (the Quran) with a great endeavor."

 [Noble Quran 25:52]

 

3. STAYING ON THE STRAIGHT PATH STEADFASTLY:


Allah says in the Quran

"And STRIVE (JAHIDU) for Allah with the endeavor (JIHADIHI) which is His right. He has chosen you and has not laid upon you in the DEEN (religion) any hardship..."

[Noble Quran 22:78]

 

"And whosoever STRIVES (JAHADA), STRIVES (YUJAHIDU) only for himself, for lo! Allah is altogether independent of the universe."

[Noble Quran 29:6]

 

As for those who strive and struggle to live as true Muslims whose lives are made difficult due to persecution by their opponents, they are advised to migrate to a more peaceful and tolerant land and continue with their struggle in the cause of Allah. Allah says in the Quran:

"Lo! As for those whom the angels take (in death) while they wronged themselves, (the angels) will ask: 'In what you were engaged?' They will way: 'We were oppressed in the land.' (The angels) will say: 'Was not Allah's earth spacious that you could have migrated therein?'"

 [Noble Quran 4:97]

 

"Lo! Those who believe, and those who emigrate (to escape persecution) and STRIVE (JAHADU) in the way of Allah, these have hope of Allah's mercy..."

[Noble Quran 2:218]

 

Allah tests the believers in their faith and their steadfastness

"Or did you think that you would enter Paradise while yet Allah knows not those of you who really STRIVE (JAHADU), nor knows those (of you) who are steadfast."

[Noble Quran 3:142]

"And surely We shall try you with something of fear and hunger, and loss of wealth and lives and fruits; but give tidings to the steadfast."

 [Noble Quran 2:155]

We find that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his clan were boycotted socially and economically for three years to force him to stop his message and compromise with the pagans but he resisted and realized a moral victory [2].


. STRIVING FOR RIGHTEOUS DEEDS

Allah declares in the Quran

"As for those who STRIVE (JAHADU) in Us (the cause of Allah), We surely guide them to Our paths, and lo! Allah is with the good doers."

[Noble Quran 29:69]

When we are faced with two competing interests, it becomes jihad to choose the right one, as the following Hadith exemplify:

"Ayshah, wife of the Prophet (peace be upon him) asked, 'O Messenger of Allah, we see jihad as the best of deeds, so shouldn't we join it?' He replied, 'But the best of jihad is a perfect Hajj
(pilgrimage to Makkah).'"

[Sahih Al-Bukhari #2784]

At another occasion, a man asked the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him
"'Should I join the jihad?' He asked, 'Do you have parents?' The man said, 'Yes!' The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, 'Then strive by serving them!'" [Sahih Al-Bukhari #5972]
Yet another man asked the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him):
"'What kind of jihad is better?' He replied, 'A word of truth in front of an oppressive ruler!'"

 [Sunan Al-Nasa'i #4209]

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "...the MUJAHID (one who carries out jihad) is he who STRIVES against himself for the sake of Allah, and the MUHAJIR (one who emigrates) is he who abandons evil deeds and sin."

 [Sahih Ibn Hibban #4862]


. HAVING COURAGE AND STEADFASTNESS TO CONVEY THE MESSAGE OF ISLAM

The Quran narrates the experiences of a large number of Prophets and good people who suffered a great deal trying to convey the message of Allah to mankind. For examples, see the Quran 26:1-190, 36:13-32. In the Quran, Allah specifically praises those who strive to convey His message:

"Who is better in speech than one who calls (other people) to Allah, works righteous, and declares that he is from the Muslims."

[Noble Quran 41:33]

Under adverse conditions it takes great courage to remain a Muslim, declare oneself to be a Muslim and call others to Islam. We read in the Quran:

"The (true) believers are only those who believe in Allah and his messenger and afterward doubt not, but STRIVE with their wealth and their selves for the cause of Allah. Such are the truthful."

 [Noble Quran 49:15]

 

 DEFENDING ISLAM AND THE COMMUNITY

Allah declares in the Quran

"To those against whom war is made, permission is given (to defend themselves), because they are wronged - and verily, Allah is Most Powerful to give them victory - (they are) those who have been expelled from their homes in defiance of right - (for no cause) except that they say, 'Our Lord is Allah'..."

[Noble Quran 22:39-40]

The Quran permits fighting to defend the religion of Islam and the Muslims. This permission includes fighting in self-defense and for the protection of family and property. The early Muslims fought many battles against their enemies under the leadership of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) or his representatives. For example, when the pagans of Quraysh brought armies against Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), the Muslims fought to defend their faith and community [3]. The Quran adds:

"Fight in the cause of Allah against those who fight against you, but do not transgress limits. Lo! Allah loves not aggressors. ...And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah. But if they desist, then let there be no hostility except against transgressors."

