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lNTR,OOUCTION TO 151)\\1

GARDE'NS '/- DELIGHT

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IB, stmple introduetfen to Islam

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Contents

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Chapter 4,: MobamlDed - a. M.e~n;.e.:QI:le.f' mf ,····Ua..b , .. ' .• '. ,5'3

Chapter .5" Prayer . ., , .. ., , , , .. "." e- ee ',., e e eee e e ~ ••• , •• ,. ~ ' ' '. ' •. !69

- ]'''Ii;QIP''~AiF 16"" 'Z···:·'3.·-k'!1iIi -11i~' :0-:-1 ,d~ ,,!!,Liff ~IO-' the 'PO"'O'f' ·8:'9"

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Chapter 7,: .':astin2 d.u~li![n~g: Ramadaa ,.'.', 107

'hapter 8: ,: HajJ: til. . pngri.m.Bg:e tOI Mee.C'8 u '. 125

Chapter '9,: GO.f\den.s olf D eJ,i~g;bt ., ,.,., ' , .. , , e . , •. ,.',., , •• , 145

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The mosque of Ibn 'Ttl lun, Cairo, provides rest and shade from the cares of Hfe.

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. Arab world yOU. would have been. 19 S much taken by the

reaction of the audience as anything on the screen itself, Consisting mostly of young men, you would have seen

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spellbound 8:8, they sa w for the first time on screen Islam beins presented i119 positive light bv Hollvwood Used

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to b ,s.,·;i·1i-i!1 g" ·11\']1' a "1,;~-~,'i ect of £'~!ti if' and of - b 1'-1 'GIn~' th ~-~,~, _'yo ~'~I "liiFi ,j)' .. IU .- .. 'Iim,WJLlIJ'i~, I~ "'~ ul~J~~;' v.' Jl.1L.1~l.t ~.lllILI_ v. '~~ I ,~l~ ~.,~Q 1··,:·U!·b.~"I,ci

Muslim '-n" ,cj;'-r"il believed that .C·--:- •• '1, s firsttime thev w"et"'e

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seeing the West portray Muslims as good, ,Afiier a daily

television diet of suicide bombs 3]1,d terrorist attacks they could herdl y believe thei r eyes i

Incidentally, those 'Muslim young men im the cinema are: the same as any young men the world over who go to the cinema, 'They have the same cares and worries as anyone else" They are there for all evening aut 'with their friends. They, too, dream of having a good, job and, settling down with tile girl of their dreams to one day start a family TIJlJe 0111y difference is that after the film they wrn lID go 1011'[ together for an orange juice, rather than a beer, and theywon't take their girlfriends along, since that will only happen. once they are engaged.

You have only to turn on a television set ill any part of the Western hemisphere to be verv soon nerfcetlv

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conv -I' need that , Is ~ .eJI1IC1i1I ,;C!. t-hc ;;1;> rel ,;: gi 0-':'" of ~- terrori C'I-'lI"I<

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Muslims feel that after the horrifying events of September J 1 til in the United States, or the terrible bO~ll;bi'lgs it} Madrid or' London or Sharm E l-Shei kh, that 'there is not an explosion or a '~,Oltld, noise to be heard ln an.y large c,ity, be it the: result of a leakinggas pipe or a. car exhaust 'back .. firing, and. all eyes will look to Islam as. l~s cause, They believe that the very name "Islamic" has become asscciated in illany ,P eople' S Blinds with suicide bombs and suspicious characters intent on evil. Wear] ng the M'~.s~,iJ.n veil; far from b eing a symbol of modesty, has become, for many, til symbol of the oppression of wom en" of extreme rel igious bias.

Where: has "this ima ge Clune from ,that~l1akes Islam seem so violent, so aggressi ve, 80 uncompromising in

its dealings with 'o.thers? Daily news, coverage 'brings to

O·.'~I"fiII'r-·- screens im ='JjjO'~I(lJ of Q:1:1'4f'r~Jm'-' a violence from 1J'I~!lJiq' ~lrIi'''I'~

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Palestine, Arabs boa-rding anyaeroplane feel that they are looked TIp ow, with suspicious eyes not only by airp ort security, 'but loy passengers, too; fearing for their own safety, ~ 'They could, 'be carrying COIll1,C ealed weapons .. t'!,

And yet, 'they say) when IRA, violence was at its height in N orthem Ireland in the 19 70 ~ sand, 8@"8,;, 11);0- 011e spoke a bout Roman Catholic terrorists, The, Roman Catholic Church wasnot singled out for criticism, WIlen the Basque separatist group" ETA" have carried out attacks in the Basque region of northern Spain, rio-one talks about Christianterroris ta SO 'W by Islam?

'it ""I~k ilst 11'[ 1 f' d m Id m a sum tar way, wnust au peop ,6 O~.' goo. wu 'won .• ~,

unhes ita,t:ln.gly condemn the bombs which kill innocent men, women a,n,d children, many Muslims once again see an anomaly, ;3, double standard, After the barbaric terrorist bombings in Madrid and London 'the whole of Europe observed at In oment of silence b) commemorate the dead, and rightly S'Qi" Yet, daily, innocent women and, chi ld 1"6:11, tire being killed in Pal estine and '[heir deaths

hard 1 v W"', arrant Ifii m ~Im"i"~;i o ··~·l Q'iii'rjj th l:'i> t el evisi fln 11" ew '.' O! A"" r-oe,

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the deaths of Palestinian civilians somehow not worth as, much ,8,S the deaths of civilians ill the: West, 'many young Muslims would ask, The British Prime-Minister, Tony B lair, was rl ght when he saJd, tl~ at the under 1y ing causes of theseterror attacks need to 'be addressed, W'!fJ hope in these pages 'to' look t.i~oJl,e8dy at these questions.

Let: us not fool ourselves right from the start W1e: need to 'be: fair, Many Musl ims are their own wurst enemy, The image ~ha,t Ill-any ,gi.v,e to the: world 'is, 1\ falsie image of Islam, Islam is not violent. The idea of ,9, "Mus Hill, terrorist" is abhorren t to true Islam, The; purpo se of '[hi S openrnng chapter is, to set out the stan and say that misunderstandings ,(1,0 ex! Bot; 011 both side's, and these In'~ sunderstandings al ~Oi~V 'fa lsehood tn creep in, W'e ean, of course" point to, examples and '~O individuals who reinforce these wrong notions ofIslam, Bad people do exist. Many in the 'W estern world are terrified about Islam because of the false ideas, ,they have about it, The world's media have a '~.jJ~ to ,Hl1SW'el for, playing as they do upon people's fears", After all, they are looking: for headlines, and violence makes a gripping story,

Let us take a step back, The West, and 'Western Europe in :p'tu1icu:~,ar" h ave long had a fascination 'with the Orient; the mysterious East The, Arab world, the world of the Moo:r., has drawn admiration, fear and w'O11 der .. Shakespeare 's Ot,iu;.i:loj the Moor of Venice, IS a dark character in every sense, eaten up by j ealousy, d,esiglledto 'put fear into the hearts of chi ldren. Shakespeare did not choose atm Indian or ,ll Spaniard or an African as, his villain, but he chase a Moor ~ an Arab, a Muslim, The crusades, of course, werethe first real contact be :t-cw ... veen east ,({ill,,,,;l1 west C ··-Iru. sader knizhts went

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off to the Holy Land, not: o111:y to recapture the Ho'~y' Places from the w nfidel but to make the if' fortune, to start over again in a new world of mystery. They brought hack stories of Saracen brutal w,ty and torture by their

heathen opponents, as wel I as tales of ravishing beauty and mystique, Veiled Arab womencgeblets of pure gold and silver, camels unhe ard of flowers and fruits, jewels 'beyond imagining were all 'Part of the fantasy brought bee k f- nn Jerusalem an d·'-, Damascus, Forever labeled as

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the ones 'who desecrated the holy sepulchre of the saviour or 'who slaughtered thousands of innocent civihans, the Moors, 'the Muslitns,) beceme fixed in people's minds as, the villaln. Story 'built upon story and imagination ran wild,

W.he;:Il the crusades. ended, the Mualim world, receded 'into the b Dick of 'many minds, al thongh the M oors were established in southern Spain ad they would, advance ,[!JS far €lV'fHI as Vienna-For most people, though" the Muslim world became an unknown world, a world 'unvisited -a AU that remained in tIle popular imagination were memori es frosn tbe past, V isitors from the Orient to the c 'iI-"'1'~'l'~P ...... f·· Eurone broug ,..~,~ '~'1:11"tl'1- them 'g·~ft··, Ci of

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camels and elephants, fine silks and brocade, Am bassadors 'to 'the S ultan' s court brought back tales of fabulous wealth and lllX'ury beyond imagining, [coupled with, stories of slaves and cencnbines. Mingled with the stories of magnificence were tales of excess and cruelty ~ b eheading and blind obedience.

The interiors, of some of the Islamic palaces where The- ,Kingdo711. of Heaven 's scenes are se.t are truly beauti ful, places where b eautiful things are cherished and held in honour, Indeed, the legacy of Islam i c art tint t spread an the' way across N orth Africa to southern Spain

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1:8 qmre ex,q1U'~,Sli _ e. ne aovances in matnema tJl.C8,) s,cl.'en,c!e

and calligraphy ~ 'to name a few, bequeathed to the world 'by Islamic scholars is, remarkable" Islamic ceranncs, glmssw,are and architecture hmve:mad~' 21, profound impact 011, theworld's cultnral heritage.

'The nineteenth century artists and writers 'who traveled to, the Mus lim lands in search of exotic inspirati 011 confirmed popular notions 'oy bringing beck arte facts and paintings of mosques harems ,a:nd Arab

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clandestinely, adding to th!~, sense of mystery, These Orlentalists, often disguised as, women ill veils and. long black clothes, sought tOI penetrate forbidden worlds, sometimes entering the holy city of Mecca itself, In S11011"t" the Muslim 'world bad become a mystery, 'Veo often fear that- which we do not understand.

For most of n!Je twentieth century and :n.ow into our O'\VU~, the establishment of at Jewish s-tate in P alestinehas belen a constant problem for the world's great p ewers

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go away, With. the advent of oil in.the Gulf states in the 60 's and 70 's, \1V,ealt~hy ~~ i~lrb visltors started coming tOI London" Paris and New 1'"' ~i'~{, bringing with them strange customsand modes 6,f~' dress that 'h ~\;d not been seen before ,W'a.ves of ,ilnl1JdgIMds into Europe from North Africa, Turkey and South Eas'- Asia biought llU'i.ny people into eontaet with Islam for the firs t time,

And, yet, Muslims an: ordinary people, Tille vast maj ority do not have fabulous wealth, 1[1 f~lC't,t:he

opposite istrue, Most of them g!et up in. the morning, gOI '[0 work and return in, the evening- to watch some television before 1,0].11g 'to bed, Nothing fanatical about that AM:usl im bus driver :~n Damascus goes, to work in the same way as, his 1l0'1J1-Mus'Hm counterpart in Washington. They both want to earn a living", to bring b ack encn]g'b, money to su pporttheir families and send f1,. .:_,",--,-~'IL ildr -,-.: 'f.,.... scl .... o.· ,~~i_ 'm' 'GI1,y .. ·. be havina elrnJnug-l~ 11 eft' ~V'el'

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for Ell family holiday, Nothing of an extremist there,

If we had the abil]ty, 'the great gi"£t, of being able to, see things from another' 'S point of view, of being a,b le to walk in someone else' s sb oes, we would see that Islam

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as a fe,181011 ID,S, neu ller v ioient nor aggressrve. ' ..... e waUJL:(;~

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peace yespe,a.ce, the answer toman' s problems, I f we can suspend our disbelief j us t long enough to hear what the other has to say, Islam might be given tbe chance to sp eak for itself;

So, in this opening. chapter we are try i n,g: to clear away SOMle of the obstacles which might prevent us from understanding 'W]-U~.' .Islam really is. Humans 'make mis takes '. 'W'e are not angels and we are influenced by all sorts of things, Non - M usl im S CIfl1110t 'be in troduced to Islam without us saying a few words eb out certain ways of behaving that seem puzz 1 ing and strange, even offensi ve, '~O those not used '~O them. As, we wi n

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'luis understandings breed mistrust,

'We mu st s,~,y something at the start about. the way

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sOln,etb.in,g about what pecple think :~t says" Remember, different cultures ,and different backgrounds look at different things ill, different W3'y~,~ It doesn' ,t make them :rru,Ji;bt or wrong. Just different, If ]['0 ok :at a painting from the front I will see something totall y different from

someone who !Io:-: oks ;tiI1'iI' ~'II' from ,;I!.ba 'L1.!f!II£!>k-- 'i!li,~,iI)'l--ll"il;'U' '1lJ"'1il.., W· @i; "JIr'-~I !;j!.,'. "._lJi.~,Ii.. • .Hi.J_,~' ' .. ,_" .. 1 ,W: "_"IU "D, ,(1~JL ,w,I~, , J_IU,_,· , lI"l~ IU~'V . .'~, 1~,Jt~~ V :-a.W-~J ._" .. ~ .b. '~

both. looking at the SHn1lJ,e object, Depending on where we are coming from, then, will 111.f1 uence h ow we understaJmd.

Let us give an example, Muslim women in, the Gulf' States, Iran ,and Afghatl.~.st:an) for example, are swathed in i..'m~"...l", from 'i~il~-Q'~ 'in, toe, exposing ,011' 'i:,U their h o'lIl'fi.do and in U ~,,,,,,,-,,,II\. ,.Jl y, "'~ ~,li;,:!alJl. lLu ,,', , , \J\1!i;'.',' ",OJ!,W,W-J',1l:i _' ~,J " ~.IL, ,~~,'!'1II i)~J.l "

part of their fac e, If not used to' this, many would

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,~:frustanby see it as, cruet. I ow oppressrve.they woum

say, How old-fashioned. How c 0 ntrsry tc the ,r.~,gh:~s that

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backward -lo oki ng, How odd 'I: Thismindset sees women swathed in black :8,8 wrong, somehow ,i]j, symbol of the "empire of evll" that threatens to engulf the c,ivBized, world,

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is a very C ommon s ens e requirement, which re co gnizes th at men !;5''ili!i1'd-1 '!liUO'I'll"'liI,(.lj;n have feelinss tow ,(l,' .... .,l;e each oth -

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that caa m,ead to 'w mrnodest ways of beha ving Mus lima

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that ",.,',-", ,0 sult £_, .. allowine natural feelins t· be ~,l1a , C~Ul .l estl" ,~ronil, a, w ()W1Ug nta u,,'1ra. , ,!!lee, J.ng,:s, 0 u e

g- ~ v· ''-~'n·· .;t;.. .... ,,Q, rein I';If'Ii dressin or '1!¥ii o· ..;3i estlv thcv "W' '0' uld ,"':I]I \! ~ -. .1 . e, . ,U ~Q W, 1!;O.i',,, i ~,,t iJI.~ yO""., '~b ;li,Ur !WI!!!;O'ii::!'. W',J' ~ I~,I!;;;',J .. ~.. .. .. " " ,0JjQ. j ~ 111

a way dThat does mot exche pas sion between the sexes, Islam offers, a way for both men and women 'to live in a 'modest ,and chaste 'way" For IDa st :M uslim women, this 'would mean wearing the Muslim vei] in. the presence of all 'men who are not a part of the immediate family, although in the home the veil would, be 'taken, off In other ,MUSUIU societies women cover completely when they are outside their homes, Just susp end. your disbelief for one moment aud 'try this idea; that women might want to give themselves totally to the' Ol1.iE; th .. eyIove SOl much SO~ thart the only one they 'want even. to see them :i s their husband. The idea, from, this point ofview, is quit,e romantic .

CoO ercion in religion has, no part i r Islam, Let us not give examples of eoercion to dismlss what Islam is real ly about.

In an age when givin.g up one? s seat on the bus for a ~,ady.) o:r hcddi ng the door open for her to pass through t has become archaic ill, ~wa~,y parts ofthe Western world, these things still remain firmly fixed ia Muslim society, Just as respect aID d reverence ft)I' one' s elders is a matter ofcourse,

In 'CIOn trast to sensational examp les used by the" press, which are tile exception rather than the rule, a whole book could b e written about the rights which Islam gives daily to women 'Her marriage dowry remains completely bel's and cannot be touched, by her husband, giving: her a financial security beyond the marriage, A wife :[8 entitled by rightto be provided for, She doesn't

have to work if she doesn't want to, T--Ik,~, '--~:O"'!..'~:-: l-:l th .. '

_ _ _ _ ~ _ _ _ ~j!L _ , ,_ .u ..... nib_H~S al1lIUL IIL=e

respect wl1~,ch Islam, gives to women were revolutionary when they were, first introduced into the Arabian Peninsula. They are []:Q less real today. Setting aside any rights, though, one has on~y to, visit a, M uslim home to' s!ee the importance the W'OllUUl bas, in the, fam Hy., She commands deep love and respect from her chilli dren and she is loved and protected by her husband, Sitting: in a ,M uslim family home win leave no-one ill ,any doubt about how important the female 'member'S are" Go down to any local market in Cairo and youwill see tl~e rights, of women in act ion, The husband will be carrying 'MU shopping bags, his son win b e sitting on his shoulder and h i;~, young d aughter will be holding h ~',c;, ha -- d H'·f!.Il. _ 'llllL:~OVUJU: '-,w ~H~ ,- ·,· .. ·u 11J~ hJtliL. '> . ts .'. ann. ~_- .1iS,

'wife WU~, 'be waltin.g, ahead of them, checking the vegetables, monarch of ,~U she surveys. Lived reality ,ru sn "t aJ1 what the newspapers would 11.a ve us believe ! ~ 'Paradi se, '" said the Prophet Mohammed, ,,~ H es at ehe

feet of your 'mother.' ~

Let us hold, on eo these things 'but put them to one side if they still trouble US'~ and wait '~O hear what Islam says about itself We, will '~zy l10 allow Muslims 'to speak about their religion, -A- young 111an caught stealing does not mean that all young people s tie a 1. A, 'bad, husband does not mean that al ~ husb ends are bad. This is true of all people. Let us allow it to be true of I slam,

It is a fact of our human condition that we are always

loo k ina co' r IEiA-n~'one to l.,'ll~-- ~ ,uS·:· n,-- - -'b - d -I·. Id·' d

,v!:'ol,,~ 1" -, somec ····0 marne, --'vlne:-O~_y S~10lL_, 1.0

something abou t it," 'we often, hear. Life is always

pointi ng out to fW1S our shortc omings, tel ling us how' wle s omehow don 't quite make the mark, 'Wf~ hear it at school or in work. an the time. So, '~f someone happens to be worse than us, it means that 'we are not the worst,

W· 's, 10- o k fo "'r'- 'W'" rongd f"'~,Iii'<f' Q·n.-!l ;I">.f';;·i1ij,...:.t·;··IIfiIIl"'S ourselves that

__ ~ _ ,':__:. ',;_: :", II _.I, :, ',"-.:Jj, v., ,~ ,~,>'- ,U~,lIl, a alll.J,llI, '~IV.IJ lJj, ''It ,~,~ 1Il.1~ ~ 111...1 [~_~, ~\.iIv.' ~~ I~, I ~~~ _

maybe we're not so had. Politicians ®O'O, anxiously look for someone I~ ls e to. la y 'the blame ear 1 ife' s it ls on, absolving themselves, and us" of all blame, Unfortunately, '[fie isn't always that simple,

Perhaps we should pcint ;3. finger .err two at ourselves first, and 'the wrong things we' ve dO:F1JJe., before we jump '~O conclusions and start looking to blame others.

