Islamic Teachings and Their Practice in Different Essay

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Islamic Teachings and Their Practice in Different Cultures

Islam a highly controversial sensitive issue today's world, misconceptions beliefs, values, goals. For, Americans Muslims live Middle East, reality Indonesia people Islamic faith. What means Islam,

Islamic teachings and their practice in different cultures

Islam developed in the 7th century, in the Middle East. It is a monotheistic religious tradition. Islam which means submit or surrender literally, is founded upon the teachings of Prophet Muhammad, and it is an expression of submitting to the Allah's will. Muslims believe that Allah is the sustainer and creator of the world. The sacred text of Islam is called the Quran. The Quran has teachings that were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad from Allah. Muslims believe that Allah is the only one true God and He has no partner or equal. The five pillars of Islam are its unifying characteristics. The five pillars are its fundamental practices. The five pillars are ritual prayer, ritual profession of faith, fasting, zakat (charity), and hajj (Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca). Majority of the Muslims are characterized by their praying rituals to Allah of five times in a day. The primacy of sacred places like Mecca, Jerusalem, and Medina form some of the defining characteristics of Islam. To worship Allah, study scriptures and pray, Muslims gather together in mosques.

A Muslim's life has no distinction between the secular and religious aspects. A Muslim's life is oriented towards serving Allah in all they do irrespective of it being religious or daily life. Therefore, Islam is a total way of life. Islamic culture emphasizes the development of good character, through the engagement in constant prayer, remembering God, meditation, and other activities. These actions will change a person's heart and bring them closer to God. Islam originated in the Arabian Peninsula and has expanded to other regions like Africa, Asia, Europe and America. Islam is currently the second largest religion in the world. From the current trends in America, it will become the second largest religion. Muslims are currently and will always be neighbors, fellow citizens, and colleagues. Islam may have originated in the Middle East, but a majority of Muslims are found in Indonesia.

Islamic culture in non-Muslim states

Majority of the citizens in non-Muslim countries do not understand the ways of Islam. Many of the citizens can practice their faith easily. Many non-Muslim countries do not recognize Muslim holidays. Therefore, the Muslims cannot celebrate their holidays as the Christians and Jews. Every Friday, Muslims have to attend congregational prayers, and they also need to take break in their working schedules to perform salat. Performing these activities is very difficult as there is not set aside time accorded to these activities.

The financial instructions of the non-Muslim states do not conform to the Islamic teachings. This makes it very hard for the Muslims to access financing or to perform banking using these institutions. Normal banks borrow from savers and lend to other individuals and enterprises. The banks make their profit margins from the differences between lending and borrowing rates. The Muslim faith does not allow for Interest to be charged on any person. This means that a Muslim who uses the normal banks will not expect to receive any interest on the money he/she saves with the bank, and they will also not expect to be charged any interest on the loans they get from the bank Rice, 1999.

The belief has made it very hard for the Muslims to use the normal financial institutions, which in turn has limited their growth and development financially. Currently there are financial institutions that have been setup which adhere to the Shariah law. This has encouraged the Muslims to start using these financial institutions, and they can develop financially. Islamic banks are deposit taking institutions, which provide the normal banking activities of any conventional bank, excluding lending and borrowing with the intention of earning any interest.

The Islamic teachings require a Muslim to be sincere, responsible and meaningful in all their interactions with others. Muslims should behave in a straightforward and open manner and be conscious of their duties and obligations to society. There should be no discrimination of any human being, and Muslims should treat everyone with good treatment and fairness. Islam does not allow for any discrimination based on religion, race, color, nationality, or sex. In the non-Muslim countries, there are many things that will make a Muslim not adhere to the above teachings. The non-Muslim countries have their own cultures, and when Muslims come to these countries they tend to adapt to these cultures, some of which directly conflict with their religion.

Muslims have to pray at least 5 times in a day, and this is one of the basic Islam characteristics Haniffa & Hudaib, 2007.

They face many difficulties as there is not set out time for them to pray during the day. Working Muslims have to look for their own so that they can pray as companies do not recognize their needs. School going children are also forced to fail in their religion, as they have to stick to the school schedules which have no provision for their religions prayer needs. Attempts to accommodate the Muslim students in some American schools resulted in criticism. People are questioning why Muslims are given special treatment and changes be made to accommodate their needs. They go on to say that these provisions violate the Constitution which separates state from church.

Islam is not well understood by other cultures, and it is perceived to be a violent religion. Islam is portrayed negatively across all modern media, and it is associated with terrorism or other violent activities. Muslims were blamed for the Oklahoma bombing of 1995. Mosques, and Muslim homes were burnt down after this bombing, and everyone was blaming it on the Muslims. The media had portrayed Muslims as been the guilty parties and all Muslims are perceived to be part of the conspiracy. When it was discovered that the bombing had been caused by a white Christian, there was never any formal apology issued to the Muslims.

Islam and Christianity

The word Islam means submit or surrender to Allah's will. Muslims are required to submit willfully, and actively obey God living in accordance to his message. Absolute submission to God is not taught in Christianity, but it teaches that human beings are all sinful, and they will never inherit eternal life because of the first parents' sins, and those of their own. This reason brought God to earth through Jesus Christ, whose purpose was to die and suffer for in order to forgive the sins of those who accept his son. Muslims believe Abraham, Moses, Noah, Jesus, and Muhammad had the same pure monotheism message from God. In Islam the last Prophet was Muhammad and, Islam was not a new religion.

The Quran is believed to be the last book sent to mankind by God. Muslims believe this book is guarded personally by God, and cannot be tampered with by any human. This ensures that it remains completely safe till the judgment day. Contrary, Christianity is believed to be traditionally founded by Jesus. The Bible is accepted as the word of God, and Christians believe God is Lord and savior. The disagreement areas between Christianity and Muslim are quite clear. Islam believes and accepts the holiness of Jesus, but it denies the godliness of Jesus. From the Islamic teachings, Jesus is not united with God and therefore, He is not God. Christians on the other hand, view Jesus as God, and they live their lives according to Him. Islam goes ahead to teach that since God is above all he cannot have children, and Jesus is not his son Mortimer, 1991.

Christians believe that Jesus is the son of God, and he died on the cross for mankinds sins. Islam on the contrast denies Jesus was crucified. Muslims believe that Jesus only made people believe that he died, but God saved him.

Both Islam and Christianity believe in only one God. Since Christians believe in the Trinity, Muslims consider them to be associating an attribute to God. They both acknowledge to be descendants of Abraham. The Quran has names of people and events which are also referenced in the Bible. Both religions believe the world will end, and judgment will be made according to a person's actions in the world. Depending on the judgment a person will either live eternally in heaven or go to hell. In both religions, prayer is a way of communicating to God, and there is a spiritual reward in helping and donating towards charity.

Islam and Judaism

Judaism and Islam are viewed to be conflicting religions and perceived to be forever in conflict and turmoil. The similarities between the two religions are not known by many citizens. There are many distinctions between the two religions. Both the religions share some beliefs and principles, through writing, practices, and their implementations. The areas they share same principles include personification of God,…[continue]

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