[Noble Quran 2:190, 193]

 

. HELPING ALLIED PEOPLE WHO MAY NOT BE MUSLIM

In the late period of the Prophet Muhammad's (peace be upon him) life, the tribe of Banu Khuza'ah became his ally. They were living near Makkah which was under the rule of the pagan Quraysh, Prophet Muhammad's (peace be upon him) own tribe. The tribe of Banu Bakr, an ally of Quraysh, with the help of some elements of Quraysh, attacked Banu Khuza'ah invoked the treaty and demanded Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to come to their help and punish Quraysh. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) organized a campaign against Quraysh of Makkah which resulted in the conquest of Makkah which occurred without any battle [4].


. BANISHING THOSE WHO ACT TREACHEROUSLY


Allah orders the Muslims in the Quran

"If you fear treachery from any group, throw back (their treaty) to them, (so as to be) on equal terms. Lo! Allah loves not the treacherous."

[Noble Quran 8:58]

 

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) undertook a number of armed campaigns to remove treacherous people from power and their lodgings. He had entered into pacts with several Jewish tribes, however, some of them proved themselves treacherous. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) launched armed campaigns against these tribes, defeated and exiled them from Medina and its surroundings [5].

 DEFENDING THROUGH PREEMPTIVE STRIKES

Indeed, it is difficult to mobilize people to fight when they see no invaders in their territory; however, those who are charged with responsibility see dangers ahead of time and must provide leadership. The Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (peace be upon him), had the responsibility to protect his people and the religion he established in Arabia. Whenever he received intelligence reports about enemies gathering near his borders he carried out preemptive strikes, broke their power and dispersed them [6]. Allah ordered Muslims in the Quran:

"Fighting is prescribed upon you, and you dislike it. But it may happen that you dislike a thing which is good for you, and it may happen that you love a thing which is bad for you. And Allah knows and you know not."

[Noble Quran 2:216]

. GAINING FREEDOM TO INFORM, EDUCATE AND CONVEY THE MESSAGE OF ISLAM IN AN OPEN AND FREE ENVIRONMENT:

Allah declares in the Quran:

"They ask you (Muhammad) concerning fighting in the Sacred Month. Say, 'Fighting therein is a grave (offense) but graver is it in the sight of Allah to prevent access to the path of Allah, to deny Him, to prevent access to the Sacred Mosque, and drive out its inhabitants. Persecution is worse than killing. Nor will they cease fighting you until they turn you back from your faith, if they can..."

[Noble Quran 2:217]

"And those who, when an oppressive wrong is inflicted on them, (are not cowed but) fight back."

 [Noble Quran 42:39]


To gain this freedom, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
"STRIVE (JAHIDU) against the disbelievers with your hands and tongues."

 [Sahih Ibn Hibban #4708]
The life of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was full of STRIVING to gain the freedom to inform and convey the message of Islam. During his stay in Makkah he used non-violent methods and after the establishment of his government in Madinah, by the permission of Allah, he used armed struggle against
his enemies whenever he found it inevitable.

 FREEING PEOPLE FROM TYRANNY:

Allah admonishes Muslims in the Quran

"And why should you not fight in the cause of Allah and of those who, being weak, are ill-treated (and oppressed)? - Men, women, and children, whose cry is: 'Our Lord! Rescue us from this town, whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from You, one who will protect; and raise for us from You, one who will help.'"

 [Noble Quran 4:75]

The mission of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was to free people from tyranny and exploitation by oppressive systems. Once free, individuals in the society were then free to chose Islam or not. Prophet Muhammad's (peace be upon him) successors continued in his footsteps and went to help oppressed people. For example, after the repeated call by the oppressed people of Spain to the Muslims for help, Spain was liberated by Muslim forces and the tyrant rulers removed. After the conquest of Syria and Iraq by the Muslims, the Christian population of Hims reportedly said to the Muslims:
"We like your rule and justice far better than the state of oppression and tyranny under which we have been living." [7]
The defeated rulers of Syria were Roman Christians, and Iraq was ruled by Zoroastrian Persians.

WHAT SHOULD MUSLIMS DO WHEN THEY ARE VICTORIOUS?

Muslims should remove tyranny, treachery, bigotry, and ignorance and replace them with justice and equity. We should provide truthful knowledge and free people from the bondage of 'associationism' (SHIRK, or multiple gods), prejudice, superstition and mythology. Muslims remove immorality, fear, crime, exploitation and replace them with divine morality, peace and education. The Quran declares:

"Lo! Allah commands you that you restore deposits to their owners, and if you judge between mankind that you judge justly. Lo! It is proper that Allah admonishes you. Lo! Allah is ever Hearer, Seer."

