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Literally Islam means peace and submission.
Technically it signifies submission and surrendering
ones self to Allah by relinquishing ones freedom and
independence in his favour. Such submission has to
total and complete by bringing ones entire aspects of
life in line with the teachings of Islam.
Islam in the sense of submission implies that for a
person to become a submitting Muslim, he has to
establish a state of harmony and total submission of
the self to God, namely physical, intellectual and
spiritual. Mans submission dimension, like all other
creatures, is already in a state of totally enforced
submission to the nature order.

Do they seek for other than the religion of God? While all
creature in the heavens and on earth have willingly or unwillingly
bowed (submitted) to His will
For him to achieve a balanced and true submission to God, and
stay true to his position as the vicegerent and free agent of God,
unlike other spiritually as well. And for mans intellect to be
correctly coaxed towards once man intellectually submits
himself to God, then he will bind himself become a submitting
servant of God. Hence he establishes a harmonious state of
submission to God. That is why Islam is called the religion of
fitrah (in harmony with human nature) as defined by God.
So set thou thy face truly to the religion being upright, the
nature in which Allah has made mankind: no change there is in
the work wrought by God: that is the rue religion but most
among mankind know not.

Furthermore, the term Islam in the sense of peace

puts Muslims on a acknowledging Him as his Lord by
fulfilling his duties towards Him. And another by living
in a condition of total peace with all of Gods
creatures by respecting their harmonious balanced
and peaceful existence. That is why the keynote of the
Islamic faith is peace and in order to ensure its
realization, it prescribes conditions and requirement
of such a state of peace with God as well as with His
other creations. Consequently, it is by submission to
God that Islam and its requirement of peace at all levels
is possible.

Distinction between Islam and Iman

If we reflect upon the elaborate definition of iman as
faith and acting in conformity with what it implies and
demands, and that of Islam as total submission to
Allah, the distinction between the two becomes
obscured. Nevertheless, some of the fine distinctions
1-Iman lies within the heart (cannot be directly
observed) while Islam focuses on observable behavior.
2-Iman focuses on ones inner submission while Islam
on the outward submission.
3-Iman is the foundation of religion and Islam is its
fabric and structure.

It is because of these fine distinctions between the two that

the Prophet admonished a companion for executing an enemy
combatant, on account of treason against Islam, even though
he had uttered the declaration of faith. And the Quran rebuked
the hypocrites for covering their animosity by external
declaration of Islam while denying it inwardly. As we read:

The desert Arabs says: we believe. Say you have no faith but
you only say we have submitted our wills to God. For not yet
faith has entered into your hearts. However, if you obey God and
his messenger, He will not belittle aught of your deeds; for God is
oft-forgiving, most merciful

Tawhid (monotheism, singularity, oneness or unity of God) is
the most cardinal principle of Islamic ideology. It forms the first
component of the topmost pillars of Islamic religion whose
affirmation and utterance entitles one to the membership
That is to declare, there is no god but Allah meaning there is
no any false god but the real God, Who is the Creator, and
Sustainer of all the universe, thus refuting the concept of the
universe as a machine running automatically towards unknown
destiny on its own accord. Furthermore, it is to affirm that

God as the creator is a unique being and has no

partner. This is known as the belief in the oneness of
God (tawhid)

Tawhid, therefore, signifies ones belief in the oneness of God

Who alone is the creator, sustainer and provider of all lives as
well as belief in His attributes. This implies three things:
1-Tawhid Uluhiyyah (Divine Unity) believing in the oneness of
God in terms of His unique characteristics of possessing the right
to be worshipped alone, loved, obeyed and prayed to for
attaining goodness and evading misfortune.
2-Tawhid Rububiyyah (Oneness in Lordship) which requires the
belief in Gods other attributes such as His characteristics in
administering, controlling, nurturing, and sustaining all the
universe that He has created.
3-Tawhid Asma and Sifat which is believing in His holy names
and functional attributes such as Allah, the Almighty, the allKnowing.

There are many passages in the Quran that describes

as such and one instance is the verse below:
Allah, there is no god but He the living, the selfsubsisting, supporter of all, no slumber can seize Him
nor sleep. His are all things in the heavens and on
earth. Who is thee can intercede in His presence except
as He permits? He knows what appeared to His
creatures as before or after or behind them. Nor shall
they compass aught of His knowledge except as He will.
His throne does extend over the heavens and the earth,
and He feels no fatigue in guarding and preserving
them, for He is the most high and supreme in Glory.

