What Is Spirituality In Ismailism? (TOP 5 Tips)

Spirituality (Ruhhaniyyat) in Islam is defined as the presence of a relationship with Allah that affects the individual’s self worth, sense of meaning, and connectedness with others.

What kind of religion is Ismailism?

  • Ismailism belongs to the Shi‘a main stream of Islam. Recent scholarship, based on a more judicious analysis of primary sources, has shown how Ismaili thought was in constant interaction with and to a certain extent influenced well-known currents of Islamic philosophy, theology, and mysticism.

What spirituality means?

Spirituality involves the recognition of a feeling or sense or belief that there is something greater than myself, something more to being human than sensory experience, and that the greater whole of which we are part is cosmic or divine in nature. An opening of the heart is an essential aspect of true spirituality.

What is spirituality according to Hinduism?

Traditionally, Hinduism identifies three mārga (ways) of spiritual practice, namely Jñāna(ज्ञान), the way of knowledge; Bhakti, the way of devotion; and Karma yoga, the way of selfless action.

What is spiritual life?

In general, it includes a sense of connection to something bigger than ourselves, and it typically involves a search for meaning in life. Some may find that their spiritual life is intricately linked to their association with a church, temple, mosque, or synagogue.

What is the meaning of spiritual practices?

A spiritual practice or spiritual discipline (often including spiritual exercises) is the regular or full-time performance of actions and activities undertaken for the purpose of inducing spiritual experiences and cultivating spiritual development.

What are examples of spirituality?

Spirituality is the state of having a connection to God or the spirit world. An example of spirituality is praying every day.

What are the 3 elements of spirituality?

The shamans, healers, sages, and wisdom keepers of all times, all continents, and all peoples, in their ageless wisdom, say that human spirituality is composed of three aspects: relationships, values, and life purpose.

Why is spirituality so important?

It encourages people to have better relationships with themselves, others, and the unknown. Spirituality can help you deal with stress by giving you a sense of peace, purpose, and forgiveness. It often becomes more important in times of emotional stress or illness. Positive impacts of spirituality.

Is spirituality a religion?

What’s the difference between religion and spirituality? Religion: This is a specific set of organised beliefs and practices, usually shared by a community or group. Spirituality: This is more of an individual practice, and has to do with having a sense of peace and purpose.

How do you develop spirituality?

Seven Ways to Improve Your Spiritual Health

  1. Explore your spiritual core. By exploring your spiritual core, you are simply asking yourself questions about the person you are and your meaning.
  2. Look for deeper meanings.
  3. Get it out.
  4. Try yoga.
  5. Travel.
  6. Think positively.
  7. Take time to meditate.

How do you explain spirituality to a child?

Spirituality is an inner sense of relationship to a higher power that is loving and guiding. The word we give to this higher power might be God, nature, spirit, the universe, the creator, or other words that represent a divine presence.

What is a spiritual person like?

Being a spiritual person is synonymous with being a person whose highest priority is to be loving to yourself and others. A spiritual person cares about people, animals and the planet. A spiritual person knows that we are all One, and consciously attempts to honor this Oneness.

What are spiritual beliefs?

Spiritual beliefs include the relationship to a superior being and are related to an existential perspective on life, death, and the nature of reality. Religious beliefs include practices/rituals such as prayer or meditation and engagement with religious community members.

What are elements of spirituality?

Five characteristics of spirituality include: meaning, value, transcendence, connecting (with oneself, others, God/supreme power and the environment), and becoming (the growth and progress in life) (2).

How do you practice your own spirituality?

Here are six practices you can incorporate into your life every day, which will help you to live more spiritually:

  1. Meditation. Try to begin each day with meditation, even if it’s only for a minute.
  2. Spiritual Reading.
  3. Practice Gratitude.
  4. Spend Time In Nature.
  5. Be Open To Signs From The Universe.
  6. Mindful Breathing.

What are the 7 spiritual disciplines?

The Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives by Dallas Willard

  • Disciplines of Abstinence: solitude, silence, fasting, frugality, chastity, secrecy, sacrifice.
  • Disciplines of Engagement: study, worship, celebration, service, prayer, fellowship, confession, submission.

Spirituality in Islam – How is it Different from Other Faiths?

