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Fundamental Beliefs in Islam

(Belief in God)

Lecture No. 3

 

Course:
Islamic Studies                                Course
Code: HUM-110

Credit
Hours: 3 (3, 0)                                   Instructor:
zain ul abideen

 

Difference between Articles of Faith and Pillars of
Islam:

The term ‘Articles of Faith’ is generally used for the six
essential elements of faith propounded by Islam. These six ‘Articles of
Faith’ are essential for a person to be considered a Muslim. These Articles of
Faith include:

1)     
The belief in One God;

2)     
The belief in Prophet hood;

3)     
The belief in the Day of Judgment;

4)     
The belief in Angels;

5)     
The belief in Revealed Books;

6)     
The belief in Predestination.

As for ‘Pillars of Islam’, the term has been used for
five observable features that distinguish Islam from all other religions of the
world. These ‘Pillars of Islam’ include:

1)     
To testify that there is no God but Allah and that
Muhammad (BPUH) is a true Prophet of Allah;

2)     
To offer five prayers during the day;

3)     
To pay Zaka’h according to the directives of the
Shari`ah;

4)     
To fast during the month of Ramadan; and

5)     
To undertake Hajj of the Ka`bah, if one
has the ability to do so.

Literal and Literary Meaning of Tawhid:

Literal meaning:Oneness of Allah or
Monotheism.Tawhid is the concept of monotheism in Islam.

Literary Meaning:To believe in the
Oneness of Lordship, Worship, Names and Attributes of Allah. The Qu’ran
asserts the existence of a unique, independent and indivisible being, who is
independent of the entire creation. God according to Islam is a universal God,
rather than a local or tribal.

Three Categories of Tawhid:

Tawhid is of following three types;

1-Tawhid
al-Rububiyyah:

Belief in the Oneness of the Lordship of Allah,
where it is to believe that there is only one Lord for all the universe, its
Creator, Organizer, Planner, Sustainer, and the Giver of security and so on
that is Allah.

One
thing can be said to these ignorant people who deny the existence of the Generous
Lord: no rational person can accept an impact without an effect, or an action
without a doer or a creation without a Creator.Moreover, it is quite obvious
that if you see a needle, you would certainly be assured that it has a Maker.
So what can be said about this marvelous bright universe, which dazzle sights?
Has it been created without a Creator and found without a finder? And much
more, have it been organized without an organizer, and all what exists in this
universe, stars, clouds, lightening, thunders, deserts, seas, day and night,
dark and light, trees and roses, jinn and mankind, Angels and animals, and all
sorts of uncountable creatures? Have all of these been found without a Finder who
could create them from nothing.No one, who has a tip of rationalism, can say
that.In short, proofs of Lordship of Allâh cannot be counted, and He Spoke the
Truth when He said, {were they created of nothing, or were they themselves
the creators?}, and when He said, {Allâh is the Creator of all things,
and He is the Guardian and Disposer of all affairs}.

One
of the rational evidences we were talking about is a debate between Abu Hanifah
(May Allâh be Merciful with him) and a group of scholastic people who were
arguing with him Tawhîdal-Rububiyyah (Islâmic Monotheism for Allâh’s Lordship).
Abu Hanifah asked them, “before we talk about this issue would you tell me
about that ship in Dajlah River, which has loaded itself with food and goods,
and then returned by itself, after all it anchored and emptied its goods without
having someone to direct?”, “this is quite impossible, and could not happen by
any way!” they said, then Abu Hanifah told them, “what would you then say about
all this upper and lower universe??” and this story was narrated about someone
other than Abu Hanifah.

2-Tawhid al-Uluhiyyah:

Belief in the Oneness of the Worship of Allah,
where it is to believe in total obedience to Allah, that none has the right to
be worshiped (praying, invoking, swearing, slaughtering sacrifices, giving
charity, fasting, pilgrimage and so on) except Allah. In addition to declaring
Allah as the Only God to who all acts of worship must be dedicated, such as
Salah (prayers), Zakah (almsgiving), Saum (fasting), Du’aa (supplications),
vowing and so on. This also includes emotions like love, trust, and fear all of
which have degrees which should only be directed to Allah.

