In the name of GOD, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
There is no other god beside GOD

This page contains responses to select questions received from around the world. For a better understanding of each subject, it is recommended that you check the verse references and hyperlinks provided.

If you have any questions, please write to info@masjidtucson.org


What is a Nikah ceremony; do Muslims have to marry only in its traditionally practiced format?

Question: Hello, I am from a Christian background and have started practicing true Islam; thank you for presenting the truth on your site. In a few months, God willing, I will be marrying my long-time friend who has also realized the need to worship God alone and follow the Quran alone for religious guidance. Being of traditional Muslim background, his family is expecting us to have a traditional Nikah wedding ceremony, performed by the imam of the local mosque. What does this involve and is there any ‘conversion’ process I am supposed to go through? My family may also desire to see us do some Christian ceremonies. We would like to check what the Quran says about marriage for submitters (true Muslims) and what can we do to bring about respect and comfort to both sides?

Answer: Peace be upon you. To begin with, congratulations for recognizing the truth and wishing to do what is right as per God’s laws. Most humans blindly follow what they were programmed to believe since birth, or follow a convenient mix of whatever suits their idea of being safe enough to qualify them as Muslim, Christian, etc. As a result of this, you may get several suggestions of what you should do for your wedding as per “Muslim laws” (known as the Shariah), even though the people who advise you are most likely to have a poor idea of what the Quran actually says about anything. For example, how can you have other laws (like the Shariah/Hadith), when all the laws for everything about life are already fully detailed in the Quran!

Quran: Fully Detailed*

[6:114] Shall I seek other than GOD as a source of law, when He has revealed to you this book fully detailed?* Those who received the scripture recognize that it has been revealed from your Lord, truthfully. You shall not harbor any doubt.
[6:115] The word of your Lord is complete,* in truth and justice. Nothing shall abrogate His words. He is the Hearer, the Omniscient.
[6:116] If you obey the majority of people on earth, they will divert you from the path of GOD. They follow only conjecture; they only guess.

Footnote: *6:113-115 Upholding any source beside the Quran reflects disbelief in the Quran (Appendix 18).

 

Marriage in Islam
Marriage is a Divine Institution which God has addressed beautifully in the Quran. The three essential conditions for marriage are:

(a) The person is not an idolater/idolatress (2:221).
This does not apply to you both any longer, now that you have taken the decision to worship God alone. Idolatry is the only unforgiveable offence if maintained till death, so an idolatrous partner may never advocate the worship of God alone in the home or among the children (24:36). As you may have realized, traditional Muslims are the first to brand everyone as idolaters without realizing that they are the biggest hypocrites and idolaters themselves.

(b) Mutual Attraction and consent (4:24).
The couple should know each other and are old/mature enough to give their own consent (not be forced) to the marriage. By God’s grace you already know each other well.

(c) Dowry, paid by the man beforehand (4:24, 33:50, 60:10).  
There are no preset rules for the value or exchange medium for the dowry, which can be arrived at mutually.

 

A marriage in Islam is essentially a solemn pledge or ‘contract’ of commitment between a man and woman to love, support and be faithful to each to each other as man and wife for the rest of their lives. When a couple pledges their commitment to each other before God, they are considered married as per Quran - God is the witness. This pledge or contract is essentially the “Nikah” which now also grants the couple God’s permission to be sexually intimate with each other. While no specific ceremony (or ritual) is required beyond this, a marriage is generally ‘solemnized’ in the presence of close friends and relatives. This ‘solemnization ceremony’ can be performed by another submitter who asks God to bless the marriage, shares a few words of advice and offers good wishes on behalf of everyone present. A suggested marriage format for submitters is available on our site which may be adapted as required.

Before or after the marriage described above, it is absolutely recommended to have a civil/registered wedding as per the law of the land. Apart from all of God's laws that submitters must follow, they have to also be law abiding citizens and do whatever is legally required by their country of citizenship/residence, so do check about this beforehand. A state registered marriage is recognized all over the world and has several advantages in terms of citizenship, passport documentation, progeny identity, inheritance claims etc. These are neutral state laws and do not have any religious bearing that you need to worry about.

About the traditional Nikah performed by a Muslim cleric (imam), we do appreciate that the family may expect it. This situation is invariably faced by submitters around the world and sometimes becomes a topic of background discussion or remarks at submitter weddings. More often than not, these come from those who are least in knowledge or true practice of the religion. So please do not be alarmed or disheartened. Instead, proceed with whatever you need to do to please God Alone, and then educate the people in advance or whenever possible. Speak to them about your beliefs following God’s law to use wisdom and the nicest possible response (41:34, 16:125), as God does not want us to destroy respectful and amicable relations because of religion (4:36).

In Islam, no one has the “religious authority” to permit two people to be married. That permission is granted by God, the ultimate witness and knower of the couple’s innermost intentions. Several people are not aware that in Islam there is actually no clergy system where matters of your soul/religion need to be authorized or mentored by a religious cleric. This is because Islam is based on an individual’s direct relationship and accountability with God where no one can decide or take responsibility for another’s soul. Additionally, the Imam or pastor from the local mosque/church will most likely be a traditional Muslim or Christian cleric which means that the religious content that he will share at the wedding will not be entirely devoted to God alone.

Therefore, in real terms, an imam who performs weddings is really only an appointed officiator of a marriage among Muslim communities. Generally most countries will accept the marriages of religious communities performed by their own clerics, though the couple may still have to comply with the civil marriage formalities anyway for the official record. An unfortunate situation of marriages performed under religious laws (like the illegal Shariah laws), is that marriage disputes and inheritance claims are applied under them, which some people may misuse to stay out of the country’s neutral laws of marriage.

Under traditional Nikah expectations, women of other religious backgrounds are required to change their names to a ‘Muslim name’ and recite the Shahadah to be considered as “converted to Islam.” This does not make sense as there is no such thing as a Muslim name because what brings God’s blessings upon your life/marriage is your worship of Him alone and your righteous actions, not your name. Therefore, now that you are submitters governed by the laws of the Quran, you do not have to have a traditional Nikah or Church wedding.

By the way, a popular ritual in traditional Nikah ceremonies is that the couple must consent to the marriage by saying “I accept” three times in a particular language in the presence of witnesses. This “three times yes” is actually a cultural tradition, not a religious rule. So don’t let anyone guilt you into believing that your marriage is not solemnized if you don’t do this specifically. Actually there is no harm in doing any such cultural ritual if you wish to, as long as you know that it is not a religious marriage rite that must be performed compulsorily.

Unfortunately, people confuse cultural ceremonies with religious law. There is no restriction on celebrating a wedding in any style of cultural format as long as you don’t attribute them to religious laws. Both sides may wish to see something that represents their religious/cultural background. For example, a woman can dress up like a Muslim or Christian bride, her father can give her away, dances and entertainment can be from different cultures, etc. All these are cultural traditions, not religious requirements. Actually it can be quite nice if the ceremonies are a mix of both cultures. A marriage is a very special event and you want everyone on both sides to cherish this momentous occasion. Of course, during the festivities, the religious sentiments of both sides can be respected. For example, liquor and pork is not served to respect the Muslim side, and so on. 

