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 How to Become a Muslim

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PostSubject: How to Become a Muslim   Sun Jul 10, 2011 5:25 am



The word “Muslim” means one who submits to the will of God, regardless of their race, nationality or ethnic background. Becoming a Muslim is a simple and easy process that requires no pre-requisites. One may convert alone in privacy, or he/she may do so in the presence of others.

If anyone has a real desire to be a Muslim and has full conviction and strong belief that Islam is the true religion of God, then, all one needs to do is pronounce the “Shahada”, the testimony of faith, without further delay. The “Shahada” is the first and most important of the five pillars of Islam.

With the pronunciation of this testimony, or “Shahada”, with sincere belief and conviction, one enters the fold of Islam.

Upon entering the fold of Islam purely for the Pleasure of God, all of one’s previous sins are forgiven, and one starts a new life of piety and righteousness. The Prophet said to a person who had placed the condition upon the Prophet in accepting Islam that God would forgive his sins:

“Do you not know that accepting Islam destroys all sins which come before it?” (Saheeh Muslim)

When one accepts Islam, they in essence repent from the ways and beliefs of their previous life. One need not be overburdened by sins committed before their acceptance. The person’s record is clean, and it is as if he was just born from his mother’s womb. One should try as much as possible to keep his records clean and strive to do as many good deeds as possible.

The Holy Quran and Hadeeth (prophetic sayings) both stress the importance of following Islam. God states:

“...The only religion in the sight of God is Islam...” (Quran 3:19)

In another verse of the Holy Quran, God states:

“If anyone desires a religion other than Islam, never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter, he will be in the ranks of those who have lost (their selves in the Hellfire).” (Quran 3:85)

In another saying, Muhammad, the Prophet of God, said:

“Whoever testifies that there in none worthy of being worshipped but God, Who has no partner, and that Muhammad is His slave and Prophet, and that Jesus is the Slave of God, His Prophet, and His word[1] which He bestowed in Mary and a spirit created from Him; and that Paradise (Heaven) is true, and that the Hellfire is true, God will eventually admit him into Paradise, according to his deeds.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)

The Prophet of God, may the blessing and mercy of God be upon him, also reported:

“Indeed God has forbidden to reside eternally in Hell the person who says: “I testify that none has the right to worship except Allah (God),’ seeking thereby the Face of God.” (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)


The Declaration of the Testimony (Shahada)

To convert to Islam and become a Muslim a person needs to pronounce the below testimony with conviction and understanding its meaning:

I testify “La ilah illa Allah, Muhammad rasoolu Allah.”

The translation of which is:

“I testify that there is no true god (deity) but God (Allah), and that Muhammad is a Messenger (Prophet) of God.”

To hear it click here:

http://www.islamreligion.com/testimony.mp3

Or click on “Live Help” above for assistance by chat:

http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/204/

When someone pronounces the testimony with conviction, then he/she has become a Muslim. It can be done alone, but it is much better to be done with an adviser through the “Live Help” at top, so we may help you in pronouncing it right and to provide you with important resources for new Muslims.

The first part of the testimony consists of the most important truth that God revealed to mankind: that there is nothing divine or worthy of being worshipped except for Almighty God. God states in the Holy Quran:

“We did not send the Messenger before you without revealing to him: ‘none has the right to be worshipped except I, therefore worship Me.’” (Quran 21:25)

This conveys that all forms of worship, whether it be praying, fasting, invoking, seeking refuge in, and offering an animal as sacrifice, must be directed to God and to God alone. Directing any form of worship to other than God (whether it be an angel, a messenger, Jesus, Muhammad, a saint, an idol, the sun, the moon, a tree) is seen as a contradiction to the fundamental message of Islam, and it is an unforgivable sin unless it is repented from before one dies. All forms of worship must be directed to God only.

Worship means the performance of deeds and sayings that please God, things which He commanded or encouraged to be performed, either by direct textual proof or by analogy. Thus, worship is not restricted to the implementation of the five pillars of Islam, but also includes every aspect of life. Providing food for one’s family, and saying something pleasant to cheer a person up are also considered acts of worship, if such is done with the intention of pleasing God. This means that, to be accepted, all acts of worship must be carried out sincerely for the Sake of God alone.

The second part of the testimony means that Prophet Muhammad is the servant and chosen messenger of God. This implies that one obeys and follows the commands of the Prophet. One must believe in what he has said, practice his teachings and avoid what he has forbidden. One must therefore worship God only according to his teaching alone, for all the teachings of the Prophet were in fact revelations and inspirations conveyed to him by God.