It is
called also Tawhîdal-Ibadah (Oneness of the Worship), which means to perform
Monotheism for Allâh in worship because He only deserves to be worshipped not
anybody else, no matter how noble and how honorable he is.Allâh said informing
about Noah, {We sent Nuh (Noah) to his People (with a mission): “I have
come to you with a Clear Warning: “That you serve none but Allâh: verily I
do fear for you the Penalty of a Grievous Day.And Allâh has ordered His
Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him to say to the people of the Book: {“Say
(O Muhammad peace be upon him): “O People of the Book! Come to common
terms as between us and you: that we worship none but Allâh; that we associate
no partners with Him; that we erect not, from among ourselves, Lords and
patrons other than Allâh}.

3-Tawhid al-Asmawaal-Sifaat:

Belief in the Oneness of the Names and the
Attributes of Allah, being affirmation of all the Divine Names
and Attributes of Allah in a manner that suits His Majesty, as mentioned in the
Qu’ran.”There is nothing like unto Him, and He is the All-Hearer, the
All-Seer.”(Qur’an:42:11).

Tawhîdal-Asma’ Wa al-Sifat (Islâmic Monotheism of
Allâh’s Names and Qualities) is to perform Monotheism for Allâh in His Names
and Descriptions, and this should happen by confirming what He has confirmed
among Names and Descriptions for Himself in His Book, or what His Messenger has
confirmed to Him as well; without any Tahrif (distortion) or Ta’til
(suspension), or Takyif (adaptation), or Tamthil (likening).

Shirk:

There are two types of Shirk;

a)      Greater
shirk open and apparent i.e. Shirk e Akbar

b)      Lesser
shirk concealed or hidden i.e. Shirk e Asghar

 

Greater
shirk

Greater shirk or Shirk-e-Akbar
means open polytheism. The Holy Prophet Muhammad PBUH describes major shirk
in two forms;

·        
To associate anyone with Allah Ta’ala as
His part

·        
To associate Allah’s attributes with
someone else

 

Allah said about this kind of Shirk {Allâh forgives
not (the sin of) joining other gods with Him; but He forgives whom He pleases
other sins than this}. And He said, {Whoever joins other gods with
Allâh, Allâh will forbid him the Paradise, and the Fire will be his abode.
There will for the wrongdoers be no one to help}.

Lesser shirk:

Lesser shirk or Shirk e Asghar means hidden
polytheism. A person commits hidden polytheism when he says tawhid,
there is no god except Allah, but his thoughts and action does not reflect his
belief.

 

The Holy Prophet Muhammad PBUH said; “One who offers
the ritual prayers in an ostentatious way is a polytheist. One who keeps the
fast, or gives alms, or performs the Hajj to show the public his
righteousness or to earn good name is a polytheist.”

 

Atheism:

Atheism is, in a broad sense, the rejection
of belief in the existence of God. In a narrower
sense, atheism is specifically the position that there are no deities.The
term atheism originated from the Greek word atheos, meaning
“without god(s)”. The first individuals to identify themselves using
the word “atheist” lived in the 18th century. New Atheism is the name
given to a movement among some early-21st-century atheist writers who have
advocated the view that “religion should not simply be tolerated but
should be countered, criticized, and exposed.

 

Agnosticism:

Agnosticism is the view that humanity does
not currently possess the requisite knowledge and/or reason to provide sufficient
rational grounds to justify the belief that deities either do or do not exist.Thomas
Henry Huxley, an English biologist, coined the word agnostic in 1869. An
agnostic is someone who neither believes nor disbelieves in the existence of a
deity or deities, whereas a theist and an atheist believe and disbelieve, respectively.

 

Polytheism:

Polytheism is the belief of multiple deities. Polytheism is a type of theism.
Within theism, it contrasts with monotheism, the belief in a singular
God. Polytheists do not always worship all the gods equally, but can
be Henotheists, specializing in the worship of one
particular deity. Other polytheists can be Kathenotheists, worshipping
different deities at different times.

 

Pantheism:

Pantheism is a word derived from the Greek (pan) meaning “all” and the Greek (theos)
meaning “God”. It is the view that every single thing is a part
of one Being (“God”) and that all forms of reality are modes of that
Being. Pantheists thus do not believe in a personal god.

 

Incarnation:

Incarnation literally means embodied in flesh or taking
on flesh. The word is used to mean the descent of divine being in
human/animal form on Earth.

 

Satanism:

Satanism is the worship of Satan.

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