Lastly, we encourage you not to worry about how things will turn out. Just trust in God and ask Him to make everything alright (22:15). You never know how God works it out. God may fix it that the families of both sides may actually look at the big picture and be content with an in between scenario. You do the cultural stuff they really want to see while they respect your religious requirements. God always provides amazing solutions for submitters from whence then never expect.
 
With best wishes to you both and may God bless you with great joys and happiness together from now to forever.

Marriage: A Divine Institution

[30:20] Among His proofs is that He created you from dust, then you became reproducing humans.
[30:21] Among His proofs is that He created for you spouses from among yourselves, in order to have tranquility and contentment with each other, and He placed in your hearts love and care towards your spouses. In this, there are sufficient proofs for people who think.

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Hajj: Eid-ul-Adha festivity is not a religious requirement 

Question: Everywhere around the world, Muslims are preparing for a religious festival called Eid-ul-Adha. What is it and how it to be performed?

Answer: Peace be upon you. Eid-ul-Adhaa (festival of sacrifice) practiced by traditional Muslims involves offering an animal sacrifice on the same day that the Hajj pilgrims also perform the rite of an animal sacrifice (at Mina). While offering an animal sacrifice is indeed a part of the rites of Hajj, it is only meant for the pilgrims at Hajj, not non-pilgrims.

For those who are not performing Hajj, they are not required to do this rite, and by insisting that it is a religious requirement constitutes a man-made innovation. Logically, if non-pilgrims want to offer a sacrifice to mark the completion of Hajj (which they are not performing themselves), then they should also wear pilgrim clothes, carry out the Shaitan stoning rite, and whatever else is done at Hajj. But they don’t do that. Other than an animal sacrifice and an illegal “Eid-ul-Adha” Salat Prayer, they spend the rest of the day celebrating in the finest clothes, while the pilgrims at Hajj continue to be dressed in a state of Ihraam, worship etc.

As regards the illegal "Eid” Prayer mentioned above, this is also another innovation because there is no such prayer, just like there is no “Eid-ul-Fitr” prayer practiced by traditional Muslims on the first morning after the month of Ramadan. In Islam, there are only five daily Salat (Contact) Prayers decreed by God, independent of whether a person is at Hajj or observing the month of Ramadan fasting or any other time in the year.

The concept of a single day for sacrifice is also incorrect. As per Quran, God has allowed four months within which Hajj can be performed. This is a very practical system because large volumes of people can come at different times and perform this once in a lifetime requirement comfortably instead of struggling to manage the crowds. This also clearly points out that you cannot have a single day to perform any rite because people will have a different day of starting, ending, sacrifice etc.
 

However, do keep in mind that there is nothing wrong in festivities to celebrate some occasion or show your appreciation to God. Like you may wish to wish to feed the poor or host a feast for friends and family. Whatever the occasion, as long as you don’t falsely attribute it to God/religion, it is fine to enjoy God’s bounties as you wish (7:32). Unfortunately, traditional Muslims believe it is a religious requirement to have Eid-ul-Adha activities. Lastly, when it comes to enjoying feasts, you may wish to know that God prohibits the eating of any food that is dedicated to other than God. Invariably, people of all religions tend to dedicate feasts to thank or commemorate idols, dead saints; prophets etc. Please make sure your meal is lawful.
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Tests or Punishments: God's efficient growth system for Submitters

Question: I would like to understand a little more about tests and punishments. What do tests involve? When something is not going right, How do I know if it is a test or a punishment?

Answer: Peace be upon you. Everything that we experience in our lives is in accordance with God's will and a specific plan that He has arranged for us to enable us to redeem ourselves. As far as we are concerned, God has given us complete free will to decide our own actions. If we do good, it is God who is doing it (because all good comes from God), but He allows us to take the credit towards our souls for it (8:17). If we do bad (because we allowed Satan to influence us), God allows Satan to afflict us with something bad. However Satan can only affect us to the limit that God allows him to. This is because God also wants us to reflect upon what we have done wrong, repent, and do better next time (18:24, 67:2).

God is the Doer of Everything*

[4:78] Wherever you are, death will catch up with you, even if you live in formidable castles. When something good happens to them, they say, "This is from GOD," and when something bad afflicts them, they blame you. Say, "Everything comes from GOD." Why do these people misunderstand almost everything?

Footnote *4:78 Bad things are consequences of our own deeds (42:30, 64:11), though God is the doer of everything (8:17). God created the fire to serve us, but you can decide to put your finger in it. We thus hurt ourselves. It is God's law that if you put your finger in the fire, it will hurt.

Tests are designed to assess the strength of our submission to God alone under all circumstances. God decides the type, time, place and magnitude of the test, whether it is to test our admission into submission, or help us fix a weakness, or come out of a problem we brought on ourselves, and so on. He may increase or reduce our provisions, or place us in tough or happy circumstances, to see if we will be appreciative, non-objecting, and submitting under all situations (10:61). The verses in Quran dealing with tests indicate that tests are not humiliating, unbearable or permanently damaging (2:286). In fact, believers can look forward to "good news," meaning they will come out better is they trust God and remain steadfast in submission to him throughout the test (38:34, 38:41).

[2:155] We will surely test you through some fear, hunger, and loss of money, lives, and crops. Give good news to the steadfast.*
[2:156] When an affliction befalls them, they say, "We belong to GOD, and to Him we are returning."
[2:157] These have deserved blessings from their Lord and mercy. These are the guided ones. 

Footnote *2:155 The test is designed to prove that we worship God alone under all circumstances (29:2).

The Inevitable Test*

[3:186] You will certainly be tested, through your money and your lives, and you will hear from those who received the scripture, and from the idol worshipers, a lot of insult. If you steadfastly persevere and lead a righteous life, this will prove the strength of your faith.

Footnote *3:186 After passing the admission tests, the proven worshipers of God ALONE enjoy a perfect life, now and forever. See 10:62, 24:55, and 29:2-3.

Nothing Bad Comes From God

[4:79] Anything good that happens to you is from GOD, and anything bad that happens to you is from you. We have sent you as a messenger to the people, ….

[42:30] Anything bad that happens to you is a consequence of your own deeds, and He overlooks many (of your sins).

The important thing to realize here is that whether it is a test or punishment, we must trust in God and look upon every experience as an opportunity to do better. God is the most efficient Reckoner so we may never know which is a test or a punishment or an effective combination of both. The reason for pointing this out is because the easiest thing for people to do is to pass off all calamities and bad things that happen to them ‘as tests.’ This decreases the desire and opportunity to take responsibility for actions and thereby not initiate a process of improvement. The traditional Muslims take this approach. As far as they are concerned, all the suffering, misery and oppression they face are 'one big test' from God, and they will eventually be relieved and forgiven in the Hereafter. This is a completely wrong idea because whatever they are suffering continuously downhill worldwide is purely a result of their actions of abandoning God's laws and not worshipping Him alone. We know from Quran that any individual or community that follows God's laws is guaranteed a life of dignity and happiness in this life and the Hereafter, notwithstanding tests and punishments that will be blended into their lives in between. Happiness is Submission to God.

