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Invitation to Islam - For non muslims

Allah (God)
Islam is the complete submission and obedience to Allah (God). The name Allah (God) in Islam never refers to Muhammad (pbuh), as many Christians may think; Allah is the personal name of God.
What do Muslims believe about Allah?
He is the one God, Who has no partner.
Nothing is like Him. He is the Creator, not created, nor a part of His creation.
He is All-Powerful, absolutely Just.
There is no other entity in the entire universe worthy of worship besides Him.
He is First, Last, and Everlasting; He was when nothing was, and will be when nothing else remains.
He is the All-Knowing, and All-Merciful,the Supreme, the Sovereign.
It is only He Who is capable of granting life to anything.
He sent His Messengers (peace be upon them) to guide all of mankind.
He sent Muhammad (pbuh) as the last Prophet and Messenger for all mankind.
His book is the Holy Qur'an, the only authentic revealed book in the world that has been kept without change.
Allah knows what is in our hearts.
These are some of the basic guidelines Muslims follow in their knowledge of God:

Eliminate any anthropomorphism (human qualities) from their conception of Allah. His attributes are not like human attributes, despite similar labels or appellations.
Have unwavering faith in exactly what Allah and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) described Allah to be, no more, no less.
Eradicate any hope or desire of learning or knowing the modality of His names and attributes.
Belief totally in all the names and attributes of Allah; one cannot believe in some and disbelieve the others.
One cannot accept the names of Allah without their associated attributes, i.e. one cannot say He is Al-Hayy - 'The Living' and then say that He is without life. Similarity in names (or meanings) does not imply similarity in what is being described (referents). As a robotics arm differs from a human arm, so the "hand" of Allah is nothing like a human hand, His speech is nothing like human speech, etc.
Certain words are ambiguous or vague in their meanings, and thus may be susceptible to misinterpretation. Only those meanings that are in accordance with what is specified by Allah and His Prophet (pbuh) are acceptable.

Islam places great emphasis on cleanliness, in both its physical and spiritual aspects. On the physical side, Islam requires the Muslim to clean his body, his clothes, his house, and the whole community, and he is rewarded by God for doing so. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said, for example:
"Removing any harm from the road is charity (that will be rewarded by Allah)." [Bukhari]

While people generally consider cleanliness a desirable attribute, Islam insists on it , making it an indispensable fundamental of the faith. A muslim is required to to be pure morally and spiritually as well as physically. Through the Qur'an and Sunnah Islam requires the sincere believer to sanitize and purify his entire way of life.

In the Qur'an Allah commends those who are accustomed to cleanliness:

"Allah loves those who turn to Him constantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure and clean." [2: 22]

In Islam the Arabic term for purity is Taharah. Books of Islamic jurisprudence often contain an entire chapter with Taharah as a heading.

Allah orders the believer to be tidy in appearance:

"Keep your clothes clean." [74:4]

The Qur'an insists that the believer maintain a constant state of purity:

"Believers! When you prepare for prayer wash your faces, and your hands (and arms) to the elbows; rub your heads (with water) and (wash) your feet up to the ankles. If you are ritually impure bathe your whole body." [5: 6]

Ritual impurity refers to that resulting from sexual release, menstruation and the first forty days after childbirth. Muslims also use water, not paper or anything else to after eliminating body wastes.

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) advised the Muslims to appear neat and tidy in private and in public. Once when returning home from battle he advised his army:

"You are soon going to meet your brothers, so tidy your saddles and clothes. Be distinguished in the eyes of the people." [Abu Dawud]

On another occasion he said:

"Don't ever come with your hair and beard disheveled like a devil." [Al-Tirmidhi]

And on another:

"Had I not been afraid of overburdening my community, I would have ordered them to brush their teeth for every prayer." [Bukhari]

Moral hygiene was not ignored, either, for the Prophet (pbuh) encouraged the muslims to make a special prayer upon seeing themselves in the mirror:

"Allah, You have endowed me with a good form; likewise bless me with an immaculate character and forbid my face from touching the Hellfire." [Ahmad]

And modesty in dress, for men as well as for women, assists one in maintaining purity of thought. Being charitable is a way of purifying one's wealth. A Muslim who does not give charity (Sadaqah) and pay the required annual Zakah, the 2.5% alms-tax, has in effect contaminated his wealth by hoarding that which rightfully belongs to others:

"Of their wealth take alms so that you may purify and sanctify them." [9: 103]