Another t:h]'ng that 'CIElll:S,f;:S In any to squint their eyes al~:

SOIl1H!th ing total ~y strange is the Muslim attitade '~O drink. Alcohol causes an obvious stumbling block for some, Mus'! im s do. not drink alcohol, Why ? Because it is forbidden in. the Qur' an, their holy book. Alcohol, they b elieve, Sh~111d be: shunned not u111y because of the physic a~ harm it can elle ged,].y cause to the body", but because ir doesn't leave you fully in control, It clouds your thoughts, affects your judgement and lowers your ability to live an upright life. A. more important reason than all this, though, ·is. that A.Ha11. forbids it. For Muslim 8., that should b e reason enough,

Sil11 Harty, the eating of pork: forbidden, Islamic scholars and. doctors cite reasons ofhealth, especially in hot climates, bun- more importantly, it is forbidden because Allah forbids it fill. 'the Qur'an ..

s o, with S ome 111:ru.s,colnceJ.l~ions at least mentioned, if not altogether resolved, the story of ]S.hI1l11. is, almost ready bJI be told, It would be a pity if these misconceptions were allowed to diminish 'what Islam has to 5,aty all out itself ..

Not too many years, ago, plans were laid for the building of agrand mosque :~l1J Rome, To be: made of white marble and be-visible froma gre at distance, this 11}.0:8I'llU6 would 'be paid for with money from Saudi Arabia. Rome' s immigrant population of Muslims from N',onJl Africa and the Balkan countries would. b 8: the mosque'sworshippers, but its importance in R0111e was that it wou ~d. be set 1L1.p at the center of the Christian faith. Pu:1,H c demonstrations and. aID. outcry from rightwing: groups, calling for a new (in] sade to stop t~.Ie. building of the mosque, were silenced when the Pope him self' declared dThait tbe IDO~K~ue should be built, 8,13 a gesture of -, inter- ,C'tli;:'II]-l '~I ~ !'l,'Ij' 'lIl'n- -d- - ('i;'ifl'~'O'pc erati -0"10- - Rom Gi ' ~

~~I~"'!LlIJ, ~ y,. , ,}L~ ,.IJ..'~\W I~ " 'lJ.J. !b_~iW! IIJ.. ,~ I. ,. _ . !!..;u ". _', . ~ .IGL·. _ ~ I. . ~I !W ~

,---- .'~-, moscue n ii"iii'!'Hl_' staads tal amidst \1t;~, surroundings

.iD;EI.Ul n .. II0IQ'''''J['I.Il!;J .l!W!I¥'f i;JtdL •. ~iIl_ii:I I __ ~ ~ '!A:-~'!!'J,: ot ~:_o ~'Y.!i,i l!;..!!u,~IllUi~_I!LII.,!.Q.

Even in Rome the mosque had become a natural part IQf

'h - b r- T_ '~ ., 'L. '~ ,i,

t,,, e scenery, A'beaccn 0" l.SlLWN. m the eten~':_h Cj.ty ..

Islam is theworld's fastest growing religion, There are 1l.0\V around ene billion Muslims in the world, Only eighteen per cent of m:n Muslims are Arab, There are more Muslims living in Indonesia than. :~n. all of North Africa and. the Middle East put together, and most

'M' usl ims '-l ~.'U.f.li o-tJj 1.1!-'" 0-' -f V ara "'1,- ,·t' The Un '~.'"",,",,..:!I 'S' ta t-S,el 'lfliAn it> <:II

>_,&Ji J!!"; ~. cl!! Vi ...... ;~" .. ~!L - ~~ ~)~ ...• , .l~....,,--- _.~~.!~!iJ. r. _"".!,,'Ii..ItQ; .lI_~",~~, a.

M uslim population of about five: million, What is truly extraordinary is that dle number of people wishing to

embrace Islam in thewestern world has, actually gone -- ~~' - .... ~ iIl-t.~ attacks of , 10 eptember 11 1- I~~

up' since me anacas y" c;,i";,- [~ :1 "I' ',:-' ,11.

In these pages, Islam wi n ten its own story m Sometimes, to make :if, more readable, the story will be accompenied by visits to 'places in Cairo or through the eyes of particular characters Cairo, a city teaming with

neoole s hout It;' ll'itll!.'~ ~, o~"O{Ii'l- fr om , '~C"V·I":'Ij'J p"-- ·0"" 'ir.i!i1ii It·!7,', neonle

l.JI' "-. Yl'r' "~~I ". - U _,'_,,_ ~I ll. !~,LIJ'b'~' ," ,·,t. ,1J U.,· ~!!JI. J' I ,', -..II. ~ r. ,..!;> ,t.""'!\J," ,~. ~',

predominau Oy Muslim, live and breazhe Is,bln],., Their story will give life a;rld, human deptl1 'to, what Islam has lito say .e These pages attempt to explain what Islam really is and '~\r~1Y ,it is growing so fast" why it appeals sc directly to the human heart

Men and women can build bridges. between nations, and c-an lay the foundations ofp eaee by getting 'to understand one another more, First of all, though, we are in desperate meed to understand ourselves, to know where we stand, and what we 'b eli eve" Islam believes that it sp eaks to thisneed ~w aU of us. Replacing the need for

P-- ower and imnortance for 1-1. ''CIIVI'n: ',g:,' 1.~~O.:, --c~ rathe It-hi .. '

, - - - = r'Y'=.- .-.-~~ - -, !_I..'! "" .- ". .Ii.1, Iv. r:a.[l.~.er ,an

being better, Mu.sU]J:us, believe that their religion calls U~, to see OUJ real worth before the Almighty and to bow down in submission t~ Him '~t rejects the shal low ,13 e l flshness dud leaves us 1e.1U'[[J.'ty and wanting more and it in vires US". instead, to a Garden of Delights, In the fa Howin,g 'pages 'we 'wi H allow M:US~.ill1.S, to take UlS 'by the 'hand and walk together with. us in that garden,

.( 0 MtJ"kil'la 1 ,We created yoz:, fr(Jn~' ,(.1' single soul, Ma;ie and' . .IeJ,nai e.. An.d w'e .,.nade: you into nations and trUJ~:S:~ Thsu Jl~ m:~y knolVlJeaclcz other. Verily"

(HJ - ---]1- IQ-----A -- 49-~ 11113--)

I u_y - :,u,r an - -i, .ill

A- 1-'1 h

.- .. -

... 8,_-_

Alloh 23

Chapter 2

Alla,h

S"" ~,t"t,:~,~, :j 't'II:..'1 ,-" ,.' - ,c' ~ '0' --tty" ~ c..;.;'--~ of Cairo's 111 "fIi 0" f"l1!inl~ of

-1 rmg m me open cc ill, varn ,,_,LLJ u o;r!< ".I.,IJi'''i!,Y''''' v

Sultan Hassan, its massivel y th ick walls towering, upwards towards heaven, makes one feel very small in comparison, Life is very fragile compared ito such grea tnes s., Considered by many Egyptians as the ii, fourth ~ pyramid, because of its sheer size and grandeur, the mosque of Sultan Hassan is a statement of that central belief of Islam, "Allahu Akbar'~';' God is the Greatest, Seeing: 'the mosque filled with thousands of the faithful for Friday prayers, bowing in adoration before their Creator, nus, one with awe, Row upon row of barefooted worshippers prostrate on the ground 'before the Almighty puts the ordl 11 3 ry affairs of'bnsiness and of

il''£' '\ tc cont xt "~-Y":"'-I:-' '-,'~I,- ",,~ 1-', c·:-,:.~-, W'.'''''''' -~1r :il' y"" ,-, " :,-'1,'-,' '--"',' ' "

dIe ].0:0 con._ex_, ' OU a~.o.ne we, ". orsntp .. .ou atone we,

serve,' ~ proclaims the prayer 'leader ~ The faithful respond ,"",- humb le an d silent sub mission t" '0" God "A '11 g,l!.. '"

U], ,.' 1. ... .11. . I], : ." w. I, iJ!1!.,iI;,: . it~rQI",; .,'~~ _J., ,v C"~ .,!". U'!!l!,l,U .•

Islam q '~l : te literallv mea n . 11;:': "submission. n A,,-'· M·· u '. ~'I :''''ir"i; ,,:;!i.it.t~. . , '!I.d .. 1...1.. Y. l,;' ,~,IU""'. IJ! !;J '!.iIi- JI." i.ilI ~1VI.~Jl~ , . . ... ;JI JlUJl.ll

is one 'who su bmits totally to Allah, rc'am.i2.ru:n,g that all life comes from Him and that at the end of IDtGe on earth an must submit to His finaJ jud.g:eITI,el1t~, :ans;werhlg 'personally for their deeds. The very concept is alien to 'those 'who would be important I'll 'this waded .. A Muslim declares, his. fa:ruth 'by saying that there is no God but

A· .r ·"·l·I.J, .... "Mi, and that Mohammed ,~,~ 'the messenger of Allah

~ " _~lJJ cu'_.l .. 1J}!P.Ij... _ ~!I!~,J1R\~~~U~u _~ '_ ~~~~k~ ~~,. ~~, v~ ~ _ _ __ ~ ~

W'le need '(to understand somethina very imp ortant

I~ I ..

. -'iiit- at t·ttk.. - '-Ih' '1' 'I,t '- :'1111 'iIJ.., 1" '. - ,t und ··110 .... ,...,,;1 th "!Ii'

ngnt at jne start, ,.1 \Vlw.l~ neip usto un erSI~,~,!IJ. I~.: a~

'M","" ·'·-1''''''''':'; b 'l"i'vl;" .. ' :... n",...:I1 W' ,'1!.., has no uartner -.".. ,I us rms ne .we_ e sn one UIO~.)_. !lIO nas no p~ !)J.1l~_ O.ll

ernua~

._.~. J_ r.

I - -. ". that , 'ft", .. ...1 . " 'l'~' bad " "'t'~· .".'"

magme IL, 8l!!J. you. nao ,a. reauy oao row witn your

nether . ...;m '-'~--i-' ",,.n!:' _'Ill.., terrible ·t··11,.,:·,,~" W'I·· .. ' ,:c,,;·,'·~1 ,;, d mo mer, aunng wmcn "ernuw.eH~n,g8, _' ere saio am

' ... '. '1' ,"',".'I.!.. unset her verv mu l"!'~, .A-t-· th e he o]~,t'''' 0'(' the row vou

W :1 ru,c,u l ',P;JI'!;;i' ,tW.1kI . .. ~'.J' I II;.,e,U~, '. '.' ", . - .l.',i!:!~~" v· JIlJ,,,,", : _ '. ~,v._

nick Q,1I ~~'Iiill IIJ....~" favou '~~'~I"I' V8'"'j!:.;. ,8., weddine present from

pIC,. 'l;,r;l!I. u,1I:" ,111..1.1;.;0.11.. .1u. ... !I;..!I' _1!I.IIL""' __ -.Q"""~ __ .'. vUl!!l!!l. 'eo .= r;,...~ _,j!L!L _ ....... _ ... _

~ ,. . ,

f1-, h d- 'b d "- th fl" Y - [1

.'_":'"_ ". r.; -_-, . "I' . ~n -' .···'···1 .:, .. , '.~ :~'" . '-"I'i- [- 11 .... 1 -' ., .• '~ '. - "-';"-'"11-- ···· .. ··1·-:> .. ,: ';,:-'

your ather, ,alD. 1~al:U;1JS eo It en me r oor, .. au Ie' len

stormed off 'However, because you love your mother very lunch you ].aler went back to her, hugged and kissed her, told her In~Jly times how sorry you 'were"

S'iJl..· .. L·d··· .... stber's teai .. --,--..J -t': (- .-,=.-. --,- '11 .r'-- '~·'1· t - ., ne snea a momer So .. ears ana rorgave yo~, .1.0.1 wnai you

1_, ·d· '.' .';g' ,." d' d" C-, 'T' to - ,:-.:--: Ci'-- f;:1k. -,'.- ,(!:--,. ·tlf.r..,-.:- N"''''':

la, St'llu. = all '.' lone,. ' ],Ie lOW w,as. I;-uen ,l:()fi,o- ~n! ' . .ell

bard feelings and no r ingering grudges, Yet, the vase

"~'~ 'h d d f' fj-' ., '~'d'

: .. ··;·i: .~ i : 1-::.] :-i'.---':'!'-i-;" ','.-'--'. '-'1' ':1 - .. - j 'I -. .' ;., ,- '- .. -1 :- '-,- '_»o: .,-,'. I .

W88 sti Sl11JaSL~ __ eo ane no amount 0.. .' org1veneSs. eoum

~ ~ In f 1!.. • 'Ii ~ 1..:11 d

repair 'it ,.11 '~Jact, there ~S' UQbl:run,g you COU.u, ever I -.0 [0

,. h b k

. '.' '-, " 1'- ., 'C'·,-.:.:- '11 ,:,:., .

rep a U" t .. al .,ro .. en va.s e. .

This example can illusrrate for' us the main difference between [shun and. thetwo other :M:ajor World Religions

hi '11 b '~" ' . G" d 'C'-' m" t s ; i ty. d J' da ". I tho

, , " ..' -: '. 'iI_ .' . '_.' -,' '., ,'-'. - •. . . -' I -'" . . -- '~ -' " .' - '....... _. - .. -

W_,J,C i oe seve Ul. one" eo, '. .nnsnam ,~, anc u" 15!11~ , n me

ICU~Inr.'iV of Adam and E··~~"" found i"i~ the Bible Adam sins and

~1~lV!'~'I;" '~'., ," -,IIlICl_-JIU"~rt=."_ -,"f'"!bIi l'!_.!UL.U .ILlLW. _:'l.~., _~ ·JJ'~~I· ···.·_l~""'"""_I~'_~o~ !!a~L-._"1

~S, 'CBSt out. of' ,tbe Garden of 'Eden because: of his sin - fo:reve:r .' For Christians arid Jews '~'lta't is the end of tile sblry of Adam a:nd: Eve Mankind inherits Adam's ~l'wn~ 'because

1- '." 'Ii!, .. .t1 "A . ..:~.J .,,,,'11 .. ,

tepasses It on since '[wle:re is no nng ,t'-~L!la~nl can, IIJlO '[0 make

up for it, He has offended God! and no rllatJ!:eJ' how sorry he 'm s forwhat he has done ['here is abSf)~ute],y 1:1o'~'h~n,g he can

A,;fl;;iit,n ree air ,.;iIk.'lifi; dam ag te The -I .~ 'u"'lIi ~m, rema ~':iFIi i.'" L·r-¥ii.'~i ... ,~iii1; 'Jf,t

I!WIiO I~U' = 11i,..!W;1~_- UJ~ ",,l, _ ;u, ,u: - ... • ,', _,~ ',.; ~!J!""" .... ',!. ,~:il'_u!JJ,J.<) lUi., \J!,lt'ii...'I!;!,W,I.. .ill ..

would need a super human to- repair the vase,

In the story of Adam aod Eve run the Qur' an" Adam and Eve areexp elled from Paradise b eeause of their sin, But, aceording to, Islam, that IDS not 'the end of the s:t{)ry .. After wandering around :BuU of :g.unt~tl1ey return and receive G od's forgiveness. The vase maker Himself repairs the 'Vase and the sit], is forgotten, 'W'e learn something very imp ortant about AU,a'h from this incident He ·1' qCO'· ~"(J1';i'~'i']'l'l-'UJ Adam appears before Him on

lIJ. ,[ ~~ . _~!Il JL,_,~ ~v. ~ J). I lIj, l~:~' V " ,I~,.I ;",' .IU,~ .~ l.~, U',~' I" !IjJ ",.1 I ~ " ~l~,J\~ ~I • ~~ u

the plain of Arafat, near Mecca, and at '3, hill which has b e1COlD!e: known as the Mount of Mercy, Adam is forgiven, This ]8, not the cruelGod of Islam $0 often portrayed by non ... Mushms, but rather a God, who forgives, a. God ofMerey and Compassion Incidentally, 'the Qur'an account does :DOt. :IJ8!Y' the blame on Eve" Adam and Eve both sin, Woman is not '~eft~ to carry the

blame through the a,lleB"

Because of the two different emld Jugs to the Adam and Eve; story there ar-e: d'i fferent consequences, Christians and, Jews believe that: because of Adam' s sin the. world is ill, need of a Messiah = to save '~hetn from

sin and '~O redeem them, Christians believe that this Messiah (which means 'Anointed One' in Hebrew) 'was J esus, They believe that since JeSU5, was GOd,1'S son, his sacrifice of ~li msel f. 0[11, the era ss made up for the si [1, of Adam 8'nd""repa.ired the vase," Th e Qur' an could not be more specific: Jesus, did not die on l~l'[e cross. The: Jews are still waiting for a Messiah to appear on '[he Temple

. J"~ 'ill.. f~ 1" .

Mount lU .,_ erusatem to save tnem ']"01l1t leu enemies.

Mus lim s ~ on the other hand, feel 11 0 need for a saviour. What would he save them from? In fact, in Islam there are no priests or mediators, no go-betweens 'between God and Mart, There are no chants or spells.no secret knowledge, no popes or conclaves. The individual Muslim, prays directly to Allah, anild it is to Allah alone that he VirHI on'€: day have to answer. His knowledge of Islam comes from the Qur'an and the Iife and example of the one to whom it was revealed, Allah's greatness is written in the heavens and on. the earth. for the Muslim, Man has. only to' look and he. will see the fingerprints of Allah :all over His creation.