Additionally, a person going through a trying situation at a particular time doesn’t mean the person is all bad. God is Appreciative, Most Just, and never puts our worship to waste. In fact He overlooks many of our sins, or else He could make the humans suffer greatly (2:143, 35:45, 39:33). Therefore, believers should also be careful about how they judge or decide tests/punishments for other believers, lest they end up misrepresenting the person and harming their own souls.

Believing Nations Prosper

[10:98] Any community that believes will surely be rewarded for believing. For example, the people of Jonah: when they believed, we relieved the humiliating retribution they had been suffering in this world, and we made them prosperous.

 

Therefore, since we do not know God's plan – whether it is a test, punishment or both - the safer option for believers is to kill the ego (2:54), trust in God (26:217-220) and look upon every tough situation as an opportunity to reflect upon their actions and see if there is something in their submission that needs working upon (25:71, 67:2). It never harms to be careful. While we don’t have to feel miserable about life (because we will experience some bad times, reminders, weaknesses/mistakes that need correction etc. 57:22-23), God does not want us to take His mercy for granted (7:99). So whether we are being tested or punished, it is good to take a positive attitude and reflect upon our lives and see if all our actions are most pleasing to God. This will automatically help us pass a test successfully, fix a weakness and come out better from a punishment, God willing. The story of David in is an excellent example of this. Whether it was a test or not, David became careful about his actions and repented anyway (38:20-26). Job (38:41-44) and Jonah (21:87-88) are among other examples of those who took responsibility and corrective actions for whatever was happening to them.

God willing this will have provided a perspective for you. For more information, you can do a search in the Quran software for words like test, punishment, happiness, trust, forgive etc. You may also wish to visit the pages on achieving happiness and trusting/loving God.
God’s Mercy Growth Tests Lead a life of Dignity and Happiness
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Infertile Married Couples: Does the Quran allow creation of a child using sperm from an anonymous donor? 

Question: Recently I was having a discussion about what married couples could do if they are not able to have their own child due to an infertility problem with one of them. Two options were discussed: (1) When the husband cannot produce sperm capable of fertilizing his wife’s egg cell; to consider artificial insemination using the sperm of third party donor from a sperm bank. (2) Where the wife cannot conceive, the husband can give his sperm to impregnate another woman who may be willing to conceive/bear a child for the couple.

My instinct tells me that this is not permissible in Islam. Please enlighten me on what the Quran says about this because one of my relatives is seriously considering one these options. I was also appalled to hear that beyond the artificial insemination option, some couples were even open to their spouse going through the normal process of intercourse with a third party to conceive a child.  

Answer: Peace be upon you and may God bless you for your concern. Marriage and creating/raising children is a great responsibility that cannot be taken lightly. Marriage and children are a dominant component of most people’s lives and God wants for us a life of joy and contentment (30:20/21). To enjoy happy family relationships, God has covered this subject in great detail in the Quran from marriage rules, spouse rights and obligations, discouragement of divorce, prohibition of adultery/abortion, creating or adopting children, family ties etc. Please study the references provided and discuss the subject with your family in light of the Quran so that they may be guided to the right decision, God willing.

When a couple marries, they enter into a commitment before God to remain faithful and supportive of each other throughout the tests of life that God takes them through. One of the wonderful provisions of marriage is that couples can enjoy legal union and procreate children (30:20). It is God's system, that to mate and create children, the couple must be married to each other (25:54). However, God may decide to render one or both of the married couple sterile and incapable of creating their own children (42:50). In such a situation, a couple may consider adoption on which there is no restriction in the Quran (12:21, 28:29, 33:37). It can be done for the pleasure of bringing up a child like your own, or to give parental shelter to another human.
If you adopt children, God has specified that you must give them names that preserve their relationship to their genetic parents - if you know this information (33:4/5). This is so that the child is protected in all future matters of legal rights, inheritances, claims, lineage identity etc. A clear identity of a child's genetic origin also ensures that there is no risk of genetic cross mating later in life, like say a person erroneously marries his or her own genetic sibling or parent (4:23). This is something that can happen in the case of mating with an anonymous sperm.

As mentioned earlier, it is God's system that to create a child, the male and female involved must be married to each other and mix their reproductive cells - which is not the case with taking a third party sperm from a sperm bank. If a couple cannot produce their own child, nowhere in the Quran does God provide an alternative option to allow one of the spouses to mate with another person to produce a child. In Quran, God has covered all options and He does not forget, nor does He run out of words (31:27). For example, He has talked about a stage after birth where a nursing mother may be hired to nurse a child in case a biological mother cannot (2:233, 65:6). If mating with another person was allowed, we would have seen verses which also cover the stage before birth (conception), telling us that if a couple cannot produce their own child, they can try to use a third party sperm or egg. But God has not put a provision for third party mating (artificially or through intercourse), but has talked about adoption.

One of the essential tests of being a true Muslim (Submitter) is to be able to overcome the ego and accept God's will. If God wills that the couple cannot produce its own biological child then they must accept this and consider the option of adoption, if they wish to raise a child. It simply does not demonstrate a good sense of equitable marital harmony or faithfulness if one of the couple mates with another person through artificial insemination or intercourse (30:21). Actually, intercourse between one of the spouses and a third person without being married to that person would constitute adultery, anyway (4:24).  It will also not be a good idea to abuse God’s Divine Institution of marriage by entering into a temporary marriage (which is prohibited), or engaging in polygamy (which is permitted only under specific circumstances).

We must always keep in mind that a special emotional and genetic bond exists between parents and their biological children (33:4). There is always the risk that the participating third party may make a counter claim on the child later in life which can be emotionally and legally distressing for the child and the family. A similar response may also come from the child who may be torn between the desire to know or belong to the original creating father or mother, despite having a good relationship with the non-creating/foster parent. Therefore, adoption is a viable solution and brings shelter to another person. It is understandable that many couples are not able to deal with the reality that they cannot have their own biological children. However, by wanting only to produce only their own child, they lose the opportunity to adopt a child and enjoy parenthood and also give shelter to another human.
What Price a Great Nation How to achieve happiness Tests of life
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Identifying God's Messenger of the Covenant / Importance of accepting & following God's messengers (June 2012)

Question: We are students of Islam and very disturbed by reading on your site that a Dr. Rashad Khalifa claims to be a prophet. Who is he to claim this? Internet articles say that he is turning people away from Islam. There can be no messenger after Prophet Muhammad and whatever Muslims need to understand is explained in the Hadith books. Also, the world does not need another messenger because all Muslims are living messengers of Islam in their own way.

Answer: Peace be upon you. We do appreciate your concerns and are happy to answer all of them God willing. Our advice is that you read our response with an open mind and think about everything logically in light of Quran. Whatever we share can be verified directly from the Quran, the same (and only) book Prophet Muhammad used for his religious guidance (6:114-115). Unfortunately, most people who call themselves Muslims today don’t actually study or follow the Quran themselves. Rather, they practice a religion based on illegal religious sources, hearsay, conjecture and bigoted convenience (6:116).

Muhammad is God’s final prophet
God willing we will start with your statement about Rashad Khalifa whom you have read about. Dr. Rashad Khalifa never claimed to be a prophet, so you will not find this statement on our website. A prophet (Nabi) is a messenger of God who delivers a scripture from God to man. The Quran clearly states that Prophet Muhammad was the last prophet, which means that no more scriptures from God will come after Quran. As God’s Final Testament to mankind, the Quran supersedes all previous scriptures, giving the world a single, complete, religious system of Submission to God alone (Islam) for all people, regardless of their religious or cultural background.

