Ever wondered, ‘What am I doing with my life?’
Ever gazed at the twinkling stars that cover up the sky on a moonless night, while lying back thinking, ‘What is this universe all about?’
The blossoming flowers, the endless horizon, the towering mountains, the deep valleys, the light blue sky, the green vegetation, the dry deserts, the insects and bees, and the animals and birds, are they only by chance or do they have a story to tell?
Born into this world suckling the mother’s breast, growing up from a child, who learns to crawl, walk and talk, to the adult full of energy and power, only to soon realize the bones have started withering, the skin wrinkling and the hair whitening. No longer is achievable what was easy in the prime of youth. The pleasures and sorrows of this world remain, but the body does not.
Ever wondered, ‘Why were we born, if we had to be gone?’
“Did you think that We had created you in play (without any purpose), and that you would not be brought back to Us?” (Qur’an, 23:115)
Every one of us without exception will return to our Lord on the Day of Resurrection.
But “Lord” and “Creator”?! Isn’t the universe a product of random selection, a chaotic amalgamation?
Steve Jobs would take offense if his iPhone’s sophistication were attributed to an accidental formation.
Then what of the universe? Isn’t it too superb to not have a creator? Isn’t the intricacy of merely the cell enough for us to submit to His Majesty?
Nothing is done without reason. The wheel for instance was not a meaningless invention. So, what is the point of our own creation?
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‘What am I doing here’; ‘Is there a God’; ‘What is religion’; ‘Why are there so many different religions’; ‘Why is there death’; ‘What happens to us after death’; ‘Why can’t I live forever’; and ‘Why can’t there be happiness forever’ are genuine and important questions that baffle many of us.
Is there guidance?
The good news is God didn’t leave us without guidance. Islam, which asserts itself as the true religion of God, says it has the explanation to all these questions.
Islam says God’s religion has been the same since man set foot on earth. Human beings are only required to obey and worship God alone and to stay away from evil and disobedience. This is the simple religion of God.
People today are in servitude to various ‘gods’ — cults, social pressure, money, lusts, desires, prophets, saints, animals, humans, idols and so on — that dictate how we should lead our lives.
Islam means submission to none but God, as only He truly deserves submission. God is perfect in wisdom, free of any want or blemish, and most merciful toward His Creation. His guidance is best for us. He is not in need of us, or our worship. Rather we, and the entire creation, need Him and are dependent on Him.
“O mankind! it is you who stand in need of Allah. But Allah is the Rich (Free of all needs), the Worthy of all praise.” (Qur’an, 35:15)
Life in this temporary world is a test and on the Day of Judgment we will be held accountable for our actions. Those who have faith in God and do righteous deeds will be rewarded with Paradise in the Hereafter, an everlasting life that does not end. Those who disbelieve in God, are ungrateful to His blessings, and commit evil will be punished in the Hellfire for rejecting faith though the truth was apparent to them.
This was the religion of the early human beings, the progeny of Adam and Eve.
The Messengers of Guidance
When human beings strayed and deviated from the true religion into what eventually became different religions, God sent prophets and messengers with divine revelation to remind the people and guide them back to the straight path.
Mankind were one community and Allah sent Prophets with glad tidings and warnings, and with them He sent the Scripture in truth to judge between people in matters wherein they differed… (Qur’an 2:213)
The prophets and messengers were men from the same community that they were sent to. They were the epitome of human perfection and noble role models for people to emulate. Apart from the divine revelation, God also gave prophets miracles to make the truth very clear in the eyes of people.
Islam says God sent tens of thousands of prophets in the course of human history and they all preached the same message.
And verily We have raised in every nation a messenger, (proclaiming): Serve Allah and shun false gods… (Qur’an, 16:36)
Muslims believe in the truthfulness of all the prophets, including (but not limited to) Adam, Noah, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Moses, Aaron, David, Solomon, Zechariah, John, Jesus, and Muhammad (peace and blessings of God be upon them). We believe in all and do not differentiate between them.
The Messenger has believed in what was revealed to him from his Lord, and [so have] the believers. All of them have believed in Allah and His angels and His books and His messengers, [saying], “We make no distinction between any of His messengers.” And they say, “We hear and we obey. [We seek] Your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the [final] destination.” (Qur’an, 2:285)
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was the last and final messenger of God for the entire humanity. The Qur’an is the final divine revelation. Muhammad (peace be upon him) was sent when the darkness of polytheism had enveloped the world. The followers of the previous prophet, Jesus (peace be upon him), had by and large gone astray. They claimed divinity for Jesus and his mother Mary while Jesus (peace be upon him) called to the worship of none but God.
What’s the Proof?
There are innumerable proofs that attest to the truthfulness of Islam, the Qur’an and Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Some are listed below:
- The Qur’an, which claims to be the final word of God, is an inimitable book that has been preserved like no other in human history. Not a letter has changed since it was first revealed over 1400 years ago. Despite its age, the Qur’an is not an “old manuscript” that can only be accessed by scholars. It is simple. Even children read and benefit from it. Yet, at the same time, it has so much depth that it continues to baffle scholars who, in the past 1400 years, have written thousands of volumes explaining the intricacies of the Qur’an and extracted countless sciences, wisdoms and laws. There is nothing comparable to it. It challenges the entire creation to bring forth a book like the Qur’an. No one has ever been able to produce anything like the Qur’an. And if you are in doubt concerning that which We have sent down (i.e. the Qur’an) to Our slave (Muhammad), then bring a Sûrah (chapter) of the like thereof and call your witnesses (supporters and helpers) besides Allah, if you are truthful. (Qur’an, 2:23)
- It is an undisputed fact that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) did not know how to read or write and he, a shepherd (and then a trader), was not known to have produced any form of poetry or prose, let alone anything close to Qur’anic literature.
- Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was the most truthful, honest and trustworthy person in Makkah. He was called Al-Ameen by one and all. How can a person who never lied in even trivial matters lie about God and prophethood?
- The Qur’an speaks about historical and scientific facts that humans have only uncovered today.
The message Islam invites to is simple, straightforward and pure. It doesn’t have any crookedness and our hearts recognize it as the truth.
Islam calls you to believe in God and do good deeds. God is Most Merciful; He loves to forgive and accept our repentance. In Islam, we ask God directly without any intermediaries.
And when My servants ask you, [O Muhammad], concerning Me – indeed I am near. I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls upon Me. So let them respond to Me [by obedience] and believe in Me that they may be [rightly] guided. (Qur’an, 2:186)
We all will return to our Lord and He will judge us with justice on the Day of Judgment. The righteous believers will be rewarded with what our souls so desperately yearn for — everlasting happiness and an eternal life in Paradise, which is better than everything we can imagine. The disbelievers who commit evil — and what can be a greater evil than rejecting God, His Blessings, and Commands — will be punished eternally in the Hellfire. And God is capable of everything.
…Those (the disbelievers) invite [you] to the Fire, but Allah invites to Paradise and to forgiveness, by His permission… (Qur’an, 2:221)
- Quran.com — A website to read the meaning of the Quran translated in different languages.
- The Authorship of the Qur’an: The Work of a Human?
- Jesus in Islam and Christianity
- Who is Muhammad ﷺ And Why Is He So Beloved
- 50 Answers To Common Questions About Islam