Muslims believe that 18],a1')1, is thenatural religion of

M' ~,~~,'I '" 11'iIt"il,-4i ~ 'ii'il d ' . ,t;lh,.;o;'ii ,t th 'I~ ,f''lfi5!t'~ ~ ,[JI"]' on 11 a '"' exi st lCi,d·. sin ,,""'f: '~1···1~

, R,~lIl~~~J!U, QIIi~!. WJia,!L." I:) Jj,''-',[J,o''U ,,~, '" I:;J! ~~.ll~._~ __ ' ~iIj .1Ii.r.-. It, 'lid.

beginning of time, In the 'next chapter we will see the part that Mobammed played in Goers revelation to Mankind and how Mohammed (peace and blessings of Allah be uponhim) was the last of the prophets, All 'the prophets revered by Christians and Jews, including Moses, and Jesus revealed something ebout Hl"is, one God, and that is why they are honoured in Islam .. Wh,etru,

someone embraces Islam he must declare h is beli ef it both Jesus and Moses as prophets. ,AU the prophets called Mankind away fromworsbipping idols or 'things that 'were not of God to worshipping Allah al one " It 'was O;~1i],_Y with God's final revelatiento mankind ill the Holy Qur'an that this religion W'8S perfected,

MUSUIlJl.S believe that Adam, the first n:l,3117 was also n1J~ first Muslim, Adam was the first 'to 'worship the one God Noth ing C<'O,!',",1l,I,'1 ~ b e m ore impo rtant tIO:'" 'M:':: '111: slims th 'a'. n

Y. , . Ul~ ~,u. ,. ,i,,1!I.I!i . ~JI!~V , .. _~~~ J ~ _{ __ ~_ _ ~_,~ L,UD !!J, , ,~,'"

- , . .

the idea, 'that there: is only one God, who has no partner

d 1- '} ,~ 'Ii' '" b 1'· d I before tl

ann '\\1.10 ras no equal". It is beueveo ~ rat even netore the

creation of Adam, Allah gathered before Him on the plain of Arafat the souls of all 'the people who would ever exist O:1m 'the face ofthe earth, ru they stood before, Him Allah reveal ed to them that there was 110 God but

He NI 0' ~o·· '11'~ ever 'rI!-'i~~ the aV'.,r..U,fI;lJI t-o·, C';';:;"\l' ,;I;-11':gt' ,f"l"1i'e' 'y never

. "" ~ .,",... .= 'Ii"o c iii· ,~,i'i!:J!,;'J II,.lI .. ,'1;,0- !!,.oI'!L'1i,.o .-Oli'",," _ Ii.!! ~~J I~==;!;'", _- ~Jl~I._ ,U,'",,",' _ I,,=,=

be-ard about thi s one God since Allah H: rn mself told. them thi s lion g ago ! It '\rv i ll 'be on this same plain of Arafat, Ion the Day of Jndgement.rhat all souls will one day have to answer to ,AI lsh for 'their deeds,

The Holy Q'lU""o_n tells 'how llUU1Y of God's prophets and messengers suffered, persecution because they called mankind ;8w'ay frOID idolatry to 'the 'worship of Allah alone. And, in our own, modern, age Islam calls us to reject the idols that are: not of 'God. and, to worship Him alone W'e ere not to set up our own little gods", like work. Of football, and worship before their shrine, but rather to. look to Al lah. F:rOiTI the beginning 0'( Till] e

itself '1 I ., d id 1 'I ~

its e w, .. ' ~ Is, am ·1~,8 ,]r1ej ecte , ic ,0 WOI'S, ,1 ~l~l.,

S- ..J - t-· ~~Ii\..,.--- ":, t'b'· '0-' '-' .. '01 .' ..:I i,'·'k -? A" ..... din 'II-, .'

c WJLUI" U1L1l1eU; 18- ~J,s,:_>.ne' , ... ,QlII. uxe ~ ~'~CCO:£1:: IDg ro

]",·1" I ". A-iIIi' h ,~, .... , ,- l"t' '.' :', ;':",'." "-, rfu Lan . ...:iII . "I.l·~' f·- .--

S ,aJln~ ,.,: ,w, a , ~,S so ,grea, so power, Jl any, so ditterent

frc ..... His creatiot that '," ._. 1-"1' -.-'.-", -1 ,-.,~·~'-_-.JII-, ,-,-, - ",-'~" :']- ink

rom . J5, creanon ,.U&,. our ,}Umam, ,m[uus can omy tnu .. ;,

in images to describe Him. When,le:ver we '~hillk we: know' 'what Allah is like, whenever we think we are beginning to understand Him, we can be sure: that He is not mike thatl Words and images fa] us in trying to describe the indescribable. How could mere creatures, who live on 'this earth for such '9 limited span of time,

'-'1':'" '~. - .. ,- ", -, to .-:-,.~ .. ,-- ,-.,-- (-"'.'~' .- nd th -},,-., ·C·,--,.·-,?, '~All'l' ~,iL - -

even Il!Jegln JJ C('I',[rn1,p,re,~':U!nl_, tneu '. restor ?J'.,·(JnU

Ai J'·b:'.·.,:,'· 0'::' "d' . ',' ,;1\'1 :', G'~'- -.,';;_:.- test 1<~ 'T'1.r~~: : -'--4[ O····,~ d ", .. ',. ted th " 4,l't: ctlf •.... 'Oe' IS ~ Ie '. Jj,ea, es .. , ,.uJ.8 ,g:realt .... 0 __ i(:,[e~~h:e _ I~. e

heavens and d1lJe earth, 'the sun and the moon and all 'the stars. H~ created allthings which live, all things ~ha~ have ever ~I'i,ved, and all things thet win exist in, the

,J!~'h'mh~' JrIU,'~UJt ~~I

'He knows all ,t'bin,gs:~ both now an.d what is to come He 1.,,... ows th e verv !f'! ecret 0 o If'--' m ien ~',Ci' '1IJ,..'~'a· rts M'-' '~"L1- - '~,['I only

",: ,AJlJ~J'U ',-', . iJi l~_. ,".. ~", ',ill. J' ~I,. )~J !!J.' .01 '.'. - '", ,.' ", • 1iJ! ,~JU~", _ . ~!r!I _ " " ,~.. I!1I v.,W.~_ .,',"

~!C'11f'I,1f'II;n' Ii;:' ~ ~'m th ~ face It"II,f'" such g:'., rea tnes ~ ]~ Ii:> to '~'~IW,.JIIO--l;II'ifrl' ,JJ, "",,L!i',~ 'U' .J'!\J .IL ., II, "'" JIl'M, "-" v.· ;:l!'l:'lll!'-', I;",i,t!!,. 11., , ..... OJ iJi ,~ _.'U! !WI '!WI '_. ifUl.:., ~.., ~.!!!,

and worship.

,~:ro is :~.I}"1'~- the .C.·.'r'...,,;tI'TI!t:i"I,~·_ t:,L,e' S':i~L~IPor'f"Ii,jU"t.i1l'.r

JIl-"l ~ -':iI]l n. ~'~llf~J '1{~. ~~-.' V'~' l' .'1. (t.U:i'J~ u iJIJ ~J'

no,thi11;g~ The F (lS'n-.ioner" His are ,the most beilut.iftd names. A Ii t/~cd is 1)1 the heavens and in the e'(j'r,th. gives Him giorpl and He is the Mi;ghty, #UE' .Wt3e., .. '

(HoI v Qur'an 9: 24)

And. yet, according to Muslim belief even though Allah :W,8 80 far frO:01 us In plower and, majesty and knowledge, and so different to, His creation, He is also very close 'to each person and eares 'for each one. Allah listensto the: prayers of the faithful alld~ if He wi lls,

an swers 'those prayers, He guides the faitbful thl·OU,gh. every movement and, moment of their livest ,A,~: the end of each person "s life he win be judged by Allah ,and, wiU he punished for ever because of hi s bad. deeds or rewarded with. Paradise for the good he has, done, ~'iA·:· llahu Akbar: ,0-, od - :1' >t!' the Greatest "j, The M··.·,· u slim 1"1'V"-£I,~

, 1. ~f~;~, I. KUw-, Ii . U _ ~. IIii# ,\r.IlU o.~ ll,l!;i, ., _ 0 ,lL,_ _ .It _' \#Q

his H fe trying: to please Allah lind hoping that his

'nll"i!Ji,"YallI"li:' 'W]"~']- 'be 16.JJi;oQj'['..:I Life it self :I'!I:' !iii test 1'n which 'M" .':Ii-.lI;",~~'~;iv,!t.60',- ,C ue .!i~;"..;"~"';(!'",~1:ia.... user ~ a res _ ,~J:o:', ~·'.IlJIr',JI.l :'i an

can win th ·,e.·· nrize ofParadise and ;,~~ Gardens ofDeli r:i']}-It

v!;,U~, _ U,:I, '~, _ ,1"" ,~,~ ","" . UI ",~iJ - !tllJ..II, ,W,I~LI< _. '. . l,lI,l/;,;,Il.I,.:Ji IV, '. 11;,.;;, '~e ~ _.

,A:~ lab" for the Muslim, is. ]-nfinib~ ly watebful 'of His Creation.

B1L]t" 'we ask again" is this God of the Muslims :a, harsh and cruel God 'before: 'Whom, W'€, have to how down ,run. adoration?' One might just as well ask is the average father of til, child harsh and cruel? The answer is probably, "no," 'butt the averag's father does sometimes need. to. be stern with his child or even punish or reprimand, ~1 im, T~ is does not suggest a lack of Iove, En fact, it breaks many a father' s heart to have to appear stern or harsh with hls son in order 'to teach him what is

b ~C"iI' ~T:~ ~ iG! 'Ii fi ;Q p' oo r 'a' nal og 'y-- , ,~"; 'I1"'I1""'~ A: .ll ah :i co fa r g' treater

'l!.!IiJ!ILi ,. ,~.liii]! ,Jj,o.l 0, ,_~,' IU·,·_." i" __ .1J(L .,IV.:~ _.,",. 1!.J!,~.lLI~'~~ . """ " J .IJ~ Ii·, ,": ~~~, .I!w-.

than anyttJirl"g: we can imagine, but U: does nudge us towards the truth, The ways of Allah, according to 'M'Us,Ums~ are unfathomable and unknowable, but His dlealin,gs w,~th Mankind, which we see in the Holy Qnr'an and throughout history show us how merciful and compassi onate He is.

Ther-e i.s, a phrase ill Arabic which enters almost every sentence which the' Muslim TUUe~m" He uses it in. every

situation of W ife: ~ ~lns.l1all an "U T[7i] 8, transleres roughly as" "If ,AU;al1, wills it to be SO',,'" You. will hear ,8 Muslim phvuniro"g the d:El.Y'~s events.Yinshallah," ~ if Allah 'wills it to be so. ~'1 willgo to the shops, inshallah," or, "I will see you tOlUiQrr,ow, inshallah, "You mi gb't ask if this bus goes to town, inshal lah, or describe 'the run"g:redi1ents that gOI into a cake, inshallah No-one would presume EO know the future, not even five minutes into the future, TI]J;at would be ,[!UC[tnptlll,g to' take away from Analill'~:S power, snd Allah '11 as no equal. E V1eHjI' detail of life ~ from the momentous to the seemingly insiguiflcant, 'are an a ~:UJJt of AHah' s p~ art, N(rt11'~.n.g can ever happen t:hat ,A llah does not allow to happen, His W,~Sd01TI a'nd. His care encompass all things. There is nothingtbat I::I.e does not

~.I!!I,Q !A'f kno r-w,~ . ~I~~ V It\.Jl _' '. !Ii

S orurH~ non-Muslims.who do not understand j ust ,hOiW deeply rooted in Islam is 'the notion that God is Great end. all-knowing, 'I,nay find this idea of "inshallah" at

lea !i:',j" stran '(!iii. e S~' 0 me '!~ ~.'!V,' even fin d ~i ill 1GI'!U'ii ~ r' ~ n '.IBF '-"." to su ,or g' " '15 ...... ,,'" ,t

'lJUL:ll.. !O _ ~ U=L.:'a. _ a . v· _'" _ lILIt.II..!C_.'J \..i' ''J1" w. . I., _ l.IJ Ill, I~..l . .lb~IO LIL _" "C .u '-',IL;. 'e' . ~!i11J.

tha t fixed events, like the' rising of ~h.e sun the next day, should 'be described "inshallah.' Others have been heard

- - .-

i,· . .- .. " ,'- " the ,1.l., ... " ',.' ,j,~., .. ''1.... '.'j. ,...... ''''I····· £;".'11,,' '""

II.() ill ruJt111lC .~ J!~ pnrase as mougn ~ i,. ],]1 eans, ' aepetut y ~ Of

"maybeeven not at all l" However, fo:r the devout Muslim, all. a spects of life are covered by Allah ~ scan:':'. Since Allah is the' All-Knowing ~urrud, the. One from whorn all life comes and if"rlI'"'t \,.'ln1r!iiii"n al ] 'I' fe W" .. ··,L·'~IL return it

. " ,!i;,.I., w.I "~~., ,de!' "-' '.' W ~!I !!.!O' !I>I!!1!IJ _' ~V' ',fir! 1. Y'], ~" ~ ,,,. J):_,. , !I.,. , .... !Ii,.l!L ,ILl; ,'. ,

". ' ",', - .11 :. t.;, " r I '1":' . .~;\ii", , "I"' I .:' ....., ~.' "it~, r of ,.€': '., '*- 'i'iII-.,.·· ,.~ A'" 'l L !i

is ,$1 ~l1PJ Y ~ Lor sue u art '!!'Y~,.u:s, ru m, amanei or lac io mat '" !Ilm~1k

is; in. eoatrol of everything. The nig ··t will iOt.l'~Y follow

"'1' d lf A'" ll 1: ., ~ I tl . '1 . f ,[ .. ), d"1 T' . h

tne '. ,my l ", sua 1 W Le.S·,:1e nrg It to ';01 .ow ay, . : e sun

'~rin. COlII,e up tomorrow if A~nah. wH 1 s :[ t to he, ~,O,' Many

AI'aJ~ 31

would suggest that it is. greaUy reass uring that i:11, ,R world beset 'by doubt all events, far from being coincidental or haphazard, are rn ndeed part of a vast plan, A,T[ of out lives are lived according 'to God's plan. Nothing can happen to us that ] s not part of Allah s plan for the

_' =' - .

ldand d "1. '. - id wl ,;, '~II d

WOR"_'_:, ano 'we can ... ' ,0 nothing to aVOL what :].8, ptanne .'

Even the manner and. time ofour death has already been

;J '" d' W k Ai • 't·, ..,!II. '.

determine ~I." e areasxeo to eo-operate U], nus mvme

,-] ,',' nd ~ . d '." . i[J' .... .... 'rit- - f id .' j ~I"' '1' . ('-1'-- .'. '.

pan ,[in :;, Hl .. _'.0 [n,~, so, ~O inn OUU, . lapp u[es s,

When asked, ~'~:H 0\\1' are you 1'1" a Mu s lim will reply,

~1'l··J~· .,...J ,,:r ~l' ". ,~'n tl .," '1' '" be t . 'G" '. d '." ·1-' . .ther 'I,," ":. "-." .'~ 'l ... ' ."

unamauuuan, tnenks ·e 0' .... ;'0·_" wnetnei ne ]8 wen or

,';]- '~ lIT, 1 .... I'm "'1 "" ,:- ,j c:' liT ,'"' c :.:;' l'~1 _'.' .... d .' the ,_,l"'l ....iii- '.. A' "II' "11 A"" '11 : . ·t· tL., -,

,[ ,j1., m a, ], tnmgs, ne W],~, renuer tnanss !~;Q ;,~" a ]J" "H.o.He,[

'-'1-'''''''' ,.--, allv imoortant fos the M"""']',\" ,~-. "Btsmill 1- p uase, eq uauy impor anr ror !!.. "e. . '.' U,S im, ] 3. tsmu ~ an

Ar-Rahman A r-Rahim. ~ ~ Found in the Holy Qur'au thi s 'i .... : '. t. tes U'[' th - -- ... - = :f"" A' l·~ l' the M··'··· iful ' •. ]... rransia .es as, . =11 'IC!iJ e name 0< Ana 1." me 'tel cr au, rne

Compassionate. ~~ No action should take place 'without

~,1'li ,;'~, 1·"l1l1I,'1'110-" c·.,~,t-]~i 0'. n b.' ein g.... mad ~. ·N··· I '10';: M·.··· nsl 'I' '!rr'I '!I.;J.1'Q.' u 'l ~ Pi'. nte '~" .;!i

11.1H;;;I "~_~,v .. ·(1,- . "'~ "1;,,0;.11 ',,' .I.. ,u' _ .... ~ ', .. , .. ' Il;,l!r .. d~,~~J, "'., ·.'Ii,..,~U, ",",.!!,,!.I[_,II, ,~,

room, get OIl a 'bus, begin his work, take [a, sip of water without declaring it to' be done :run 'the name of Allah. AU, things are done in God ~ 05, name, III a sense, all things are

marl '1.,,~1 ',- d .. rL":::':·d'C t'~I'-"I"'" ,: ),. b··c .. - askine A"',']l"l- tc

mace J!.10 ~y ann d D, ' J] er r s nee ess oy as .. UThg -,a.] 0

'bless them. The phrase: also tells us what Muslims

~' .. lie A·· '1']', t. ,'" like CoH' 'i·' .·t "·1· "" .ibed - .,-, " .'~,c

!I!)e, ,ueve " '_ ",au, 18 l], ,e,. '" ',e ,I,S ,1]]0 ,C ,eSCll .• ·e '. as c,rule ~ or

vengeful; but as merciful and compassionate. What a delightful description! 'The Creator of the heavens and the: earth is actually described as 'the One w110 shows mercy and, compassion,

How different this ~1- C' from ,;i1. 11 e des crintions 0- f Islai

.. W' .. ' 1.,w.lfl...l",·1!0 U,_~I';i;' ~!.ii! lb'!i.J~I,J, '-J-_, 0.;";, "J']c" I _' - 61_, _'';,J,,~,l1,

d- il "1 levisi ..:a· 't

you see . auy on t ie te eviston screens or reaa In. t ae

Islam teaches ,that since the beginning of time, Allah has revealed Himself to' Mankind, hestlJ)w:~.Il;g: His blessings and! His mercy, He has, shown Himself 'to be oft- forgi vi:w.,g and abounding in compassion, Allah ~ 8

will C"Q,'l!jJID [~1"Qj1:n" is that ;0'1111 find 'Ho,g""tJi, 'Cili""i'di- seeuritv in

,W" ll,. QQ.,.!"!i::l1 • 'D .I~\~, " 'l@.: :~_" .~J~ I~l.ll ,1.1:11.' ~_I r~Y.1~~ UlILIL·. iiJ/!iJ!w"U . IJi "L

Hin1.