[33:40] Muhammad was not the father of any man among you. He was a messenger of GOD and the final prophet. GOD is fully aware of all things.

As you can see from the verse above, the Quran only says that Muhammad was the final prophet (Muhammad Khaatum Al-Nabiyyeen), but does not say he was the final messenger. This is because after every scripture, God always sends a messenger (Rasoul) to confirm an existing scripture. In Quran, God tells us that He entered into a Covenant with the prophets that He would send a messenger to confirm all existing scriptures (3:81, 33:7).

[3:81] GOD took a covenant from the prophets, saying, "I will give you the scripture and wisdom. Afterwards, a messenger will come to confirm all existing scriptures. You shall believe in him and support him." He said, "Do you agree with this, and pledge to fulfill this covenant?" They said, "We agree." He said, "You have thus borne witness, and I bear witness along with you."

Messenger of the Covenant
Rashad Khalifa is that ‘Messenger of the Covenant’ referred to in the verse above and he provided all the evidence required to establish his identity as that messenger. However, this proof will only be relevant to you if you are willing to accept that a messenger can come after Prophet Muhammad. If you cannot believe or don’t want to accept that a messenger can or will come after Muhammad, then the identity of that messenger is irrelevant because you will not accept any kind of proof that is presented to you. Actually, the problem people have is not with Rashad Khalifa the individual, but the fact that someone claimed to be a messenger of God after Muhammad. Once people have decided that a messenger cannot come after Muhammad, they will not consider any evidence that he presents and will do whatever they can to discredit him, even if it means inventing falsehood about him.

On the other hand, if you accept that a messenger will come after Muhammad, then you should proceed to verify his proof from the Quran. Therefore, the next step is to first take a decision whether you believe another messenger will come after Muhammad or not. Below are a few points to help you in that process:       

  1. God always sends a messenger to confirm an existing scripture from Him. After Prophet Muhammad, till the era of the twentieth century, the Quran has not had a messenger to confirm its Divine revelation and existence. The advent of God’s Messenger of the Covenant is a fact of Quran (5:19) and also prophesized in the Bible (Malachi 3:1-3).

  2. It has always been a tendency of humans to reject a new messenger when he comes to them. Then after they finally accept him, they think that God will not send another messenger after him! For example, Joseph was rejected when he went to his people and then they thought that another messenger cannot come after him. The Jews did not accept the coming of Jesus and the Christians refused to accept Muhammad and so on.
  3. [40:34] Joseph had come to you before that with clear revelations, but you continued to doubt his message. Then, when he died you said, "GOD will not send any other messenger after him. (He was the last messenger)!" GOD thus sends astray those who are transgressors, doubtful.

    Footnote *40:34 The Jews refused to believe in the Messiah when he came to them, the Christians refused to believe in Muhammad when he came to them, and a majority of today's Muslims believe that Muhammad was the last messenger. On that erroneous basis, they refused to accept God's Messenger of the Covenant. We learn from 3:81-90 and 33:7 that those who fail to accept the Quranic injunction to "believe in and support God's Messenger of the Covenant" are no longer believers. See Appendices 2 & 26.

  4. A messenger of God always brings with him irrefutable proof of his messengership. By God’s leave, Jesus revived the dead, Moses parted the sea, etc. Rashad Khalifa was authorized by God to discover the mathematical miracle of the Quran, a unique numerical code based on the number 19, which provides irrefutable proof that God exists and that the Quran is from Him, intact, down to every letter. It is a perpetual miracle encompassing all previous ones that can be physically verified independently and from anywhere by all present and future generations.

  5. Will a messenger after Muhammad reduce Muhammad’s position in history or Islam? This is one of the biggest concerns for many when coming closer to accepting the Quranic fact that a messenger will come after Muhammad. It is God’s system that a subsequent messenger never undermines or disregards any previous messenger’s importance or role in history. Every messenger plays a distinct, soul saving role for the people he was sent to, and it is the job of all humans to respect, uphold, and not make any distinction among any of them (2:136, 2:285).

  6. Nothing changes the fact that Prophet Muhammad was God’s final prophet who brought God’s final scripture to mankind. Nothing changes his tremendous influence and position in the establishment of God’s perfect religion of Islam which God has decreed as the single religion for all mankind till the end of the world (5:48).

  7. What was Rashad Khalifa’s role? As explained earlier, Rashad Khalifa is the Messenger of the Covenant that God entered into with His prophets before creation. This is a fact of the Quran and there is no way for anyone to show from the Quran that God will not send another (rasoul) messenger after (nabi) Muhammad. Rashad Khalifa did not say anything that is not from the Quran. In addition to discovering the 19 based miracle of the Quran which confirms several facts that are essential for the happiness and salvation of human beings, he also clarified many aspects of the religion which people have failed to see or understand from the Quran. For example, one of his major efforts was to make people do exactly as prophet Muhammad did, which is to worship God alone and follow the Quran alone for religious guidance (6:19, 6:38, 6:114, 6:162). He pointed out that Muslims have abandoned the Quran and are showing disrespect and false love for the prophet by following the Hadith and Sunna which were never decreed by God or the prophet (34:44, 39:23, 68:37). The Hadith and Sunna are Satanic innovations falsely attributed to the prophet against his will.

Does the world need a messenger after Muhammad?
Coming closer to acknowledging the fact that a messenger of God will come after Muhammad, one of the last questions sincere seekers tend to ask is, “Why does the world need a new messenger?”

The answer becomes obvious when you reflect upon the shape the world is in today across all nations and religions. Everywhere there is nothing but chaos and animosity. Among all, the Muslims are the most warring, miserable, oppressed and despised people on Earth. In every scripture, God guarantees a life of prosperity and security for any individual or nation that upholds His laws. Therefore, the mess the world is in is undoubtedly a result of abandoning God’s instructions. The Muslims are rightly deserving of the worst punishment that they are experiencing everywhere because they have turned away from God’s complete, perfect and fully detailed scripture in favor of a religion based on falsehood, propagated by ignorant/corrupt religious leaders and scholars. The premise that all Muslims are living messengers of Islam is a completely misleading idea because they have long since stopped being worthy of that title. Almost everything the Muslims do is wrong and has nothing to do with the Quran preached by Prophet Muhammad.   

God sends messengers to restore peace and guidance to the people. They have different roles to play from warning, giving good news or explaining/clarifying God’s message, all so that the people get back onto following God’s path correctly for happiness in this life and redemption to God in the Hereafter. But however much the world is trying to find solutions for peace and economical/social/environmental stability, things are not improving (7:94-96, 8:73, 16:112, 16:33, 20:124, 39:40). There are so many sects in every religion and each of them thinks they are right (6:159, 30:32). There are so many ideas and opinions about what life is all about, and so on (6:116).