‘Spirituality’ is defined by Google in 0.49 seconds as “the characteristic of being concerned with the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things” (spiriCHooald/ (noun)the quality of being concerned with the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things). Spirituality may be found in all religions in some manner. In the end, recognizing that we are more than just a physical, material existence — that we have aspirational reality — is likely at the heart of most religious beliefs.

In an attempt to have a better understanding of spirituality, it may be beneficial to consider what spirituality means in the context of various religious traditions.

Spirituality in Islam

The following is written by Dina Mohammad Basiony: “Spirituality in Islam is more than simply a sensation. A real understanding of The Spirit’s Origin and relentless pursuit of Him, as well as a dedication to loving Him and abiding on His road, until the day we meet Him, are what it takes to be a true spiritual seeker. As a result, it is a lifelong path of growth, honesty, and dedication to The Creator (The Source of the spirit), rather than a brief burst of enthusiasm or spiritual boost.” In Islam, worship is defined as the pursuit of spiritual health and progress that extends beyond the physical existence.

  1. God provides us with bodily acts to help us develop spiritually, find peace and happiness with God, ourselves, and the rest of God’s creation, and to help us grow spiritually.
  2. Once a year, for a month, Muslims abstain from eating, drinking, and having sexual relations with their wives in order to nourish and satisfy the thirst of their souls, and to devote their attention to connecting with God.
  3. Muslims leave their homes and all they know and love at least once in their lives to journey to the very first edifice devoted to the worship of God, in order to be reminded that their ultimate commitment should be to their Source, The Everlasting.
  4. When done in line with what pleases God (morality and ethics- we know this standard from the Prophets’ examples and by following their path), and with the aim of seeking nearness to Him, any action can be considered an act of worship, according to the Islamic tradition.
  5. God is our Source, the source of all direction, love, serenity, and satisfaction in our lives.
  6. The pillars serve as a reference point to ensure that we never stray too far from our connection with God.

However, according to Islamic belief, education in good manners, humility, and love to God’s creation are equally necessary for the health of the soul, since it is a realization that everything comes from the same solitary source as the individual learner.

Spirituality in Christianity

There are numerous different Christian sects, as well as many different interpretations of what spirituality means in this religious tradition. We might find it beneficial to return to the most fundamental definition of spirituality, which is the recognition that we are more than a material life and that we are part of a spiritual reality. In many religions, this spiritual existence presupposes the presence of a higher spiritual force and, as a result, the existence of a link with that power, which is God.

The Christian image of God is formed by these three realities: God the parent, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit is a person who has supernatural powers.

“The beginning of Christian spirituality is our salvation via Christ.

We must first acknowledge that we are impotent to assist ourselves in our bondage to sin and hostility with God (Rom 5:6-11), and then we must be born again and converted (John 3:3-8; Acts 2:38-39).” God the Father is referred to as Moreover, as Peter Feldmeier, professor of Catholic Studies at the University of Toledo, explains: “Christian spirituality is a relationship with God as he has shown himself through Jesus Christ.

“However, it must be rooted in a religious tradition,” says the author.

It also appears that Christian spirituality is sometimes beyond the reach of human abilities and can only be attained by divine means.

Spirituality in Buddhism

For those who believe in God and the relationship between The Creator and the created, it may be intriguing to consider a religious tradition that does not have one basic tenet, such as Buddhism. Buddhism is a religion that does not have a central belief. Buddhism is centered on the spiritual growth of the individual, yet it does not hold to the concept of a personal God. According to Buddhist belief, nothing lasts forever, and the only way to achieve spiritual enlightenment is via virtue, meditation, and knowledge.

Muesse, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Rhodes College: “Buddhist spirituality is concerned with the alleviation of suffering via an enlightened view of reality.” Even while the spiritual practices of the Buddhist tradition differ substantially across its numerous major kinds, they are always geared toward ultimate emancipation from suffering as well as the growth of knowledge and compassion in its practitioners.

When we conduct our lives in pursuit of these goals, we are living our spiritual lives.” Buddhism’s spirituality is built on a human path to bring about the cessation of suffering.

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It is possible that believing in the impermanence of everything would make even following the Buddha and an understanding of what suffering, wisdom, compassion, and morality are impermanent in themselves and different for each individual and even varying throughout an individual’s lifetime seem less difficult to achieve.

In the physical world, it is nurtured; yet, it lives in the realm of emotion, where it is a very real, but private, experience.

One thing is certain: having varying conceptions of God makes the subject of spirituality that much more hard to discuss.

