Understanding Islam’s Call as Obligations of the Faithful

OUR FIRST OBLIGATION is to verbally profess belief in the Qur’an, which affirms that “there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet.” This statement of faith, known as the shahada, is one of the foundational principles of Islam.

There are many groups and organizations that claim to represent Islam, but the only legitimate group is one whose members are imbued with sincerity of purpose and have an unwavering focus on fulfilling their religious obligations.


Prayer is one of the five key practices that Muslims are obligated to perform each day. It is an act of worship that connects Muslims with their Creator and provides them with peace and tranquility in this world and the next. It also serves as a reminder of the presence of a Higher Power in all aspects of life and helps them to stay grounded in reality.

Line two in the adhan refers to witnessing that there is no god but Allah (La ilaha illallah). It is a reminder of the central tenet that is Islam’s foundation. Reciting it during prayers reminds Muslims that monotheism is the only true faith and that those who do not believe in this truth are living in ignorance, or Jahiliyyah.

The third line is an injunction to perform the ritual prayer called Salah. The word Salah means connection or communication in Arabic. This call is a reminder that Muslims must make it their goal to regularly pray to stay connected with Allah. It is also a way to keep a person grounded in reality, because the five daily prayers are synchronized with the changing of the sun’s position over the earth.

When the sun starts to decline, the Muslim begins his or her afternoon prayer known as Dhuhr. This prayer is a time to reflect on the events of the day and remember how much Allah has blessed them. The prayer also includes supplicating to Allah for his or her needs and concerns.

When the call to prayer is complete, Muslims stand together to perform their prayer. This is a unique aspect of Islam, because people from all different parts of the world are able to gather together and pray side by side regardless of language or culture. Prayer in congregation is considered twenty seven times superior to prayer performed individually and teaches Muslims the importance of community and unity.


Observing a month-long fast during Ramadan is one of Islam’s five pillars along with daily prayer, declaration of faith, charity and performing the Hajj pilgrimage. Muslims abstain from food, drink and sexual intercourse from dawn to sunset during the holy month, a time that is revered as an opportunity for spiritual purification and self-restraint.

Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) has exhorted his followers to observe fasting as a means of moral elevation. Fasting not only imposes a check on eating, drinking and sexual intercourse, it also forbids backbiting, indulging in foul speech, and telling lies.

In addition, it is important for Muslims to eat a light meal before dawn called suhur to prepare for the day’s fast. Muslims often sound drums or ring bells in the predawn hours to signal to those nearby that it is time for the morning prayers. In addition, the Islamic practice of alms-giving (zakat) is emphasized during this time of fasting to encourage a spirit of generosity among Muslims.

While upholding the pillars is considered obligatory for all Muslims, many people do not consistently observe these religious obligations. A variety of factors affect this, such as age, stage in life, work and family responsibilities, health and wealth.

In addition, those whose physical or mental health makes fasting detrimental are excused from it. This includes the elderly, those with a heart condition or on medications, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, children and individuals suffering from ill health or post-natal bleeding. Those who have severe health problems or are on blood thinners may not be able to fast at all and should seek medical advice. Similarly, those who have undergone surgery or are on blood transfusions are not allowed to fast.


Zakat, often translated as charity or almsgiving, is a vital pillar of Islamic help. It not only purifies the wealth and soul of the giver, but also helps those less fortunate by ensuring social justice and eradicating poverty. Understanding the importance of this pillar will help Muslims fulfill their religious obligations with confidence and faith.

A stipulation of Islamic finance, zakat requires a person who meets certain criteria to donate a percentage of their annual earnings to charitable causes. This amount varies depending on the type of wealth, such as agricultural products, livestock, business assets, paper currency, and precious metals like gold and silver. In addition, the amount is determined by the market value of the wealth in the year it was collected, allowing for a fair and balanced assessment.

In addition to being a form of obedience to God, zakat is an excellent way to maintain discipline and stability in one’s finances. It also encourages a sense of gratitude by reminding the giver of how much they have been blessed with, and thus leads to a happier and more content life. It is also a precedent for additional voluntary donations, known as sadaqah, that can be given at any time and in any amount.

Furthermore, zakat serves as a reminder of the shared responsibility of Muslims to preserve the society and environment in which they live. It also promotes a greater sense of solidarity among the community as it encourages individuals to work together to help those in need. This can be seen in the many charitable organizations that are founded by Muslims to help those in need, such as orphanages, hospitals, and food banks.


Charity, or sadaqa, is a fundamental part of Islam and an important way for Muslims to uplift those in need. It is one of the Five Pillars of Islam and embodies universal values of compassion, empathy, and social justice.

Giving charity is a great way to show your love for Allah and gain His mercy and forgiveness. It also provides protection from calamities and trials in life and ensures the safety of loved ones.

The Quran and hadiths hold a significant place for charity, as it is one of the most noble of acts. Those who engage in charity are rewarded by Allah, and the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) taught that those who give in this life will receive shade on the Day of Judgment.

Zakat is a form of charity that requires all Muslims to give a set percentage of their wealth to those in need, and it is considered one of the Five Pillars of Islam. However, a Muslim’s charitable actions are not limited to just zakat; they can also take the form of sadaqa, which is voluntary and does not require any money or assets.

Charity can take many forms, from sharing knowledge to providing food or shelter. It can even be as simple as a smile, but whatever it is, it is an important aspect of Islam and a way for believers to show their devotion to Allah. It is also a way for Muslims to strengthen their bonds with community and fellow believers. By working with organizations like UMR, Muslims can extend their compassion to others and amplify the impact of their donations.


Hajj is one of the most important acts of worship in Islam, an annual pilgrimage that every Muslim must perform at least once during their lifetime. It is an expression of devotion to Allah and servitude to Him, as well as a test of faith. It is also a way of showing gratitude for the blessings and bounties bestowed by Allah.

The pilgrimage, or ibadat, is an essential act of worship that unites Muslims from all over the world and creates a sense of community among them. During the hajj, Muslims dress in similar clothing and pray in the same places, promoting a sense of unity that transcends differences in race, language, and ethnicity. It is a practical declaration of equality and mutual respect for other Muslims, as well as a call to fight racism and xenophobia.

A pilgrim’s obligations during hajj include assuming a state of purity called ihram, reciting Talbiyah, circumambulating the Kaaba (also known as al-Haram) and Sa’yi, walking between the hills of Safa and Marwah, and throwing pebbles at the Jamarah in Mina on three consecutive days. In addition, the pilgrims sacrifice an animal or give a zakat, or charitable donation, to show their obedience and gratitude to God.

The hajj is a major event in the Islamic calendar, taking place over a few days during the month of Dhu al-Hijjah. However, some Muslims prefer to undertake the hajj thamattu or hajj Ifraad, where they perform the tawaf and umrah in a single trip without the requirement of sacrificing an animal. This allows them to begin their ibadat earlier in the year, from the beginning of the tenth Muslim lunar month, Shawwal.