In this post, we shall look into the fundamental principles of Islam. At the end of this lesson, you are expected to:
- Identify the five fundamental principles of Islam;
- List the five articles of faith; and
- Itemise the five obligatory prayers.
What are the fundamental principles of Islam?
There are five fundamental principles of Islam. They are the very pillars of every Muslim. They are Iman (belief), As-Solat (prayer), Az-Zakat (charity), As-Sawm (fasting), and Hajj (pilgrimage).
These are necessary prerequisites to the perfection and completion of one’s faith as a Muslim.
The literal translation of Iman is belief or faith. Every Muslim must have a strong belief in the existence of Almighty Allah and that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is his true messenger and the seal of all prophets. A Muslim must also believe that whatever happens to him, whether good or bad, has been preordained by God Almighty.
Thus, there are six articles of faith one must abide by to qualify as a true Muslim. They are:
- Belief in Allah
- Belief in prophets
- Belief in holy books
- Belief in angels
- Belief in destiny
- Belief in the last day of judgement
Solat comes in two forms: the obligatory prayer and the voluntary prayer. The obligatory prayers are the five daily prayers that Allah has prescribed to all Muslims in supplication to Him.
Muslims must observe the five daily prayers as at when due with their prescribed Nawaful. Whosoever does not observe the five obligatory prayers counts for a non-Muslim.
The five obligatory prayers are:
- Subur (Fajr): the dawn prayer.
- Dhuhr (Zuhr): the midday prayer.
- Asr: the afternoon prayer.
- Maghrib: the sunset prayer.
- Isha: the evening/night prayer.
Zakat is one of the pillars of Islam. It is purely almsgiving. A certain proportion of a Muslim’s wealth is given out to the poor or the less-privileged in the society. The almsgiving is done in line with Islamic injunctions to provide leverage for the poor. The giver will continually enjoy Allah’s blessing on his wealth.
It is imperative for all Muslims to fast during the holy month of Ramadan. Allah has commanded all Muslims to fast when the month of Ramadan comes. This places both the poor and the rich on the same pedestal. Any Muslim who intentionally breaks or misses a fast is mandated to repay with sixty fasts.
Hajj is the holy pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina for purification rites. It is an act of worship mandated for Muslims with means. Muslims who can afford to should perform Hajj at least once in their lifetime.