Thursday, September 18, 2014

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10 random facts about Muslims

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11) Muslims believe that God has revealed 99 of His names, or attributes, in the Qur'an. It is through these names that one can come to know the Creator. A few of these names are the All-Merciful, the All-Knower, the Protector, the Provider, the Near, the First, the Last, the Hidden and the Source of All Peace.
12) The Christian concept of "vicarious atonement" (the idea that Jesus died for the sins of humanity) is alien to the Islamic concept of personal responsibility. Islam teaches that on the Day of Judgment every person will be resurrected and will be accountable to God for their every word and deed. Consequently, a practicing Muslim is always striving to be righteous while hoping and praying for God's acceptance and grace.
13) Muslims believe in all of the true prophets that preceded Muhammad, from Adam to Jesus. Muslims believe they brought the same message of voluntarily surrendering to God's will (islam, in a generic sense) to different peoples at different times. Muslims also believe they were "muslims" (again, in a generic sense) since they followed God's true guidance and surrendered their will to Him.
14) Muslims neither worship Muhammad nor pray through him. Muslims solely worship the Unseen and Omniscient Creator, Allah.
15) Muslims accept the original unaltered Torah (as revealed to Moses) and the original unaltered Bible (as revealed to Jesus) since they were revealed by God. But none of these scriptures exist today in their original form or in their entirety. Therefore, Muslims follow the subsequent, final and preserved revelation of God, the Qur'an.
16) The Qur'an was not authored by Muhammad. It was authored by God, revealed to Muhammad (through angel Gabriel) and written into physical form by his companions.
17) The original Arabic text of the Qur'an contains no flaws or contradictions, and has not been altered since its revelation.
18) Actual 7th century Qur'ans, complete and intact, are on display in museums in Turkey and other places around the world.
19) If all Qur'ans in the world today were destroyed, the original Arabic would still remain. This is because millions of Muslims, called "hafiz" (or "guardians") have memorized the text letter for letter from beginning to end, every word and every syllable. Also, chapters from the Qur'an are precisely recited from memory in each of the five formal prayers performed daily by hundreds of millions of Muslims throughout the world.
20) Some attribute the early and rapid spread of Islam to forced conversions by the sword. While it is accurate that the Muslim empire initially spread, for the most part, through battles and conquests (a common phenomenon for that time) the religion of Islam itself was never forced on anyone who found themselves living under Muslim rule. In fact, non-Muslims were afforded the right to worship as they pleased as long as a tax, called "jizyah", was paid. During the Dark Ages, Jews, Christians and others were given protection by the Muslims from religious persecutions happening in Europe. Islam teaches no compulsion in religion (Qur'an 2:256 and 10:99). For more, read "The Spread of Islam in the World" by Thomas Arnold.

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