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Islam: A Search for One God and the Last Prophet

Holy Quran KoranToday, the religion of Islam has come on the world’s center stage. For many non-Muslims, this religion has become synonymous with terrorism. Yet to its believers, it is a religion of peace, a religion of the one and only God, and its founder, Muhammad, was the last prophet of God. How could a religion that enjoyed 500 years of a golden age after it was founded be stuck in the dark ages today? Many non-Muslims are quick to blame the current abysmal conditions of Muslims today on the violence mentioned in the Koran, the holy book of the Muslims. Yet, it was the same book that founded the Islamic empires nearly 1300 years ago. What, then if anything, is wrong with Muslims of today?

From the days of Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406) till early 20th century, there has been little progress in the intellectual life of Muslims. During this time, Muslims have seen a shift in focus from religion becoming an active code of life to blind conformity of established practices and mindless observance of fixed rituals. As a result, Muslims have lost sight of the values and the dynamic spirit of classical Islam that was inherent in its original message.

Understanding Islam requires understanding the meaning of the Islamic profession of faith, “There is no god but Allah (God) and Muhammad is the last messenger of God.” The concept of one God is by far the most important concept in Islam. The Koran categorically states that “Say: Allah, He is one and only…He begets not nor is He begotten; and there is none like unto Him.” The oneness of God is a reminder that man will one day have to answer to God for his deeds on Earth. Each man is responsible for his sins. He will not be able to turn to any other gods for atonement of his sins. It is a concept that instills fear in man for his creator. It was Franklin D. Roosevelt who proclaimed, “There is nothing to fear but fear itself.” For the Muslim, this fear is God and man should fear nothing but God. Thus, when man fears nothing but God, he is able to overcome his inner weaknesses and desires and in the process become the master of his fate.

Similarly, the last part of the profession, “Muhammad is the last messenger of God”, calls for man to take charge of his destiny. Till Muhammad’s death, man relied upon prophets and messengers sent by God to guide him. Muhammad was a prophet without miracles. Yet for Muslims, Muhammad was the perfect prophet. In Islam, prophecy reached its perfection in realizing the need to abolish itself. From hereon, man had reached the evolutionary stage where he no longer needed prophets to help him come out of his predicaments. In one Hadith, an emir tells Muhammad that he will rely upon the Koran, the method of the Prophet, and his own best judgment for guidance. The Koran stresses on observation of nature and a constant reminder of how other prophets handled different situations, and asks man to seek his answers in them.

In essence, Islam calls for man to become proactive, to become his own master. The Koran states, “Verily never will Allah change the condition of a people until they change it themselves (with their own souls).” It calls for man to act and take responsibility for not only his own well being but that of society as well.

Yet, today, we find Muslims content with their current situation. Having accepted an ideology of fatalism, many Muslims are poor, illiterate, and ignorant. They refuse to take action in altering their condition and instead pray for divine intervention to take them out of their misery. Prophet Muhammad has become a demigod and fear of God has all but disappeared. Muslims have stripped Islam of its moral and social fabric and eagerly seek an afterlife like someone looking for a needle in a haystack. In the meantime, the Koran, the prophet’s method, and best judgment continue to collect dust.

About the Author
Nadeem Tusneem is a Muslim American in the field of science. He manages the website, http://www.cafemuslim.com

  • Posted in : Islam
  • Author : Clerg


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