Convertsoften claim that the Islamic idea of the human soul corresponds to their own character.

Most significantly, converts have an intimate relationship with God that they could not have experienced via any other religion. They claim that it is this connection that allows them to experience true peace and contentment in their souls. (Extracted from the Discovering Islam archive.)

Quest For Balance: Simple Ways to Engage With Spirituality Everyday

Spirituality does not have to be a separate pursuit; it may be a part of our everyday routines and activities. The author, Hussain Rajwani, outlines three simple approaches to look about spirituality in a fresh way and to attempt to infuse it into our daily lives. The youngster was probably no more than seven or eight years old at the time of the incident. His wet clothing, weary eyes, and tangled hair conveyed the story of his hectic afternoon spent rushing from café to café in the scorching 40-degree heat of Morocco’s Sahara desert.

  • I offered to buy a few and included a hefty gratuity in the process.
  • When he saw I was perplexed, he said that by working hard every day to make a decent livelihood, he felt he was always in the presence of God and experiencing the spiritual side of his religion.
  • In fact, this was not the first time I had come across someone on the streets of Morocco, or in any other poor nation, who had chosen dignity above charitable assistance.
  • How might we look for chances to engage in a greater spiritual journey in our everyday lives?
  • “Let me emphasize again, however, that spirituality should not become a means of hiding from the world, but rather a means of more actively interacting in it,” Mawlana Hazar Imam said at the Tutzing Evangelical Academy, and those words instantly sprang to mind.
  • But now, it has become something much more.
  • Philosophers and authors of the past had abundant time to reflect about the mysteries of existence, ultimate purpose, and societal good.
  • Finding practical methods to incorporate spirituality into our daily lives is essential to releasing ourselves from the chains of the commonplace.
  • As a result, we are looking for chances in our daily activities to re-awaken, reconnect, and re-energise ourselves, so that spiritual exploration becomes a natural part of our everyday living.
  • The poet Mawlana Jalaluddin Rumi, who lived in the thirteenth century, articulated himself beautifully: “What are you talking about?

Don’t forget about your regular routine. “There’s a Treasure Chest over there.” Perhaps it is time to reexamine our understanding of what spirituality is. Here are three ways that I want to begin doing so immediately:

Reawaken the mind

Inspiration comes from engaging in activities that allow us to express ourselves creatively. “Imagination is more essential than knowledge,” Albert Einstein once observed. When humans are released from the constraints of the commonplace and are engrossed in the depths of their imaginative imaginations, they experience a sense of fulfillment. When we use our imagination, we are able to express our inner spirit and are inspired to question the world around us. A person’s imagination can reveal itself in a variety of ways.

  • While people gain an understanding of us via our creative expression, we gain an understanding of ourselves, what is important to us, who we are, and where we belong in the process.
  • Do we remember how interested we were as youngsters, when we were able to express ourselves via our imagination?
  • Scientific investigation, philosophical inquiry, and creative endeavor are all considered as responses by the devout to the Qur’anic appeal to examine the creation as a means of comprehending Allah’s loving grandeur, a call that is repeated throughout the book.
  • There are several options to discover new methods to incorporate spirituality into our everyday lives, ranging from smartphone applications to online classes.
  • If you want to take it a step further, enroll in classes in art, languages, architecture, or writing.

Reconnect with nature

In order for the world to continue its transition from an agrarian-based culture to a knowledge-based society, we are spending a growing amount of time inside in front of our computers searching, monitoring, and analyzing information that is being given to us from a variety of online platforms. International research has demonstrated that spending less time outside has negative effects on our physical and mental health, as well as our social and emotional well-being. We all grew up hearing stories of our parents, grandparents, and great ancestors laboring outside, whether on rugged mountain ranges, by rushing streams, in bountiful fields, on animal-filled farms, or in lush green gardens.

As Mawlana Hazar Imam points out, “In Islam, the Divine is mirrored in the creation of the natural world.” Throughout history, Muslim kings from Moorish Spain to Persia have attempted to recreate this sense of serenity and harmony in the architecture of their royal gardens, including lavish water fountains and natural greenery into their landscapes to achieve this goal.

