A person belonging to Islam; also a person who believes in God and submits to his will as it is described in the Koran.
The literal meaning of Muslim is a person who "submits" to the will of God. There is a bit of creed in the name 'Muslim', since it communicates that the true believer is one who does not challenge God and his will, and who tries to live his/her life according the rules without questioning them.
The word 'Muslim' uses the same root as 'Islam': s-l-m.
According to many Muslim thinkers and theologians, the word Muslim is considered as a quality that not all inhabitants in the Muslim world can claim. A majority of the people are considered as believers (mu'min), which is less than being a Muslim. A Muslim is a person who is intentional in trying to lead his/her life according to God's will, while the mu'min (believer) is one who chooses the easier path, and lets his/her needs dictate action.
Most Muslims use the term 'true Muslim' for the really devout, which means that all people belonging to Islam are considered Muslim, even if they are not practicing Muslims. Research (Tore Kjeilen) in Tunisia in 1994 showed that about 40% of the population are practicing Muslims, while 50% participate only in major holidays. Slightly less than 10% are not active at all.
Atheists exist in all Muslim countries, yet because they seldom exeed 1-3% of the population, they often designate themselves as Muslim, since they identify with Muslim culture and world view.

Quraan Shareef / The holy Koran

The holy Koran, the sacred book of Muslims, the true constitution of Islam, is the words of Almighty Allah in its entirety, in the form of a book revealed to the beloved Prophet Muhammad ( peace be upon him ) through the archangel Gabriel (Hazrat Jibreel a.s).

It was revealed in such a way that it was spread out over a period of 23 years, upon the holy Prophet Muhammad ( peace be upon him ) and by fragments, i.e. verse, group of verses, whole sourah or even several sourahs at the same time.

Last message revealed by Allah to mankind, it is the mother of all books, i.e. it cancels and replaces all the old writings such as Zabour (Psalms) revealed to Hazrat Daawood (a.s) prophet David, the Tawrah (the Torah) revealed to Hazrat Moosaa (a.s) prophet Moses, Swaheef (holy sheets) revealed to Hazrat Ibraheem (a.s) prophet Abraham and Injeel (the Gospel) revealed to Hazrat Isaa (a.s) prophet Jesus.

The word Quraan in Arabic means "reading" (lecture). Which means something which is read or which must be read. It is pointed out that the first word of the first revealed verse is the word "Iqra" which which means "Read!". This book of law, this book of prayer is made to be read. This last message of Allah, revealed in clear Arabic language, is and will remain authentic (swaheeh) until the end of time.

It is the most sacred thing to the Muslims and the most valuable thing they have in their houses and mosques, because it consist only of words of Almighty Allah. It must be handled and carried with Respect. It should not be touched by people in state of impurity, that is one must be obligatorily necessary to be clean and pure (check this subject, our article on the Ghusal and the Wazu). This rule also applies for very other document which contains even only one verse of the holy Kuran, whether it is in Arabic or translated in any other language. It must be kept in clean places and must not be put in places whose level is below our private parts (when we stand). It should not be read in dirty or any unsuitable places (for example toilets, bathroom, under bridges and in the markets…).

Its reading (tilaawat) must be respected, i.e. it must be listened attentively when it is read with loud voice. And wherever it is read, it is recommended that the place is perfumed (see our article on agarbatthi/incense).

It is also a book of prayer, one find its tilaawat (reading) in almost all the ibaadats (prayers and acts of worship).

May Almighty Allah gives all of us the privilege to have a life according to the Quraan shareef !

The virtues of Hadith shareef

The word hadith means report. It is by definition, the sayings of the beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) related back by his Sahabis r.a (companions). The lessons which is there make the sunnah (principles) of the holy Prophet (peace be upon him) , which along with the words of Allah ta’ala in the holy Koran saint, constitute the basis of Shari'at (the Islamic law).

Allah orders us to obey his orders (koranic order) and to obey his beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) (hadiths), this means to be obedient, i.e. to be Muslim.

Many people think that the words of Allah and the words of the holy Prophet (peace be upon him) are like two seperate things. But, for us the Sunnis, we have a very great consideration for the lessons of the beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) since Allah himself specifies to us in the holy Koran: "Those who obey the messenger have in fact obeyed Allah" [ sourah 4 – verse 80].

We also often refer to the "Saha-sittah" which means the 6 books of hadiths considered as authentic (swaheeh). They are the hadiths of: Bukhaari, Muslim, Tirmizi, Abu-Daaoud, Ibné-Maajah and Nasaï. Which does not mean that the other hadiths do not have importance. All the hadiths since they emanate from the holy Prophet (peace be upon him) must be subjected to our attention. We sunnis, we grant much importance to other hadiths such as: Mishkaat, Baÿhaqi, Tibraani, Ibné-`Aadi, Haakim, etc…

We warn however, those who, with an ease nowadays, think that they are allowed to interpret or use hadiths to divert people, without them having a thorough knowledge of hadiths.

Since these sayings are those of the beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) who is the most intelligent creature that Allah has created, this means that the lessons which are there are of an eminent level accordingly to the character of the holy Prophet (peace be upon him) himself. Therefore, it is necessary to be intelligent to be able to understand the essence of these words and lessons full of wisdom. For these reasons, we estimate that those who are allowed to transmit sciences resulting from the hadiths must be those who made extensive studies in hadiths and hadith matters, and in the deen in general, to really be able to understand the deep and true meanings of these prophetic lessons. We highly recommend all of us to consult the `aalims (erudite scholar and wise experts) on the matter.


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