Praise be to Allāh, the Lord of the worlds. May Allāh raise the rank of our master Muḣammad ﷺ (d. 11 AH) and his Āl and Companions and protect his nation from that which he fears for it.

ALLĀH

Everything that exists, except Allāh the Creator, is created by Him[1]. God has full power over every bit of His creation. God is not created; He existed always, having His attributes. God will never perish, nor will His attributes diminish. The attributes of God are uncountable, among which are: He has knowledge of all His creation; He sees the seeable things; and He hears the hearable things. His knowing, seeing and hearing are in no way similar to ours. God's Kalām (Speech) is not made up of language or sound, nor does it resemble the speech of man in any way. God does not need any of His creation for His existence and He does not resemble any of His creation in any way. This means that God is not a man or a woman; He is not “a Father” or “a Mother”. God does not have a wife, a mother, a father, a son, or a daughter; He has no equal or partner. God does not divide into parts. No creation has “a part of God” in him, nor can any creation become like God. He is the only God.

God existed eternally before He created any of the places, such as Paradise, the skies, Earth, or the planets. Hence, we know God is now as He was before He created all these places; He does not need any place for His existence. God has always known about every part of His creation; there is no thing in His creation which escapes His knowledge or defeats Him. No thing goes against the will of God. Both good and evil occur by God's will. However, God orders humans to do only the good; humans make the choice to obey or disobey God. Our ability to do good or evil is given to us by God, the Exalted.

HUMANITY

Men and women are creations of God. They are distinct from plants, animals, jinn, and angels. They were created after the angels and jinn. The first man was created from clay. God puts a soul, which He created, in the human being, but in no way is man's soul God, or “a part of God”. The first man was Ādam, and all human beings come from his family. Ādam had no mother or father; he was created and given life by God. God created a wife for Ādam who bore his children. God created the human beings to order them to believe, profess the truth about God and His messengers, worship God only, and follow His orders during their life on Earth. Some of mankind do worship God correctly and obey His orders. These will be rewarded beyond imagination in Paradise. Some of mankind do not worship God correctly and will be severely punished by God in Hellfire.

JINN

Jinn are a distinct creation of God, who are invisible to humans. The ancestor of all jinn is Satan. He was first a believer, then he blasphemed. God created him from the pure flame of fire. The jinn are male and female and have offspring. They exist here on Earth and elsewhere. Like the humans, some jinn worship God, but some do not. The ones who do not are known as the devils, whose head is Satan.

ANGELS

Angels are another distinct creation of God. They are not male or female and have no children. God created them from light. They never sin. They obey God in every matter. Humans have angels near them that record all they do. Some angels have appeared to people in the form of men[2], but they never take a woman's shape. Some angels protect people from jinn by God's will. Gabriel (Jibrīl) was the angel who conveyed the Revelations to the prophets.

PROPHETS

Prophets are the greatest men that ever lived. Prophets received Revelation from God and conveyed it to the people. The prophets received the Revelations and conveyed them in the language God ordered. The language of the scriptures is created, but God’s Kalām (speech)[3] is not. A messenger is a prophet who comes with abrogating some of the laws brought by the previous messenger or receives a new set of laws. Prophets were intelligent, trustworthy, and truthful. They never commit major sins and never leave their Religion. Many prophets have lived in the past. Muḣammad ﷺ, may God's peace and blessings be upon him, who lived some 1400 years ago, was the last and greatest prophet.

Other prophets before Muḣammad ﷺ (d. 11 AH) include: Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Ishmael, Jacob, Joseph (son of Jacob), David, Solomon, Moses, and Jesus, may God's peace and blessings be upon all of them.

The true scriptures were Revelations received by the prophets. Moses and Jesus both received scriptures, but what are now called the Torah and the Bible have been tampered with by man and are not the true Revelations received by the great messengers Moses and Jesus. The only scripture which is unchanged and will never be changed is the Qur'ān, which is the scripture God revealed to Muḣammad ﷺ, His last prophet, in clear and eloquent Arabic. God has promised to protect the Qur'ān from any changes by man. Hence, it has remained unchanged since it was received some 1400 years ago. Unlike the prophets before him who were sent to a particular people, Muḣammad ﷺ was sent to all people who lived at his time and all people who would live after him until the Day of Judgment.

THE DAY OF JUDGMENT

On a day which only God knows (not even the angels or prophets know it), God will make all the creatures who are still living on Earth and in the skies die (including Satan, and other devils and angels). Then God will resurrect them all. Then He will judge humans and jinns on what they did during their lives. They will be rewarded or punished, by God's will, for what they believed, said, and did by their own choice.