So how do you decide what is the correct answer and what isn’t? Where do you look to find the right solution for all problems? These answers are all there in the Quran (10:57, 8:73), but people have gone too far away now to figure out the answers all on their own (25:30). Just like in the past, the time has again come where the world needs a messenger from God to point out where the people have gone wrong and what they need to do next to restore peace in their lives. As per Quran, God’s Messenger of the Covenant has set this plan rolling so that present and future generations will never again be able to claim that they are not aware of what God wants them to follow from the Quran (9:33, 61:9).
As the messenger confirming all of God’s religions/scriptures, Rashad Khalifa’s role included purification and consolidation of all the messages delivered by God’s prophets into one message, and to proclaim that henceforth, there is only one religion acceptable to God, “Submission” (Islam). That is exactly what he did and a good starting point for you to understand his role in the restoration Islam to its pristine purity is to understand why humans are created and what their role on Earth is.

End points
God willing this has answered all your questions and you will think about this with an open mind in context of the Quran’s message. In our response you will have noticed several Quran verse references along with links to related topics which you may wish to read for a more thorough understanding of each subject. The translation we recommend is available on our Quran page. Lastly, we would like to end our response by sharing three critical points which you must consider carefully.

  1. The essential requirement of all human beings is to worship God alone and use this life to seek redemption to Him. Unless people worship God alone and devote their religion absolutely to God alone, all their good deeds in this world will be nullified in the Hereafter — where there is neither nepotism nor intercession. Unfortunately, most people do not worship God alone and are not able to worship Him or practice their religion without mentioning another entity along with Him (3:18, 39:45). This constitutes idolatry, an unforgiveable offence if maintained till death (4:48, 39:65). You can understand more about this from our pages on Monotheism and Muhammad.
  2. Messengers were mortal human beings like all other humans, with absolutely no power of mercy or intercession. The Muslims reverence Prophet Muhammad to an illegal status that almost rivals God and follow a religion which is based on information that they think (or want to believe) the prophet said or did. The Hadith and Sunna contain a lot of absurd information that sometimes makes a public exposure and mockery of the private life of the prophet and his family. If people would just reverence God alone and open their eyes to the truth (2:165, 3:79, 4:36), they will actually end up having true love and respect for the prophet by seeing him for the real person he was and the huge role he played in establishing Islam for the world.      
  3. Please also let not your focus be on Rashad Khalifa, the powerless human, because Satan is trying hard to divert people from the fact that one of the ways God communicates with us is through His messengers. It is God’s will that a messenger will come after Muhammad to purify His messages and restore Islam to its pristine purity. People should be concerned with what God wants for the world, not who He decided it should be communicated through (2:247, 6:12). Of course, eventually the decision is up to you because there is no compulsion is religion (2:256). One of the biggest reasons people lose out from following what is right is because they succumb to peer pressure, just like people have done every time something new came to them in the past (29:25, 35:10). By outright rejecting and refusing to examine information about the religion because they are afraid or don’t want to accept the truth is no big deal (10:39, 41:41). God commands people to verify everything for themselves (17:36), so if people want to reject anything, they must also be able to counter show from the Quran why another messenger will not come after God’s final prophet, and why that messenger is not Rashad Khalifa.
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Conversion process to Islam (Submission)/False cultural barriers (April 2012)

Question: I am planning to embrace true Islam (as explained on your site), but my traditional Muslim friends are advising me all sorts of rules which seem complicated. They talk about things like wearing green attire, reading Arabic and not wearing gold or silk. Is this correct, because I don't see the sense in it? Is green a Muslim color? Please advise me so I don't start out wrong.

Answer: Peace be upon you. First, we congratulate you on embracing Submission to God alone. It is a great blessing upon you to be guided to the right path at this time, much ahead of the billions who will soon follow globally (2:208, 9:33, 61:9, 21:51). 

When you ask about Islam, at most times you will find that people don’t really have a clear idea themselves. They repeat what they know from hearsay and false sources, so do be careful about accepting anything without verifying it from the Quran (2:171, 17:36, 34:53).

In case you have been told differently, we take this opportunity to clarify that there is no formal conversion process to adopt Submission to God (Islam). Submission is an individual and special relationship between you and God where you account to Him directly for your deeds. There is no clergy system in Islam to whom you must report to or get permission about how you connect with God. The Quran contains the clear roadmap for a happy life on Earth and redemption to Paradise in the Hereafter. God is the Teacher of the Quran (55:1-2). Also, Submission to God is an equal opportunity system for all humans, regardless of gender, language or cultural background. You do not need to change your name or cultural habits, nor need to know how to read, write or speak Arabic to Submit to God alone.   

So if you have chosen to submit to God alone, then your declaration of faith is, “Laa Elaaha Ellaa Allah” (No god except God). This is the First Pillar of Islam and you have to bear witness about this to God directly, not anyone else. (You are also aware that you have to remove all forms of idolatry from your life). If you do this, you have already entered or “converted” to the real world of Submission to God (Islam). The next step is to develop your soul by performing the practices of Islam namely, Salat (Contact Prayers), Zakat (Obligatory Charity), Seyyam (Fasting) and few years later, Hajj (Pilgrimage). The correct methods are detailed on our website under religious duties. As regards leading righteous life, the Quran has all the rules and pointers to help you do that every day of your life. 

About the color green; there is no such thing as a Muslim or Islamic color. The religion of Islam requires you to believe in the unseen and therefore, logically, there is no religious symbolism. Besides, it does not make sense, because a color cannot influence your life nor will it bring God’s mercy upon you over another color. It is not certain how this idea came about, but it could be because God refers to green carpets, silk, trees etc. a few times in Quran. Green is also abundant in nature and a very soothing color. But this still does not give it special significance, because God uses several allegorical examples from His creations to help us get a sensation of the wonder Paradise we can look forward to (2:25).

There is also a false belief that you cannot wear gold or silk, and various reasons are offered. There is nothing like that in the Quran. In fact, God tells us that the believers in Heaven will reminisce about how they already had these on Earth, which clearly proves that these are fine to wear (2:25). Therefore, please do not worry about all these things. God allows you to dress as you please as long as it is within the rules of modest dressing. You are also free to wear jewelry or indulge in any form of material luxury you wish. The thing is to remember that all these things are temporary and have no value in the Hereafter (3:14). Therefore, be careful not to become proud, preoccupied and heedless with them and always be appreciative of God’s blessings (14:7).
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Praying at traditional mosques (masjids) is prohibited. Where should submitters pray? Can they visit Mecca and worship at the Ka'bah? (April 2012)

Question:I have recently become a submitter and am learning the Contact Prayers. I understand that I should not pray at traditional mosques or churches. So how do I do my daily prayers or the Friday congregation prayer? Does this also mean that submitters cannot visit the Ka'bah? Why do you not refer to it as the holy mosque?

Answer: Peace be upon you and congratulations on becoming a submitter. It is great that you are learning the Contact Prayers, as they are the main means of developing the soul (27:3).

Submitters know that must never mention any other names besides God in their prayers. A mosque, masjid, synagogue, church, temple etc. is essentially a common dedicated place for people to come and worship. It does not matter what the architectural design of the place is because that is a religious/cultural association and does not determine the value of the prayer. It is the people or what goes on at the place for worship which makes the place sacred for worship or not. That is why you see in the Quran that God calls the Ka’bah the ‘Sacred Masjid’ — not holy mosque, as often referred to by traditional Muslims (2:144, 48:27). Therefore, if you assign a place in your home or office for prayer, it can also be considered as your own masjid.

