Although you see yourself as a an insignificant speck, within you the entire universe is contained; you are thus yourself the meaningful book whose letters make clear what is concealed.
Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world, with about 25 % of the earth’s inhabitants considering themselves Muslim (an adherent of Islam). Followers blanket all corners of the earth and believe the purpose of our existence is to worship and awaken to the God within, as well as to witness the face of God in everything. The Arabic Qur’an, considered the oldest known verbatim word of God, guides Muslims to know their true nature.
While Christians believe Jesus was the Son of God, Muslims consider him another prophet like Adam, Noah, Abraham and Moses. Muhammad, in Islamic tradition, was the last prophet sent by God to mankind and whose teachings provide the purest path to enlightenment. What are the basic tenets of Islam?
- Salat: praying five times a day to Allah
- Sawn: fasting each year during the month of Ramadan
- Zakat: giving 2.5 % of our excess to charity
- Hajj: making the pilgrimage to this holy place once in our lifetime
While the first two are compulsory, the second two are not, since not every Muslim can afford to give and make the journey to Hajj. One thing I really appreciate about Islam, is the idea that living our faith should not be hard, complicated, and overbearing. None of the above tenets seem overly challenging, although fasting for a month may be harder than I think since I have never tried it.
As someone keenly interested in the Perennial Philosophy, Islam has much to contribute to my slow, but awakening realization that life is about more than getting the kid to school on time and paying the bills!