One must try to mold their lives and character and emulate the Prophet, as he was a living example for humans to follow. God says:

“And indeed you are upon a high standard of moral character.” (Quran 68:4)

God also said:

“And in deed you have a good and upright example in the Messenger of God, for those who hope in the meeting of God and the Hereafter, and mentions God much.” (Quran 33:21)

He was sent in order to practically implement the Quran, in his saying, deeds, legislation as well as all other facets of life. Aisha, the wife of the Prophet, when asked about the character of the Prophet, replied:

“His character was that of the Quran.” (As-Suyooti)

To truly adhere to the second part of the Shahada is to follow his example in all walks of life. God says:

“Say (O Muhammad to mankind): ‘If you (really) love God, then follow me.’” (Quran 3:31)

It also means that Muhammad is the Final Prophet and Messenger of God, and that no (true) Prophet can come after him.

“Muhammad is not the father of any man among you but he is the Messenger of God and the last (end) of the Prophets and God is Ever All-Aware of everything.” (Quran 33:40)

All who claim to be prophets or receive revelation after Muhammad are imposters, and to acknowledge them would be tantamount to disbelief
.

http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/204/


The Necessary Ghusl (Ritual Bath)


In relation to reversion when is it necessary to make Ghusl and what is the right way to perform it?

A. Ghusl is the complete washing of your body with the correct intention, which ultimately depends on the circumstances for which you are performing the ghusl. One of these occasions is after one has entered Islam - that is after one has recited shahadah, not before.

The soul has been cleansed and purified through the declaration of 'La ilaha illallah, Muhammad ar-Rasul Allah' and now it is time to purify the body so that those obligatory duties, which every Muslim becomes responsible for, may be attended to. To wash the entire body is sufficient.

However, according to the practice of the Prophet Muhammad PBUH or the Sunnah, it is best to start with washing the private parts followed by making Wudu (ablution) just as one would do to pray except for the feet which the Prophet PBUH used to leave until the end. Then wash the body thoroughly, head and hair followed by right side, left side, thorough rinse and finally the feet. A shower is always more hygienic for this purpose than a bath.


http://www.islamanswering.com/subpage.php?s=article&aid=1253

[color:c809=darkblue]More details on Ghusl


Perform Ghusl Correctly

(Extraced from Taleemul Haq, by Shabbir Ahmed E. Desai)


MORE ABOUT WATER

The water with which Wudhu or Ghusl has been made is called Musta'mal (used) water. This in itself is taahir (pure), but Wudhu or Ghusl is not allowed with this water.
Water from which dogs, pigs or animals of prey have drunk is impure. The water which a cat drinks immediately after eating a mouse or any other creature is impure. Water left by a person who has just drunk wine is also impure.

Water left by a cat (if it has not just eaten a mouse), a cow, buffalo or hen that eats anything filthy, lizard, crow, kite, hawk, eagle and all other Haraam birds is Makrooh.

The water which has been left over after drinking by human beings, Halaal animals, eg. cows, goats, pigeons, doves and horses is Taahir (clean).

All types of water will become impure if something unclean falls into them. However, two types of water are excluded from this rule, namely:

1.Flowing water of river or sea, and
2. Stored water in large quantity, eg. large reservoir or huge tank.
3. Stored or standing water which covers an area of approximately 21x21 ft (6.5x6.5 m), and is deep enough so that a person can take out water with his hands without baring the ground, is regarded as large quantity of water. Any tank or reservoir as big as that will be called a big tank or a big reservoir.
4. Any animal or bird which has flowing blood and falls into water of a small quantity and dies will make the water impure.
5. The water of a big tank or reservoir becomes impure when the taste, color or smell of filth becomes apparent.
6. Animals that are born and live in water, eg. fish, frogs, etc., or insects that do not have flowing blood do not make the water impure if they have to die inside it.


NIYYAh (INTENTION) OF GHUSL (BATH)

It is SUNNAT to make the niyyah for Ghusl

One should make the intention of becoming clean from that impurity he wishes to get himself clean from, eg. I am making Ghusl to become clean from janaabat.

THERE ARE THREE FARAAID (REQUIREMENTS) IN GHUSL

1. Passing water into and out of the mouth, i.e. gargling
2. Putting water into the nostrils
3. Passing water over the entire body.

* If a Fardh (compulsory act) is left out, or a hair's-breadth place is left dry, the Ghusl will be
incomplete.

THERE ARE FIVE SUNNATS IN GHUSL

1. washing hands upto the wrists
2. Washing the private parts and the parts over which uncleanliness is found
3. Niyyah (intention) of washing off any unseen filth
4. Making wudhu (Ablution) before washing the body
5. Then passing water over the whole body thrice.