But Islam pos es ;0, challenge, It is a simple fact of the human condition that Man momg~ for happ,fn.es,s." In arn,y community, in a:11Y family, 011 any sb~e:t we see people who 'want to fi:nd fulfillment ln, their lives, Men ,a:nd. women look for that perfect partner who U~ ey will SP.SL1,d the rest OIf th.,e:~r lives with, raising a family and seeing

'~h- . ~·~I- ch ildren ~1f'it'W' up .'. and fin .. d success. 'O:JI-~~'~l''F', 11.0 ....... ~: r for

I~, ~i!J I 'I!i#, ~. _JL yltlJ ,C4_!j,v __ I~.,' g I. I ~ ~., .\r.i~I!i.!-h:]3QIr. . _ 11~.lIL~,1Jir.i L;I! tIL._ v~ .1u·

sadsfaction in, their work, fu.opnn g: that job satisfaction wil ~ be accompanied by a flnancial reward that helps 'to make life comfortable. Still others seek '~O find happiness ill sport or music or travel. And others try to answer ttl.elf need for happiness in. less w holes OID,e' pursuits: drugs, sex, crime. And yet there still remains a longing in the human heart that no. li!l'm'oiUut of material lP ossessions or even Ioving reletionships can answer Howmany of t1.S,~ having in"anaged '~'O save up for tbat '~U~\V' car, soon enough want a better one? How many, having saved for so many years to :pa:y 'tile: deposi t for an apartment or house, are 8;0 on looking for a brighter apartment OJ a 'bigger home? The clothes we have in our wardrob e neve r seem ~if'io b .. e enou o~},,· "Tl1- ~ holi d Q-y.~c:'! w 'Il!i

;Q Ulu ", _- l~l.ll~'·'t-:, fIi.1i~ .,tIL· I!w.V .',..' :., v. .. ,~~Jlji' , ,. '~ ,', V .: .. _ {~II'·".:l!' t." .[~

take are never long enough. or exotic enough 'to provide rest for ourweary bodies,

Wby is :it that the television is 'always. swi tched Om1~ even when guests visit us? Turning on the radio 'is, one of the tint: things we do when giett(~rnJ,g: out of bed. i:l1:1, the morning, ,AU of this as if silence 'would. remind U~, of our loneliness, om longing .. 'Wf~: need noise, to s,to:p us' from 'thiF.rukin,g~ OUf restless hearts, clamouring for peace, shut out the seren~,tywinh noise"

Islam speaks right 1:0 the heart of this IC!Oljld]t~on and says, 'that there is an am swer ~ ''N]la.t people are really searching: for" al though '~'hey don 't realize it" WS God. Himself, Islam enables 'Man to. listen to God Himself a1l1]Jd respond tc Him,

Let us take an analogy frOID. Ancient RO.1l1.e .. The Rom ans were l]it):a:t builders and they werethe ma sters ,.

of a gre-at empire .. An 'iflb"i.c8lte network of roads made communication throughout the: empire possible, At the center of the road network 'was the (:mty· of Rome itself W',e. have taken th ill s fact and made it a. part of the English language: "all roads lead to Rome .. -~'Alld indeed they did, It 'was, possible to 'travel direetly Iln Rome from the furthest, far-flung corners of the empire on. roads that were snaigh t and well-pave d. Islam tells today' s wor:~d 110~~ that an roads now lead to Rome, The grea tness of Rome he s long vanished, Instead, we are. helped to gee that all roads lead to God. It is possible, in all the circumstances of .~ ife, to find paths tbat lead 'I)] S to Allah, By responding to His call and listening to His promptings we can find our way oun of the noise and the chaos tn .. at 'rna dern life confronts us wi til and we can find the peace an.d the calm which Islam offers, soothing our hearts and refreshing (lUI' bodies,

F OJ.' Muslims, the simpl e Arabic phrase, La III aha 11.lallah~ there is no God but Allah, is 'the key which 'bursts open the door to hfe's meaning, All roads lead to God, the One '00 d who is without partner OJ equal 'M uslims believe that Allah :fuM18 revealed Himself t10 Mankind in the Qur'an and has shown men and women 'bow' to know, love and serve Him in this world and given hope. of Ih appiness forever in. the YlotM~ to come

The problem is d13 tour human hearts are very stubborn and we both rebel and resist, We rebel against

.!lin h' '''I<~'

,n I:~,a.· _ .;,;t j

people telling 1l1S 'w hat to do or how to b eha ve .. W'e resist

anvone ';i'~l- terferin (jJ' in our p"- ""1':"'1/,' ac '1 Is lam ~'it'rIo"U ']' te E'o 1" ,e" 'to

,1l,lI, ",iv,~~~ ~~, I~;,~ ,~!I",.; ,_,I,~ ,~,a., v.,,J1.. ',;£;1, 'J" ,.;;, ,i[!L~ .• 1..l ,~H."" ,,;,,;',jh~ J'_,

submit, to cast aside OU1' own. logic our own selfi nterest, our own 'p lans and, schemes for how things should be done" Instead" 'we are invited to b ow in SUb1D] ssion te something in f nitely greater than ourselves, to someone 'Who will guide along the right p'iJdh every step that 'we take. 1 t may seem strange to us, at first, :~iJJit to b ~ :in icon tro 1, but there comes a securi ty in knowing that 'the: One who guides us, is truly ill. control of all things,

The five central beliefs of Islam, on which the whole rel igion is based-are ca n ed five: pil lars, It is as though these: pillars hold up' tbe faith of Muslims, just as pillars s top a bui lding from faUing do wa " Tho pillars, in turn, 'be lp Muslims to be faithful to what 'they believe, The first of these pillars we have begun to look at in this 'first chapter. U is called, 'run Arabic" '~Sh,ah{uJ,ah,:~" lor bearing witnes s that there is no go d. but AI] ah and, Mohammed is the messenger of Allah, This Shahadah is so important that it is caned. from the 'top of every minaret in the world five times at day to call 'the F aithful to prayer. It is, the first thing that a M'Ucsbrm man win whisper into the ear of his newborn baby, l~ is the, onl y form ula ne cessary for a person to declare 'run order to become Mus. HrIDl .. , It is what all Musf ms would hop e to utter before they die, In this first chapterwe have tried to talk about Allah, In the next 'we shall talk about Mohammed, and in the subsequent chapters we wi ll talk about the other four pillars of Islam,

The second :p n lar tbHOWs, 011 quite nannally from 'the: first: prayer, Muslims ,aJrte required to pray five times a day, Prayer is Man:'s response '~:!l) his belief in this One God. The third pillar of Islam is eel, ned Zaka'h: giving ,~ certain amount of one's possessions to the poor in. ackncwledgernent that all worldly possessions come frolll.AUa:h and 'frha:f those 'who 9I-e fortunate tOI have possessions ia this world hold. them intrust from Him, 'Ihe fourth pillar, which Muslims believe WIS revealed 'bY' Allah i:rru. the Holy Qur'an, is, fasting d.luin.g· the month of Ramadan, The fiftil arrnd. £1l1a1 pillar of Islam Hajj, is the requirement of every Muslim who is able to do so to make a. special pilgrimage 011ce in his life to MeCCft,

So we have started om iarroduetion to Islam by saying 'that t.bl!, central, most :imp ortaat, b elief' of ·MusUi.:tl1S is very 'hnp.~.e:: there is one God, In bending: one's win '[0 accept this idea tbat one God exists, and

.... ontrols tbe W·.· F1I;'r'~d'" 1i,[/'~, ·i'.;II·if"P then at 'il,~.~OIIr'~ niiliiil~rJn to the

v...: .u!.~.!IU.'l;lI' . .:!I' '. W.I . .,...· .. lIWI.~.IL-, 'I'¥ ""'" """'"" 11;,. \.i,U. ,!tll!.. l""",!l.'lI!r.:;,'1J., 'U!.IY"-".u . u . Woll.!i..;

possibi ~:]~.ty-::-: of hea "'~Iii"iIO' more Islam. t·'I.l,.I~; reli Ol~,n'l'9IJ of

U13IJ,JLWJll!JI ~ '_,_ . r "._:_" ,~,~,~·_:.Jj,'!I!~~l~' ~.JI,ll.~.,~rv.'!I ,~nJi,~i'.~"_·=, ~ IU-~~ '~~~~e-Y","-lI, v"","

submission to God, invites us '£0 submit 'totaUy to His, W~U:l' 'to accept His greatness and our smallness and to prostrate ourselves on the ground 'before Him, When a. man 's forehead. is ·f;ou.cbiug: the dust of the ea:rth~,bow.~'m~lg in total submlssion before His. Creator ~ he is at h:18 most vulnerable, Islam teaches that the wisdom of this world is, rednoed jn n.ottruirnl,g: compared to the greatness of Anab .. Neitber the strongestman in t'he: world nor the richest has an.y power or influence over his destiny, The Mu slhn accepts 'his. destiny from Allah land. finds his

And SO~ back to themosque of Sultan. Hassan, Bunt between 1.3 $16 and 1.3163, the mosque' s cons:tnlCUO:W. almost bankrupted the state, so vast was the: project, The

~,.' :l-,n-.", 1)1 .' ~: - ;~.-:- 1'1'-- .. -'--I '~1- .".-... _ .... :::: 11: - -Y- h r . : > lta .'. 'l"1

W 10lC compiex IS monumenta; wn sea .e. ... e 8U ran W no

'built :wt obviously 'had. .0.0 inferiority complex !:

Everything about: the mosque shouts greatness, W'!e enter through ,8\ :mmss:iv€ stone portal, dripping with stalactites carved in Iimestoae, We wander th:rough a, cavernous

d- d - . tlTh Il '1-1· b- ~ k

. ~ . ," ," '.. " ", ~ '-::_""';l_-::'I'~ " ".~ .. -_: I:' ~.' r.;~-:" ." - . \ I' ·C'. '_ ,'. _. . _:' r. , _·1 -.' ',"._ 'I ', ..•. , •

,SIn. lark passageway" wun wa s severa metres t." ~C.; .

before corning ou t into the central c ourtyard where our chapter b e.gan. 'In the centre :~J), ~U1. t110fl1Ji:OUS covered fountain for the faithful to wash before prayer, On three of the fO'ur sides are V;B,5):t covered spaces where students of Islamic lia!w w01JJd have sat at the feet of their teachers, On the fourth side is the marb le and gold m,ihl~a.b.~ 'pointing out 'the direction of Mecca and the Ka'sba, '~he focal point of all Muslim prayer, Hanging on long chains are dozens. of glass oi li lamps. Carved.

into t-l,···· stone ,-'_ .. ,: .... d the '1'\'·'--"'1"· :'; .. texts £:',- ... , ... the

In. 0 me s one aroun . ne prayer area are eexrs rrom . ne

H -·1·" Q - .'-' _... A··" '. ·d··~ ·1···· , . ...lII:' - I :- '~'l ,- the .. · -t-·· .. u

o y ' : ur ,an..,··. n-. surr'Oum1llu~ng ,~lw.. are . ;W~e v~s·· w:aus,~

towering hi .. gh up to the s:t.y, In the cool of the morning or in the slare of the afternoon S:UrJJ·· one can s·~,t q .. ~ uietlv

_' '_== .• - lei!. .. '_' .... -- '_.' ·'._'.l. --- ""'~ '-- ,_, __ ' __ '_l _,,- -I--=--~,J'

A: '" '~-L . -. f· O· d' C· ., T---ll'·

P.nnujfl;r-i-~'nQ'. t: :-:"i~ vastness rr- •. ' '_' 0- •.• '~: .··'II"'j:I'!!:IiI·j;·illii"'ii,'~ ~ 'I . '~Ii!2' ..

. V_, ~~~~tlJJ.~ 1l_!lI,1!;i . ~o._ ~Ui~ v . . a . '~J~u:.ru,I,V.I~'~J,", ,~,!IJ

enormens 1l11iosque~, perhaps secretly intended by Us patron. as a monument '~O himself has. lasted through the centuries, long after hh;. death, as, a proclamation Wl~~tten

"" ,t, ,,', .. that 0",- ,..:I]. f'j ndeed '0" ,~ rear <:!ii - d hac ~IV ~a, '1 ed

1111 S .,one ~la!!. ',' QUI 1;:; ].nu~~, "" I ~ " uU, ""',,i,Jo .1'",",:'~, .J1~,

'H imself to mankind and that 110tl1 ing can h appen in this world, lnshallah, unless he wills ,i~ to be S:O'.

Ch -- tl . .. Sf.·, ,:8'p -'e'f .· i . 1

Mo' h '. -. "-"m"-" ed

, __ '.', " .a.m.,I'.·I.~\~ 1

A- M-.:' ·e':r.:c·~y,,:' to M-· ankln d'"

, , .' .~_.. .' _' ,U __ , _ , . [. I

.' -

'-."

Th P" h ,c', ,~ b 1-" "Ii.. d M' di

e 'rophet s mosque 'was. esta ", l sne a in ,:'~- e nna

Cb t- 3" " ap -or ~-

M,obammed

A Mere:y to :M'ankin_d,

Y'O\J1, can't make someone love you, 'There: is no formula or s,et plan of action that can inspire love from someone else, Many hearts 'would 'be satw sf ell if that were indeed. possible! Prophet Mohammed, may Allah's peace and blessings be UpOrul him, has a special place of

'h .' '~- h f 'M '~' H;' I,

'", ( "- i'- ,-' "'- :'.""" ," , :,'" 'I" ,', -" ,"-, - '-, '-II '"

,CH1IJOUr m t e , eart 0 every . ,_' us, nn, "I e ~ s not J 11S,f

admi ~e,.A1 0' r re sp e eted '0,-1' looked U' p' t ...... - H' ,e' ~ ~ '[,0" ,"V, ~,e-dl A' -"',

U.·._,IL~JJ'I.lL ru .. J ~ iJ.,," . I"'~. '_ U -. vu., .. ' -.U. ' .. ttO ,""._ .. " ',].1 ,_, .

real 11 ovethat I""nmel[" from the ''I... e !l1rr!> n'r-FIIP- 1:: ~,j1 '-M' r., 'II\.., '-, ' : -> - - - c d

.... ,~_w, lv'" ',Ir;,.., '1,- y,I~, ,",v ", , ' ,~ .Il.J, 'U' ,J,J ,U, ,,- - "U,,",IJ III., Jr", y' '_ .11. .... '11., ' Onworune __

'is, loved by Muslims,

'11 ,,' -'i,.. hean f C>' d' .. , J

'nere 18 lID, tne teart ('1;' -cJllrO a .. istnct W_LlJOIse very

Il - <JJ1~m ~ ~1-'lS· oi i-'~ If' ]' iifiI C~Cii ir'ii iii' 'G .fC~''''''fil!~' oft ;;-n ,*1i1,~ hea r-:~ 0- f 03!;"'l~l'y

UJJJj,I.~ J..:" ,~'. ~o.' JILldf~(A.lJ.I~, ~JlJ.l~~fLlL .. -.l,lL JJ.W.J. ~,l.~~ 1. \";(.)J .!Iln _.,1, ~ .• ,,'~ :,.'

Egyptian. A dis tri et of ramshackle buildings standing

I'd ifi - d "'h · f '[

~~ ",'--:-:-:-::':- .- -- ·-"~I·_.-.I-··'Il -[1,','_."'1" -·',:",1','-:"': : .. , ._. I - .. : "_.- '-1:- '"_"," -." ,:'-I_~I'_'·:

a ongsme magm 1 cent mosques an, tne nU11lS 0" pa aces,

the oldest university ~lJ, the world, the shrine of a. grandson of the Prophet and, a bazaar fal110US throughout

the Middle East. In til is district you wil ~ t1nd scantil y,_ clad tourists jostling alongside matronly Egyptian ladies, and visi tors from, the Gulf States, swathed :~n black .. Street hawkers and shoeshine boys in. from the countryside, Streetwise youths with a fast little, in sell ing, AU of Iifeis here. The district. Al-Hussein .. ,

MouUd' A.J1'·~.Nab.i, the birthday of tbe: Prophet, is not a religious feast" as such, It is more a popular outbreak of joy in. celebrating the birthd:a.y of someone who is, moved so much, Celebrated 1!3, 8 narional, public holiday in. Egypt and many other Arab and Muslim nations, now here can you, findthis festival more celebrated than ,j;:ifiIJ H' ussei n P,1\]j ck ,;;;.,,,;ill t\ •. ~] an C'y-. ord '~rii ~'r-y" W·_'· eek en d eve DC ,ji'~ o·

,il~~JIl. ",~~@,~,~ '! ,~!(_"~,. ,~, VI" Q_" _,: V . ~~IJR- J ~.' "," w'W( u ',W ·i. - '-", '. '_.-, :.IJ~.~.~,

thousands of people 'fl- ock Jn '''A ,.,:,t..~. distric It- for the

~~,~; _:. ~'_Lg!Q liI-!l u'~ ~_!!\# .. I ... ~~ ,_ ~V~'=~ I I~V 1J!1'~1 ' .. , lLll', ... ,'._', l'l·~,__ . ,.~-

festival, 'The usual tourist cafes and restaurants selling chicken and kebab are now swelled 'by stalls set up for ,a more local audience to sell pop-corn, candy-floss toffee-apples - ,a:nythin,g a small child could ever want his father to buy him", TOy!3", balloons ~ little drums .. Street singers singing the praises of' the: Prophet. A scene fun of fun.A celebration of the joy of Islam.

*'**

Islam has no revered founder who set up the religion, 'Wle, have already said that Muslims believe that Islam has existed since 'the beginning of time andthat the first man, Adam, was also the first Muslim Men and WOIUe.1l. are born good by na rare, There is [J;Q falJl'~t in Allah 's

crean on "_",~~_,,,v_ !I

,j, W~, have indeed C'lleated ~nan in (he best qf ~nQulds.)

(R" olv ... " Q" ".'I'~fJrO"iIi'rii ,("I,';::. ,4···· :). , ',' 'I;JI' 'J '!;.JII. I. ,dJILit ;:1 ,J ,. -I

il!]'1,' .c.,.... .~ 1'~1 other Tnfh 'I ~ni{'l;I~,lil'lm'" ~n' '<IlIMI..J1 W';", '{1!;:m1en'

Ii" ree, Jl.l'om a·!ll \;II' I.w,,,,,f IlJli ·.'Y~.IILI"'" !;"id:!1 '. ,,,,,", , ~u;y, , . v ... , ..... \ ,

'would naturally believe ,~'D One God, unless they were 'ltaugltt something different, T11!e prophet Ibrahim (father

A' braham to ,C' . ':~'l'''~' stia .• 11~, "liD'1 ·d·' , J ~"IUC,)I W,', i:liC, ,<I] prophet of

,~g.U"-!l- ,. " '11,,11' _ ,W,L ~,.::I . .:::1 (.IL, I!J'II'I IiJ .. ULJ!" Y 'lUI' ,JI.W..... 'lUI'

Islam ;g;rtiI were D';'~~v,-~d'" and Solom ~iII':Ii Even the n,1i'li;,e;, hailed

.l!.!3'~;y.~ '~, ~~ ", """,,!!'..... .,,1;11. !Ii,I.,;[jJ, "L , 1,.'I!Jr.l[. '. ,II;JI'W.!I. -: "''''"' ,. _. 'II;! 'UJlI~ . GIl.., ~

bv C" .• ~;~~i:'i:ii'~';;III11i"f:;~ as John the Bap •• i[[,st. Yahva, is said 'no be '8

y .. W.:U.liJ!tlil);.tJ.Jm_iiJ' UIiJ ,. v~~__ _ ~ __ , __ ~' ~_ ' " ~,' _ , ,__ ~~

proph et of Islam M··· .... ~ nc Ill'!! it" "1i'i'lI'd J'~~'UIf'j' ;j!fin ;:!I1'ml prop bets of

"_'VI~ ,,!!k.i._ ",". ,JLo. .!~_I,I .. '!I ' ~ .. u~~jji alll,lu)--, ~o .. ilI', ~/YU~I GIj,lIJ, " .. 'Il,V " .. 'l.1Il.rJiJ. .~I IU .

