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Explain the Islamic beliefs about Tawhid, Akhira and the Books of Allah. Islam is described as a living religious system that applies to an estimated one billion people globally. The key beliefs in Islam revolve around the elements of Tawhid, Akhira and the Books of Allah. Tawhid is the most basic tenet in Islam, where each Muslim worships one omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient deity and personality. It is the acknowledgment that Allah is the “Creator and Provider” and the belief in worshiping Allah’s many attributes. This is evidenced in the Qur’an, “Glorified be Allah, the Lord of the Throne, bow to He and what they attribute to Him! [Surah Al Anbiya: 22]. In Islam, Allah set the requirement that humans must perpetually remember their God. This generates a transcendent and personal realm and connection to Allah. The Prophet Muhammad stated, “Human beings are created in the image of the Most Compassionate”. That is, submission to Allah reflects His will, as He is seen through each individual. Akhira is summarised as life after death. It encompasses the resurrection and the final Judgment of all. God assesses people, “according to intentions of their actions” and rewards and punishes them respectively.

Beyond death it is too late for forgiveness and those whose actions are deemed sinful are sent to Jahannam, hell, whilst the good are sent to Jannah, eternal paradise. Believers seek their entire lives to be in complete harmony with Allah. As the Qur’an says, “He that works evil will not be requited, and he that works righteous deed will enter the Garden of Bliss” [HQ 40:40]. As the Qur’an names, the most important of God’s truths revealed to His prophets are: the Torah of Moses, the Psalms of David, the Gospels of Jesus and the Qur’an. The Qur’an is seen as the most complete and true, as it is the direct guidance of God.

A Muslim believes that Allah conveyed messages to many prophets as He did to Muhammad. Is is expressed, “Believe in what has been sent down to thee (Muhammad) and before thee” [Surah al-Baqara 2: 4]. The inspired Books of Allah represent the written revelation of God’s will and how an adherent can practice and submit to Islam. The importance of the Qur’an is linked to the ethical guidelines and teachings of Allah, to be mirrored by adherents. In summary, the core beliefs of Tawhid, Akhira and the Books of Allah embody the advice and word of Allah.

The beliefs manifest themselves in all aspects of Muslims’ existence, from life to beyond death. Demonstrate the importance of the Qur’an for the whole of the Islamic religious tradition. In your response refer to beliefs, ethics and practices. The language of the Qur’an is seen as poetry rather than prose, guidance rather than many obligations and the soul, heart and mind form part of whole recitation of the Qur’an. The Qur’an is fundamentally an instruction booklet for each Muslim where each tradition, article and belief is docked. Muslims live their lives in the image of Allah as they are “created in the image of the Most Compassionate”.

The Qur’an is believed to be the direct word of Allah and supplies guidance in the ways in which an adherent can submit to God’s will. It highlights Akhira, how a Muslim can achieve eternal paradise. It highlights Tawhid, the doctrine of the oneness of God and submitting to his will. It highlights in belief in Angels, creatures that “prostrate all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth”. It paints the messages of Allah and exhibits them to adherents. The Qur’an also is the manual of shaping laws, moral decisions and forming a well-rounded ethical framework. Islamic jurisprudence is primarily determined by the understanding of the

Qur’an. However, various other sources aid the process. It is written, “In the Qur’an we put thee on the right way of religion so follow thou that way” [45:18]. An example is what is considered “Halal” (permitted) and “Haraam” (forbidden). The Sunna and Hadith are used second. The Sunnis use Ijma, the consensus of religious leaders whilst the Shi’ias turn to Imams and the Ayatollah, the leaders of the religion moved by divine wisdom. After that Qiyas appears which finds similarity in one situation and applies analogies and teachings to another. The Five Pillars are defined as fundamental practice.

They are: the Shahadah, declaration of faith, Salah (prayer), which is believed to “restrain one from shameful deeds”, Zakat (charity), Saum (fasting during Ramadan) and the Hajj (pilgrimage). As no bird can not fly conveniently with only one wing, a Muslim can’t be welcomed in the Heavens unless he is keeping good balance of the two Islam wings. The Qur’an outlines how these foundational pillars are to be completed to balance adherent’s lives. Human beings are guided by Allah but they are ultimately the architects of their own destiny. Hence, God revealed the Qur’an, His keys to unlocking a righteous, spiritual and fulfilled existence.

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