This section presents articles that will help the true truth seeker to understand the religion of Al-Islam. Articles discussing the basic tenets of the religion, religious philosophy, and Islamic history as well as articles dispelling common myths, propaganda and deliberate misinformation are also presented. In this open season of outrageous attacks against Al-Islam and Muslims, it is very important that the true truth seeker be able to ascertain truths from falsehood. The articles in this section will help in that process.
[Taken from Introduction to Islam by Muhammad Hamidullah (Centre Culturel Islamique, Paris, 1969), with some changes to make it more readable. The changes are marked by pairs of brackets like around this paragraph. Dr. Hamidullah's present address is: 9 Beaver Court, Wilkes Barre PA, 18702, USA.]
1. IN the annals of men, individuals have not been lacking who conspicuously devoted their lives to the socio-religious reform of their connected peoples. We find them in every epoch and in all lands. In India, there lived those who transmitted to the world the Vedas, and there was also the great Gautama Buddha; China had its Confucius; the Avesta was produced in Iran. Babylonia gave to the world one of the greatest reformers, the Prophet Abraham (not to speak of such of his ancestors as Enoch and Noah about whom we have very scanty information). The Jewish people may rightly be proud of a long series of reformers: Moses, Samuel, David, Solomon, and Jesus among others.
2. Two points are to note: Firstly these reformers claimed in general to be the bearers each of a Divine mission, and they left behind them sacred books incorporating codes of life for the guidance of their peoples. Secondly there followed fratricidal wars, and massacres and genocides became the order of the day, causing more or less a complete loss of these Divine messages. As to the books of Abraham, we know them only by the name; and as for the books of Moses, records tell us how they were repeatedly destroyed and only partly restored.
Gender, race, color, lineage etc are no criteria for superiority
O mankind! Lo! We have created you from a male and a female, and have made you nations and tribes that ye may know one another. Lo! The noblest of you, in the sight of Allah, is the best in conduct. Lo! Allah is Knower, Aware. (49:13)
Be just in all matters, even if it is against your relatives
And approach not the wealth of the orphan save with that which is better, till he reach maturity. Give full measure and full weight, in justice. We task not any soul beyond its scope. And if ye give your word, do justice thereunto, even though it be (against) a kinsman; and fulfill the covenant of Allah. This He commands you that haply ye may remember.(6:152)
Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said, there is no doubt that, there will be Hadiths coming after me, claiming that I have said things. So you MUST test those Hadiths from the Qur'an. If it is really according to the Qur'an only then accept it, otherwise reject it.[ (Sanan Dar Qatni, Vol-2, Book – Imrani Abee Musa, Matba Farooqi – 513)
The Qur'an is number one. All else is of secondary status and if anything disagrees with the Qur'an it is to be rejected. Let’s look at a brief history of Hadiths. In order to analyze the Hadiths we also need to see Islamic History with open eyes. I hope the following will help those who may not be familiar with that history.
I was once asked by a tourist at Al-Fateh Mosque in Bahrain: "Why do you Muslims pray towards the east? God is not in the east!" I smiled and said, "Here in Bahrain we pray towards the west."
So why do Muslims pray in a certain direction? And what is the cubic-shaped black structure in Makkah? And why is Makkah sacred to Muslims?
Muslims all over the globe pray towards a mosque in Makkah. The Qur'an talks about Bakkah (the name of a valley in Makkah) being the location of the first house of worship appointed for humanity (Qur'an 3:96-97). By praying to God towards Makkah, Muslims join other fellow Muslims praying elsewhere in the world in human circles all worshiping God towards the same spiritual center. If you look at the Valley of Bakkah from the air, you will see the physical circles of Muslims praying around a cubic-shaped black structure, known as the Ka'bah. The Ka'bah is the mosque believed by Muslims to be the first house of worship. In every prayer Muslims say to God: You Alone we worship and You Alone we ask for help (Qur'an 1:5). The word we indicates that a Muslim is not praying alone even if he/she is praying individually because Muslims are spiritually connected to others praying with them towards the same spiritual center.