Islam, AU of thesepreaching worship of' One 'God and 'the rejection of idols, Muslims believe that the mess age

ab out, ,",L,~ One ·G·:· e d n'3<'~If-II!!Ji'mpA '~'O' '-M··: oses 911'111..1 Jesus became ~,:_ ' I.U.'IO.'·~.:""_; "j", JII,I!J'!Ii'~,!;II,w: .... u I~" .:. "ci~ri >I.lI:.L.~.IIJI, ,raJ; .. ~ .I~~" .... """:

distorted. and misrepresented over time. The Jews went astray, becoming preoccupied with. their land and, inventing laws and regula tions whi C,~1, became a, 'burden. fb:r men ~ shacks", . The Christians, out of an exeggerated :~,Qrve for Jesus, lost U]J,e spirit of what 'was, revealed to them and began to see Jesus as divine, God's son who came down to earth to save lnankin.d fr-om sin,

Mus I ims believe th,~t the Holy Qur'an is quite liter,any fhe 'word of God, They 'win often say, "'A_8

A' '[ la 'l.;;; sa ~ ·d· ~:iliii tl ae 'Q' ur' an ~" to ju ~4"l"·f·h .;iI, n ~'I;'iO'UII·na.IIi'lI'iR-

. .' . J.I. a' .,~.I .U,il Ii!. 'I..! ':, ~'. 'I ~ '. ~ ~ I, 'v ,.'; ,,",'L. '1.J' (lI". ,w ~_~._ ...... w.~.1~'"

Sueakina 11I""ij(t" his Pronhet M·····.·· nll-'1:IiIU-I'[DaA.A]'I'ilI'h-, 1ii:'~'U!f1l

',r~iU "_WiJ-~$i' 'v,l ,W,1I ,li]il w.-,!IJ,~U~ ... I~I~ ,. V ~~ ~ ,,~VU'I ~ lu' O!Qj' ~

(according to Muslims) in the Qur'a .. n, ~r;We have, sent you but as aJ, In.ercy for ;a~ I mankind.' 'N ei ther a king nor ,<?o!i god M······ .'. oh am med '1- C' often referred to b V' ·M···· 'U' 'i.:'.111• m C' (11J ;'~I~

u· [ .... _ IU,,' :~j I '_:,- y- _ -u_ " -, -', - .vU. '-!i'-i v, .I .. ~ I, 'J vll,.., .w. ~ . . . .'.1 '_~';jJ I ~ - . :iJJIJ.- _-. ,_~ '''11 .. \lILl!J..~

simpl y as "the 'best of men.' F or reasons known, to Allah alone, 'be chose a simple 'man of humble origin,

living in the relative obscurity of theArabian Peninsula, to.·· .: bear His mess 8,0'6, HI'i~: ITII erev to :~d11 manki nd.

_ , u , __ '"" ~ __ .:;;; _) =e,!J! ,!I,J!!.y~ '-i!.J ,v {_~.iI! ,~uULI\. .I!.w,U.

An honest and 11010 lie man, loved, by all who knew him even before the Re velation of All GiL Mohammed

.lI,Wl.'11 ~_, '. ,"" ror ,"~lll, :,' ':", I~ ai .01~1i. v - ,,:'1.;iIJ,J.,:~ d" rufLlnr;".:U.

was to become the: perfect example of how Islam i,s, '®o b ~m ived -H--~ (" everv a ction thought and =W~"C ,-'d W'" "-,,' ld

,/..... mIl"'" ,i . lL 0, !.... ""'~'.J '1~~,U.llL ~ I.,H" >,il:IlJ.. ,_t~", or ' ,OU ,I ,

mi rror 'II"h-' e R',: iOv,j30'~1 al,j,,; o .'n he t, ~,f~1 re lif!.t:li:]' ved _ ]i""lf,; ~ ~II~ fe ;q.,'~iilifl

"v I~~~_ ..... ,,","~!;l!l.I.l£~,_ ~J _ [U::~'WII, ~ ,'Ii,.<I!;;;i', _ .... Y. ,]l.lliJi ,1Il.1! Iu'UU

,.,,' ~, . II -if ·d' '~'" A-1~1. ·h:'· revel tion - f···· 1;,;1;'i"I· '1-"(" c, -l-

exampie, reotec run ~' tan s 1 eveianou 0 rnmser are

now the inspiration for millions of Mus lims.

Jr,,' 'lfJ. -, th _r" '- ""'\' '-'-'1' th --'1-;1. '1"."""""1' formul ae ,~t t .-c-,~,.;al

rn ][81111111 lL iere are no It eorogtca J[,Q.nJ1U ,as. ula. neeo

to be expl aimed 'to the uninitiated by profess ional reli gious people, There are no abs truse or to bseure doctrines thatmust 'be: interpreted before the faithful can understand them, If there is lever ,[' di spute over SOt"D:e: way of living one's life, the Muslim will simply look at wh at 'M····· I oh amm ed i w·· nn~ d' hav e done ~1" W·' hat h jI!!i;, would

" . ,.'"'_.'.- ',lV .. U ,', "iJJ1!JJ. .' . ·:uu.[ .. ', lWu "','~ U.IU",I1.~ .. _· y. ,' . .'. 1&1.". _ "-' \1\,',:__ ," I.~:U,

have said about that situation. In, the holy Qur'an and in the life and teaching of the Prophet Mohammed (may Allah '3 peace and blessings 'be upon hi En) the Muslim has fme and sure guidance, Allah has spoken abou t Himself and has told Man howto live .. Mohammed has resp onded to that Revelation,

Mecca at the time of 'Mohatnmed'~s birth was a center of imp ortance, being on the caravan routes between Y emen in 'the south and Syria in the north. Many traders would pass through the town on their way fo do business, stopping off on the way for additional deals and. for rest, 'Mecca also had an addisionel importan .. ce, It was horne to the Ka'aba, t.he, house of God rebuilt by

Ibrahim many centuries before ,and had become a center of pilgrimage,

. Thousands would 'flock to honour the many idols housed within the Ka'aba, offering gifts and in turn

brinsi dd d 't h t h ~ Tl K"·iII.. '~II

~ nngmg aao ec wea tn i 0 t· e town.T re .1· a alva was aiso

aplace of sanctuary .. Anyone taking refuge within its. walls could claim sanctuary and. would be safe frorn any enemies until a dispute could be resolved .. AU of these factorsmade Mecca It center of' some importance in the area ...

m,t "' .. "]', ",' ",c ':"1 mant :'-. ,c, ,t tl at ' " .. ',-' ... ' . ·:~,,":-'d' ':~rfoIf'i

.ill was so impe .. ant, m lac." l~~]a" many envie , ],I~

position. Fifty days before the 'birth of Mohammed OlM9 such person, Abraha the ruler of Yemen, vowed to

de .~ t -,,'. the "K' '. I '[il...l I . ' . AI ,"'D -~-, ova rhe . -. '.' ,.,., -·f··· .'i'l~· - ... ~., '''' .

e-s . roy ,lie. ." a a.1u Eli EU1'u [I,.#m·.·, Q ':', ... ", C 6llJ."er 0.. p.W,gt. Ima.ge~

with all its assoeia ted trade and prestige, to Sana' a in Yemen, I·J.e approached Mecca with an army, at the head ofwhich rode Abraha himself and, an elephant As the}; approached 'the Ka 'aba the elephant sat down and. refused to budge, No a-mount of beatings could get it tOI

. -.' .... ,. ..... At the , , .. : .. 'f,··" ", fk ck .. f b,~,~AI.--., " -',. c',' ~·..-:al - ,"f'

m.love. .'.. ~ . ue .sall1:e dU]e a, at,!; u, .: ~I ~fS ,appe~lfte'U.~ as 1 .

from nowhere, carrying large rocks. w hichthey 11 urled

- - -

down on Abraha's army destroying 'the invading army,

almos t. to. ;8.1 In an .. , 'What had seemed like impending disaster for the p, ~ ople of Mecca had, turned into a miraculous victory, Mecca and the Ka'aba 'were un touch ed

, .UY'~II~ _>Ii

In later yean; many 'would point to, this and simibu strange events, 'whj,cll surrounded tbe birth and childhood of Allah's Messenger, as, 'wholly fitting since

this was nO'1 just the 'birth of one man, but also the birth of a nation .. They would. also point 'to. references 'in the J ewish Torah 811d the Christian Gospel promising that someone would come in the fu.'wrc ...

We' need not write here every detail of Mohammed's life, since this is covered :rum many other places, 'but a few facts will help us to under-stand more, His family belonged to the noble tribe of the Quraysh, which traced itself back to Ibrahim's eldest son, Ismail, and was beld in h!..g~l regard in Mecca and the surrounding territories, . . His grandfather, Abdel Muttalib, was aleading figure in Mecca, well .. respected and honoured by hia friends and colleagues, Mohammed was. never to know his father, Abdullah, since he died just before. 111113 boy was born. Instead" hie' 'was brought up by Jlis m othe 1" until "the age

fsi 'il.. 'L, d".-31 dl - k t'; 1 .. .,.--~,

o srx wnen sne, too, [,J.eiIJ. aUJ' .. was, taken rrom .. 11:m •. Tile

young boy was ,p:~;a,ced, ill ·the care of his grandfather, but his grandfather, too, died. only two years later and the young 'boy went to live with, his uncle, Abu. Talib, who was to play such. a strong [ole in. protecting and caring for the boy, even into manhood.

Before c.o(ntrunu'bl.g with. the: story [of Mohammed, met: '0:5. pause .and r-eflect on how' God chooses rather strangely, according to our human wisdom '\JIbils.,t Mohammed was, bom ofa good fami Iy ,. ;3. decent family honoured by Us' neighbours, he was nei tber bo~rll!. "to power nor wealth, O.rp1llaned "by the age of six, be, lived with his uncle, not in. the centre of some gr,ea t mud. powerful citY' 'with an influence extend:in.g far beyond its

M·.-··Ii·--·. -,-- -.-,- ... ,,,J' _ , ...... I.l.i'!i,.~-fli!J' to it.l~,iii~~~"" 4-9

, O-affl,"leu ~ ]VI.t.HL,.....- . t.!!,J)IoI:n:fhn~' '_

boundaries, but rather in a region. stra .. te gieally unimportant 'to the 'world powers of the time, Tom odem ;,' _ Western eyes -M·"·,··inha.ml'nedwas-, an orp rhan

lIl_Y,\;,; , _ , _ LJI , _ ..... O~ ~_ __ _ _ _ _ _

livin g .. '. in . the '_. mid d' ,'I;i:lII of nowh e re, And Y'.' et Allah tool": this,

d, 1, ,u., ... l, ........ __ v __ ...... __ .. _ _ _ _ _ _ . ._ _ _ _

orphaned boy" according to Islam, aud rnade him, a warner, a. witness and. ,8], bearer of glad tidings to all rna nkind - H~ used 'H' .is eh osen instrument, who could

m l11\.ln m "'-' .. oJ \.!Ii , Q !;.,.o . !,Jy__ _ ;9 __ = =y_" _~' __ , __ . _ 'VVI~~_

neither read nor write, as a mercy to the nations.

Many are tbe stories connected with Mohammed's childhood which show' that the boy was somehow sp ,GI;t";~1 Hindsight h as a habit of alwavs 'p- utt tin g", Qi 'If:O'CJU

[.;II ... 'Ii.i- .... '.II,g • J-IJ.. , ,"_ l~'~: ':_~ll!., ';"'-'. '; ,,~, _", JIL V ': __ I." .. J. .... " >'"'" .- .lUI,., IW , ,", ,1'13.1

glow on ordinary events that took. place long ago, Wishful thinking sometimes permits us to e laborate simple stories, However, many people te stify to the special way in whicb the young Mohammed was honoured. When be was ei.ght years old a group of people was visiting, Mecca during a time of severe, drought How 'they longed for something to drint !, 'No water had been seen for a long time, 'hot even ,3, cloud. They asked the boy' So grandfather to take bim w-ith. them to pray for rain, No sooner had 'they ani ved at the Ka' aba 'with, the child than clouds began to appear across the sky, followed 'by plentiful rain in abundance,

At the' age of twelve be accompanied hi s uncle, Abu Taljb, on a business- trip 'to Syria, 'but on she 'w,a.y there they met a Christian monk who was so impressed by the boy that be insisted, on entertaining them lavishly ~ "This 'IS the messenger of A'~ lah to mankind," the monktold them. Hie' urged Abu Talib not to take the boy any

so

fu rth :e'!i" W,,~t.'n71 11~'i~ 1 .. ~.:-]:1' '''0.'; ,,,a;Iif1'IAI 111"1'rit'Ii back hom ~ ,;i:::.fo;;..j ,C;",c". I'c f

. ,~, , ,~, , ~,!Wl.~, JLUJ", U",.,L L .. r,:)'!;;.r~~U ",~~I, .. eu, "jl;.~.ul Ii;.Illtll H~;~l. 0

enemies W:'R"iIO':. rniaht ~:C'Ii3',"i:' 1 ",.,' "M,: ,,;rn..:I,·· ,- .. ·..:al '~',_.-,c ,.: .... " t

..... ,w.n. .. ' "lw":' . b, nU~,_h t~iUnll, U~ll.,_, Oualr)]llleu was sen,

'I..'~I C: ,~ .. , to I M"I :mcc . .-. '!:':!II

U!l;~I" ,r\. t _ " , ~. ·'b-~I~

M _ 'm- _ . - - - d _. ". f 'H" . d

ll' -I' gr~ln'ln' 'e' g'. I ~~~;w' .' ~ nto ,~I ."] '~11ii31 y" 0'11 ']'!l 0' ']-nl an ~ 111'1- s- 'p'lr-IP~ .

'lUI" ~~" n '~' ,.':.l """', '.' ~~: IJ,,'II-!!' t:iI!, . II. ,I!;.! _',"'1,;; ,I" ~ ~~~~=~. ""':. , .' . '''-'. '

love from :11] 8 friends and respect from those he worked wi tho W orking at first as a sbeph erd, like llUU1Y prophets before him, and later 0]1 entrusted 'with' 'business dealings, by friends and relations, Mohammed 'was a good and religious 'm,811" He earned the name, Al-Amm, the: trustworthy one, from thos e who knew him ,,\~rben Mobamoned was thirty-five a severe flood almost demolished the Ka'aba, causing severe damage fo ~ts foundations, 'The tribes of Mecca riaturally wanted to rebui ld ~"t and they set ab (Jut their work vigorously, replacing: one stone after another, There is hI the corner of the Ka'aba a. special rock, set into the wall, known as the Black Stone" 'The' Meccsns believed this Black Stone to have; been bronght down. to earth from heaven by angels, Whichever tribe put the Black Stone back into

'~'iIf\t_j nl .... ce W" :0"1 'II A I' '1'11-' d' 9; ~(II '[..,g, '~"iI; ~ ,ill' '1i,., ,1'\1 1'1 ()C 1'10 0] ired Ind ,a r.;.,A +~~ a>'V ~,I~.,;,io ,~ ,"~.,.'"",; , .. ,'11,.. 'LlII_,~ I, ,~"",~. 11;)"", ,h~',b]~~',J ,A ;~c!, ,'IW,,,,",, _,' ,. iueeu IJ.,w.~.'''''J

+"ik 0",'ill ci 'i[;I;]'1Jr' only '''~''8 most honourable jribe of pi,ll, was

Ul. 'L 'O,I.I~,) !u! H " U .. n... ,I" . i:i I~. ,W]u" \,lI1!i.:U. !i;1>., ,...., I~., _...., ... i9dJ . ""0

wortliJJY to do this. Tberein lay the problem. NOone Qf themcould agree which tribe should have the honour of replacing the Black Stone, Itthreatened to cause a, major dispute llUHI someone suggested that they wait for the: next person to come through one of the gates 'to enter the precincts of the Ka' aba, They 'would let that person

d ~ if'O,~ .(1~, 'W'",,' 'hat '!l'i reli ef it 'W'· op::' to t:!l'\ ~~'iII"y" An ~,n -hen 'F'IIl· e first __ ;~JIkI.lIJ ... :l~,. ,:: .. u,lL (;.I, J.I ~. ,~:_ '" .. "" ".': t:lhl ".u ~ 11 ~.IIJ .. ·V]Ll~ '¥'i!" " "_ Q.llLli. ~-f <> .Hi.~.MI~ _

person to COII1i.e through the gate; was Mohammed. '~~I t is Al- Amin, ", they said, "the trustworthy one, ~.~ Mohammed

showed. great wisdom in settlingthe dispute, He placed a cloak on the ground, put the revered Black S. tone in its centre, and then asked 'the tribes '[,0 each tale a e0111er and lift the cloak, Mohammed himself then edged the Black Stone into its place, Everyone was satisfied and Mohammed's standing: grew even more as a, 'trustworthy, WiS<8 and honest man,

A deeply spirimal 1118n, Mohammed would, often go off 0([1 hrus own for days, and, nights to the cave of Hire, near Mecca to spend time fasting and thinking about IO·"t"I;,11 It was 0, ']-'11 'O"I'lM!l!J such nizh t tow ards the end of the

, ,vllli., ,!J, ''I''I!, L3 ,,,,I!,U,,,", ~II!-!i,ru _" _,~,I!,1;::i ,~~ I~:V _, ".:lI ,w ,,:I. ,Y,_, c_u""'"

month of Ramadan that something W8$, to happen that would change the course of hun GUIll. bistory, Allah was to. reveal Himself to Mankind.

'Chapter 4

'M"h d

....... 10" .. 'Dim: . ". "m"'-"-'e' ,

, - .. ','.~. . ,'g, " . , ... __;.J. '.

Mohammed,

ID,[lY' the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him

M:o'ha,m'med M:e.SHS,eng'ler tof Allah.

If you "vie; ever watched a class of six-year-old children you 'Il know that, when excited, their chattering and laughing and shouting combine to produce a noise level unimagin.able to man .. Experienced teachers have as o:~ui!'i.om.~ Just at the height of ' the chaos. the class teacher, without a, sound) raises her hand, and the result is electric. As if by magic, the noise stops and the U tt]e ones raise t'iL1IiP ir o wn han ds <f.ff!lo~ un til all ar -~, silentlv

y, . \r.I';~ ,~"" lj.... -IJLI~. -._1, t· ~ ~~, j!.t: _ " U. _':, ~\JI~I "__ _" ~1· . _ '",-" ~ .Jl. '.IL 1 11J.._ j,I

lo eking at teacher, waiting fat bier to speak,

~Mu~dims, 'too, have a. saniler magic, In. the middle of a street brawl or a heated discussion it only takes some bystander to say; "Salib An-Nabi." 'Pray for the Prophet, and the protagonists 'back off) replying, "Peace and. 'blessings, of Allah be upon him.' How could Muslims fight 'when. their beloved Prophet's name is invoked? Whenever Mohammed's name is spoken or written;

those hearing it wi n, say the same words, "Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him,' In fact, in most Arab COUll tri es there 'ru s a, special key on the jypewr iter or keyboard which, when pressed, writes "Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.'

