Understanding ISLAM and the MUSLIMS (Final Part)
Posted on Jumaat, 06 Ogos 2004 @ 23:05:58oleh Hanan
*Question 20 "Can a Muslim have more than one wife?"
The religion of Islam was revealed for all societies and all times and so accommodates widely differing social requirements. Circumstances may warrant the taking of another wife but the right
is granted, according to the Quran, only on condition that the husband is scrupulously fair.
*Question 21 "Is an Islamic marriage like a Christian marriage?"
A Muslim marriage is not a 'sacrament', but a simple, legal
agreement in which either partner is free to include conditions.
Marriage customs thus vary widely from country to country. As a
result, divorce is not common, although it is not forbidden as a
last resort. According to Islam, no Muslim girl can be forced to
marry against her will: her parents will simply suggest young main
they think may be suitable.
Question 22 "How do Muslims treat the elderly?"
In the Islamic world there are no old people's homes. The strain of
caring for one's parents in this most difficult time of their lives
is considered an honor and blessing, and an opportunity for great
spiritual growth. God asks that we not only pray for our parents,
but act with limitless compassion, remembering that when we were
helpless children they preferred us to themselves. Mothers are
particularly honored: the Prophet (SAW) taught that 'Paradise lies
at the feet of mothers'. When they reach old age, Muslim parents are
treated mercifully, with the same kindness and selflessness.
In Islam, serving one's parents is a duty second only to prayer, and
it is their right to expect it. It is considered despicable to
express any irritation when, through no fault of their own, the old
The Quran says: Your Lord has commanded that you worship none but
Him, and be kind to parents. If either or both of them reach old age
with you, do not say 'uff' to them or chide them, but speak to them
in terms of honor and kindness. Treat them with humility, and
say, 'My Lord! Have mercy on them, for they did care for me when I
was little'. (17.23-4)
*Question 23 "How do Muslims view death?"
Like Jews and Christians, Muslims believe that the present life is
only a trial preparation for the next realm of existence. Basic
articles of faith include: the Day of Judgment, resurrection, Heaven
and the devils playground. When a Muslim dies, he or she is washed, usually by a
family member, wrapped in a clean white cloth, and buried with a
simple prayer preferably the same day. Muslims consider this one of
the final services they can do for their relatives, and an
opportunity to remember their own brief existence here on earth. The
Prophet (SAW) taught that three things can continue to help a person
even after death; charity which he had given, knowledge which he had
taught and prayers on their behalf by a righteous child.
*Question 24 "What does Islam say about war?"
Like Christianity, Islam permits fighting in self-defense, in
defense of religion, or on the part of those who have been expelled
forcibly from their homes. It lays down strict rules of combat which
include prohibitions against harming civilians and against
destroying crops, trees and livestock. As Muslims see it, injustice
would be triumphant in the world if good main were not prepared to
risk their lives in a righteous cause. The Quran says:
'Fight in the cause of God against those who fight you, but do not
transgress limits. God does not love transgressors.' (2.190)
'If they seek peace, then seek you peace. And trust in God for He is
the One that heareth and knoweth all things.' (8.61)
War, therefore, is the last resort, and is subject to the rigorous
conditions laid down by the sacred law. The term jihad literally
means 'struggle', and Muslims believe that there are two kinds of
jihad. The other jihad is the inner struggle which everyone wages
against egotistic desires, for the sake of attaining inner peace.
*Question 25 "What about food?"
Although much simpler than the dietary law followed by Jews and the
early Christians, the code which Muslims observe forbids the
consumption of pig meat or any kind of intoxicating drink. The
Prophet taught that 'your body has rights over you', and the
consumption of wholesome food and the leading of a healthy lifestyle
are seen as religious obligations.
The Prophet (SAW) said: 'Ask God for certainty and well-
being; for after certainty, no one is given any gift better than
*Question 26 "What is Islam's presence in the United States?"
It is almost impossible to generalize about American Muslims:
converts, immigrants, factory workers, doctors; all are making their
own contribution to America's future. This complex community is
unified by a common faith, under-pinned by a countrywide network of
a thousand mosques.
Muslims were early arrivals in North America. By the eighteenth
century there were many thousands of them, working as slaves on
plantations. These early communities, cut off from their heritage
and families, inevitably lost their Islamic identity as time went
by. Today many Afro-American Muslims play an important role in the
The nineteenth century, however, saw the beginnings of an influx of
Arab Muslims, most of whom settled in the major industrial centers
where they worshiped in hired rooms. The early twentieth century
witnessed the arrival of several hundred thousand Muslims from
Eastern Europe: the first Albanian mosque was opened in Maine in
1915; others soon followed, and a group of Polish Muslims opened a
mosque in Brooklyn in 1928.
In 1947 the Washington Islamic Center was founded during the term of
President Truman, and several nationwide organizations were set up
in the fifties. The same period saw the establishment of other
communities whose lives were in many ways modeled after Islam. More
recently, numerous members of these groups have entered the fold of
Muslim orthodoxy. Today there are about five million Muslims in
*Question 27 "How does Islam guarantee human rights ?"
Freedom of conscience is laid down by the Quran itself: 'There is no
compulsion in religion'. (2.256)
The life and property of all citizens in an Islamic state are
considered sacred whether a person is Muslim or not.
Racism is incomprehensible to Muslims, for the Quran speaks of human
equality in the following terms:
'O mankind! We created you from a single soul, male and female, and
made you into nations and tribes, so that you may come to know one
another. Truly, the most honored of you in God 's sight is the
greatest of you in piety. God is All-Knowing, All-Aware'. (49.13)
*Question 28 "What is the makeup of The Muslim World?"
The Muslim population of the world is around one billion. Most
Muslims live east of Karachi. 30% of Muslims live in the Indian
subcontinent, 20 % in Sub-Saharan Africa, 17% in Southeast Asia, 18%
in the Arab world, 10% in the Soviet Union and China. Turkey, Iran
and Afghanistan comprise 10% of the non-Arab Middle East. Although
there are Muslim minorities in almost every area including Latin
America and Australia, they are most numerous in the Soviet Union,
India, and central Afnca. There are 5 million Muslims in the United
We have made one change to the original contents, specifically in
Question 11 where it was written that the Prophet (saas) allegedly
said "Seek knowledge even into China." We have removed this because
it is a weak hadith, and some have called it a forgery. In fact,
there are many other authentic ahadith that emphasize the importance
of gaining knowledge, hence there is no need to propagate this weak
It is with the greatest pleasure that we give you our permission to forward or translate this email in any language. Wallah! If we had the means we would flood the world with or free literature.
Your brother in Islam,
Mohd Mujahedd B Mohd Nasir