[Noble Quran 4:58]

"O you who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah's witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice. Be just: that is next to Piety and fear Allah. And Allah is well acquainted with all that you do."

 [Noble Quran 5:8]

"And of those whom We have created there is a nation who guides with the Truth and establishes justice with it." [Noble Quran 7:181]

"Lo! Allah enjoins justice and kindness, and giving to kinsfolk, and forbids lewdness and abomination and wickedness. He exhorts you in order that you may take heed."

[Noble Quran 16:90]

"Those who, if We give them power in the land, establish prescribed prayers (SALAH) and pay the poor-due (ZAKAH) and enjoin right conduct and forbid evil. And with Allah rests the end (and decision) of (all) affairs."

 [Noble Quran 22:41]


DID ISLAM SPREAD BY FORCE, SWORDS OR GUNS?
The unequivocal and emphatic answer is NO! The Quran declares:

"Let there be no compulsion (or coercion) in the religion (Islam). The right direction is distinctly clear from error."

[Noble Quran 2:256]

Here is a good study of the question of the spread of Islam by a Christian missionary, T. W. Arnold:
"...of any organized attempt to force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim population, or of any systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian religion, we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either course of action, they might have swept away Christianity as easily as Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV made Protestantism penal in France, or the Jews were kept out of England for 350 years. The Eastern Churches in Asia were entirely cut off from communion with the rest of Christiandom throughout which no one would have been found to lift a finger on their behalf, as heretical communions. So that the very survival of these Churches to the present day is a strong proof of the generally tolerant attitude of Mohammedan [sic] governments towards them" [8].
Islam does not teach, nor do Muslims desire, conversion of any people for fear, greed, marriage or any other form of coercion.
In conclusion, jihad in Islam is STRIVING IN THE WAY OF ALLAH by pen, tongue, hand, media and, if inevitable, with arms. However, jihad in Islam does not include striving for individual or national power, dominance, glory, wealth, prestige or pride.





********  

References

[1]. For the sake of simplicity and easy reading, masculine pronouns have been used throughout this brochure. No exclusion of females is intended.
[2]. Haykal, M. H., THE LIFE OF MUHAMMAD, Tr. Isma'il R. Faruqi, American Trust Publications, 1976, p. 132.
[3]. Haykal, pp. 216, 242, 299 and 414 for the Battles of Badr, Uhud, Al-Khandaq and Hunayn, respectively.
[4]. Haykal, p. 395 for the conquest of Makkah.
[5]. Haykal, pp. 245, 277, 311 and 326 for campaigns against the tribes of Banu Qaynuqa', Banu Al-Nadir, Banu Quraydhah and Banu Lihyan, respectively. Also, see p. 283 for the Battle of Dhat Al-Riqa'.
[6]. Haykal, pp. 284, 327, 366, 387, 393, 443 and 515 for the Battles of Dawmat Al-Jandal, Banu Al-Mustaliq, Khaybar, Mu'tah, Dhat Al-Salasil, Tabuk and the Campaign of Usamah Ibn Zaid, respectively.
[7]. Hitti, Philip K., HISTORY OF THE ARABS, St. Martin's Press, New York, 1970, p. 153.
[8]. Arnold, Sir Thomas W. THE PREACHING OF ISLAM, A HISTORY OF THE PROPAGATION OF THE MUSLIM FAITH, Westminister A. Constable & Co., London, 1896, p. 80.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hajj - Pilgrimage To Mecca






  

Many misunderstandings and misconceptions today confuse even our Muslim youth. This is true even regarding the way we believe in our Lord, our Creator - our God - Allah



Consider some of these questions containing lies about Allah and God in ISLAM


1. Why do Muslims pray to a black cube in the desert in Mecca!
(Muslims do not pray to anything or anyone, except Allah)



2. Why do they kiss a black rock haning on the black cube!
(Not because we think it is Allah) 


3. How come they do a pilgrimage (Hajj) like some kind of pagan ritual!
(These rituals are from Abraham and Ishmael, even before Jewish times) 



4. Why do they pray to a "moon-god" idol - actually inside the cube building (kabah)?
(There is no 'idol' or anything else for that matter, inside the kabbah)  





Allah Almighty says

{And He it is Who created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon. They float, each in an orbit.}

(Al-Anbiyaa' 21: 33)


This glorious verse refers to a scientific fact concerning the system of the universe. Scientific discoveries have proved that we live in a huge universe that depends on revolution. The earth revolves round the sun once a year, the moon revolves around the earth once per lunar month, and the other planets of the solar system also revolve round the sun, each in its own orbit. Besides, most of these planets have moons that revolve around them, each, also, in its own orbit. Astronomers have discovered more than 60 of these moons so far.


