Why why why?
Let’s talk frankly. Almost never do non-Muslims study Islam until they have first exhausted the religions of their exposure. Only after they have grown dissatisfied with the religions familiar to them, meaning Judaism, Christianity and all the fashionable “-isms”—Buddhism, Taoism, Hinduism (and, as my young daughter once added, “tourism”)—do they consider Islam.
Perhaps other religions do not answer the big questions of life, such as “Who made us?” and “Why are we here?” Perhaps other religions do not reconcile the injustices of life with a fair and just Creator. Perhaps we find hypocrisy in the clergy, untenable tenets of faith in the canon, or corruption in the scripture. Whatever the reason, we perceive shortcomings in the religions of our exposure, and look elsewhere. And the ultimate “elsewhere” is Islam.
Now, Muslims would not like to hear me say that Islam is the “ultimate elsewhere.” But it is. Despite the fact that Muslims comprise one-fourth to one-fifth of the world’s population, non-Muslim media smears Islam with such horrible slanders that few non-Muslims view the religion in a positive light. Hence, it is normally the last religion seekers investigate.
Another problem is that by the time non-Muslims examine Islam, other religions have typically heightened their skepticism: If every “God-given” scripture we have ever seen is corrupt, how can the Islamic scripture be different? If charlatans have manipulated religions to suit their desires, how can we imagine the same not to have happened with Islam?
The answer can be given in a few lines, but takes books to explain. The short answer is this: There is a God. He is fair and just, and He wants us to achieve the reward of paradise. However, God has placed us in this worldly life as a test, to weed out the worthy from the unworthy. And we will be lost if left to our own devices. Why? Because we don’t know what He wants from us. We can’t navigate the twists and turns of this life without His guidance, and hence, He has given us guidance in the form of revelation.
Sure, previous religions have been corrupted, and that is one of the reasonswhy we have a chain of revelation. Ask yourself: wouldn’t God send another revelation if the preceding scriptures were impure? If preceding scriptures were corrupted, humans would need another revelation, to keep upon the straight path of His design.
So we should expect preceding scriptures to be corrupted, and we should expect the final revelation to be pure and unadulterated,for we cannot imagine a loving God leaving us astray. What we can imagine is God giving us a scripture, and men corrupting it; God giving us another scripture, and men corrupting it again … and again, and again. Until God sends a final revelation He promises to preserve until the end of time.
Muslims consider this final revelation to be the Holy Quran. You consider it … worth looking into. So let us return to the title of this article: Why Islam? Why should we believe that Islam is the religion of truth, the religion that possesses the pure and final revelation?
“Oh, just trust me.”
Now, how many times have you heard that line? A famous comedian used to joke that people of different cities cuss one another out in different ways. In Chicago, they cuss a person out this way, in Los Angeles they cuss a person outthat way, but in New York they just say, “Trust me.”
So don’t trust me—trust our Creator. Read the Quran, read books and study good websites. But whatever you do, get started, take it seriously, and pray for our Creator to guide you.
Your life may not depend on it, but your soul most definitely does.
Islam: The Perfect Way of Life for All
It is a must that we strive to know Islam. Allâh’s Messenger (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam, meaning: May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) to the whole mankind encourages us to acquire knowledge of Islam in order to comprehend it. He says in the following authentic Ahâdith:
Abu Hurairah (radhiallâhu anhu, meaning: May Allah be pleased with him) narrated that... the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, “Those who were the best in the pre-lslamic period of ignorance will be the best in Islam provided they comprehend the religious knowledge.” (Bukhâri 4/572 and Muslim)
‘Abdur Rahmân ibn Abi Bakrah (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated on the authority of his father that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, “If Allâh wants to do good to a person, he makes him comprehend the religion; and of course knowledge is attained by learning.” (Bukhâri 1/67)
Mu‘awiyah ibn Abi Sufyân narrated that Allâh’s Messenger said, “Goodness is a (natural) habit while the evil is a stubbornness. To whomsoever Allâh wills to show goodness, He favors him with the understanding in the Religion.” (Ibn Mâjah, 1/221)
When we study Islam or at least read the Qur’an and the authentic Ahâdith we learn that Islam is easy, complete and the perfect religion as well as way of life for the whole mankind. We read in the Qur’an and the Ahâdith the following unique features of Islam:
1. Islam is easy:
“But whoever believes and works righteousness he shall have a goodly reward and easy will be his task as We order it by Our command.” (Qur'an 18:88)
