The Fundamentals Of Islam (Part 1)


With the aid of and the strength given by Allahu ta'ala, who keeps all 'alams in existence and gives all the favours and gifts and who never sleeps, now we begin to explain the blessed saying of our Prophet (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam).

Our beloved superior Hadrat [1] 'Umar ibn al-Khattab (radi-Allahu ta'ala 'anh), who was a gallant leader of Muslims, one of the highest of the Prophet's Companions, and was famous for his truthfulness, said:
"It was such a day that a few of us, the Companions, were in the presence and service of Rasulullah (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam)." That day, that hour was so blessed, so precious a day that one could hardly have the chance to live it once again. On that day, it fell to his lot to be honored with being in the Prophet's company, near him, and to see his beautiful face, which was food for spirits and pleasure and comfort to souls. To emphasize the value, the honor of that day, he said, "It was such a day..." Could there be another time as honorable and precious as the one at which it fell to his lot to see Jabra'il (Jibril, Archangel Gabriel, 'alaihi 's-salam) in the guise of a human being, to hear his voice and to hear the knowledge men needed as beautifully and clearly as possible through the blessed mouth of Rasulullah (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam)?

"That hour, a man came near us like the rising of the moon. His clothes were extremely white and his hair was very black. Signs of travel, such as dust or perspiration were not seen on him. None of us, the Companions of the Prophet (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam), recognized him, that is, he was not one of the people we had seen or known before. He sat down in the presence of Rasulullah (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam). He placed his knees near the Prophet's blessed knees." This person, in the guise of a human figure, was the angel named Jabra'il. Though his way of sitting seems to be incompatible with manners (adab[2]), it showed us a very important fact that, in learning religious knowledge, there is no such thing as shyness, nor does pride or arrogance become a master. Hadrat Jabra'il wanted to show the Prophet's Companions that everybody should ask what he wanted to know about Islam freely from teachers without feeling shy, for there should not be shyness in learning the religion or embarrassment in paying, teaching or learning one's debt to Allahu ta'ala.

"That noble person put his hands on Rasulullah's (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam) blessed knees. He asked Rasulullah, 'O Rasul-Allah! Tell me what Islam is and how to be a Muslim.' "

[1] Hadrat: title of respect used before the names of great people like and Islamic scholars.
[2] adab: there is a special adab in doing everything. The adab of doing something means to follow the conditions necessary for doing it in the best way.