The solar system, likewise, orbits a center of our galaxy, the Milky Way. This galaxy consists of more than 130 billion stars. Galaxies, in turn, revolve round a center that only Almighty Allah knows.


The law of revolution applies also to atoms, the smallest units of elements that cannot be seen even by microscopes. An atom is composed of a nucleus whose diameter is less than a millionth of a millimeter. An atom is surrounded by electrons that move round the atom in an orbit. Since all matter in the universe-whether solid, liquid, or gaseous-consists of atoms, this means that the law of revolution applies to everything: stars, planets, moons, animals, plants, sand, seas, air, and so on.


This includes cells as well. The cytoplasm in the cell moves around the nucleus.


There is a common factor between the orbital movements of all the objects referred to above, this is, their revolution is counterclockwise.


Contemplating the above lines, we come to realize that revolution is a cosmic law.


With a believer's meditation upon such a scientific fact, another image of revolution is brought to one's mind: the pilgrims' circumambulation of the Ka`bah, which is a basic ritual of Hajj in Islam.


Circumambulating the Ka`bah is a symbolic act of worship, whose wisdom may be hidden form some. It indicates the believers' utter submission to Almighty Allah alone. The pilgrims go to Hajj in response to the divine order that Prophet Abraham (peace and blessings be upon him) conveyed to people.



Allah Almighty says

{And (remember) when We prepared for Abraham the place of the (holy) House, saying: Ascribe thou no thing as partner unto Me, and purify My House for those who make the round (thereof) and those who stand and those who bow and make prostration. And proclaim unto mankind the pilgrimage. They will come unto thee on foot and on every lean camel; they will come from every deep ravine.}

(Al-Hajj 22: 26-27)


This signifies that the Ka`bah is the spiritual center of the believers. It refers to the close bond that should be between a believer and his Lord. A believer turns toward the Ka`bah five times a day during the prescribed ritual Prayers.


A pilgrim circumambulates the Ka`bah as if he or she is a celestial body orbiting another greater body. Circumambulation of the Ka`bah is to be performed counterclockwise. This indicates that there is a joint factor between a pilgrim's expressing his ultimate faith in Almighty Allah by circumambulating the Ka`bah in that way and between the cosmic law of revolution discussed above. This indicates that there is consistency between the obligations of worship in Islam and the natural laws that govern the universe, which indicates that they all belong to only one source, that is, Almighty Allah.


This proves the truthfulness of the call of Islam that there is no god but Almighty Allah. Thus, Islam is the true religion that provides humankind with a comprehensive view in conformity with the divine truth that is apparent in the natural laws of the universe



Hajj - Pilgrimage To Mecca

The fifth pillar of Islam is to make a pilgrimage (Hajj) to Mecca, in Saudi Arabia, at least once in one's lifetime. This pillar is obligatory for every Muslim, male or female, provided that he/she is physically and financially able to do so.

Prerequisites for performing the Hajj are to be a Muslim, to be free, to be an adult or mature enough, to be of sound mind, and to have the ability to afford the journey and maintain one's dependents back home for the duration. The reward for the Hajj is nothing less than Paradise.


The Hajj is the ultimate form of worship, as it involves the spirit of all the other rituals and demands of the believer great sacrifice. On this unique occasion, nearly two million Muslims from all over the globe meet one another in a given year. Regardless of the season, pilgrims wear special clothes (Ihram) - two, very simple, unsown white garments - which strips away all distinctions of wealth, status, class and culture; all stand together and equal before Allah (God).

The rites of Hajj, which go back to the time of Prophet Abraham who built the Ka'bah, are observed over five or six days, beginning on the eighth day of the last month of the year, named Dhul-Hijjah (pilgrimage). These rites include circumambulating the Ka'bah (Tawaf), and going between the mountains of Safa and Marwah, as Hajar (Abraham's wife) did during her search for water for her son Isma'il. Then the pilgrims stand together on the wide plain of Arafah and join in prayers for God's forgiveness, in what is often thought of as a preview of the Last Judgment. The pilgrims also cast stones at a stone pillar which represents Satan. The pilgrimage ends with a festival, called Eid Al-Adha, which is celebrated with prayers, the sacrifice of an animal, and the exchange of greetings and gifts in Muslim communities everywhere.