PARADISE (HEAVEN)

Those of mankind and jinn who believe correctly in God, and believe in the Messenger sent to them and profess their belief (i.e., becoming followers of the true Religion) and die with that status will dwell forever in Paradise, which God has created for them. The life in Paradise is better than what any human living on Earth can imagine. Those in Paradise will experience it in body and soul, but the body will be a new body with no defects. Paradise is not allegorical. It is very real and actual place. Therein will be wonderful riches, foods, joys, and peace. People will be married and have interaction with one another. Those in Paradise will be in various ranks according to their piety. Those who are rewarded with Paradise will never be sent out of it.

HELL

Hell, another creation of God, is the dwelling place for those of humans and jinns who reject the Revelations of the prophets. Hence, they disbelieved in God and His messengers. Hell is also a particular place and its torture is not experienced here on Earth. The suffering will also be in body and soul. Some of the followers of the true Religion, who sinned but did not repent during their lifetime, will suffer in Hell for some time. Being believers of the true Religion, they will get out of Hell after a time which God wills. Then they will enter Paradise and dwell there forever and receive no further punishment. Some believers of the true Religion who die as sinners will be forgiven by God on the Day of Judgment and will not go to Hell before entering Paradise.

LIFE AND DEATH

This life of a human or jinn always ends with death and there is no exception. Humans do not choose their race, gender, parents, or birthplace. Thus, they will not be held accountable for those aspects of their life on the Day of Judgment. No human is doomed to Hell because he was born as a certain sex or race. God, the Merciful, has promised that any human or any jinn who dies as a follower of the true Religion will receive Paradise forever.

The correct belief in God does not change. Every prophet and messenger has said the same concerning belief in God: No one is God but God, and mankind is to believe in Him and worship Him only. The prophet for the people on Earth at present is Muḣammad ﷺ, may God's blessings and peace be upon him, and the laws for the present population are the laws that Prophet Muḣammad ﷺ was given by God for mankind. There will be no new laws given, for there will be no new messenger or prophet.

SATAN

Satan, the first jinn, was present with the angels when God ordered him and the angels to bow down in respect before Ādam. Satan did not bow down in respect. He objected to God and said he was better than Ādam, because he was made from fire whereas Ādam was made from clay. Because of this objection, God damned Satan and banished him. Satan vowed that he would try to persuade humans to accept false belief and to perform false worship and shameful conduct. God promised that Satan and those who follow him will go to Hell on the Day of Judgment.

Satan is man's accursed enemy. His vow to ruin many of mankind is not to be taken lightly. He attempts to confuse and ruin man by his prompting and making bad deeds seem good. A person is not sinful when Satan whispers to one; one is sinful if one believes and/or acts on the prompting. Although humans must believe that Satan exists and take the warning about him very seriously, we must remember that God has full power over Satan. Satan can do nothing against the will of God. When a believer of the true Religion strives to follow God's orders and asks God for protection from Satan, one must not doubt God's great protection and mercy.

RELIGION

There is only one true Religion–that of believing the correct belief in God and His messengers, worshipping God only, loving, respecting, and following the prophet of the time, and loving and respecting other prophets. Every prophet and messenger followed and called people to the same Religion; this Religion is called ISLĀM. A believer in Islām is called a MUSLIM. The meaning of the word Islām is "to submit to God". The meaning of the word Muslim is "one who submits to God." The name Allāh is the name of the only true God. It means the One Who is attributed with the Power to create things. Although prophets and messengers spoke different languages, what they called people to be the same Religion, Islām. A person can declare that he believes and follows the true Religion, Islām, in any language. Belief is known to God regardless of the language. Those who say they are Muslim, yet deny the true belief in their heart, with their tongue, or by some actions, are surely not Muslim. God knows fully who are the ones who truly believe in Islām. Both messengers Moses and Jesus called their people to the true Religion, Islām. This fact is clearly described in the Qur'ān, the last and preserved scripture for all of mankind on earth.

JESUS

Jesus, may God's blessings and peace be upon him, is dearly loved by Muslims, for he is one of the greatest of messengers and he is one of the most loved creations to God. Jesus has no father; he was created within his mother, Mary, a woman chosen above others.

By God's will, Prophet Jesus performed many miracles and was obedient to God in every way. Jesus spoke only the truth and his followers were Muslim. Never did Jesus say he was God, "the son of God", or that his followers should pray to him or to anyone other than God. Jesus is a man, but had no father; Ādam was a man but had neither a father nor a mother. The Qur'ān tells us that the Jews did not crucify Jesus as some believe. He was not crucified at all. By God's will, Jesus was raised from Earth. Jesus is alive in the second Heaven. God will send Jesus back to Earth before the Day of Judgment. Jesus will attest that Islām is the true faith and that Prophet Muḣammad ﷺ, is the last messenger. He will follow the laws that God gave to Muḣammad ﷺ, and slay the one-eyed impostor.