;:-j!:: * ;i;

'(Rea;ct .in t'luJ IUJ'me Qf' .thJ' Lord and Ch€riJh,(d}~~ Who created, created man out oj' a clot of blood Read. rhuJ thY' Lord is MOst B'()l.~,'jtiful~, He wbo tfJUgilt by the pen; T augh'l man that L~!hiC'11 he kJ~€W not.,'

(Hn,~lv ,Q'~IC]'r')~I'1Ini '9.·'£,., '11 ,-:5~')1

vl,J' Ib dJ. (~~lILl _." U I. Jj, '_ "

Mohammed repeated amoudwhat the angel had told

'a...~,-. H' -' later sald ''''lOt '," -",- -,:, ~f",t'''''-· '. "';-"'--d- .'--', -, ,-- -'--.":'iH-" ,-mm, "e rarer s,~ru .: ~,_ was as n me woras were w.rh:~<en.

c. c "~ .'-, ~ heart ", '-r"]-},(..'!;' first 'W:~' :0'.' "1;1~, of the zlorious .Q. "';lU~' an

on m,y l~i,r '" .. , ,'\.;I' . -.oU .a ... - ,~U'oJ v' ~~ ..... ellv 'IV:!Oi! ' .. ~. __ , ',_-~=

l1adl 'I; een revealed,

Mohammed, in ,grea'~' anxiety as to what all this could.

"In ean II rushed back. :h.O.lUS to .1:1"1 B, wife" Kh ad ij ah and. asked her to cover him because he 'WijJS shivering and to comfort him. In res .. ponse to' such :2[. strange tale from her ~ . l,'.:;~;"':' , , d '-[I' 'I adi ~"' 1'1"1'1l1' media tel Y:·'·' tol ·d'- ·M······· I ohammed n otto wlUSilliJ'alL~, . "iU.1t:I, ..lJa" u .. ,1.. .i!;,;1, ,,~.!,,;; .. _ .. . .... ·.__ILL._"""tJl_~,~. _._

worry. Allah would. never disgrace him, she said, bee ause be W'8:$ such a good ~n1d ],011LeS t man, F or tbe rest of their marri ed life to,gle·~·h.et~ Khad :ij,a11. would be a pillar of strength, s,1U..p:portin .. g her husband, God's Messenger, In fac.t, the first person to believe i~1 the message delivered by Mohammed was Khadij a:h ~ fo.~ I owed 'by his young cousin, A Jj" :h i s close fri end Abu Bakr, and A"1JU Bekr's servant, Zayd .

. As, the reveletiens 'continued, Mohammed was .f'l"{"ij mrnan d ed bv A···. ~ l ah 'ilfn I"" ubl iclv d ,c;'m '1""ij,J~I-' th m. '!f"i"i;I5J(" sage of

cu ,~: '_' ,IPIJO",~j'~.I~.~1 "_'.j' ::_. ,~.~; i~.!IJ , Ilv _~ -..!ij'jll .- 'j- U,'~',~ I'¥~, t .~ IUlI~111'\J!tiI~~',. I~' v

Islam and. to recite theversea of the Holy IQrt1:r" an which he had been given .. One day ~ Mohammed c Urnb1ed to the tOPI of a h ill IDlI.l11.1f}d. As .. Safa ilmMecca and began to shout 'for the people to come and listen to him, 'The people of Mecca did :not know what such a commotion could mean, but since ~t was 'their tru sted Mohammed who was. calling then] th.ley flocked to hear what he had to say, "If I were to warn you !f'hat ,alJID armywas nn the orher si il:l~ il"i;f:' this hil 11 ready to Qltf:aii'""~L .. vou '\\'0- uld 'VO'1il

·.UJI"",,,[ ,k) 'I/;,!11;;,;!Y I~ ,,1,<0 Ji~,IU, ., ..... ,~._..' ~_!I;,,_I!,,!Jt\. J'_~'.' ._ 'UIi. J!j,,_.

bel ieve me?" be cried out The peopl e said that, of C01J1"S'e, they would beli .. eve him, "Know 3' then" UUI:~ lam a warner," he said, "and Allah has CQi!11,111iU1died me to warn YOI1.!F~ He warned them that unless they gave up the worship of idols and "turned instead to the wo:rshjp of the one God preached 'by Ibrahim they 'would surely perish.

~{li IGC'-~,o'l, .. ,.JJ5I\,",r;> n;rD' .,' iC!'li,aL~

UV . ~I'[f ,~~!f!h7 VJ"' 1~1 {.~l·I,J

S ~ ~I'· 'I M I., ..::i t, ... A

ome s;tayeu. to nsten to w, tat ,: r tonammeo ,IWi¢l.U to s a.y ~

but most turned their backs on him and walked, away, His message was too much for them, They didn't want to hear,

How 'true: and how' similar this is tOI ()IUr own moderu age, Men and 'WOlu,e:I1"~, deep down 'in their hearts; know wh at is right and, yet choose: '~'O turn. their backs and, walk away, When a terrible tragedy afflicts mankind, such as Itt violent earthq 1L1 ake or' a mas sive explosion cans il~g, death and dl~Sbuct]on, people are quick [0 pray for help,

1~ I. II "Ji .~

'bea.-"g··. ~'no" the Almiehtv to." save th em ~ When the d. <:i1'1-;' g. 1,9! i ~,

,iQ-.c:c -"~~, - - . e I",). Q~~- ~ ~,.,..\~" ~ " .... ,~.JI._b"-' . ,LJi.[[1~1;;,;o]j, ]~

gone ~ b owever, 11105 t of us forget our desperate dependence on God and we sink back to our former wa ys, thinking it better' to fLU} OlU own. li ves the way we choose"

TIlle: Mecean s were deeply divided over

Mohammed ~I s message, but the va st m'aj ority insulted and ridiculed hint, some even saying that hehad gone luau. During this time Mohammed and his followers suffered persecution at the hands of the Meccans, The chiefs of the Quraysh became e'VBi1 more angry at the, div ision Mohammed was causi ng: aiwd they asked hi s uncle, Abu, Talib, 'to stop him from preaching hi s

'~'lIiP'Q!~"~g- if.3; .g'1li1''V ]fl ['lli'I'e' '~MIOl"!:!i !'hrII'~i"Ii"II .... A 'U/90 moved - bv -ji!:- et 'I·' "s

~ : . .....:l3raJiY\-,''''''" YLj ",M!'V"." "~., II ,Ui.JI.fill.,I'!I'~HI,~¥~!!;l.J , ,J, . \1IjJ. ,I; 'V\1,[]'[-l! c ,u-

uncle had 'to say but he; ~ndd, he c ould not ever s top calling people to Islam and the 'worship of Allah,

The persecution grew' worse, The Muslims were ridiculed. Stones and dirt were hurled at: them ill. the

street One hundred of them :- "t;l!.: M-··· - 'h~ .' .. d ~I

iJ' ~.~,:;~-., .' .'. :~,!"I .1.1 •. W.I,; ~-u 0, , ' J.EJ.11/;,I11l, Wl'iJfl ',0 am1l1,e L ' 5,

permission, left Mecca to seek refuge in the. Christian land of Abyssiuia, M ohammed and his followers, 'we're evicted from their homes and. forced to 1 ive 'in a. separate part of the town, cut off from everyone else, This 'W'2lS in the seventh year of the Revelatlon and, it lasted for three years. No food Of' supplies 'were: allowed to' reach the Muslims and 'they went for long periods at a time with no sustenance, S;R ve the knowledge that their religion

wa iD true Some on locke rs could not b 'I!':'J;'GII]~ to li::"iO~ (;"'n'II"""I~"1I

," ". '.~'.:J! lUI .. '!k ,L'I!l .:l'u 1.,~.lw, u!.1 ,I," - ·..IA '-.:,~ ~j 'I!#~111;j. '. , :~, U,'V ~ . -. ~Ii;~ -" ,~~y ~j~v ~'I~ lbo, ,.1,

s:uf]ier:ing continue and they secretly started. to prov rude food to the believers Eventually, the blockade: collapsed

Very often run life, amidst what seems a situation 'wf:fbou.t hope, we suddenly find ourselves sllCCieSBf111 once more, finding: help where we least expected it. T:bm s was '~O happento Mohammed, In the tenth year of the Revl~~,21tiO:l1,Mohalnmed suffered greatly, First, Abu, Talib died, the uncle whom he had '~,QiV'fHj and who had protected him, Then his beloved wi fe ~ friend and companion, Khadijah, also died, leaving h'W111 alone 'after SOl many years; of marriage, Ill, thi s year ,~OO, Mohammed su ffered rejection from the, peop ],e of A[,-

Taif ';I;"", 'w,":~''IJ;n,'!''III''I ]'1~ I~,1'!>1id:~ go' "IIf'I;~ to I oreach the 1AIl,~'I[I:Qg;iO'll!"I of

, .... ,]"I,~ Il.!<;,l , , W"I,U,lIU ,L ,._ , .. i1i;[;I"", , ,,' ,U,'Ij,,;i 'b" ,I:'" ""I!'!L ""L ,W],,,,,, ,I.,Y" r;.,;:)Ii:I,IGI,,!t:;)I""' ," ,II..

worshipping one God alone, These '[fJ eople threw stones and rocks at him, causing his b ody to. bleed,

In the midst of all this, 'when all sea ned to be dark, Mohammed 'was granted an, extraordinary favour" M1tlS1hnSI call this 'ttbe: Night Journey. The an ge 1 Jibril 'W()~(J~: Mohammed from sleep and got himto mount ,E,\

dazzling white steed. on 'which Mohammed 'was, transported, from Mecca IDO Jerusalem, to ,AI-Aqs,a.~ the furthest mosque, There Mob~uD.tll,ed was met by an assemb ly of ear lier prophets and he :~,ed them all in prayer to Allah Jibril led Mohammed from what is now caned th,e D ome of the Rock in Jerusalem through the seven heavens, encountering prophets on 'the way:

Adam, Jesus, John the Baptist, Idris, :MOSt~8, Aaron and, finally, the prophet Ibrahim himself Jibril showed himself wn person to Mohammed, who was dazaled by the ex perienc e, and Mohammed was tween almost to the throne of Allsh Hims elf: 'It was, on this extraordinary ni gil t that Mohammed was gi vel'. the second p:iJ lar of Islam 'by Allah, the five daily prayers, which 'would become so HlIid'anlle.~ltali®o the daily lrufe of every Muslim,

When the experience was over; Mohammed was transp orted back wO Mecc 3.. 0 n his return the

disbelievers lau ghed even m ·0.· ~,,~, even callinz 1'11';1"1"1 ,g 'l ']1 ar

'Ll, ,i;!i'_ )I;;;,..!l ~Ibi'~ 1;;;0 i:) "~ "HI'!;;'·, ;~V r,;A:. , , , , ."Jl, iW'; 'W' V r,;A: , 1iui'!t!I;,W, I,~,~,,~, ,,U, 1,,1, '(i , U,',.

[twas then that M ohammed and his co:~np,al!l]OrrnS prepared to. leave Mecca

Some citizens of the city of Yathrib had approached Mohammed and invited him to the if city .. This, plaice was to become known as Medinat Au ... Nabi (Medina), the City of the Prophet The Muslims packed up their belongings, left Mecca and their beloved Ka'aba behind and migrated to Medina. This happened to Mohammed after thirteen years of inviting peep le to M~bu11.., It has becom e known as the H:~j ra" or M,i,grm,tj,o:~" and, because

'. f its ,',; -, -:0. rtan ce in the life of Islam the M·.··· uslim

o i.:.-5 ltTI,p.", .a,ill,........ If !!I._ ,I;,r .It 1!. U =QI~!,l!!=!!I.-~,~ I~-."!.io' ,. __ ~,,_, '_

calendar now dates from this time. Just 8:S the Christians and most of the eastern world use a calendar starling. from the birth of Jesus", so Muslims have a calendar which starts from the time of the :Mil;r.mHon. This new era, 'was to 'be the second phase of the mission of Mohammed,

During this time :rnrm, Medina d tie Muslims witnessed what wa-s, the birth of tile first Islamic state, 'with Mohammed as its head, Islam blossomed. Tt.H~: centerof the state was te 'be the mosque, Every cidzen within the: state was g uarante ed freedom, justice and security, Cha.'rdty '~O all was the hallmark. of this new society, Mobammed told his followers that even a smile to- YO'Uf' brother is :a charity, He led by exampl e A;s leader of the state be did, not live in luxury, 'waited, upon. 'by servants, but rather lived as, ,f) simple nUU1~ sewing his own !c~oak) repairing his own sandals and, w:aHing UPO'l1 all who needed him, Visitors could not t'eml him apart from anyone else in the 'mosque; having to ask which one 'was -M' .- DC. ham - m-" ~'d'

" . ,'_ '.i! IJI,-I. ,.. '.' ,..;;;;,' ,,.

'ft-- .. ,.,. d . , '~:i' - '~1 ,','C_ ' 1." --' . c . 'iI'.~.-c. - '-.- M"':,' -' . ..:!I.~ ---, , ·t'IL.,·.1f t-lle ...

,lit .' was _u:nng !!~llg g~onous !~lme, ].11 ,_, :6111111fi _U,a,I1_~1Ie

-'] ,. d d f1- I "1'] f 'I '~ d . th

'f' -. liI'·:- .. - ':"", I r··" -II!I'" -:"'1' : "~> ,'_'. ::' :'''1' ',",.,":" "~-" 1""-; ~:'", r .. ;~""- I" ""I I, """-I

t 11,[. ann . Dud 1 P] ~ fU is 0 = So ,a.m were granee __ to t, e

believers: Zakah and Fasting It 'was during this time,

""" th 'iii-' M -1.,;, .- A! .., .ied .;!\ ..... othe f -- '.-'. ,,-, ",.:c.-

too, 1~."a,I~, onammeo re-marnea Anomer savour was

.' . 't- Alit·· th - M-'" '-" :-'l··'·----,· 'U'- '.- til thi 'f .. ' ~"'k-' ,II'-h'·

granteu _OJle' 1,,_lUilmr$.._ p unn ~ 1.8 dame; de l e

Jews" they had, p'r,a.y~d, facing Jerusal em, Now they were instructed to face Mecca whenever they prayed. So it is

th at 'Ii' ··d··- ,,' th K-" '. b .. ~ '.' tlu &',1' -, - f" <lI,-I'[ M:: ",:'~' -- _. ,-·-c".a.'--

t~:a _ i~O_ ay ~ _"e . ,> a ,m, a, IS IllJle .IlOCll S 0, Q" ,_ us,~un pw:ay 1iJE' ~

being: the first place OIl. earth, according to M'tlsH:~ns, where worship was, offered. to the Que God.

The Migration, the:n.~ had been a turning point in the life of the believers and in the establishment of Islem, T11e Muslims lived ill peace and happiness In their state, 11J~,ed. over by one who. was as humble as he was wise, Yet they were not left completely alene The peopl e of Mecca 1 coked with envy on. the way 'they prospered and they sough t tOI destroy this Muslim state. I twas at this timethat the Muslims were given permission by Allah to defend themselves fro 11]. the Meceans. III the second year of the Hijra, during the 1110i~tb of Ramadan, an army carne fr01D Mecca 'to destroy them, The Muslims were vastly outnumbered but, putting their trust ill God. alone, they managed to win the lb,m.tU.,e~ This Battle of Badr was another turning p oint for Islem, The foll owing year, in. the Ba tine of Uhud, the Meccans returned a:nd. the: :MusH]118, 'baret y escaped with their lives, having I'll t their trust. in their weapons and strategies of war, rather than in Allah alone, bJJ. the flfth year of the Migration ;aJ. Meccan army marched on Medina and laid siege to the efty for one month, but without success, They withdrew when '~hey knew the:)" could not succ-eed and tile following year signed a truce with the Mus[ims~ the Treaty of Uda'biya", In all this fighting am. en0:r111:OU8

~IU'I mber of M······· 'eccsns :orii~I~1 .~ .• 1"", surrounding .... , tribes had

~Jjl AL_ IU\r.I: . ,~, ,w~l!J.g~.lIlJ[) ~]_lILI,U. ,1Il,~ !;I! __ • JiV_._~~ I Ill'" ,', ' U . .J! .[.WGlIUI

embraced I~,~,8Jnl" so impressed were they by the faith of the Muslims land. the gentleness of their leader ..

Ii'" -', -,.,,,,1, r·· t I" th at M"-;~ ~'11,.- --.: -- - ed . 1-- 'i'.' letters t·· I Ii, was ::l!l., nns nme ~ at " :o.~l}al]]Rn,e:, wrote e. d!U S o

the rulers of a,'H 'the surreunding lands, including 'the rulers of the world's jwo great powers, Persja and Byzflll)trn,1[Jm, inviting t'beltn to Islam, He warned that tb.eir

I·, ...:ill ''U,.. 1- ~ f 'J' I ~Id '1I:...Ii!:': m

uves anu tne . ives Oi' thetr people wouic IUS rorever tost

·'·f·· th -. '~.=.r. ·d·'·~'d- -: ot lti...,- ·d·.... 'it_'I~1 ,',-. '~I'I H"I-:-- :'1',;,,'11 ',' ".- th , '"I 11 r of 1 I~ _~ey:c 11 , no, ,ue e, 111$ C a~" ,'. .' I ,er.l\,lfi.,l.1 os~,_ He ,m,ller 0

Byzantium, acknowledged the wisdom of Mohammed's message but said, tha t circumstances were against such a change of heart, III our own age, too, circums tances often preven t us frorn taking: decisi OlU1 we know' to be :rru"gJlt Sometimes we a:r,e just too 'bu!}y to hear. Other times we choose to be deaf

Tw ft h "R!-. t, M'

_ o years a' •. er t ie pe ace treaty WI tn t[ ~Ie , ...•. ', eccans

Mohammed made an, important decision. Its terms had 'been repeatedly broken, by the Quraysh SJO Mohammed ch~cid!ed tOI attack Mecca, Hie marched Ot1, the city with an a:nny of ten thousand and c,aptured, it with hardly ,any 'blood being spilt, bru, great bum'rn,H'[y'1 Mohammed entered Mecca on ,3, camel wi th his head lowered. He granted forgiveness and amnesty to all his en emies, 'The third and 'final phase of his mission 'bad begun, The people of Mecca V" oluntarily accep ted Islam, 'T!!}-rP three '11]111fid' re ed

\r.',' \J;~. . V 1,~~\IL'~1 U' , IYr~'I!..I'~ - - .,U. ~ ~(:'~'~~Ht,f. 1 ~ lolL \.o'~ .. ·w,,· _. J ' •• - • : _-

a.nd sixty idols inside the Ka' aba were smashed in to pieces and the Ka "aba was purified and dedicated once more '~,(JAUa'b.

