What could be more defining my religion 'Islam' than it's own literary root 'Salema' meaning 'Peace and Purity' owing to the 'Submission and Obedience' of the only God ,our Creator (Allah ), with all the best attributes.He is a gender-less,Super-power-the Sustainer, the Giver! He is 'unseen' but 'all-knowing'!
'Islam' is neither a new religion nor 'Muslim', a new name. It was the religion of Abrahim* and the honourable messengers after him ,including Moses* and Jesus*,as mentioned in Quran (or Koran) -the book (words ) of Allah. The message was completed and perfected on Muhammad *, highly praised-one, who is honored to be the best human example of the Quranic teachings, to follow.
( arteric * means blessing of God upon them and the 'due' respects)
Although Muhammad* is the Last Messenger (Khatamun Nabbiyeen) , highly honoured , yet Islam is 'not' Muhammadism as it was not founded by him and Quran is not about Muhammad*'s life-history /his teachings.
Quran is not about Arabs, either..The only reason for the deliverance of the 'Final Message' of Islam to/through Arabs was their historical link to Abrahim*..(...and the right time and place..)
So I feel the best and unbiased philosophical approach to the religion Islam could only be Quranic- the unchanged verdict, nothing more nothing less,..!
The main objective of Islamic teaching is HUMAN and the essence of the principles/philosophy behind the Islamic teachings is JUSTICE.
Islam encompasses the whole universe and is not confined to any single nation or race, place or 'time'!.It was there since the creation of first Human , Adam*.
The MESSAGE has been delivered to Humans by Humans.
The message/law of Islam is convergent and centripetal, and not divergent or centrifugal.
Islam is all about the 'relationship' of a human to the Creator, human to human, and human to the universe, on the whole.The inter-connection and inter-relationship is based upon the laws of justice and balance, manifesting the ultimate 'unity' into ONENESS.
Human is titled as KHALIFA -The vicegerent on earth , a 'Masterpiece' blessed with a share of God's own attributes (qualities) and is given choice (free-will) and responsibility of doing right or wrong ,evil or good, unlike the rest of God's creations which are already submitting and obeying the supreme laws of nature without any conscious efforts,and do not transgress, assuring the stability of the whole system.
Human is endowed with high Intellect and wisdom with all the capabilities of conquering the knowledge and forces of nature for the benefit of human-kind, only!
Humans are born to LOVE and respect all of God's creation.
Human nature is made PURE by birth, and the tendency of doing right or wrong is impregnated in the nature of each SOUL, 'SELF' called NAFS (Nafs e Ammaara, Nafs e luvvaama in Arabic). When the soul achieves a high moral standard , the Nafs reaches the state of PEACE and 'satisfaction', and achieve the closeness of God (Nafs e Mutma-inna)..... God, who is closer and crucial to every human just like the Jugular Vein, as Quran ascribes!
The responsibility of the conduct is regarded on individual grounds only and no one is accountable for anyone else' s action. Moreover no one is burdened more than his/her natural capacitiy of bearing nor he/she will be judged for any thing else except for his/her own deeds, on the day of JUDGMENT.
'Sin' is an injustice done to one's own-self or injustice to others as it is inter-related.It is the crime rendered against the natural and social balances. Conscious act of respecting and protecting the balance is the primary responsilbity of all humans on the whole. They are informed about the basic importance of 'cycles' in nature and are expected to maintain them for their own existence and prosperity. It is a test for each individual under the circumstances he/she has been placed and is warned to repay for any harm or injustice done to the creatures on Earth and Earth-itself ....a HOME given to them......,strictly emphasizing the principile of 'cause and effect'.
So Humans are destined to reap what they sow, in this world, as well!
Human submitting to /obeying these divine laws and striving to establish the divine system,are regarded as believers and hence called Muslims (submitters, obedient).
( ...being dis-obedient and calling onself a Muslim is self-contradictory...since it's not a 'tiltle'..but a 'quality'.! )
Islam sets a' very high moral criteria' ,codes of conduct, for the believers; do' s and don'ts (halaal , haraam) . Not a single social crime/injustice has been left out in Quran, from back-biting to murder, harrasment to adultery, suicide to terrorism etc. Even remaining Idle and purposeless,or indifferent is not acceptable.Habits and things affecting the consciousness or dishonoring the human grace,are not permissible.