  • “It is not possible to divorce beauty and mystery from intelligence in Islamic philosophy, as demonstrated by this structure – in fact, the opposite is true.
  • Our imagination is thrown into disarray the more we learn, the more we understand, and the more we delve just under the surface of our everyday life – the more we uncover.
  • Despite our growing knowledge, what we experience is a constant renewal of amazement, a great sensation of awe, and a powerful sense of Divine inspiration.” Beyond our sense of calm and tranquillity, the value of natural beauty cannot be overstated.
  • The repeating pattern of the sun rising after each night serves to remind us that our issues are temporary and that life carries on regardless of what we are going through.
  • As a result, nature provides us with the motivation to consider the perplexing riddles of life, human behavior, and the advancement of society.

Experiencing a sense of oneness, stability, and harmony in the midst of nature may assist us in engaging more fully with the spiritual teachings that nature has to teach us about ourselves.

Reenergise your bodies

Most of the time, we do not associate taking care of our bodies with spirituality. The Muslim poet Farid al-Din Attar, on the other hand, stated that “the soul is concealed in the body, and Thou art hidden in the body.”” The human body has some of the most invigorating and technologically advanced systems of design and engineering on the planet. Think about it: how often do we pause to consider the mind’s power to generate new ideas? Have you ever thought how the intricately interrelated systems of the human body work together in unison, much like the instruments of a big orchestra?

  1. The wonders of the human body stand in sharp contrast to the way it is treated in today’s society.
  2. According to the World Health Organization, cardiovascular diseases* are the leading cause of death worldwide, accounting for more than half of all deaths.
  3. Our plans, desires, and objectives can be severely curtailed, if not rendered impossible, if our bodies do not maintain their smooth operation over an extended period of time.
  4. As a result, the state of our physical bodies may have repercussions for our unique spiritual quest.
  5. Like a result, we should treat our home as we would treat other aspects of our lives.
  6. By learning about the wonders of the human body or by abstaining from a bad social behavior, we are establishing the groundwork for a stronger house for our inner soul to reside in.
  7. Cardiovascular illnesses are a collection of conditions that affect the heart and blood arteries, and they are frequently associated with heart attacks and strokes, which are caused by a blockage that stops blood from flowing to the heart or brain from being delivered.
  8. He is a graduate of the Graduate Program in Islamic Studies and Humanities (GPISH) at the Institute of Ismaili Studies, and he just finished a Masters degree in Public Management and Governance (Public Policy) at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

The author’s opinions are his or her own, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Australian Treasury or any other organization.


  1. Speech delivered by His Highness the Aga Khan in 2006 at the Tutzing Evangelical Academy in Germany
  2. Institute of Ismaili Studies, Speech delivered by His Highness the Aga Khan in 2014 at Brown University in the United States
  3. Timothy Freke, The Heart of Islam, Alresford and Godsfield, 2002
  4. Albert Einstein and Bernard Shaw, Einstein on cosmic religion: and other opinions and aphorisms, p. 44, 2002
  5. And many more sources. The Dover Publications, Mineola, New York, p. 97, 2009. Nature experience reduces rumination and subgenual prefrontal cortex activation in the brain, according to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  6. Institute of Ismaili Studies, Speech delivered at the International Colloquium, ‘Word of God, Art of Man: The Quran and Its Creative Expressions’, His Highness the Aga Khan, 2003
  7. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Nature experience reduces rumination and G. Bratman and colleagues, 112, pages 8567-8572, 2015. In addition, see World Health Organization (2017), Physical activity fact sheet
  8. AKDN, Speech delivered at the Foundation ceremony of the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat’, His Highness the Aga Khan, 2005
  9. AKDN, Inauguration ceremony of the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat’, Ottawa, Canada, 6 December 2008
  10. Islamic Art and Spirituality: Mantiq al Tayr in Seyyed Hossein Nasr, Farid al-Din

Peer-review: Naureen Firdous Ali (BSc (Hons) MA) | Edits: Afshan KhojaShahzadi Devje RD CDE MSc

  • Realize that Islam is synonymous with “peace” or “submission,” and that you must submit your wants to the Divine Order
  • Proclaim that “there is no deity but God” and place your faith in the spiritual essence of reality
  • And observe and heed the teachings and example of the Prophet Muhammad Understand the Qur’an as a Divine revelation, a store of truth, and a guidance for daily life. sense a connection to a global cycle of prayer that occurs five times a day throughout the world
  • Become a reflection of God’s generosity by giving generously to others
  • Learn about the spiritual advantages of fasting during the month of Ramadan Gratitude and patience should be shown in the face of all challenges and testing. strive to develop a society that is economically and socially equitable
  • Consider the significance of pilgrimage and, if you are a Muslim, perform a journey to Mecca
  • Admit that God is beautiful and enjoys beautiful music, poetry, architecture, and other forms of art
  • Be welcoming to people of different faiths and to the long line of prophets
  • Acknowledge that God is beautiful and enjoys beautiful music, poetry, architecture, and other forms of art
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Ismaili Philosophy