Twenty-nne years had passed since the first Revelation i Mohammed's Hie was. now drawing to' au end, Having seen tWie triumph of !S]ZUll overthe idol .. worshippers be returned once morc jo Medina, the,

center of the Islamic world, an.d, lived his, life ,1!3 quietly as he could, caring for anyo:ne in need, sharing what little he owned and. spendiml~ his days in praise of Allah, f:r1()111 Medina, he sent QiIJ t groups 'to invite an men and women ofgoodwill to Islam,

[11. the tenth year afterthe Hijra (,A,.:H.) Mohammed performed -Iajj, the once-in-a .. liferime pilgrimage to Mecca enjoined on, ull Mus.thoo8 capable of lualk.inJg: it This 'was to bethe fi,fth, ,p~na'r of Islam, On the last day of the pi~gr.~~nag:e he d el ivered his final Sermon '~O those present, many of whom wept as they fisrened, "Remember that you,win indeed meet your Lord, ~", he 'told, them, S()' they ]1]; ust live in peace and charity together, 'wl thout gre ed or usury. "I leave behind me two things," be said, "the Qur'an and my example. If

)"O"U follow th em von w"'~ ]1- not 01"\0, astrav ·O! .... 1"i li"iJii'n 1,,~ I' ,j' sten

. ". ,lvl,'!!J" i., ,'"', ,,' ,1 v -' .... ,~,~ , ,[_w., - - ~... (;!o!J; - ~ '~'J' ~ '. .' 1,.11 ""'V,,t"'[~:) "t,,;). 'G~,W,

'ttOI tn.y words", KJl0'W that every Muslim, is a brother 'to ,every ,M uslim ,and, thl t al ~ ,M uslims constitate one brotherhood." He caned. aloud, "Be ,Iny witness, 0 Allah, that [ have conveyed yonr message to 1ny people, 1~ and there before them he revealed the :blst verse of the QUF'~ an:

.. ' This day have J' p,erjec,ted )!O:~lr reiigio» for po U1 completed lHJ) /a'l'()Ur Ol~ ,pau and chose',; for YOZl,' Islam ,CiS you» reUgiCJiWt,)'

(Iioly Qur'anS: 3)

At the end, of the pilgrimage, Mohammed returned 'to hi s home in Medina, At d~,e age of sixty-thre e he died,

being buried in tile earth beneath his. sleeping-mat, 'the last Messenger of God to humani ty.

***

In tile city of Medina today a vast mosque replaces the simple me sque 0 fmud. bricks and palm trees that existed in Mohammed' s da Y ~ A green dome So tands over th e spot '~v here Moh ammed' s house once stoo d. M illions of Muslims l!JJ,O'W cometo pay their respects and b) pray for their Prophet, weeping in his presence

W'e have said that, according to Muslims, Islam 11218 1'-'" fou "l',d',' er. 'l,nl~'~I€,fI: the uneducated mig :1·1.'t venera te th e

no ,!IlII_ L~J, ..... ~,. VV 1 hel!! . Ii;;.' IIJ.,_~ . '!i.: __ .. , __ . ___. _ . _.. __ _ _ . _

t b f' 1 '~. k-' thei bles - '. . I -'~ - h .. -

0""",1'11'i1o-!:!' '0' '1'1I"'fI; Y' '''''e' 11 'r;:" ,QI'i;JIi "l'~flI; 0'1 1 r:rI'~i1e' " r-oC"Ii;l] nlC]!' Q '!:li1'WI i g,l1:1, 'nI'IO'

.. UI, .,jJi... ..!!J '.:.. .IL.Jl..t." ~ ~ g;J'!i;,;-1i"oo ~ .~ ~,~, . __ """,~ [, ., • ...,.~ 1;1' _'." ~~, •. ~,_ ()II, ..... 1 "_,'~;;;,, ~ w~ ...

saints" as. such Mohammed W8IS a man, A,t the Prophet's funeral, Abu Bakr addressed the anxious and desolate faces before him and said: no men, if anyone worships Moharnmed, let him know that Mohammed is dead, But if anyon.e worships Allah, then know that Allah, is alive and wil 1 never die. r~'

We began by saying 'that Moulid An-Nabi, the birthday of the Prophet, 15 celebrated with great jioy :in the district of Al-Hussein in Cairo, giving lots, of fun and, lots of happinessto rnany Muslims. Perhaps the best way for Muslims and, for all people of good will to celebrate h is birth, though, IDS, to study f is Rife and imi tate his example, learning from, what he said, and did that he was ,~li. mercy to all mankind, May 'the peace and, blessings of Allah be upon him,

, . - 5

.' "[ -

. ~ .

Chapter I~_ ,I

A llahu Akbar. God is 'the: Grea test

C- h- t 5-" - ,a:p'_~:el' .. :~

lid b f th ., . " 4.~ -1 1l" 'II •

w'Ouit,., : ecome one 0". tne m.3jt01" c ities Oil t ae isiamic

lands. Its mosques and centers of learning would be. unrivalled in. the Arab world, The mosque of Amr Ibn Al-As 'was, the 'first mosque to be built ill the whole of Africa" established so that the soldiers of Amr could pray when they flrst arrived in Cairo, For fourteen 'centuries, prayer has ha] lowed i 1"8 walls, It has been remodeled and re-designed many times over the, years, but

still st '1 ['·'·d; ". ",' 'I the '.'_ ... : ,'- .. ' '. t' ch i"'!il~.,:li,-· :t.. ~' A····'·.. the l' -"'. der SJ,~~ sranes anne very spa.' C'" '-11.:1 ..... ]1 IUy ; unr, ,e ea er

'Of the ann)' of Islam" Tbe mosque has recently been carefully and tastefully restored, It impresses now by its

grarnd simplicity: four covered areas opening onto a

r - _, " .' • "r' , .. - _.... ..... _.. .. J - - -". ~ '.. " ". • ,', •• -. iit_

large open courtyard 'with 8, coveted fountain at its center . One can, only marvel at the sheer number of worshippers at Friday prayers, gathering in the mosque

".- '-','. ,j!., .' th "/' I" " .' ..... . .- iitv and to ,]" rte t - the

-0 pray roge aer as a commumty an . 0 ..l;S. en .,0 ne

weekly sermon that will feed the if faith fo:r another

weel .. , '·,·I";"~~.

What brought all these worshippers to tbe. mosque

, . th A"dJ-:L" th C' - '1,1 ,*,- n· .. - .. /' F:'",·' tir - dr r thc

was, ~. e . . - ".,f~an 1,_1 ~e .. , a .. w, to J!r 1,8 ye,r. . -1 ve Im,es a ',a.y ,: Ie.

.- .... -- " . '.-', "[-'1'""'- ,'- ·C·.· .' ','- ,,,C c, £:' -" the ' ..... ·,-c ,.,--* 'f' ', ...

prayer-ca er announces ,ITOlD l~"e .IF]:l1llan;::~ 0,1, every

mosque that it is time for prayer, time to set aside all the

f life i ... ;11 1L." 't .. , 'I, f L"c' ". ]C

cares Q' ue tn Oi,w,·l;.d~t toworship t~~e author 0'[ LIie nseit.

In Cairo, as in SQ lnany large cities of the Muslim 'world, the Call to Prayer comes first from one mosque and.

th . ,~,. tl -' di tar '.- ,,t';.-. ','- - - ,-- . .,- ,j;·t· .-., .. d t'1)..·- - '~'l"'- -

,M,en,., ,~n, 1~-le . ~_lS ,anee,!, ,trom, anO(jle;,r an '.' . "W w.en ,aIlOI~,ll~.r,

until the whole city seems te be crying out to God, "~A'''l~l-' 1:.. Ak l.._ no IG' - .'- dl ~. rth . G"'- at -. st

,~_, .. :af.I:U ~::~,·IQYr,,· IIJ 18 'I. e IJ.--ea, e,s_ .. ,

Thosewho are, not Muslim must wonder what alltlris sound CM, mean, C all ed out in Arabie, the exact 'words of the Adhan. are as follows:

GOld is the G reatest, God is the G reatest, God 19 the Greatest, God is the Greatest.

I bear 14' itnes s that there 18 no God but All{Jn.,

1 bear 'witness that there is no God but

A ll·~l. ~ ~ t~ 1~;r:~;I,

J bear 'W itness that Moeammed is the .. Messenger oj'AJ{ah.

]' bear witness tha.t MtJha'ln~n'u~d' is the; Messenger of Allah"

Come to Prayer. Come to Prayer.

Come to Security. Cometo Security. God is the Greatest. God is the Great;est.. There is no God but Attah.

Like alii, air-raid siren urging the citizens to hurry and take shelter) the Adhan urg.e8all Muslims a,~l . of hlllna.n'ity~, to think about God, to set aside all else in favour of Him, to' hurry to prayer and to 'take shelter ftOITI the CiU"eS, 'Of llfe in God. alone,

The; first prayer call is followed some minutes. later by a second cal 1, announcing tha t '~he prayer is about to 'b egin illl the mosque, M uslims do not have to' go to the mosque for these five daily prayers, but. Mohammed taught his. IOUOW"fH:'S, that it was, better tor them 'to do so and that they would be rewarded by Allah if tb"ey di d. Every step a man takes on his 'wa,:yto pray in the

mosq 11.8:, 11.e said, would! raise him one de glee in Paradise and would forgive one of h:ws sins. It Is. a remarkable sight, especially 0011 a Friday, the one day in the week when the noon prayer mus: be: said together ,M a community, to; see all the worshippers heading in the same direction to pray, It is B reminder to everyone thet Allah is, the center of everything and that I:Ie takes priority over every' other activ Lty.

Why,. trJbell" do, MllS·] ims pray fi ve time s a. day '? .Any Muslim would be quick to give the answer: because ,AUafu 'bas commandedthemto do ~J,O!, They believe dUI't when .ProJ~~JH~t Mohammed, may the peace and blessings of Allah be ~JJPon him, traveled with ,tthe, angel J:wbrrnl through the seven. heavens to the presence of Allah

H· lf 1 ·')1 ,€,:'';I··I iii..

tmse .. r, ne was given t me nve 1I,J,Ei,H.:y prayers as, the

second plllar of Islam, Hie later narrated that at first he was to'~d tha:t: he land his foU.oiwers S11ou1d. pray fifty times a day" He accepted this message and. began to leave, but the prophet Mus a (M·O:!H~fS) approached him and said that fifty times would be impossible to keep, Mohammed should go back laud ask that the numb er of prayer timesbe reduced, So Mohammed returned and begged that the fILUM ber of prayer times be made Iess . . Allah reduced the number to' ten, so he accepted this and. be gan 'to leave, but :MU5Hl, again approached Mohammed. Even his own people the Jews, he said, were not capable of so much prayer, Mohammed should go back once more and ask tnatthe .~U1l1 bel' he reduced, SOl Mohammed returned to God's presence once more and begged his Lord, Allah declared tha·t the number of

Praye» '17'

-- -

daily prayers be fixed at five, Mus a, even tbo(l,ght this too lTl8llY, but Mohammed felta:sham,ed to go back ag ';;;'i,i'n, A"', llah declared '~'I have enforced Me 'y" 0' :b- ligarion

'1£!Ii,,_~,Q,U~,;, ;0111. ,,U- ,: "",'!!iJ~,j,_-!,_;, '_ ,~_I,,,,,,, _ \0' 'I;,;..,,~.1Y, '" ,,_-, ,,' e,~ " -:,II.~: - "U ,

and, made it light for My servants. Hie who prays these five prayers win 'be rewarded as if he 'bad prayed fifty ~ What I decree cannot be changed,"

We have already said 'that there is a deep down

'I' '. '1 - hich c: h" d

rongmg In men's iearts w, ,10,1 craves ror nappmess all'

fulfi llment in life. 'No amount of material things can ,- atisfv that cravine Men and women block out their

saISJIl,j" ",r ,:cr.' ~- - ----- -~~-- -~---- --~-~

thirst for happiness with as many things as they canto keep them. busy .. Prayer, on the other hand" answers that thirst in a real way, Prayer calms us down and puts us in touch with our real selves. Prayer is, not an escape from reelity ~ [11. moments of prayer we can escape to reality and see things as 'they :really arc. Prayer gives 'Us a perspective which is true.

Th e five d g'~ Iv pra 'U';Qr~ t'""11 te nla ee at set , t--I' m j!li,~

~ .... I ~~, V :_.l I".::_I~_~" 'j' _:....;:.!I~j'~ ,i;i! . ·M,.~·: r~!i±~.l~.·-. ~ _ ~:."," I __ i:~V~

throughoutthe day: dawn, noon, mid ... aftemoon, sunset ~'n--..II evenin g" -T-h"I~'Y' give ~ pattern of pr aise Q;'n-~1I -W"-' orship

,~" t,I!I, ""', 'Ibi ".', _c- • " , "~",_ : __ ',' 'Ii' "'" '" ,_;ir.1l, "'1lJ. 'o. ., '!.;II' , =_' " ,~,o\;' 'i(:lI, I, i;.lI, ,,'_I.~.... ,I"

to daily life so that all the affairs of the day are made hol y by prayer. 'Woken fl101D. hi s sleep at dawn or called from h:i s work i.n the heat of the afternoon, the Musl im '~s summoned to forget everything else for' <t, short whi le ,tUl,d to turn his thoughts to God.

Before he prays though, he must fir~t of all wash, "There is a, special routine of washing: oneself that 'takes place before Ole pra(ye,[', The Muslim wants 'to come before the Almighty ~ clean" No-one would think of

7'8, Gardtms. of.Delight

IO~.l1,gtO meet the, President of France withom having at wash N'" '0,' 0, 'iilll~ W' '0" uld ,(1""'" fo "." It.! jo 'ill.. interview lili~'l't_'~ dirty

'_··_.·,._·_~'t __ 1!1 _" _'_=" I,~.W,~ ',:", '.'_:.' "_~l,~,UI I~U .w.~_".''' g.. ,.:_:.IIJJ ~o.IJotl~~ ''r:~ t. .'........ 'ir¥." .-~l ' .. -.\~Jl,- .. ~.~.'.

hands, In the same way, it would be uathinkab le for a Muslim to stand, before Allah. w:ithol1L~,'t being clean. Muslims take' a few moments to clean themselves before they begin ]t all ows the dus:~' and. the dirt' of daily life; 'to

],.A w.GIC'h- edawav physically J"~IiV't !Jilt:' *,l .. e- d--~"II,(I,t' a -"rIIA t'~,- ~ ;["'[1- U-~-!I:lI!iJ;, vUi Ib;,,_g'j !.,,: 'i~'J" ,J'J'. '!..j;j,- iliI;o ~JJ.': uD. ano me (. ir

which cling to (lUI." hearts are washed away, spiritually, bythe prayer i tself

Another idea might Q'll~0 help u '~, ,~ ..... , understand the

Elv_ ,.,.."..4, 1 _ ""()II, , .. .I, _. ,U,!l, t!LJ,;!iU ,Ii;,;'~-L i:!i 'i;,.V '!I,_ uIJ,l",.l.;;) 1!,i!;:~nU _ JU,e

importance of the washing before the prayer begi ns. Tn

som ~ m O,!l:"IilIIU!3'~ 'b,]I1II'~ 'It- long !JIg' 0- "!!.foi,) ;P;1Ii1r;l-~1·\_';; 01 'W:': hat 'W':: 'as

iJiV, " -'''-' '" ,-,iJI'"'ill, vLl .. '!OiJ!.J!l - ,11[, .1;,:1< -, '1i;!L, .•. " .J VY, ""'jU,I~""", .~ ,~>!l.lII, ,. IY,~, 'iJ!'

cal led :8 ziyada, or enclosure, which surrounded the ------, r.,r._;;. but also ;"ilffilr;;'1:11]IAAA .i!rii 11':;('i;1} 'W'· 011'11 to ~"~e;'t-' -,-- :",,&10 ,t'l- ,-, mosque t :, a:i:!I·. ,~,IIl.I,I'-'Jl!!<.!I!U~U Q ~& ' ..... ~ ,~, IL..' t.tIJII:~ anee me

'mosque from its surrounding buildings, Going ;ti'hrough the first ,ga.t€ from the street you would leave the hustle and 'bus tle of H fe behind befor-e, walking through the enclosure 'to one of the' d.OO-fS of the mosque itself This enclosure ptuvided ,8; pbysllcal 'break 'between the activity of the street and. the quiet of the mos que. The washing before prayer performs ,2, similar function. It gi ves the worshipper just enough time to stand ap art from the world of commerce and of work and. to get 'b ims el f into the ri O1':bt. frame of II '~rnl"ll~ b efore .n eater ing (il1.]'~

~ __ ~_~Q _ ~= "_ ~ _ _ ~. ~ __ ~~ _ V ~,~.L ~U ... ltv . ""!io.I',U,,,,,['iJLIl .. ~ ,,[

his thoughts em. Allah, W:h:Hs,t he isw~8bung: he is leaving behind all that kept him bnsy and is declaring his intention to ,1;:0 and pray.

