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ARC Home > Faiths and Ecology > Islam > Islamic beliefs :

What do Muslims believe?

Studying the Qur’an

Submission to Allah

‘There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is His messenger’


These words in Arabic are known as the Shahada or declaration of faith. The word Islam means submission and peace. A Muslim is a person who submits to the one true God – in Arabic called Allah – and so finds peace.

Muslims recite the 99 names of Allah, as given in the Qur’an. But worship of images, of men or God, is forbidden.

The prophet Muhammad is accepted as the final prophet from Allah. The previous 24 prophets, including Noah, Ibrahim (Abraham) and 'Isa (Jesus), received messages relevant for their times, but Muslims believe that only Muhammad received the full and final revelation.

The Five Pillars of Islam

These are the main obligations of all Muslims:

Declaration of faith – Shahadah – in one God, Allah, and in Muhammad as His prophet
Prayer – Salah – five times each day: at dawn, midday, late afternoon, evening and last thing at night
Fasting – Sawm – during the month of Ramadan, from dawn to sunset
Welfare tax – Zakat – is paid to the community for distribution to the poor and the needy, at a minimum of 2.5% of each Muslims’s income
Pilgrimage – Hajj – at least once in a lifetime if possible, to Makkah in the month of pilgrimage

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