Abu Hurairah (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, “Religion (Islam) is very easy and whoever overburdens himself in his religion will not be able to continue in that way. So you should not be extremists, but try to be near to perfection and receive the good tidings that you will be rewarded; and gain strength by offering the prayers in the mornings, afternoons and during the last hours of the nights.” (Bukhâri 1/38)
Anas bin Malik (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "Make things easy for the people, and do not make it difficult for them, and make them calm (with glad tidings) and do not repulse (them).” (Bukhâri,8/146)
2. Islam is complete:
“…He it is Who has sent unto you the Book, explained in detail. They know full well, to whom We have given the Book, that it has been sent down from your Rabb in truth. Never be then of those who doubt.” (6:114)
“For We had certainly sent unto them a Book based on knowledge, which We explained in detail -- a guide and a mercy to all who believe.” (7:52)
“…(This is ) a Book with verses basic or fundamental (of established meaning) -- further explained in detail -- from One Who is Wise and Well-Acquainted (with all things).” (11:1)
3. Islam is perfect:
“...This day have I perfected your religion for you, completed My favor upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.” (5:3)
As the perfect religion, Islam teaches mankind how to attain success in the most perfect way. The following are some of the Ahâdith that serve as enlightenment and guidance to those who desire for perfection:
Abu Hurairah (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "Goodness and comfort are for him who worships his Rabb in a perfect manner and serves his master sincerely.” (Bukhari 3/725)
Ibn Umar (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "If a slave is honest and faithful to his master and worships his Rabb (Allâh) in a perfect manner, he will get a double reward.” (Bukhari 3/722)
Abu Hurairah (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "Whoever believes in Allâh and His Messenger, offers prayers perfectly and fasts (the month of) Ramadan then it is incumbent upon Allâh to admit him into Paradise, whether he emigrates for Allâh’s cause or stays in the land where he was born.” They (the companions of the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "O Allâh’s Messenger (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam)! Should we not inform the people of that?" He said, "There are one-hundred degrees in Paradise which Allâh has prepared for those who carry on Jihad in His Cause. The distance between every two degrees is like the distance between the sky and the Earth. So if you ask Allâh for anything, ask Him for the Firdaus, for it is the last part of Paradise and the highest part of Paradise, and at its top there is the Throne of Beneficent, and from it gush forth the rivers of Paradise.” (Bukhari 9/519)
Abdullah ibn Hisham (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated: “We were with the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) and he was holding the hand of 'Umar bin Al-Khattab. 'Umar said to Him, "O Allâh’s Messenger! You are dearer to me than everything except my own self.” The Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "No, by Him in Whose Hand my soul is, (you will not have complete or perfect faith) till I am dearer to you than your own self.” Then 'Umar said to him, "However, now, by Allâh, you are dearer to me than my own self.” The Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "Now, O 'Umar, you are a believer.” (Bukhari 8/628)
Abu Hurairah (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “The most perfect believer in respect of faith is he who is best of them in manners.” (Abu Dawud 4665)
Abu Humamah (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “If anyone loves for Allâh’s sake, hates for Allâh’s sake, gives for Allâh’s sake and withholds for Allâh’s sake, he will have perfect faith.” (Abu Dawud 4664)
Abu Hurairah (radhiallâhu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “Among the Muslims the most perfect, as regards his faith, is the one whose character is excellent, and the best among you are those who treat their wives well.” (Tirmidhi 278, 628, 3264 and Abu Dawud)
Aishah (Radhiallâhu anha) narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (sallallâhu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, "Among the believers who show most perfect faith are those who have the best disposition, and are kindest to their families.” (Tirmidhi 3263)
All the above Prophetic teachings in addition to the Qur’anic Ayât (Verses) earlier quoted clearly tell us that indeed, Islam is the perfect religion and hence the best way of life for all. Islam as a universal religion is Allah’s Blessing and Mercy for all of us. It is for us to enjoy it and be successful in the eternal world to come. The best way to attain success through Islam is to learn it according to its authentic Sources. That is, to acquire knowledge of Islam through the Qur’an and the Sunnah and the right deductions from these revealed Sources of Knowledge and Guidance.
Why People Embrace Islam?
Since Allah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) is the One Who gives guidance, earnestly ask Him for authentic Islamic knowledge. We must seek His help and guidance to be able to apply such knowledge and share them to others – all for His Pleasure. May our Rabb (Cherisher and Sustainer) increase our knowledge of Islam and enjoy the best life of being true Muslims forever. Ameen.