Ismailism is a branch of Islam that is associated with the Shi’a main stream. Following a more careful examination of original materials, recent study has demonstrated that Ismaili thinking was constantly in dialogue with, and to a certain extent influenced, well-known currents in Islamic philosophy, theology, and mysticism. The philosophy of Shi’i and Ismaili Islam makes use of ta’wila as a technique for interpreting text. This Qur’anic phrase refers to the process of returning to the original meaning of the Qur’an.

  1. The human mind is called upon to extract and reveal that which is hidden or concealed inside the body (batin).
  2. The notion ofibda’ (which is derived from Qur’an 2:117) serves as the beginning point for such a synthesis.
  3. It is possible to think of the process of creation as occurring on several levels.
  4. Inevitably, the human brain comes into contact with creation and attempts to understand the mystery of an incomprehensible God.
  5. Revelation of religious law (shari’a) is the job of the Prophet, but the Imam’s role is to progressively reveal to his pupils the deeper meaning (batin) of the revelation through theta’wil (gradual revelation).

Table of Contents

  1. Language and Meaning: The Ismaili Philosophical Position
  2. Manifesting Transcendence: Knowledge of the Cosmos
  3. Introduction.

1. Introduction

Ismailism is a branch of Islam belonging to the Shi’a school of thought, and like other Muslim interpretative groups, it has been concerned with building a philosophical discourse in order to explicate fundamental Qur’anic and Islamic ideas and values from its founding. While it may be tempting to categorize Ismaili and other Muslim philosophical viewpoints in easy terms, such as “Ismaili/Muslim Neoplatonism,” “Ismaili/Muslim gnosticism,” and so forth, doing so would be incorrect. Some academics have done just that in the past.

  1. It was viewed as heretical by those who were hostile to it or opposed its philosophical and intellectual attitude; tales were created about them and their teachings by those who were hostile to it or opposed its philosophical and intellectual position.
  2. These biases led to a negative image of Ismailism, which was interpreted as having been derived from sources and tendencies that were regarded as “alien” to Islam.
  3. It has also been demonstrated that Ismaili thought was in constant interaction with and to some extent influenced well-known currents of Islamic philosophy and theology.
  4. It was Nasir Khusraw (d.
  5. Nasir Khusraw (d.
  6. The Arabic tradition was carried on in Yemen and India by the Musta’li branch, and in Syria by the Nizaris, who were descended from the Arabs.

In Persia and Central Asia, the Persian language was used to perpetuate and build on the heritage. Local oral languages and literatures played an essential role in the lives of the Ismailis in other parts of the world, while no purely philosophical texts were produced in these languages.

2. Language and Meaning: The Stance of Ismaili Philosophy

The ofta’wil is one of the techniques for interpreting scripture that is notably linked with Shi’i and Ismaili philosophy, but it is also found in other traditions. As a result, the application of this Qur’anic term, which means “going back to the beginning,” signifies an effort in Ismaili thought to establish a philosophical and hermeneutical discourse that establishes the intellectual discipline for approaching revelation and creates a bridge between philosophy and religion, as well as a bridge between philosophy and religion.

The discovery ultimately involves both the intellect (‘aql) and the spirit (ruh), both of which work together in an integrated manner to illuminate and expose truths (haqa’iq) to the seeker.

Analogical, metaphorical, and symbolic language allows one to create distinctions and establish contrasts in ways that are not possible with a literal understanding of the English language.

3. Manifesting Transcendence: Knowledge of the Cosmos

In order to construct an alternative synthesis, it has been stated that Ismaili philosophy blends a manifestational cosmology (which is akin to some features of Stoic thinking) inside an adapted Neoplatonic framework. The notion ofibda (which is derived from Qur’an 2:117) serves as the beginning point for such a synthesis. In its verbal form, it is understood to signify ‘everlasting existentiation’ in order to explain the concept of God’s timeless command (Kun: Be! ), which is found in the Qur’an.