All the laws and injunctions given by Allah and His Prophet (pbuh) are pure; on the other hand, man-made laws suffer from the impurities of human bias and other imperfections. Thus any formal law can only be truly just when it is purified by divine guidance - as elucidated by the Qur'an and the Sunnah - or if it is divinely ordained to begin with - the Shari'ah.
Muslims Contribution To Science
Astronomy : Muslims have always had a special interest in astronomy. The moon and the sun are of vital importance in the daily life of every Muslim. By the moon, Muslims determine the beginning and the end of the months in their lunar calendar. By the sun the Muslims calculate the times for prayer and fasting. It is also by means of astronomy that Muslims can determine the precise direction of the Qiblah, to face the Ka'bah in Makkah, during prayer. The most precise solar calendar, superior to the Julian, is the Jilali, devised under the supervision of Umar Khayyam. The Qur'an contains many references to astronomy.
"The heavens and the earth were ordered rightly, and were made subservient to man, including the sun, the moon, the stars, and day and night. Every heavenly body moves in an orbit assigned to it by God and never digresses, making the universe an orderly cosmos whose life and existence, diminution and expansion, are totally determined by the Creator." [Qur'an 30:22]

These references, and the injunctions to learn, inspired the early Muslim scholars to study the heavens. They integrated the earlier works of the Indians, Persians and Greeks into a new synthesis. Ptolemy's Almagest (the title as we know it is Arabic) was translated, studied and criticized. Many new stars were discovered, as we see in their Arabic names - Algol, Deneb, Betelgeuse, Rigel, Aldebaran. Astronomical tables were compiled, among them the Toledan tables, which were used by Copernicus, Tycho Brahe and Kepler. Also compiled were almanacs - another Arabic term. Other terms from Arabic are zenith, nadir, albedo, azimuth.

Muslim astronomers were the first to establish observatories, like the one built at Mugharah by Hulagu, the son of Genghis Khan, in Persia, and they invented instruments such as the quadrant and astrolabe, which led to advances not only in astronomy but in oceanic navigation, contributing to the European age of exploration.

Geography: Muslim scholars paid great attention to geography. In fact, the Muslims' great concern for geography originated with their religion. The Qur'an encourages people to travel throughout the earth to see God's signs and patterns everywhere. Islam also requires each Muslim to have at least enough knowledge of geography to know the direction of the Qiblah (the position of the Ka'bah in Makkah) in order to pray five times a day. Muslims were also used to taking long journeys to conduct trade as well as to make the Hajj and spread their religion. The far-flung Islamic empire enabled scholar-explorers to compile large amounts of geographical and climatic information from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
Among the most famous names in the field of geography, even in the West, are Ibn Khaldun and Ibn Batuta, renowned for their written accounts of their extensive explorations. In 1166, Al-Idrisi, the well-known Muslim scholar who served the Sicilian court, produced very accurate maps, including a world map with all the continents and their mountains, rivers and famous cities. Al-Muqdishi was the first geographer to produce accurate maps in color. It was, moreover, with the help of Muslim navigators and their inventions that Magellan was able to traverse the Cape of Good Hope, and Da Gama and Columbus had Muslim navigators on board their ships.

Humanity: Seeking knowledge is obligatory in Islam for every Muslim, man and woman. The main sources of Islam, the Qur'an and the Sunnah (Prophet Muhammad's traditions), encourage Muslims to seek knowledge and be scholars, since this is the best way for people to know Allah (God), to appreciate His wondrous creations and be thankful for them. Muslims were therefore eager to seek knowledge, both religious and secular, and within a few years of Muhammad's mission, a great civilization sprang up and flourished. The outcome is shown in the spread of Islamic universities; Al-Zaytunah in Tunis, and Al-Azhar in Cairo go back more than 1,000 years and are the oldest existing universities in the world. Indeed, they were the models for the first European universities, such as Bologna, Heidelberg, and the Sorbonne. Even the familiar academic cap and gown originated at Al-Azhar University.
Muslims made great advances in many different fields, such as geography, physics, chemistry, mathematics, medicine, pharmacology, architecture, linguistics and astronomy. Algebra and the Arabic numerals were introduced to the world by Muslim scholars. The astrolabe, the quadrant, and other navigational devices and maps were developed by Muslim scholars and played an important role in world progress, most notably in Europe's age of exploration.

Muslim scholars studied the ancient civilations from Greece and Rome to China and India. The works of Aristotle, Ptolemy, Euclid and others were translated into Arabic. Muslim scholars and scientists then added their own creative ideas, discoveries and inventions, and finally transmitted this new knowledge to Europe, leading directly to the Renaissance. Many scientific and medical treatises, having been translated into Latin, were ...

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