A place of worship where the name of God alone is not commemorated is in the grip of Satan. In the Quran, God prohibits His servants from praying at such places or along with the people who do not worship God alone. This is because they will speak the polytheistic word of Satan and will repel from the path of God. Therefore, please do not pray at any of these places at this time. To do your Contact Prayers, you do not have to be inside a building which has a typical look associated with Islam. You can pray in your home or office, wherever convenient (7:29). God willing in future, new places will be built and old ones will be purified. Please also do not go to a traditional Friday Congregation prayer or you will be guilty of hearing/supporting falsehood and setting a bad example for future generations. It needs only two submitters to form a congregation. One gives the sermon/leads while the other listens/follows. If you do not have a submitter with you to do the Friday Congregation Prayer, then just pray four units (Rakats) Noon (Zuhr) prayer as you do on all other days. You may also wish to let us know where you are located and we can check if there are submitters near enough for you to connect up with God willing.     

[72:18] The places of worship belong to GOD; do not call on anyone else beside GOD.

Masjids that Oppose God
and His Messenger*

[9:107] There are those who abuse the masjid by practicing idol worship, dividing the believers, and providing comfort to those who oppose GOD and His messenger. They solemnly swear: "Our intentions are honorable!" GOD bears witness that they are liars.

Footnote *9:107 Any masjid where the practices are not devoted absolutely to God ALONE belongs to Satan, not God. For example, mentioning the names of Abraham, Muhammad, and/or Ali in the Azan and/or the Salat prayers violates God's commandments in 2:136, 2:285, 3:84, & 72:18. Unfortunately, this is a common idolatrous practice throughout the corrupted Muslim world.

Do Not Pray
in Those Masjids

[9:108] You shall never pray in such a masjid. A masjid that is established on the basis of righteousness from the first day is more worthy of your praying therein. In it, there are people who love to be purified. GOD loves those who purify themselves.

About the Ka’bah, it was established by Prophet Abraham on the basis of righteousness from the first day. Centuries later, the place was taken over by idol worshippers, which was again purified by Prophet Muhammad. If the people who presently visit or manage it follow corrupt practices, it does not mean that the Ka’bah is idolatrous and not God’s masjid. What Satan tries does not change the reality and God always exposes and purifies all falsehood at the right time.

It’s like if you have visitors staying at your home who may do something wrong or pursue their idolatrous worship in their room. These actions do not mean that your home is bad or can be deemed a place of idol worship. It will always be the home of a Submitter by God’s grace. Likewise, because Islam is in a state of corrupted practice today, it does not mean that the Quran or Islam is wrong. The Quran will always be the perfect book of guidance and God’s system will prevail, despite the idol worshippers (9:33, 61:9). The Ka’bah will soon also be back in the hands of the righteous.

[8:34] Have they not deserved GOD's retribution, by repelling others from the Sacred Masjid, even though they are not the custodians thereof? The true custodians thereof are the righteous, but most of them do not know.

Any submitter wishing to visit and worship at the Sacred Masjid at Mecca most certainly can. All they have to do is not pray with the idolatrous congregation or follow any of the false practices prevalent there. You can pray by yourself (or with submitters if they are with you) after they are done. For submitters wishing to perform Hajj pilgrimage (required once in a lifetime), it is not easy to try to do this all by yourself at this time, as they have several restrictions on travel, reporting etc. It may be easier to go along with a regular traditional tour group (so all the formalities are taken care of), and then you do your worship by yourself thereof. Most people don’t notice or care unless you draw specific attention to yourself. So do take care about talking about the truth out there today as it could turn into a problem for you. The complete details of the pilgrimage are provided on our Hajj page along with video.
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Information other than Quran to Prophet Muhammad (March 2012)

Question: Was there any information given to Prophet Muhammad, other than the revelations recorded in the Quran?

Answer: Peace be upon you. The Quran informs us that the entire Quran was placed into Prophet Muhammad’s soul on the 27th Night of Ramadan, after which he was required to reveal it to the people over a period of time (97:1, 17:1, 44:3, 53:1-18, 17:106). This content, often referred to as “the revelation,” was written down by the prophet in his own hand and delivered by him in stages over a period of 23 years. 

Besides than this, we learn that the prophet had also received other information/communication from God, but which but which was not meant to be recorded as part of the Quran text. For example, the instructions for which passages of Quran where to be delivered when and where, or the final sequence in which the Quran content was to be compiled etc. — these were all independent instructions given to him.

Let’s look at a more detailed example. Verse 66:3 specifically tells us that God informed Prophet Muhammad about something his wives did, but we do not know what exactly God told him.

[66:3] The prophet had trusted some of his wives with a certain statement, then one of them spread it, and GOD let him know about it. He then informed his wife of part of the issue, and disregarded part. She asked him, "Who informed you of this?" He said, "I was informed by the Omniscient, Most Cognizant."

What is important and relevant for us to know is not the exact words that God told the prophet, but the lessons we can get from the verses about how a certain matter was dealt with. This is explained in verses 66:4-5 and several lessons can be learned from them such as: nothing is hidden from God; we must obey/trust God’s messenger and never betray him or disregard his instructions; God always establishes the truth; God supports His servants; you must repent and reform from errors.

Therefore, what is there in the Quran is all we need to know for our salvation. The Quran is extremely efficiently designed where specific details are mentioned where required, or sometimes only a few words are adequate to fully address a subject (10:37, 18:109). Or God may explain it through examples as above. Similarly, the prophet will have received instructions or information about dealing with the community, wars etc., but which was not to be recorded as part of the Quran text.

Unfortunately, traditional Muslims who are not satisfied with the Quran alone, interpret this “other information” to be the information that is found in the books of Hadith. On this basis, they assume that to understand the Quran and “follow the messenger,” they have to refer to the information the Hadith books.

This is completely incorrect and out of context of course. To follow the messenger means to do as he did – worship God alone and follow the Quran alone (3:79, 6:162, 17:73). Prophet Muhammad did not decree the Hadith. He was not even allowed to explain the Quran, because God is the Teacher of the Quran (55:1-2, 75:16-17). The books of Hadith & Sunna are satanic innovations falsely attributed to Prophet Muhammad about what he is supposed to have said or done.

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Inviting to Submission, dealing with non-submitter family members (March 2012)

Question: I am from a Christian background and by God's grace I am practicing the truth for the past six months. Unfortunately, my family members are not interested in listening to the truth and this causes a strain on our relationship sometimes. It's worrisome at times and I don't know how to deal with this.

Answer: Peace be upon you. To begin with, congratulations for realizing and embracing the truth. It is a great blessing to be guided to the truth and you are among a very fortunate few at this time. In fact, for people of non-traditional Muslim backgrounds who may have to overcome various religious, social, or cultural biases, God promises them twice the credit (28:54). The situation you have described is faced by many submitters initially, but God may soon take care of that, so please do not be disheartened. Keep in mind that guidance is in God's hand and He decides who and when someone will be guided.

Only God Guides

[28:56] You cannot guide the ones you love. GOD is the only One who guides in accordance with His will, and in accordance with His knowledge of those who deserve the guidance.

