5 pillars of Islam - five steps to heaven
Islam is the youngest of the VII century in the vast Arabian Peninsula. Together with Judaism and Christianity, he forms a family of so-called, that is, going back to the common source of revelation, given, according to their followers, to the forefather Abraham.
In terms of its content, Islam is a syncretic tradition, which in the early stages of development included various elements of Judaism, Christianity and paganism.
The founder of religion, Muhammad, considered himself a prophet and presented his teaching as a new revelation of the Most High, the God of the Old Testament patriarchs and the God of Jesus Christ. The basics of his teachings are quite simple and represent 5 requirements, known as the 5 pillars of Islam. In fact, all of these have a purely social significance. In other words, Islam is a socially organizing religion that does not offer (at least in its orthodox forms) prospects of mystical depth. So, what are the 5 pillars of faith in Islam? These are shahada (confession), namaz (prayer), zakat (alms), uraza (fasting) and hajj (pilgrimage).
The value of the 5 pillars of faith in Islam
All pillars are obligations imposed on a Muslim. These are not abstract, but very specific requirements for a person who professes Islam. The 5 pillars of faith are not subject to revision and do not imply free execution "at will", since they are proclaimed by the prophet himself, that is, according to the convictions of Muslims, inspired by Allah.
Shahada - Confession of the One God
Of all 5 pillars of Islam, shahad is the most important, as it is a symbol of Muslim faith. However, shahada is not just a text, like, for example, Christian creeds, but an active, active declaration and confession. She proclaims that there is only one God (in Arabic called Allah) and that Muhammad is His prophet. A frank, one-time shahada makes an invalid Muslim and automatically imposes on it the remaining 4 obligations.
When performing shahad, a person must renounce the worship of all other gods, goddesses and deities, and surrender only to Allah in his heart. Thus, this tradition affirms the unquestioning, unconditional principle of monotheism, which organizes the spiritual atmosphere of Muslim society.
The practical consequence of the execution of the shahada - the belief in the One God, is the prayer worship of the Almighty, which in Islam is called namaz or salat. But prayer, as one of the 5 pillars of faith in Islam, is not just a prayer, done at any time for any reason. It is to the smallest detail developed, strictly declared ritual of worship prescribed by Muhammad. According to the legend, Allah demanded 50 times of prayer from people a day, but the prophet managed to lower the bar to five times - in the morning, at noon, in the early evening, in the evening and at night.
In form, it is a sequence of movements and postures with a parallel declaration of prayer formulas. One such full cycle is called rakata. Namaz of different times include different amounts of rakat.
Women must pray separately from men. If this is not possible, they are behind them.
A person can perform all prayers individually in any ritually clean place. The exception is the Friday noon namaz, since it involves the gathering of the whole community in the mosque.
Zakat - Donation
Like the practice of tithing in the Jewish synagogues and Christian churches, the 5 pillars of Islam imply a mandatory donation from their followers. It is called Zakat and in this religion is not just a measure of material support of the cult, but also a requirement of faith. That is, the religious status of donations in Muslim culture is so high that its non-fulfillment is equated with the renunciation of the One God and the violation of other pillars of faith. The exceptions are those Muslims who, due to the insignificance of the material condition, are freed from zakat.
There are developed standards for the distribution of the size of donations. This is usually 2.5% of the available cash, if the general condition of a person exceeds 85 grams of gold or its monetary equivalent. Other tangible property, such as livestock and crops, is also subject to zakat.
It is paid once a year. Moreover, the rules of Islam provide for several categories of persons who can be provided with material gratuitous assistance qualified as zakat. There are eight such categories, and what makes Islam different from Christianity in this respect, it’s not only religious leaders.That is, a donation can be paid not only to a religious organization for its purposes, but spent, for example, on paying debts of another person who does not have the means to return them in time.
Uraza - post
Muslims also include in 5 pillars of Islam a post called urazo. This religion involves several posts during the year, but only one forms the pillar of faith - the fast of the month of Ramadan.
In contrast to the Christian religion, the Islamic level is a complete rejection of food, water and sexual contact only during daylight hours. With the onset of darkness, these prohibitions are lifted. In addition, Islam does not oblige some people, for example, patients participating in hostilities, women during menstruation, and criminals serving a sentence.
Hajj - pilgrimage
Hajj must at least once in a lifetime commit every person who professes Islam. The five pillars of faith impose a duty on pilgrimage to Mecca to the Kaaba, since, according to Muslim tradition, this tradition was begun by Abraham and supported by Muhammad. Kaaba is the greatest material shrine of Islam.The origins of her worship are rooted in pre-Islamic pagan Arabic cults.
Hajj takes place at a strictly defined time - in a little over two months after the end of Ramadan.
Women can also make pilgrimages, but only when accompanied by a husband. And those Muslims who for various reasons cannot do this should, nevertheless, send a deputy for themselves.
These are the 5 pillars of Islam that all physically and mentally full Muslims must perform in life in order to earn the forgiveness of sins and go to heaven.