  1. In summary, the process of creation can be considered to occur on a number of different levels.
  2. Due to the Ismaili doctrine, matter and spirit are linked under a greater genus and each realm has its own hierarchy, the spiritual and material worlds are not considered to be diametrically opposed one another.
  3. In order for the human mind to eventually connect to creation, it must first be transformed into the tool for accessing via history the mystery of the unknown God implicit in the formulation oftawhid.
  4. According to this typological perspective, the age of the great prophets corresponds to the development of the cosmological paradigm, which is developing in order to restore the equilibrium and harmony inherent in the divine design of creation.
  5. For human society, the Prophet’s role is to commence the cycle, but the Imam’s role is to supplement and interpret the teaching in order to maintain the fair order at both the societal and individual levels of society.
  6. There is only one cause of time, and that is the Soul of the World.

With an Ismaili philosophy of active interaction in the world, this synthesis of time as cycle and time as arrow is at the heart of the concept of time as arrow.

Author Information

Azim Nanji’s full name is Azim Nanji, and he was born in the city of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Nanji in the state of Azim Email:[email protected] The Institute of Ismaili Studies (IIS) is based in the United Kingdom.

Islamic Concept of Spirituality

The distinction between the Islamic idea of spirituality and that of other faiths and ideologies must be thoroughly examined in order to provide an answer to this question. Many of the vague notions associated with the word’spiritual’ unconsciously come to mind when discussing Islam’s spirituality; as a result, it can be difficult to comprehend that Islam’s spirituality not only transcends the dualism of spirit and matter, but also serves as the nucleus of its integrated and unified concept of life without a clear understanding of the difference.

Body-Soul Conflict

One of the ideas that has had the most impact on the climate of philosophical and theological thinking is the notion that body and soul are mutually hostile and can only flourish at the expense of one another. For the soul, the body is a prison, and the activities of daily life are the shackles that keep it in servitude and prevent it from growing and developing. As a result, the cosmos has unavoidably been separated into two categories: the spiritual and the secular. Some chose the secular road because they felt they could not fulfill the demands of spirituality; as a result, they lived excessively material and hedonistic lives, believing that they could not match the needs of spirituality.

  • Those who want to walk the road of spiritual perfection, on the other hand, came to regard themselves as ‘noble exiles’ from the rest of society.
  • Physical self-denial and mortification of the flesh, according to them, were required for the development and perfection of the soul.
  • Since the hustle and bustle of everyday life would interfere with their meditations, they considered woods, mountains, and other secluded locations to be excellent for spiritual growth.
  • The battle between the body and the spirit resulted in the development of two divergent ideas of human perfection.
  • Human people acquired the ability to fly and swim as well as run and destroy like wolves, but they did not acquire the ability to live as noble beings.
  • With these new victories, mankind would be able to hear far sounds like strong wireless sets, view distant things like one sees with a telescope, and gain powers that would allow them to cure the unhealable with the simple touch of their hand or a fleeting gaze.
  • It is believed by Muslims that the human soul has been designated by God to serve as His Khalifah (viceroy) in this earth.

Creating the body has just one goal in mind: to provide a vehicle for the soul to employ in the exercise of its authority and the performance of its duties and obligations.

Because of it, this world is not a place of punishment where the human soul finds itself by chance, but rather a field where God has placed it to labor and fulfill its obligations to Him.

Instead, man should learn to live and work in it, and strive to give the best possible account of himself.

He will very certainly fail the examination if he leaves the majority of the answers blank in the response book.

Islam opposes and condemns the austere way of life, and instead recommends a set of techniques and procedures for the spiritual growth of man that take place not outside of this world, but within it as well.

Instead of lonely areas of spiritual slumber, the genuine place for spiritual growth is in the middle of everyday life.

Criterion of Spiritual Development

In this section, we will explore how Islam evaluates the growth and degradation of the soul. Because he serves as the vicegerent (Khalifah) of God, man is responsible to God for all of his actions. It is his responsibility to exercise all of the powers that have been bestowed upon him in conformity with the Divine will. To obtain God’s favor, he should make use of all of the abilities and potentialities that have been given upon him to the utmost extent possible. It is important for him to conduct himself in all of his interactions with other people in order to please God.