RULES WHILST MAKING GHUSL

1. Ghusl should be made in a place of total privacy.
2. One should not face Qibla whilst making Ghusl.
3. Ghusl may be performed standing or seated, preferably seated.
4. Use sufficient water - do not skimp nor be wasteful.
5. Abstain from speaking whilst making Ghusl.
6. It is better not to read any Kalimah or Ayah while bathing.
7. Before performing Ghusl, one should make niyyah: I am performing Ghusl to become clean.

* Without niyyah, there is no Sawaab (reward) although Ghusl will be valid.


PROCEDURE FOR PERFORMING GHUSL

1. Wash both hands, including the wrists.

2. Wash the private parts. The hands and private parts should be washed even if one is not in the state of Janaabat (sexual impurity) or in need of Ghusl.

3. If there is visible filth elsewhere on the body, it should now be washed off.

4. Perform Wudhu. If one is making Ghusl on a stool or platform where water will rapidly flow away, then perform the complete Wudhu. If there is a fear of the feet being dipped in waste water during the Ghusl, then postpone the washing of the feet to the end of the Ghusl. Ensure that the mouth and nostrils are thoroughly rinsed thrice.

5. After performing Wudhu pour water over the head thrice.

6. Thereafter pour water thrice over the right shoulder and thrice over the left shoulder.

7. Then pour water over the entire body and rub.

8. If the hairs of the head are not plaited, it is compulsory to wet all the hair upto the very base.

- If a single hair is left dry, Ghusl will not be valid.
- If the hair of a woman is plaited, she is excused from loosening her plaited hair but it is compulsory for
her to wet the base of each and every hair. If she fails to do so then the Ghusl will not be valid.
- As for men who grow long hair and plait it, they are not excused from leaving their hair dry.
- If a woman experiences difficulty or is unable to wet the very bottom of her plaited hair, then it is necessary for her to unplait her hair and wash her entire hair.

9. It is Mustahab (preferable) to clean the body by rubbing it. All parts of the body should be rubbed with the hands to ensure that water has reached all parts of the body and no portion is left dry.

10. Rings, earrings, etc., should be removed to ensure that no portion covered by them is left dry. Ensure that the navel and ears are all wet. If they are not wet, Ghusl will be incomplete.

11.On completion, one should confine oneself to a clean place. If, while performing Wudhu, the feet had been washed, it is not necessary to wash them again. Dry the body with a clean towel and dress as hastily as possible.

12. If after Ghusl one recalls that a certain portion of the body is left dry, it is not necessary to repeat the entire Ghusl. Merely wash the dry portion. It is not sufficient to pass a wet hand over the dry place. If one has forgotten to rinse the mouth or the nostrils, these too must be rinsed when recalled after Ghusl has been performed.

ISSUES PERTAINING TO GHUSL

It is permissible to leave the head dry and wash the rest of the body if it is harmful to apply water to the head due to some sickness or ailment. However, once the person is cured of his sickness, it is Wajib (compulsory) to wash the head. Water has to flow over it.

Make haste in covering the body. One should not delay in wearing one's clothes after completing the Ghusl. The Shar'iah emphasises this so much, that if the feet have not been washed as yet, then first put on the clothes and thereafter wash the feet.
It is not necessary to remove the ointment from a cut or wound during Ghusl. Just pour water over it.
After Ghusl, Wudhu should not be make to perform Salaat or for any other Ibaadat since the Ghusl is sufficient.

It is preferable to cut the nails of the fingers and toes as well as remove the hair from under the armpits and below the navel before taking a bath. If one is required to bathe due to impurities (eg. Janaabat), then it is not permissible to remove, cut or break any nails or hair from any part of the body. Unwanted hair should preferably be removed once a week. If this is not possible then every second week. Care should be taken that it is not left for more than 40 days. Beyond 40 days the neglector will be sinful.
Sequence to be followed in clipping of the finger- and toe-nails:

Pairing of the finger nails should begin at the Shahaadat finger (index finger of the right hand). The nails of the balance three fingers (of the right hand) should be clipped next, in order (eg. middle, ring, and little). Thereafter continue with the small finger of the left hand and complete the remaining three fingers and thumb, in sequence. Lastly, clip the nail of the right thumb.
Clipping of the toe-nails should begin at the small toe of the right foot and end at the small toe of the left foot, in order.

* It is compulsory for a person who is in the state of Janaabat (impurity) to perform Ghusl. It is also compulsory for a woman to have a bath after Haidh (monthly menstruation, maximum of 10 days) and Nifaas (blood which flows after childbirth, maximum is 40 days).



Read also:

http://theislamichaven.forumotion.com/t145-questions-and-answers-related-to-taking-shahada
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