Definition of Iman
Literally, iman means belief involving confidence in truth and
not a supposed truth. Technically, it is to utter the proclamation
of faith in the Islamic creed.
There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger
Consequently anyone who out of full conviction and
understanding of the meaning and purport of this declaration
affirms his faith with unshakable confidence, he will be entitled
to the membership of the Islamic religion. As to the true nature
of faith and its implication for ones daily life, it has been made
clear to us in a tradition by the Prophet in which he defined
iman as Faith is knowing in the heart, voicing with tongue and
activity with the limbs Thus iman involves three element of
knowing, speaking, and doing.

Knowing in the heart means that a person knows or recognizes

in his heart that Allah is true God and He exist, and
Muhammad is His Messenger. As to what is the heart? The
term does not merely refer to the human organ with its
physical qualities together with is attributed psychologically
qualities of emotion. Rather it is a specific faculty or spiritual
organ that separates human beings from non-human beings.
Normally in the Quran it is referred to as intelligence (aql),
a faculty which designates human as a rational animal in the
family of mammals in the animal kingdom. That is why in
the Quranic view, a human being without a spiritually
functioning heart is depicted as an animal or worse.
Do you think thou that most of them listen and understand?
They are only like cattle nay they are further astray from the way.

Again the Quran talks about the qualities of the

heart, and classifies them as a healthy heart (the
one which is able to understand the nature of
things), the sick heart, the rusted and the lost.
Only the heart with faith will be healthy as it is
able to see things the way they are:
They have hearts, but do not understand with
It is not the eyes that are blind, but blind are
the hearts within the breast
Those-He has written faith upon their hearts

Accordingly, the essence of human heart, the faculty of

cognition and the seat of iman if faithfully and strongly
affirm to the truth and reality of Allah and His
Prophet, one part of the essential fundamentals of
iman will be in place. Thereafter, this cognition of the
heart has to be uttered verbally and then translated
into action by ones tongue as well as his limbs. The
reason being that utterances of the formula of faith
alone is not enough and has be verified and its
truthfulness ascertained, so as to ensure whether the
person involved really means it or not. Because many
people say one thing and do otherwise. God Himself
dis-like such a behavior: Verily hateful is it to God that
you say what you do not do

That is why the Prophet of Islam made another requirement that

faith has to be elaborately expressed through action, decreed by
faith in Allah and His Messenger.
Consequently, action by limbs in the hadith in question signifies
that Muslims after having verbally acknowledged the existence
of God commit themselves to this truth and show this
commitment in their activities, not just any activity, but those
that are commanded by Allah, or are in conformity with the
truth of His revelation.
In short, iman refers to the profound belief in God, its other
requirements in the heart, and its external confirmation
through a verbal declaration together with committing ones
self to its full materialization through ones action.

Fundamental of Faith
We have described iman as consisting of faith and
action. For iman, a vision to be upheld, realized and
nurtured, to become eternalized, entrenched and
solidified in the inner recesses of ones heart and mind
and to direct his limbs towards action, one needs
supplementary principles, called the articles of faith
(arkan al-iman) or fundamentals of faith. These articles
of fiath consist of belief in Allah, in the messenger, in
the angels, in the scriptures, in the hereafter and in fate
and destiny or pre-measurement. These articles are a
set of fundamentals outlined by the Prophet to be the
foundation of Islamic ideology.

Ibn Umar reported; we were seated once near the

Apostle of Allah when there appeared a person dressed
in extremely white clothes and having jet black hair. No
fatigue of journey did appear on him. And no one
among us could recognize him till he sat down near the
Prophet and, among others, said: O Muhammad inform
me about iman, He replied: Iman is that you believe in
God and His Apostle, and His angels, and His books,
and the last Day and Pre-measurement. Then he said:
you have spoken the truth
Therefore, according to this hadith, the articles of faith
are six in number. As to what they stand for, we shall
briefly elaborate on them as follows:

1-Belief in Allah
Belief in Allah is at the topmost of the hierarchy of iman and it is
the principal article of faith to which others are secondary. This
precisely means to declare that all other gods and deities are
invalid, but the real God. And finally all other religions and
worships are erroneous, fallacious and therefore futile save
Islam. This is echoed in more than one place in the Quran, and
one instance is:
He is God, besides whom there is no god, knower of the unseen
and visible; He is the most compassionate, the most Merciful, He
is God, besides whom there is no god, the Sovereign, the Holy
one, the sources of peace, the guardian, the preserver, the
Almighty, the compeller, the supreme, Glorified be God above
the partners, they attribute to Him. He is God, the creator, the
maker, the fashioner. To Him belongs the most beautiful names,
and He is the Almighty the All wise

Therefore, to have firm faith in the One God and His sublime
names and attributes and to reject all other gods (alihah) and
whatever the term god stands for is the true states of belief in
2-Belief in the Messengers
Belief in Messengers is another requirement of faith as it is
only natural and logical to believe in them. In order for man to
be able to receive divine instructions, and understand and
implement them in their lives, they need a human medium in
the form of Messengers. Accordingly, the necessity of the
messengers, as human communicators of divine revelations in
human language and its experimentation by them as human
exemplars is inevitable.