You must always remember that if it took you this long to be guided to the right path, some other soul may need longer. Since you do not know if and when your dear ones will be guided, you must at least ensure that you are left alone to practice your religion freely in amicable surroundings. When inviting to submission, it does not help to tell people up front that they are wrong, because no one likes to be told that. There is always an element of ego at play, so keep the sentiments of the people around you in mind. Usually if you leave people alone and do your own thing with sincere conviction, at some point they will leave you alone and may even encourage you once they recognize your commitment to what you believe in.

God asks us to invite to His path with wisdom and kind enlightenment, using the nicest possible response. When people don’t want to talk about following a perfect system decreed by God, one of the best ways to open the doors to the subject is to set a good example yourself. People can’t help but see that Submission to God alone brings upon a calming and positive effect on people’s lives. When people see the effect it has on your life through your kind, patient and compassionate approach, it becomes interesting for them to want to consider it.

Sometimes people are open to a logical dialogue about God and religion, as long as they can sense that they are not under any obligation to subscribe to anything you tell them. When people are left to explore for themselves, they are more likely to pursue. In fact, rather than telling them to be Submitters (or Muslims,) encourage them to be true followers of their religion by practicing the religion from their own scripture. Should they try, they will soon get stuck at some point because the systems and information across all other religions are greatly corrupt. This will make them realize for themselves that they are not practicing (or can’t practice) their own religion correctly, so they should be more accepting and supportive of what you are doing. If you feel they want to understand this aspect further, you could offer them to explore the page on Christianity for themselves

One God/One Religion

[29:46] Do not argue with the people of the scripture (Jews, Christians, & Muslims) except in the nicest possible manner―unless they transgress― and say, "We believe in what was revealed to us and in what was revealed to you, and our god and your god is one and the same; to Him we are submitters."

How to Spread God's Message

[16:125] You shall invite to the path of your Lord with wisdom and kind enlightenment, and debate with them in the best possible manner. Your Lord knows best who has strayed from His path, and He knows best who are the guided ones.

Every act of submission by a submitter is there for people to see God’s excellent system of life at every stage in the day. Like say, people will appreciate God’s perfect system of guaranteed funds for needy relatives through Zakat. Or they see how you praise and thank God frequently and don’t behave in aggressive or arrogant ways people often tend to behave. Another very important thing people will want to know is that Submission to God does not require any change in social/cultural habits – because that is a big concern for many.

Perhaps one of the most practical ways to guide people to the truth is to give them a logical reason to worship God alone and follow a system decreed by Him. Towards this, it is essential that they first know why they were created and what is the role of humans on Earth

May God bless you and give you the support and strength to live in peace with your family.

Submission No Compulsion in Religion Inviting to God
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Taking Prophet Muhammad's name in the Shahadah is Shirk / Defining Idol Worship (March 2012)

Question: How do you say that Muslims are committing idol worship by mentioning Prophet Muhammad's name in the Shahadah? Some religions have a concept of making idols/statues and worshiping them. But Muslims do not do this nor do they worship the prophet. Please explain.

Answer: Peace be upon you. You are right that Muslims do not make statues or practice a bowing/prostrating form of worship to humans. Yet by taking the prophet’s name in the Shahadah, they are indeed committing idol worship, and in many other ways as well, as explained ahead.
The Quran (11:2) says, “You shall not worship except God,” and the verse containing the Shahadah of Islam (3:18) says, “GOD bears witness that there is no god except He, and so do the angels and those who possess knowledge. Truthfully and equitably, He is the absolute god; there is no god but He, the Almighty, Most Wise.”

From verses 6:162, 7:29, 72:18, we learn that we cannot mention any name along with God, and that our worship must be devoted absolutely to Him alone. Idol Worship is committed when you love, reverence or depend on someone/something as much as or more than God. If you cannot worship, remember, commemorate, or bear witness about God alone without including Prophet Muhammad in some way, you are committing idol worship by giving the prophet as much importance as God. This is pure idolatry or Shirk (partnership) by definition. You do not have to be “praying to” Muhammad or any human being to be committing idolatry. The very fact that you cannot worship or mention God alone without involving another entity constitutes idolatry. Consequently, the prayers of those who have other entities included in them along with God become idolatrous prayers and are duly nullified.  

The Greatest Criterion*

[39:45] When GOD ALONE is mentioned, the hearts of those who do not believe in the Hereafter shrink with aversion. But when others are mentioned beside Him, they become satisfied.*

*39:45 Despite the clear commandment in 3:18 that the First Pillar of Islam is proclaiming: "Ash-hadu An Lã Elãha Ellã Allãh (there is no other god beside God)," the majority of "Muslims" insist upon adding the name of Muhammad. This Greatest Criterion alerts us that rejoicing in adding the name of Muhammad, or any other name, exposes disbelief in the Hereafter. See also Footnote 17:46.

God also commands us reverence Him, not human beings (5:44, 9:119). No human – dead or alive – is divine or ever had any power to guide, intercede, help or provide for anyone (12:42, 6:17, 6:51, 9:80, 10:107, 25:10). Yet, humans set up other humans as ‘gods besides God’ by loving or worshipping them like God, if not more than God (2:165). Muslims love and reverence the prophet excessively and raise him to the level of an infallible super human; take his name with utmost respect etc.; while God alone is worthy of such praise and reverence (45:36-37).

This form of veneration or idolization of humans is prevalent in all religions and is not restricted to just setting up of God’s appointed servants as gods besides God. These ‘gods’ (human idols), include religious leaders and scholars, fake messengers, professional religionists, philosophers, new age gurus, spiritualists, self-proclaimed saviors etc. Though these people may appear knowledgeable or guided, they actually repel from the path of God alone with their ideas (9:34, 58:16, 63:2). They preach their own interpretations of God’s laws or even blasphemously decree some in His name (6:93). Or they may offer their own philosophies without any proof or basis from God’s scripture. Some even offer to pray/intercede for others (often for a fee), which suggests that God needs to be bribed or advised about what’s going on.

Unfortunately because all these people seem to have the answers that suit everyone’s comfort and convenience while promising a life of peace and happiness, millions follow them blindly and treat them like their own personal god (22:8, 28:50, 31:20).

Upholding the Teachings of Religious Leaders Instead of God's Teachings

[9:31] They have set up their religious leaders and scholars as lords,* instead of GOD. Others deified the Messiah, son of Mary. They were all commanded to worship only one god. There is no god except He. Be He glorified, high above having any partners.

*9:31 If you consult the "Muslim scholars" about worshiping God alone, and upholding the word of God alone, as taught in this proven scripture, they will advise you against it. If you consult the Pope about the identity of Jesus, he will advise you to uphold a trinity. If you obey the "Muslim scholars" whose advice is contrary to God's teachings, or if you take the Pope's advice instead of God's, you have set up these religious leaders as gods instead of God.

Beware of Professional Religionists

[9:34] O you who believe, many religious leaders and preachers take the people's money illicitly, and repel from the path of GOD. Those who hoard the gold and silver, and do not spend them in the cause of GOD, promise them a painful retribution.