  • Man’s relationship with God will become closer the more one does this with a feeling of duty, obedience, and humility, with the goal of pursuing the Lord’s pleasure as the goal in mind.
  • The same holds true for being sluggish and disobedient, which will prevent him from being close to God.
  • As a result, from an Islamic perspective, the spheres of action of the religious man and the secular man are the same.
  • The man of religion will be just as active as the man of the world, if not more so, in his domestic and social life, which will stretch beyond the bounds of the home to the market square and even to international conferences, as opposed to the man of the world.
  • Whatever a religious person does, he or she will do with the conviction that he or she is accountable to God, that he or she must strive to obtain Divine pleasure, and that or they must act in line with God’s commandments.
  • As a result of this distinction, the entire material life of a man of faith is a completely spiritual endeavor, whereas the entire material life of a secular person is an existence devoid of any traces of spirituality.
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What is Islam? – Center for Religious & Spiritual Life

Muslims are among the most recent of the main global faiths, and as a result, they are also among the most well-documented and historically verifiable of them. History of Islam begins with the life of Muhammad ibn Abdullah, who was born in Mecca, which is today’s Saudi Arabia, in 570 CE. Muhammad ibn Abdullah is considered the founder of Islam. However, very little is known about Muhammad’s early life. He was born into the Hashemite clan of this powerful Quraysh tribe, but nothing is known about his early life.

  • According to legend, Muhammad’s first marriage was to Khadijah, a wealthy merchant who was attracted to him because of this characteristic.
  • After witnessing his professional and personal accomplishments, she proposed to him and they were married the next year.
  • The marriage was reportedly happy, and Muhammad did not remarry while she was still alive, according to all indications.
  • In addition to being a religious leader, it is stated that Muhammad was also a spiritual man who had the habit of retreating to a cave in the mountains to reflect and contemplate in isolation on a regular basis.
  • It was the first of many revelations that Muhammad would receive during his career.
  • Every year, thousands of Muslims participate in the “Night of Power,” during which they remain up throughout the night in prayer.
  • It was also necessary for them to begin living lives that were more ethical and socially responsible.

During Muhammad’s lifetime, another amazing incident happened around the year 619.

First, Muhammad went to Jerusalem on the back of an aburqa, a winged horse with wings.

God revealed to Muhammad the ultimate form of the daily prayers while he was there.

As the persecution of Muhammad and his followers, known as Muslims, grew more intense, he began looking for a safer location where they might live in peace with their beliefs.

In exchange for his presence, they pledged to convert and build an Islamic way of life for the entire city if he came.

The Prophet Muhammad arrived in Yathrib in 622 and founded a prosperous theocracy in the city that would later become known as Medina (medinat al-Nabimeans “city of the Prophet”).

While in Medina, Muhammad continued to receive revelations from God, but these revelations, which are recorded in the Qur’an as the Medinansuras, were of a more pragmatic nature, with a focus on solidifying Islamic society and establishing communal norms and rules of behavior rather than on spiritual matters.

According to Islam, adoration is reserved solely for God. Although Muhammad died in 632 CE, it should be evident that his legacy continues to have profound and tremendous importance long after his death.

What Is the Qur’an?

In Muslim tradition, the Qur’an is regarded as the final word of God, consisting of a comprehensive collection of all of the revelations Muhammad received from Gabriel. The Arabic language has a privileged position among languages because, according to traditional Islamic teaching, the words of the Qur’an are literally the words of God. As a result, while non-Arabic speakers may read a translation of the Qur’an in order to better understand its meaning, translations do not carry the same weight and authority as the Arabic text.

Because the Arabic words are literally the words of God, reciting them is considered to be spiritually beneficial; it is for this reason that memorizing the Qur’an is considered to be a deeply holy act (a person who memorizes the Qur’an is known as an ahafiz, which literally translates as “guardian/caretaker” of the Qur’an); and it is also for this reason that there are professional reciters, who are frequently hired by large mosques to come and A sacred act in and of itself, the recital of the Qur’an is regarded to be exceedingly essential and is an act that draws those who hear it into the presence of God.

  1. Overall, one fundamental overriding theme can be seen across the Qur’an as a whole: the call to repent and submit to God’s message and will.
  2. First and foremost, God is the creator of the cosmos and, as such, is the universe’s supreme authority.
  3. Second, when God created humans, he endowed them with reason, which includes the ability to distinguish between good and wrong and to choose whether or not to obey God’s will in a given situation.
  4. Individuals who die will appear before God and be judged according to their acts in the resurrection; those who live righteously and obey God will be rewarded with eternal bliss in paradise; those who live unrighteously and unfaithfully will be punished with eternal torment.
  5. Lastly, the Qur’an stresses that God has sent prophets to various people in various locations throughout history, each striving to correct them when and where they had gone astray and bring them back to the one true God.