That is why God continued to select the most able

among people as the conveyer of His message for
human society, and finally eternalized and perfected
them in the everlasting message given to Prophet
Muhammad, the Quran. The Quran embodying the
guidance of God to man is everlasting simply because
its message transcends time and space, and cuts across
the artificial barriers that divide humanity, unlike the
ancient messages and Prophets which/who were timebased and locality-based.

3-Belief in divine Scriptures

Belief in divine Scriptures signifies the
confidence in the text that contains Gods
communication with man. It is through
guidance from Him that man can know how he
should practice what he believe. The only book
that is still valid is the Holy Quran, the perfected
divine instruction to mankind. Nevertheless
Muslims are still required to believe in the
original version of other divine scriptures that
are today inaccurately known as Torah.

4-Belief in the Angels

Belief in the Angels signifies faith in

invisible creatures, belonging to the
unseen world, who are perpetual
servants of God and function in
various capacities in carrying Gods
command. Some like Jubril worked as
medium of communication between
God and His messenger.

5-Belief in the hereafter

Belief in hereafter is a natural sequence to the lineal journey of
man from the world before, to the world now to the world after.
The Muslim belief is therefore that the world now is transitory
whereas the world after is permanent. Hence mans effort is
to strive to gain the best of places in his permanent residence in
the hereafter. This is significant as this article forms the
foundation of accountability and retribution in Islam. Hereafter
is the palace where absolute justice of God will satisfy all the
aggrieved people who suffer the injustices of all kinds and
descriptions in this temporary world.
Be mindful of a day on which you will return to God. Then each
soul will be recompensed for whatever it earned and they shall
not be wronged

6-Belief in Predestination (qada wal qadar)

Belief in predestination signifies the Muslim belief that
all things both good and evil proceed from God, i.e all
things proceed from a single unified will and command
from God. Nothing is outside it as God is one, so all
things are part of a great integrated whole that
proceeds from His oneness. Good is part of His plan
and so is evil. Thus whatever happens has been
decreed by Allah. God had instructed His beloved
Prophet to say:
Nothing can happen to us except that which God has
decreed for us. He is our protector, and let the believer
put their trust in God.

Definition of Shariah
Shariah, literally means a waterhole, where animals gather
daily to drink, or the straight path according to its Quranic
Then We put thee on the right way of religion, so follow thou
the way and follow not the desires of those who know not.
This verse characterizes the Shariah as the right way because
adherence to it guides one to the true path of guidance set by
God (sirat al-mustaqim). Accordingly, the Shariah literally stands
for a straight path which guides man to the true path of Islam. It
is a way of moral, spiritual and intellectual life in the same way
as Shariah (water hole) led people in pre-Islamic Arabia to the
source of water upon which all physical life depends.

Definition of Fiqh
Linguistically, fiqh means an in-depth understanding
of what is intended or having deep insight into
something and comprehending it. This is clear from
the hadith below:
To whomsoever God wishes good, He gives him an indepth understanding of religion.
Technically, it refers to the science of derived practical
legal rules relating to human conduct, as acquired from
their detailed Shariah evidences (sources).
The word fiqh in the early days of Islam was employed
in the general sense of understanding (the Quran also
uses it in that sense)

Subsequently, however, it was used in the sense

of deep understanding of matters relating to
religion only. Consequently, anyone who was
knowledgeable in matters of religion, was
called faqih. Later on the term evolved and was
coined into a more specialized concept,
signifying the academic field devoted to the
subject of Islamic law, its legal system and
matters of ibadat. Thus fiqh in this sense refers

1-A science devoted to the exposition of deduced

practical legal rules constructed from the Shariah
evidences. Deduced practical legal rues, in this context
in contradistinction to theoretical rules, do not partake
matters of aqidah and ethics. The technical name of
legal rules is hokum which we shall address in due
2- A body of knowledge developed by human
intellectual activities (ijitihad). Human reasoning to
understand and interpret divine guidance (embodied in
the Quran and the Sunnah) in new and changed
situations and to apply it to actual situations in life has
yielded to this body of knowledge, called fiqh.