Incidentally, even in a non-religious context, while it is fine to admire and applaud the talents/worldly successes of people, you must be careful to not let that admiration slip into a state of ‘awestruck idolization’ where you forget that God is the One who raises people to different ranks in accordance with the test He has instituted for them on Earth. No one achieves anything except in accordance with God’s will. For worldly successful icons, it is probably a very big test for them where their earthly blessings can actually be the cause of them being losers in the Hereafter (9:55, 3:196-197, 23:55-56).

More on idolatry: Majority of believers in God are destined for Hell (12:103-106)

Another major reason why most humans end up in Hell is that they set up their egos as gods besides God. To truly submit to God means to let Him guide you throughout your life. But people prefer to uphold their egos and lead their lives as per their own opinion of life and religion. When you let your soul be guided by your ego instead of God, it constitutes setting up the ego as a god besides God and is a critical reason why there is so much chaos and unhappiness on Earth (25:43, 45:23). Refusing to utter the correct Shahadah of Islam by insisting on adding Prophet Muhammad’s name in it is a perfect example of idolizing the ego. It is actually the ego that led to the creation of the human being and it is the ego that will prevent most of them from being redeemed back to God (2:54).

As explained earlier, idolatry is committed when you believe that anything or anyone else besides God can help you. For example, people worship or believe in the power of inanimate objects like statues, icons, tombs of the dead, talismans, gemstones, natural objects like sun, planets trees, fire, water etc. These things cannot hear or see or help in any way. Nor can you change your fortune by consuming “holy food or water” because there is no such thing. God tells us that no one knows the future except God and warns again witchcraft like concepts that use the jinns to predict fortunes. Millions fall victim to mystique concepts like astrology, tarot card reading, black magic etc. (2:102, 7:188, 27:65).

Another subtle, indirect form of idolatry that all humans should watch out for is, ‘preoccupation with the material world.’ Amassing wealth and pursuing/worrying about worldly pleasures/vanities (properties, possessions, homes, cars, looking good etc.) is a lifetime pursuit for most people at the cost of developing their souls in preparation for a life of eternal happiness in the Hereafter (6:32, 43:33-35). While God gives us the freedom to pursue and enjoy all His worldly bounties we must be careful not to let these preoccupy our lives because they have no value for us in the Hereafter (7:32, 18:46, 16:14, 62:10).

Remember, idolatry is the only unforgiveable offence if maintained till death. The bright side is that it is never too late to discard idol worship and submit to God alone. God is Most Merciful and acceptor of repentance (40:3).

[39:17] As for those who discard the worship of all idols, and devote themselves totally to GOD alone, they have deserved happiness. Give good news to My servants.

God's Infinite Mercy

[39:53] Proclaim: "O My servants who exceeded the limits, never despair of GOD's mercy. For GOD forgives all sins. He is the Forgiver, Most Merciful."

The Unforgivable Sin

[4:48] GOD does not forgive idolatry,* but He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who sets up idols beside GOD, has forged a horrendous offense.

*4:48 Idol worship is not forgivable, if maintained until death. One can always repent from any offense, including idolatry before death comes (see 4:18 & 40:66).

Monotheism Who is your God? The myth of Intercession
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False rules for women concerning Salat (Contact Prayer) like menstruation, Friday congregation prayer, covering the head etc. (March 2012)

Question: I was taught as a young girl that women must cover their hair when they pray and cannot pray or fast during their menstrual cycle. Also, my mother and I are submitters now. We were taught that women don’t need to attend the Friday congregation prayers. What should we do?

Answer: Peace be upon you. Unfortunately, several false man-made rules have crept into Islam which prevent women from performing their religious duties correctly.

Menstruation
Nowhere in the Quran has God prohibited women from praying during their menstruation. Menstruation is one of the body’s many natural functions like wax in the ear, mucous in the nose, shedding of skin and hair etc. These happen involuntary and have nothing to do with any religious practice or prayer. If a woman cannot pray or fast during her menstruation (because people say it is unclean), then she should not be thinking of God during these days either. In the Quran, God makes it clear that men and women are equal in belief, so the system and opportunity to make it to Heaven is also equal (3:195, 4:25).

In the Quran, God has only forbidden sexual intercourse during menstruation. If women were not meant to pray during their menstruation, it would extremely easy for God to add that instruction (2:222, 31:27). Today Islam is being restored from America and the women of Christian background who are embracing submission never had a problem with this because they were never taught to link any religious duty with menstruation. The new female generations of submitters today don’t have any idea about this so it never even occurs to them that they can’t perform their religious duties during menstruation. It’s actually only a matter of mental programming so just go ahead and enjoy practicing God's easy and practical religion.

Covering the hair
The rules for dressing are clear in the Quran. Covering the hair (or being covered from head to toe) is not an Islamic dress requirement for prayer or any other time. However, there is also nothing in the Quran which says that men or women cannot cover their hair if they wish to either. So they may do as they feel comfortable. However, we encourage submitters to be careful about not making any false rules or forming habits which can’t be rid of later. Also, believers must always try to set the right example. So if people are new to submission and observe submitters apply any (personal) non-compulsory actions, they may assume that it is part of the religious requirement. It is the responsibility of submitters to clarify the correct position so a wrong habit is not formed.

Women attending the Friday Congregation Prayer (Salat Al-Jumu'ah)
God has made all the religious practices, including the Friday Congregation Prayer mandatory for all submitting men and women (62:9). It is a social religious classroom which makes believers come together and listen to the word of God. As you will know from 9:107-108, submitters are forbidden from praying at corrupt masjids where the name of God alone is not mentioned. It takes only two people to form a congregation – one leads/gives the sermon while the other listens/follows behind the leader. When there are men and women present, the men lead the congregation. If there are only women, one of the women will lead. Therefore, if you do not have a congregation of submitters whom you and your mother can do the Friday Prayer with, you can do this among yourselves at home or office or wherever convenient. A video on the method is available on our Contact Prayer (Salat) page.

Women in Islam Islamic Dress Code Religious Duties
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Celebrating birthdays of messengers and other humans. Is it allowed in Islam? (March 2012)

Question: I would like to know whether it is permissible to celebrate birthdays in Islam. What about birthdays of prophets?

Answer: Peace be upon you. You are free to enjoy and celebrate birthdays of yourself, friends, family members, colleagues etc. There is no restriction in Quran on celebrating birthdays, just like there is no restriction on celebrating anniversaries, achievements or any occasion you wish to. God allows us enjoy life however we wish as long as righteousness is maintained. Of course, whatever we enjoy, we must never become preoccupied with it and must always remember to be appreciative of God and thank Him for all the bounties and blessings (obvious and hidden) He gives us (7:32, 31:20).

However, what does not make sense is that people celebrate birthdays of prophets and other people who are dead. That has no significance or religious benefit at all. Additionally, by celebrating the birthday of a particular messenger, violates the command not to make distinction among God's messengers (2:285). Unfortunately, people make the celebration of a messenger’s birthday into a religious rule which is completely wrong. There is even the risk that the meal you offer or are invited partake in will become dedicated to ‘other than God,’ and such a meal is prohibited for submitters (16:115). God does not like innovations in His name. People also make the death anniversary of a messenger into a religious event which does not have any basis or authorization in Islam.

Best wishes and enjoy your next birthday celebration. We take this opportunity to share that a very significant birthday in the life of a human being (whether you celebrate it or not) is the 40th birthday.


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