The Five Doctrinal Tenets Of Islam Final Graded Copy Grade: 95 The Five Doctrinal Tenets of Islam: Supporting Pillars for the Faithful The Five Doctrinal Tenets of Islam: Supporting Pillars for the Faithful I. Introduction to Islam A. Numbers in Islam B. The Prophet Muhammad and the Hadith II.
The Five Pillars of Islam A. The Statement of Faith (Shahadah) B. The Establishment of Prayers (Salah) C. The Giving of Alms (Zakah) D.
Fasting (Sawm) E. Pilgrimage to Mecca (Hajj) III. The Effect of the Five Pillars on the Islamic Life The Five Doctrinal Tenets of Islam: Supporting Pillars for the Faithful Islam is, debatably, the fastest growing religion in the world today. At a level of 1.2 billion, they represent approximately 22% of the worlds population. Moslems make up the second largest religion in the world, surpassed only to Christianity at 33%. This is according to the 1999 World Almanac and Book of Facts (724).
What is Islam? Who is a Moslem? What do they believe? How does one become a Moslem? In 1964, Philip K. Hitti addressed the rapid emergence of Islam throughout the world in his writing History of the Arabs. In his book, he stated that every eighth person in our world today is a follower of Muhammad. He continues to say The Moslem call to prayer rings out through most of the twenty-four hours of the day, encircling the large portion of the globe in its warm belt (Hitti 3). Today, some thirty-six years later, Islam has become the place of comfort, peace, and faith for over one billion people. To have this type of growth there must be an underlying foundation to the movement.
As any builder can attest, in order for a structure to maintain its integrity the support for that structure must be stabilized and strengthened. Within the holy writings of Islam the support and structure of the faithful is proclaimed. The concept of no deity except God is always alive within the heart of a Moslem. They recognize that he alone is the Creator, the Provider and Sustainer, and the true Reality; the source of all things of all benefits and harm. This belief requires that He be worshipped and obeyed.
In the Holy Koran, God has made obedience to the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad incumbent upon the all believers. The teachings of Prophet Muhammad are available today in the form of Hadith. Although Islamic faith and beliefs are vast, the establishing doctrine, i.e., foundation, for Islam remains to be the five pillars of faith. The first is a statement of faith, the subsequent four are major exercises of faith of which some are daily, some weekly, some monthly, some annually, and some are required as a minimum once in a lifetime.
The Five Pillars of Islam These Five Pillars are the frameworks of a Muslims life. At one time, when the Prophet Muhammad was asked to give a definition of Islam, he named the Five Pillars. In the Hadith, the collection of sayings of Muhammed, these exercises of faith are stated to serve mans spiritual purposes, satisfy his human needs, and to mark his whole life with a Divine touch (Hadith Shih Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 2, Number 7). The writings comprising the Hadith, while regarded as an excellent guide to living, are not regarded as having the same status as the Holy Koran (Quran). The major duties, nevertheless, in the life of a Moslem are to fulfill these Five Pillars. They are: 1.
The Statement of Faith (Shahadah) 2. The Establishment of Prayers (Salah) 3. The Giving of Alms (Zakah) 4. Fasting (Sawm), and 5.
Pilgrimage to Mecca (Hajj). As distinct as the Ten Commandments are to members of the Christian and Judaic faiths, each of the Five Pillars are direct commands from Allah for his children. The first of these Pillars is: The Statement of Faith (Shahadah). Shahadah is the bearing of witness to Allah.
This is a declaration of faith. In his declaration, a Muslim proclaims ASH-HADU ANLA ELAHA ILLA-ALLAH WA ASH-HADU ANNA MOHAMMADAN RASUL-ALLAH. The English translation is I bear witness that there is no deity (none truly to be worshipped) but, Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah. The Shahadah is repeated at least on a daily basis. Having acknowledged this within his heart, the second Pillar of Islam is instituted: The Establishment of Prayers (Salah). Ordered time for prayers is essential for maximum benefit to both the faith and to the believer.
The Shahadah is to be performed five times a day: morning, at noon, mid-afternoon, after sunset and just before sleeping. Ones body is to be toward the holy city of Mecca, or toward the east, where the Prophet Muhammad was born. No other form of worship can be compared to the prayer (Salah), for it is the basis of religion, without which there would be no religion or faith. The earlier prophets (e.g., Abraham, David, and Jesus) and their followers practiced prayer in some form as an essential part of the religion of God. Islam, which is considered the final stage, completion, and confirmation of a monotheistic religion, considers prayer essential. Its denial removes one from the ranks of Islam.
Obligatory prayers are performed the aforementioned five times a day, and are a direct link between the worshiper and God. As stated by Sayyid Abu Al-Ala Maududi in Islam: Its Meaning and Message, There is no hierarchical authority or priesthood in Islam, so a person learned in the Quran leads group prayers. These prayers contain verses from the Quran, and they are said in Arabic, the language of the revelation itself (Al-Ala Maududi 12). Personal prayers, on the other hand, may be offered in ones own language. While the shahadah is paramount in becoming a true Moslem, and the Salah is necessary in maintaining a close relationship with Allah, a concern for others is stressed within the confines of the third of the Five Pillars of Islam: The Giving of Alms (Zakah). Synonymous with the tithe of the Christian faith, Zakah is expected and ordered of the faithful of Islam.
It is an act of worship and spiritual investment. The literal meaning of Zakah is purity, and it refers to the annual amount that a Moslem with means must distribute among the rightful needy. Ibr …