What Muslims Believe

Central tenets of Islam, based on the questions in the Belief-O-Matic quiz.

 

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  • Belief in Deity
    There exists only one personal God Almighty--Creator, all-powerful, ever-present, and all-knowing--formless, incorporeal spirit.

    Incarnations
    None, as only God is worshipped. Muhammad is revered as the last and greatest of about 124,000 Prophets/Messengers. Jesus Christ was a Prophet/Messenger of miraculous birth who performed miracles, ascended to heaven before crucifixion, and will return as a Muslim--but he was not an incarnation of God.

    Origin of Universe and Life
    God created the heavens and earth in six days, but the Qur'an refers to a "day" as equal to thousands or tens of thousands (or any large number) of years. In the West, some Muslims allow for the belief in evolution but only as controlled by God.

    After Death
    Saved souls will experience the bliss of heaven and unsaved souls the torture of hell. On Judgment Day, God will resurrect the dead, unite body and soul, and judge all for eternity in heaven or hell. There are seven layers of heaven.

    Why Evil?
    People are not inherently sinners but are, by God's design, free to choose right or wrong, including belief or nonbelief in God. Satan and his spirits inhabit the planet and rule the nonbelievers, while Satan cannot touch believers.

    Salvation
    Obey God's law and Muhammad's doctrine. The path to heaven includes confessing faith in one God, Allah, and that Muhammad is His Messenger; recitation of five prayers daily; giving alms; fasting throughout Ramadan, pilgrimage to Mecca. Confessing and repenting one's sins is between the person and God, made only to Allah and for Allah. Strict obedience to God's laws (conveyed in the Qur'an) and His prophet's doctrine is required.

    Undeserved Suffering
    Suffering is desired by Allah to erase one's sins. Some suffering is Satan's doing or is the work of his spirit world cohorts ("Jinn") and is allowed by Allah as a test of humility and faith; suffering and adversity strengthen one's faith, as pain often leads to repentance and prayer.

    Contemporary Issues
    Abortion is prohibited. Homosexual behavior is condemned. Gender roles are prescribed. Marriage is a sacred contract (but not regarded as a sacrament), and although divorce is permitted, strong reconciliation attempts and measures are expected to be taken first, per the Qur'an, and there are some waiting periods and restrictions on multiple remarriage to the same woman. Remarriage is not prohibited.


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