Religion and human society have always been a great part of any country or nation. A person’s belief in something that is unexplained and higher is inseparable from a human being. Islam is a religion that has many followers, even though the rules and beliefs are rather strict and hard to follow. The Five Pillars of Islam are major guides for any Muslim’s life and people pay great attention and put effort in to be a part of the higher order of existence.
The Five Pillars of Islam are called in such a characteristic and specific way because they are the major definitions of what is right and wrong for any Muslim person. Even though it is close to impossible to trace the origins of where it started, one does not have to look far into the past to explain their own following and undoubted belief. Due to this, there were some rituals that had to be carried out. The first pillar is Belief. People must be able to let go of any skeptical thoughts or opinions and rely on the Islam and God. Sometimes, it is difficult to do due to life’s hardships that were experienced by people, leading to a lack in their faith. They realize that the major part of their life is gone and that the choices made, will not be undone.
The second pillar is Worship. It is the intricate relationship each person has with God and how they can rely on the God’s ability to help and change the world. Prayer is a big part of religion when a person can ask the Higher Power to help them live through the hard times or find the solution to the depressing problem. When a person feels lost, religion welcomes the individual with the reassurance that they will be helped and life will become better. The power and the entity of God is a great mystery and so, people rely on this belief to find resources to feel happy again. The third pillar is Charitable giving. An individual must contribute and repay the God for all the help they have received (Teece, 2004). The relationship is reciprocal where the worshipped God and a person are mutually respective and supporting, as they both need each other.
The fourth pillar is the Fasting during a certain time in the year, more specifically, the whole month of Ramadan. The beliefs and traditions are closely intertwined with the social fabric. When people fast together, they unite with the common goal and pay their respects to God. It is the cleansing of the soul through control and limitations to the body and simple pleasures of the mind and physical satisfaction (Khan, 2000). When people follow rules and entrust their minds and organism to God, it shows true devotion and belief in the great plan that has been created for the people by the Spirit. The fifth pillar is the Visit to Mecca or pilgrimage, as people often refer to this as a mission. This must be achieved at least once in a lifetime and is thought to be sacred (Zepp, 2000). Of course, for those who have to travel longer distance, the process can be seen as more rewarding because the time and energy they spend are that much greater, leading the individuals to appreciate the trip they make even more.
The power and the entity of God is a great mystery and so, people feel the awe and unexplained want and need to be a part of the Divine. This central theme of the religion is very attractive to many people and they set out to find their true meaning of life and the reasons for their suffering. The Five Pillars are rules and direction markers that are unbreakable and so, are followed by all Muslims. They can be compared to the rules that Christian people have in relation to their guides in life. The similarity is that the close relationship between Christianity, culture, science and psychology is in reality the same thing and a similar thing can be said about Islam. Christian laws of “do not kill, respect the neighbor and yourself” are all based on the wisdom of the world and all creation, basing themselves on ethical and moral framework (Gort, 2002). If a person is of sane mind and healthy, they understand that to hurt anything that is alive is wrong and this is based on the fact that if you do not want to be hurt, do not hurt others.
This statement is reflected in Christianity: “treat others, as you yourself want to be treated”. It is much noticeable that Christianity is more aligned towards the behavior of a person in relation to others while Islam focuses on the way a person behaves towards God and the respects they pay to the religion itself. All religions are united by the concept that there is Supreme Being who created everything and governs the world. To analyze this point rationally one would come to the same conclusion. People are not the ones who created Earth and the Universe. The thoughts about nature of the world, human nature and life in general, all boil down to the same fact, which supposes a great purpose that everyone must find out by themselves and with the help of God. Simply hearing what the purpose of life is, would not mean anything to a person, they must come to this realization themselves, through feeling and understanding (Strayer, 2011).
Islam and Christianity both have a very complex relationship of God and a person, and it is hard to examine people’s thoughts and feelings without using religion. Genetics and childhood are a big part of a person but there is always something unexplained that makes up a person. There is a part of the divine in everyone, a little piece of God and it hides in person’s deepest corners. Religions demonstrate the great influence that the belief system of the society has on the leaders and the individuals. Throughout time it played an important and inseparable role in the lives of people, supporting but sometimes destroying civilizations. The Five Pillars of Islam and the Christian commandments illustrate that people have direct obligations towards God and religion in general. The sad truth is that belief in the divine and the belief in own private beliefs are always in conflict. People do not want to believe what they are told to believe and whatever they decide to believe in personally is not sufficient enough to provide consolation for the majority of the nations. The common goal of all religions is to unite people in the peaceful fight for truth and morality, through dedication to God and righteousness.
Gort, J. (2002). Religion, Conflict and Reconciliation: Multifaith Ideals and Realities. New York, NY: Rodopi.
Khan, M. (2000). Islam as It Is. Delhi, India: Goodword.
Strayer, R. (2011). Ways of the World. Boston, MA: Bedford/St. Martin’s.
Teece, G. (2004). Islam. North Mankato, MN: Black Rabbit Books.
Zepp, I. (2000). A Muslim Primer: Beginner’s Guide to Islam. Fayetteville, AR: University of Arkansas Press.
The Five Pillars of Islam Religion