SINS

When a person goes against God's orders (which are conveyed by His messenger), one sins. The worst sin is blasphemy. It is caused by any belief, saying, or action that contradicts Islām. When a person becomes Muslim one leaves all blasphemy. A Muslim must learn about blasphemy to avoid committing any of them as one proceeds through life. If a Muslim commits blasphemy, one becomes non-Muslim (apostate) and must become Muslim again. If a Muslim commits a sin which is less than blasphemy and dies without repenting to God of the sin, then this sin is counted against one on the Day of Judgment, unless God forgives it for one. On the other hand, if a Muslim follows God's orders, in obedience to Him, this is counted in his favor. All of this is known by God and no thing escapes Him.

When a Muslim commits sins, he must repent of them immediately. To repent of blasphemy, one must utter the Testification of Faith, with the intention to clear oneself of the committed blasphemy. The Testification of Faith (Shahādatān) can be stated as follows:

“I testify that I only worship my Creator,

and I testify that Muḣammad is

the Messenger of God.”

Any statement equivalent to the Testification of Faith is also accepted.

For a sin less than blasphemy, one must stop doing the sin, regret having done it, and have the intention not to commit the same sin again. If the sin is stealing from a person, for example, then the stolen goods must be returned as well. God is ever-merciful to the Muslim. No matter how many times the Muslim sins in one’s life, if he stops it, regrets having done it, and intends not to do it again, one will be forgiven by God. But for those who are non-Muslim, no matter what good things they do, they receive no credit in the Hereafter; they must first become Muslim.

A few examples of blasphemy are: believing that God has a son, worshipping an idol, and saying that God does not know everything. Some examples of sins less than blasphemy are: killing a person unjustly, adultery, drinking alcohol, and stealing. When a Muslim makes sincere repentance, as was described, it is as if one did not sin, in that one will not be punished for what one repented of, for God is ever-merciful to the Muslims. Also, when a person becomes a Muslim for the first time, God forgives all one’s past sins.

PRAYER

Upon the order of God, Prophet Muḣammad ﷺ commanded the Muslims to pray five times a day. This order applies since the lifetime of Prophet Muḣammad until the Day of Judgment. The prayers have a specific format with the one praying, praising, and thanking God, asking for His help and guidance, and asking Him to bless the prophets and the pious Muslims. A Muslim knows that at any moment of one’s life one can ask God for help and guidance, and one is encouraged to do so. However, supplicating God does not replace the five prescribed prayers, which have a specific format to be followed.

BECOMING A MUSLIM

A person becomes a Muslim by leaving all that contradicts the meaning of the following Two Testification of Faith, believing in the heart and declaring with the tongue[4].

“No one deserves worship but God, the Creator.

And

Muḣammad is the Messenger of God"

believing in all this implies that: God, the Creator, has perfect attributes; only God must be worshipped; Prophet Muḣammad ﷺ, the last prophet, was truthful in all that he conveyed from God; all the prophets, peace be upon them, before him (the first of whom was Ādam) conveyed the same message of belief to their people; they are to be loved and respected, yet in no way do prophets (or any creation) have God's attributes.

A person can become Muslim, as aforementioned in the solitude of a forest or in a crowded subway; one does not need to go to a mosque or have Muslims witness one’s profession. God knows the hearts of His creation. However, when one becomes Muslim one may declare one’s belief to some fellow Muslims so one will be known as a Muslim among the people.

Don’t hesitate to embrace Islām; it is the gateway to success. To anyone who becomes Muslim while reading this booklet, we advise you to seek knowledge as to the practice of Islām from a trustworthy Muslim teacher. As people go to college to be taught by those knowledgeable about different subjects, one must go to a learned Muslim to learn about the practice of Islām. For a devoted Muslim, there will always be more to learn and more ways to improve; so arrogance is not a part of a good Muslim's life.

All praise is due to Allāh,

the Lord of the heavens and earth

and Allāh knows best

 

[1] The words “He”, “His”, and “Him” used in reference to God must not be interpreted to refer to gender.

[2] Some angels may appear to people in the form of men, but without sexual organs.

[3] The Kalām of God, has two meanings: one meaning refers to the eternal and everlasting attribute of God by which He orders, prohibits, promises, and threatens. God’s Kalām is not composed of letters, words, language, or sound. The other meaning is the expression of God’s eternal attribute which was revealed in the authentic Books of revelation that were given to the Prophets.

[4] Saying any statement equivalent to the Two Testification of Faith in any language is also valid.

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