Islam allows the total freedom and condemns slavery or bondage and does not allow to use Magic or tricks to control other's privacy. Pride and prejudice has no room in Islam. Keeping eyes open and following the reasoning are the essentials of learning and behaving without exceptions and excuses. No superstitions, exaggerations or make-beliefs are permitted.
( I've omitted the detail...)
The only criteria of 'supremacy' amongst the believers is the CONDUCT , and no color race or any other reference owing to the 'diversity' ,which is attributed as source of apparant recognition,only!
Islam sets rules for an ideal family system leading to the establishment of an ideal society, where everyone enjoys the privilege of equal rights and responsibilities, (parenthood is especially honored) ..which paves avenues for an ideal society, in turn , and a peacful neighborhood. A society in which all the unprivileged are included, respected and protected, religiously and no one is left out.Their honour, property and beliefs are mutually secured.
There is no gender-based discrimination in Islam. Adam* and Eve* were created from a single soul. Both men and women are' required' to be modest with respect to their natural appearances (no dress-codes), keeping the respect of relationships, preventing immorality in society they live in. Women are especially honored and protected because of their natural vulnerabilities. Allowance of more marriages(at the same time) is ONLY conditional , when due to wars orphan women and children exceed in number, even then it's not recommended if any injustice is anticipated amongst them.
Quran suggests/justifies a 'MIDDLE course' in actions to be on safe side. There's no extremism and no compulsions/impositions at all in the religion .However any thing that disturbs the social balance of any given society is not considered popular or acceptable .The rights to protest against the social and religious injustice is reserved on defensive grounds only and NOT on the offencive basis. (This is a form of Jihaad)
There are recommended 'just' punishments regarding social crimes or mentioning of natural tendencies of taking revenge ('eye for an eye') ...but the door of 'compromises and forgivness' is kept opened for all.
All Muslims are obliged to abide by the law and remain faithful to their countries .
( ..revenges/ intrusions/ invasions into other's lands is not Jihaad)
Quran keeps on reminding all humans and believers to strive and struggle for th GOOD of their souls, which is the best form of Jihaad ( from juhd = to strive/struggle for goodness) because it's the best way to bring 'good' and fighting back the 'evil' in community and society. Quran encourages to join in, for the sake of good (Al-Maroof) and fight back the evil (Munkir)
Striving with PEN is Jihaad ,too
Islam only allows the conveying of the message of God by words and not by sword .( ..no such things as 'holy wars'...)
Patience and perseverence are highly valued!
Today the 'Pure Islam' is not 'purely' adopted as a 'Deen' ='way of living' and is fringed with many un-Islamic practices and beliefs (due to lack of knowledge/mis-interpretations/alien influences) besides the 'originals',..... creating divisions, disharmony and controversies in the society. Since there is no priesthood in Islam and Islam forbids to follow the 'majority' blindly, it is every Muslim's individual responsibility to reform his/her self.
No one can take-over or for-sake the religion of God!
Creating 'divisions' amongst MANKIND and amongst believers is the 'main deviation' from the philosophy of teaching of Islam, according to Quran--an injustice! Quran didn't forget the issue of religious tolerance and the respect of every religion, either, only the followers have forgotten it! It forbids injustice done on account of hatred or jealousy (hate-crimes, public abuse....even God doesn't say He ' hates' so and so..He says .He doesn't love ..so and so...!
Killing and suiciding is substantially forbidden.
Quran also suggests ways of mutual 'closeness and inclusion', amongst religions (one/only God) and amongst Muslims (one Quran) .No one is allowed to JUDGE anyone, at all, even then. The final authority is the only God , our Creator and the time is the 'day of Judgment'.
Only God will decide about our 'righteousness' and 'wrongness'….. He will tell us whether we 'worshipped' Him or 'obeyed' Him.. He will inform us if we really loved Him.Did we love what he loved and did we do what he wanted us to do. Did we 'fear' Him or.. His 'wrath'!
If we expect Mercy and Forgivness for us from our Creator, then we have to practice these divine attributes of being merciful and forgiving to everyone around us .
OUR GOD will decide whether we deserve 'Heaven or Hell' but let's not at-least make our Earth a Hell, ...if we can't turn it into a Heaven!
With a message of PEACE to every one!!!
Assalaam o Alaikum!