The actual prayer follows a, set pattern with different 'actions accompenying cUffer-ent words, 'Ihe 'prayers are

sadd. in Arabie, regardless, 'Of the nati onality of the: one who is, praying, and 'they involve reci:[[n.g certain parts of the HOlly Qur'an.When the fixed pattern of prayer hes ']j een completed, an individual may then add :~ is own

nravers ];'~ 'fl.. e W"Q'II"I,t' (!I 'iI;,n. l' n any 'm ang ua iji).'Ij3, Th( n,~.f-5; 1'1i· ew . ton

t". ~~'i,~, .. ,:,~, .1. n,,' . w,~.ioJ' W,. . ,Jj u',:' W!W I" ,: ,"_ i!6'v. ' 'V;~'!o;i ~.!l.I ..... _,' i~

Is~aln find it difficul t, mt first, to master the prayers in Arabic, but the rhythm and the. pattern of the prayer soon b ~C" .. O' m iesnemral to th em ['1'!1, each of the CoI- 'iiI,;:=> 11a ~t,!U,

",rv .. ' ,~ .:._ .. I~ - :.,_: I, , '. ~d ,lIil'~ ;t!~~~,"" . V " ~ , ~ I'll .. 1,1, 1.:- U. - JL~, .. -.'.. ~~.t· ,1,1 ''il'''\r."' '!UILi4JL,[,j'

prayers the worshippers reci te the opening verses of the holy Qur'an, as well as, other verses they may have learned,

It is worth noting here that many Muslims take exceptional pride in. knowing the whole of the; Qur' an. by heart, having begun to learn it as small e111 ldrea. MallY mosques pr!ijvrude lessens in. reading and reciting" and many schools give prizes to chi ldren who manage to. reelre a, large num ber of verses on their own. a. It never ceases to amaze, when traveling on the. metro or' Ion ,3, public bus in any Mu:sUm city, how many people will De: holding the Qur'an open and reciting its verses aloud, espe ciall y during the hol y month of Rj8.1nOO,an,; In many Western countries, where open displays of piety are umrsnal and wou'~d. attract puzzled 'looks, from onlookers, 'this. w~H~ seem unusual, However, in th,e Muslim world it is wholly natnral a-nd not in the least unusual 'h) find. the, p erSOD si tUn.g next to you on a train or a 'bus reciting verses from the Qur'an, 'Such recitation is itself a farm of worship, Very often, in. a taxi or public vehicle, the cassette being played by the driver will not be the '~,ates:t: popularmesic but will, rather ~ be a

cassette of thi s or' 'that ,pOIJ1JJllar ~heikh reci thlg verses from the, Holy Qur'an,

Islam, does, no~ make my distinction b etvieen religion and 1 ife, On tbe co ntrary, for the Muslim, Islam is Hire its e:~[ One ofUle greatest barri ers '(0 understanding Islam and the importance it has in the life Q f 'bed ievers is ~h:I'S different way of :kHlkj:ng at reli gion in the East and the West, In the Western world many sincere people go to thieir church on a, Sunday ,m:rlJJd) tl~ien try to put in to

" du '], 1", 'IIJ.. - 'IL, II!." '~ d ~1I.l..

practice uunng the week w jJj~a,t tWj,ey nave nearc O:n,LlL I e

S ab bath day" In Islam there is no Sa bb ath day, no day of the week ho lier than any other, Fr(H~ Ml1S llms 'it is not a matter of trying their 'best to :~ lve a .good ] ife, based on

the or' worshi rt";;- fi!- rr.io 'So, ,'!jj'kbatl\" 'F"'O'i" 1f'Le'" [';I'I1'fI'''''er~ 'M"l,'iliD'II'~m---

Co nen -"_, UI]['~ 1,P 0,", !i.~1!J _~III:"j!I:" .-u" I,~, me I;iu.!l,~< 1,"" "'~.;:II.I~ ,',)

every -" '1ft'll oment of everv d'" '..t!i'Y'" :1' C' '11 ved in t '11. i.:fj, p' 'r' esence " '0" f "

'I!..r .~. !liJ..i . ":._. ..II..l:I.U..t,ldll,~\.,IUI, IV',_" \i,r _ ·~:J".I}. ',' u:. .,~ . -.LI. V ~ ':' ,.~.. ~ ... ~. ',' ',~'\.:,ii __ ',~ _,' 1,.:.-_

Allah, Islam is a complete way lof life, IQ1l1c.e "the believer has bowe d, in total submiss lio[ID to the One God, all else 'IOU ows on natural ly, There 'are wayso f greeting others ji ways of entering ,B) house, ways of eating which are all ]-rlli.fonned, 'by Islam, The good Mus U In, wi U attend 'W hi s health, theway he is dressed, the way he speaks and the way :11,e looks at other people ~n a. 'way guided by Islam. Hie 'wi 1 ~ enter ttH;~ mosque in a. certain way" get on 3 'bus by greeting In tho se present with ii,' Salaann« ai:ayw'nt:, j"

and everything 'he sees and dCH~18 will be related directly 'to what he bel] eves,

No-one would tl~:ru,nk it odd 011" give disapproving hlOKS. to ;~l1y Musl im reciting aloud rhe '1Irvords of' ,An.~h. However, those who have not achieved the great heights

of 1 eamfng the whole QUI" an, 'by heart will LUU~: 'what knowledge I) f the Qur'an they have, to inchrde different verses al different prayer times, The opening verses, though, are al ways the '1)31ne:,

(iIi the ,~¥a,11;U! of Allah,. tneMf),st Gracious, Most ,M(!!n;:if_uLPra.is€ be to Allah The Cherts her a~~cl Sus,ta.i"rut!r of' the If.Q1~lds: Mo&'l Gracious; Most ,M'erc,ijui;" Mtts'te" (Jf l,he'Do)} of J1~'Clg'e',1zent j TJU:B' do 'we ''t4.MJ'rshi,p~, And T:h,tne aid 'W'e' seek. Show us the stT!ai,ght }!t-1t1jJ:, Thl~w~Jl of' t'i1(JS(fj; 01~ W"1Dn~' Thoe has bestowed Thy ;(:;:r(J'c(!'~ ThllS'(! 'who'5'e (parUat'l) Is n;(}t w~~Qth, And who ,ga not as'tray+)'

( Holy Qur' an 1:: 1 ,_ ')

The prayer is first of all praise and ~to:r'S'hip of Allah and it explreS'SJes the ,attitude of Muslims 'to. God; they bow and prostrate '~lu~nlselves :in hurtl~wlity before Him, They acknow ledge that He is the Lord of everything. and that :n.o"thin,g th,ey do C~U1J, cometo any good unless it is prompted first of all 'by Allah. The prayer begs Allah to include 'the faithful worshippers iii tbe: company of those who will be saved The' rest ,of tne prayer unfolds inthe same way ~ The worshippers mirror what "they are saying with their .H ps by the' actions they perform, bowing at kneeling or prostrating themselves accordingly ~ Once again, a profound distance can be. seen between this prayer of' worship ,and, praise and prevailing attitud .. es 'that have g;rowl1. up ill the Western world. 'Notions of' freedom, justice and, equality make llli11.y people in 'the West nneasy at bowing d. ow n before anyone. How unseemly, they think, for men aad women t10 fall

prostrate ,on the ground, And yelt,. :fOI the; Muslim it is wholly approprlateto bow down 'before Allah, to fear His judgement 0':11 'the, last day and 'to beg for His mercy, These (l(ttmtudes, are very' real in the heart of the Muslim. We ha ve said tbat tbe first pi llar of Islam is to bear

witness that there 1',11:' 'n,"" O-'I,,",~ 'lIi-slnrt--l:...y- -, o-f" worship LlI1':i!'

.i .. 1L'IW\~O ~ :,_,~ _.1IJ.,J"~_.Jl~ _I~ ,~~,v i _).LlI'Ikt "V-!lf'V, ,.-~JI.,_':.'.' ::" ... -. uIJ,~l .. :,. I![J"I",

,Anall~Muslilll pr,ayel'~, then, accepts that statement and V]JI:ts it il1,tOP,l',llJctwCe. Mill,s-Urns would find rather scandalous the idea that God! can 'b e talked- to as an equal. Remember, God is without ,e qual and has, no partners, they say,

If other societies talk about freedom and equality before 'God, 'nID:e;y need look no further than the tll'OS'CJjue,; During the prayleTs the: worshipp ers stand together, shoulder '~:O shoulder, in rows.praying together without distinction of' education or weahh, In the Inasque you might 'find a prince p,ra.yin,g: n-ext '~:O a poor man, At the: end of the prayers they win greet, each other before leaving, There is no, room in Muslim prayer tbr

. dlstiC,tti ens of class, Even the man 'w:il . .Q leads the prayers h:asbeen, chosen not because 'he, is 3, professionally religious person, doing ajob for which he: is paid, 'but because 'he knows 'more, about Islam and the Qur'an than anyone else, There are no priests in Islam, No, religious ministers, acting, Oil, behalf of men. There !:II"[Iti' ju ist 'M' uslim " hi .. rothers ~'Mld, sist ~'~ LO' ,WI" in 0' in -'I'

I~'~ _ .: ~ ,,", o.-~Illl.l ./ IV W"W,!Ii#,~I6J ~"~.'. __ J ~.~~. ~.~,i;JI~ W). .. _ _ '0. l ~ J

submission to Allah,

Some would be quick, to point out one, distinction, though, They would quickly say that the men and the

women do not pray together, Surely this points out a prejudice against women ? In. fact according to Islam, the opposite is, true. Islam, is an eminentlypractical religion. The worshippers are gathered in, the: mosque to' focus ali their thoughts and attention on. Allah alone. If there is a, beautiful \VO,lUaJ.l in the mosque :rnt is only

] I 'II ,.J 'k "1 "IIJ..,"" " , " , '~!

natural t rat eyes W'IOU_~,l!I. sneex g, ances atner .Jt :rn s neither

good, nor bad, bur simply a" '[act ,AU 'of one's thoughts would be distracted. Men and women are separated in

~h ~ hi '[' ,. 'J f 'I

t - f~ ,[-fi o",s"'q:- -11]- ~ 'I ';-n r- - '." 'I ]- ir. 't-ii~ ~ ~:O';R"'I ~ 01·11~ _ rn ~'V- ·/In']- r p- --:: i~r-· .eet 'f

C',n_,W ,~o,I",_'_!I,.,,,,,,", ,'!.,;i' .. LI." iJI' ,L,,",!~.:!i,1L.1Il ''-!I._. '''-'''II !,U' ~~, U,k, ,_:- ","" ,,,",I!..;!_",J

na tunal dig tractions a:lrwd toO aUO\1i/' each one the pri v ilege ofprayer,

The: mosque, as we have already S,B; id, is very S:ilTI ple, If a man prays ,at home be win use a smell prayermat 80 that the ,'P~ ace on which 'be: prayers is clean. The area for prayer in :8" mosque is usually c arpeted, for the same rea-SOIl. There 'm S 110 mystery abo ut the prayer mat or the carnet in th e 'ID' 'O·'Sq' ue ·C' ';0·' 'jf"ii"li men IE' en il"! ~!",~,o 'til',f"' th .!iI"1i- it "W':' -:l"l~ 't

"._-_'~'':'''_- ' __ '_ ,.:.~_ '_' .!;J' __ ",",', 'U,J.JL""~VI" iil""',,~,iiJ!!;,.!- ,iJi[i:.!I:'J,a ,_~I,tiII.lI" ',_" W'.'

keep the. fl 0 0 r cl ean, The worshippers remove their shoes before entering, out of respect for the place itself an.d. out of respect for their brothers and sisters 'who wi n, 'be seated 011 rhe floor, lest they should bri ng in dust from the: street, There is also in the 111!Q,SCrU,f} a separate place fO':F the washing before prayer, It mi ght 'be a, beautifull y tiled founrain or j ust a tap with told, 'water II but its functi ou is the same,

TA: "II! ·~I'·l '·1 'II!.,-

Jt:'U3, :~:lraye~~ area U1. the mosque 'WI w. nave two things:

some kind 0 f marker to. point the wcrahippers in the

d;' ,t~ __ . . f" M- - - __ d l' ised r--' , ] fl

1'1 .. I . ... ."' r' ... - -.1 .. !!I .. ... ., I. I.· ..... , I ~ • I ~. 1 D. _ •.. -: -:-- I. -. . - 3. ..-. •

rrecnoa O,L ", .ecca; ane a ,P ace raiseo rrom t :U3 , oar,

Mesques vary greatly in size and ill the w',ay they

]'11 ~'~~~. '~.e.l~;¥i' b .1 til ,I" . but ,~'L\." ~·v ",,]1] share ,~;!~,~ same ''L.!iQl i:' ~ e .

.. 1.1;.'11, 'If "'" Ill; '!,;; !i,.;\l.1 .II .. U ,L,. ."!J.;!l.'~ !UJ,,,,",, .1 it4,w· , ;.;dJII!~_ , II;,;! U"I,"'-' o. r;.;U c~ . .:u ..

features, Regent's Park mosque ]u London '60r example, has a great copper dome beneath. which 'U:H!~: worshippers 'pray, The idea, of fl, dOl11J9d mosque developed in Islamic architecture $0 that the sound 'ben eath it could be amnlified and !['Jjf\ 1"1-:-11,'111':1"1' +1'1~ hot air of ,t'A~,s.~ rabian lands

~IJ' " :, ',,~ . j" I . ~ ~~, u.-, _' IO'U I~, ~IL, Il I ~ ~"WIV ~ I~'_l'~ ,'_: I, ~ ~,~,I~ nJ,~~;IIj)' ~_.i~t ,!~~~ .. :u-~

would rise upwards in the mosque, P.liOV wding some cool for the worsh ippers, The dome is, also a. sp iritual reflection ofthe heavens stretched above Man across the earth, The device used 'fa :poimt OU~ the direction of Mecca is called the mihrab. It might be a simple curved space in the bri cks of the wal ~ or 'be a magnificent structure of pol ychrome marble and gold"bul its fU.t.lC~WOll. is simple: U amplifies the voice of the prayer leader standing ] n front of it and itimmedi ately shows 'the direction of Mecca to anyone 'entering the mosque. Many mosques also have a, miaaret, In. these days. of microphonesand loudsp eakers it :[ s ea sy for the A dhan to 'be broadcast. In. former rimes, though, climbing to the top of the minaret and, crying 01Ll~ the 'Cf~tl to Prayer was,

. the b-' est ~1i'm''\I' for people to 118003'[" 't'IL..Ii"l!_.;j:.,J"~·nM abo 'iij'~ If! '1-1 mo,

11lJ"I"'~ :.:.~.j'. t.~'f.I,~,j. .~Y~, rVv I':_~ __ Vi ,,_,v.I;:.~._ _Wlu..~ r~,'~f"""~r,"-,Ji ~-,~ .. __: ¥v ~, ,_:~I

nn·~e.,I;I. and ,,,,'1 amour ofth p sn .eet

JLI,U JI O'W "-l J '.- j ~ [!~- Lll!'Y.-..: '!J ~ 11,.= '~ ~dll..l '_ \# _ !'

There js another sm '2lII1I'! In--'~~'C' onception in a. lisr of

w,~ '.' l \n!! 1Il!31 ~1.!IllJ.IV ~~ ~.I~... liJii, : ·(;1,.11 .". r, 1.Q _' UIII.J.I~\;.;Ir_,'" !.lUILlil ~ .Ii,·.,. I '_ "Ji.~'~ _'.. .

many, that some In the Western 'wad d h ave a bout Islam,

H . .. -c - .' ,- - ,,- 'n. ',-- d 'f 't'b"" t .' li~ .. " . '!l... 'd", ?~'! T'C-'] , ",'

ave you e'N~r~,eaF:' I 0 I, . e enll~ \;yor~y nea ~ 8< t ._ ..• nere

;:Ji,[c;. no "worry iii ... e ad i:'!"'~ ']'19i I~ ~ iQ 1"'1"'1i oQ 1[>; fC they we'Fe il:"iIf'iom p

are '_,"_ ·"~"'I.·· .. rry 1U1~'l~""·~, ',£.1 "iijl],l;LL.r,1.J.~, ,"IJPil ,w, IljJi'I!J.·.··· \.~~:·.:I,~~-' rOV:,:,iw

antidote to stress or a, fanciful way to avoid smoking 0,[ biting one' s fingernails. You do often see people walkingin the street fingering a sID,eJ]' set of beads, but the beads have nothing to do w rut11 worry - and everything to do with p:ray,e:f';A sibha; prayer beads consist of' a s~ri:ni of' beads that are passed between 'the: fingers. T,bey could be of precious stones or of simple ,[J'] astic jl but the individual using' them will first of all say, for each bead he touches, "Praise 'be. to' Ged," For the second round of beeds be 'wHl say, "Thanks beto G'Od,H an d for 'the: th ird be 'wi~ 1 say ~ "God :i s the Greatest," 'No hint of 'W'(ltTY' abou t hi s prayer, hut ~l simple: '.::Ii~:m"''''''.n.1l'I:JI~ edgem 011\1" of Go d W' 'h ilst the ordin grtt affa ']""['!O!' of

l[._~~,1\J1.IU'."~· W'o" ',:" ~ ',,~!Ij ,lJ.. .. -. I, U.'· _.' ',,, '=~ , ~ _ -- ~~ V ,'.~_- ,J .... ,(;~~ j' ~~ . .- n,~,j~_L ,~ v-

life go on. If tbis simple string of ' be' ads is all antldote to stress, it is, not because ofthe beads themselves, but of the Faith that inspires 03.1111, and peace in the heart ofthe believer.

So we have seen tha t, a_'ccordjllg to, Islam, prayer is part and parcel of the life of every Muslim, From, expressi ons of devotion that adorn everyday speech, to re:c,itrung verses frnm the Holy 'QI~Jr~ial1. whilst sitting 0]1. the bus to utteriug special words 'when entering a house or to 'Using, small 'beads for prayer, the Muslim's da.y is 'fi lled wi~h ways: of t'hinking about Allah, Central '~O all these ways aile the, five daH:y prayers given to man by Allah Himself to make ho:~,y his day .. There are also

(1'1, 'I' et and pri 1: ~CI"fr'.f.]i; ]~,Jf'II'I~ ents of prayer either l' '["'I th o!!II

I~J/I~, .. '.I_,V. _, I~_L_',._ _ .,1. _,''If'C:~II~~ _"Il,~v. JI! . .II,I~ ".-i~ yi,. ~,,' pjl,/I~'_:I'j ~,_&_,,_~_ ,_~,~ l.:,~

'~,110Sq-tU~ or :~ n the quiet of one ~ s hom e. One very beautiful beli af, taught to the 'believers by Mohammed, may the peace and blessings of ,A.11a]_~, be [W,:POll him, is

that the last thi rd ofthe night, if] the hours just before the dawn prayer, is, ,8, very special time for prayer,

Duri '1 '-] 1Ik., "d A" 'I-I'm l"":l ...;,11' ~:

i!!lnl1g: t iese rours, ,]:],e sal" ,', .. w,~l~l, cescenes to tbe

lowest of the heavens, act],'V'le:~y seeking out those \'111110 are asking of J~I:i In i~:~ p'R~a,yer so as, to grant their requests, 'Whe.re is the cruel and vengeful God ~ha: many attributeto Islam? This Godrus~rn:tll"er, 80 tender that He stoops down to hear 'the prayers of'His Creation, The maker of the stars and the sky, the Lord, of the Worlds, stoops dCi\Vn..

Prover '~1

. ~. ~J";'i!' 'iD'

AU~h. win j udg:e them fi,l'st of aU on their faidr[ulness. toprayer and 011 how quick. they have b een to respond to'

'~l . '-.- '."-' . '1'~i1 T- 1- .' faithfulness of ."~·"-·I· :.:- .... - b ..... - .. '. ". 'l!.;., .. I~ 1e pra.yer c a.~ ~ a. = le ,~.€u .. H.~ lbness 0 .. sOIn.e Caln e seen l~y

what appears like a small bruise 011. the forehead, caused 'by one' s head touching the around], :SIO many times lin prayer, 'The faithfulness of 1\10St" however" will be known '~'~ Allah alone, 'W':','- :'110-1 will reward His servants

., .. . . I~.. W. ,"" !I;;Ii.:kv ~Y,. _ ~. . . _.~. _. . . _ _ _ . _ .. oJ!

Wit11 Paradise, "l bave enforced My obligation and made h. Ugh t for My sen/ants" He W'R1.0 prays these live pra yen; will be rewarded as if he had. prayed fifty, W11at I decree cannot 'be changed,' ~

II

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