In the name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful.
Islam Explained post 3
Ever wondered what the five pillars of Islam are? Why do Muslims have to pray? Do you really stop eating for 30 days in Ramadan? What’s the Hajj?
Look no further for the answer:
The last messenger Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
‘ “Islam is built upon five [pillars]: the testimony that there is no god but Allaah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah; establishing regular prayer (salaah); paying the zakaah; Hajj (pilgrimage) and fasting Ramadaan.”
These are the five important matters and acts of worship which every Muslim must perform, (see further for more details):
1- Testimony of faith- Muslims must testify that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah alone without partners and associates, and that Muhammad peace be upon him is the final servant and messenger of Allah.
This must be internalised, and uttered and adhered to in both word and deed.
2- Salah/establishing regular prayer- There are five compulsory prayers Muslims are obliged to perform each day. Reference for this obligation can be found in numerous verses of the Qur’an (Allah’s final book of revelation to us).
“Verily, As Salaah (the prayer) is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours”
[Qur’an chapter 4:103]
The prayer is the second most important duty after upholding the testimony of faith, such that abandoning it is tantamount to disbelief. Details on the way to perform Salah, and its importance can be found in statements and narrations of the sayings and teachings of Muhammad peace be upon him, Allah’s final prophet.
3-Zakaah- The Obligatory charity- This requires Muslims whose wealth reaches the required threshold, to pay 2.5% of there wealth in charity to individuals eligible for Zakat funds as mentioned in the 9th chapter of the Qur’an (verse 60), each lunar year.
4- Ramadan/Fasting- Muslims are obligated to fast 29 or 30 days of the 9th month of the Islamic lunar calendar. This requires abstinence from food,drink and intimacy from the beginning of dawn to when the sun has set. Those unable due to a valid reason, e.g.travel, are to make up the days before the next Ramadan. There are more rulings regarding fasting which we have posted in previous blog posts.
“O you who believe! Observing As-Sawm (the fasting) is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become Al-Muttaqoon (the pious)”
5- Hajj/pilgrimage- This is a journey to Makkah and surrounding areas which Muslims undertake, at least once in their lifetime, in submission to the command of Allah. Muslims who are adults, sane, free, physically and financially able, (and for women, have a male family member to accompany them) must undertake this journey of devotion to The Supreme Creator, Allah.
“And Hajj (pilgrimage to Makkah) to the House (Ka‘bah) is a duty that mankind owes to Allaah, those who can afford the expenses (for one’s conveyance, provision and residence); and whoever disbelieves [i.e. denies Hajj (pilgrimage to Makkah), then he is a disbeliever of Allaah], then Allaah stands not in need of any of the ‘Aalameen (mankind, jinn and all that exists)”
Hope you like these short insights to Islam.
(Do leave your comments and questions below!)