Using these methods, the Qur’an attests to the unsurpassable character of both Muhammad’s authority and that of the Qur’an itself, while also laying out plainly and vehemently a way of living that allows a rich and meaningful existence, both in this life and the hereafter.

The Five Pillars of Islam

As a result, the five basic activities of Islam are historically known as “pillars,” which is an effective metaphor for emphasizing the importance of these practices and the role they play in sustaining one’s life as a Muslim. Islam’s foundational activities are the five rituals that Muslims engage in to reflect their religious identity and show their engagement in the greater community, which are referred to as its five pillars. There is significance in how they shape religious habits and thinking, but also in the way they structure and organize an individual’s whole life.

  • First and foremost, theshahadah.
  • Muslims are obligated to do particular prayers five times a day, at various times throughout the day, including at dawn, noon, mid-afternoon, sunset, and evening.
  • These prayers are performed according to a precise set of rites, which include a series of ablutions, which, in addition to washing the body, also represent the purity required to appear before God.
  • In order to demonstrate God’s ultimate control over creation, as well as to demonstrate reverence and obedience to God, it is thought that one should annually give back a part of one’s riches to God.
  • Zakat, on the other hand, is more structured than that, with the vast majority of Muslims agreeing that 212 percent of one’s total assets should be donated for this reason.
  • This month is the holiest month of the year in Islam because it celebrates the first revelation of the Qur’an to Muhammad, which took place somewhere around the end of the month, making it the most important month of the year.
  • Because Islam follows a lunar calendar, Ramadan is observed during each of the twelve months of the year over a period of many years.

This holds true to a greater or lesser extent depending on one’s geographic region.

In many Muslim nations, the whole rhythm of the day is changed to accommodate the Ramadan fast, which includes eateries closing during the day but remaining open later into the evening in order to accommodate the fast.

It is preceded by a special almsgiving to benefit the poor and less fortunate.

Every year, around two million Muslims from all over the world go to Mecca (located in Saudi Arabia) to partake in this life-changing event with their fellow Muslims.

In particular, the males wear two pieces of white cloth that have not been sewed together, which many people keep and use as a funeral shroud.

The Ka’aba, a square structure believed to have been built by Ibrahim and Isma’il to serve as a place of worship for the one true God, serves as the focal point of thehajj both literally and figuratively.

Daily prayers are focused directly at this particular edifice, which serves as the physical core of Islam. The rituals take about a week to complete, and most participants rely on guides to ensure that they are carried out correctly and in the proper order.

The Concept ofJihad

The notion of jihad is perhaps the most misunderstood and misconstrued concept in all of Islam. First and first, it should be noted that Muhammad did indeed speak about the significance of jihad, but his explanation was in no way comparable to the connotations that the word has today, particularly in an American setting. The term itself derives from an Arabic origin that literally translates as “to struggle” or “to strain oneself.” It is used in two separate ways in the Qur’an and Islamic tradition to represent two different “struggles”: the internal struggle to be faithful and obedient to God, and the external military fight against God’s enemies.


It should go without saying that the type of terrorist activities carried out under the guise of jihad have been resoundingly and unequivocally rejected by the overwhelming majority of Muslims around the world, precisely because the conditions outlined above were flagrantly violated by the perpetrators.

As well as urging believers to “strive in the way of God with a service worthy of Him” (Qur’an 22:78) and promising “We shall guide those who strive in our cause to the roads leading straight to Us” (Qur’an 29:69), the Qur’an also mentions this form of effort.

For Further Reading:

Islam: Religion, History, and Civilization, written by Seyyed Hossein Nasr, is a comprehensive study of Islam. Jonathan Bloom’s Islam: A Thousand Years of Faith and Power is a must-read. Sheila Blair is a well-known actress. Islam is a religious belief system. Observations, written by Caesar E. Farah Karen Armstrong’s Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet is available on Amazon. The Oxford History of Islam, edited by John L. Esposito, is a comprehensive history of Islam.

Islam: Continuity and Change in the Modern World, by John O. Voll, is a book about Islam in the modern world. This quotation may be found in practically every literature that discusses the notion of jihad. See, for example, Esposito et al., World Religions Today, p. 243 (World Religions Today).

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