Islamic content encyclopedia

What A Muslim Must Know


Praise be to Allah, we praise Him and seek His help and His forgiveness. We seek refuge with Allah from the evil of our souls and from our bad deeds. Whoever Allah guides none can lead astray, and whoever He leads astray none can guide. I bear witness that there is no true god but Allah alone Who has no partner, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and His messenger.

It is the duty of every Muslim to learn what is necessary of his religion, whether in terms of creed, acts of worship, or dealings. A Muslim must not abandon the religion of Allah, refraining from learning it and not applying it;

rather, he must learn what is essential for him to be on the right course regarding his religion and to worship Allah Almighty knowingly. Thus, he should not be like the Christians who act without knowledge, nor like the Jews who have knowledge but do not act upon it. We ask Allah to keep us away from their path. In view of the fact that many people are ignorant about the fundamentals of religion and owing to the predominance of ignorance, I decided to write a book on things that every Muslim man and woman need to know about the indispensable issues of creed and acts of worship.

I divided this book into three chapters: The first chapter is about the creed, the second chapter is about the acts of worship, and the third chapter is about the dealings and transactions.

I ask Allah Almighty to make it beneficial to every seeker of the truth and to make it done sincerely for His sake, indeed, Allah is the All-Bountiful, the Most Generous.

May Allah's peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his Companions.

Authored by: Dr. Khalid ibn Hamad al-Khuraif

Chapter One

The Creed

First Topic: The Meaning and Pillars of Islam

Islam means submitting to Allah by Tawhīd (monotheism), subjugation to Him by obedience, and dissociating oneself from Shirk (polytheism) and its people.

Islam has five pillars, which are as following:

1. Bearing witness that there is no true god but Allah and that Muhammad is His messenger

2. Establishing prayer

3. Paying Zakah

4. Fasting Ramadān

5. Performing Hajj whenever one is capable to find a way thereto

Importance of Tawhīd (monotheism)

Allah Almighty created the creatures to worship Him alone and associate nothing with Him, as He said: {I have not created the jinn and mankind except to worship Me.} [Surat adh-Dhāriyāt: 56] Such worship can only be understood through knowledge, as Allah Almighty says: {Then know [O Prophet] that none has the right to be worshiped except Allah, and seek forgiveness for your sins and for the [the sins of] the believing men and women, for Allah knows your movements and your places of rest.} [Surat Muhammad: 19] Thus, Allah mentioned "knowledge" before the words and deeds. So, Tawhīd is the most important principle that the Muslim must learn, since it is the core and basis of religion. Without Tawhīd, there is no religion; therefore, it is the Muslim's primary duty [to learn its meaning]. Tawhīd is the first pillar of Islam and every Muslim must know and act upon these pillars, which are five, as mentioned in the Hadīth of ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him and his father) where he said: "I heard the Messenger of Allah (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) say: 'Islam is built upon five (pillars): bearing witness that there is no true god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, establishing the prayer, paying Zakah, performing Hajj, and fasting the month of Ramadān.'" [Agreed upon]

Thus, every Muslim must learn the meaning of Tawhīd, i.e., dedicating worship solely to Allah without associating anyone with Him in His worship, be it a close angel or a messenger.