Things we inherit from our fathers

May 27, 2016

0c5354e6eb3af2e1c5f499e980c781dcMy nephew asked me a few days ago if his friends were going to heaven -his Christian friends, “I don’t know” was my answer. Then we got in to some of the Aqidah and fiqh surrounding this issue. There is a disagreement between scholars about the issue but the two major opinions I’ve been taught is that if no messenger has come to a person/ people they are not responsible for their actions and will not be judged by the moral code of Islam. And some go further to say they are not responsible to even believe in God if a messenger has not come to them. Some scholars have said that no one is responsible for accepting the message of Islam if they only hear a corrupted message -for instance if someone hears the message of Islam solely through the depictions of terrorists in the media.

What if they know about Islam but only know of random factoids like ‘Muslims don’t eat pork’ or ‘Muslims cover their hair’, are they responsible for accepting Islam? Well, I know a woman who became Muslim through her initial interest in Islamic fashion but nevertheless it can’t expected of most to accept Islam on largely superficial premises. But what does it mean to accept Islam? What is Islam? Islam at it core is a continuation of the message of monotheism, a finality of that message. Each prophet, peace upon them all, came with one simple message, “Believe in God and follow me”.

Despite our love for prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings to him, Islam is not about Prophet Muhammad, it’s not about Hajj, it’s not about hijab, beards, or not eating pork, it is at its core about our belief in God. Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings to him, was merely a continuation of that message. Had we lived in the time of Jesus, Abraham of Noah, we would be obliged to follow them. But why do we follow these men? Because they are the means by which we follow God.

When it comes to faith we must really only ask our selves one thing, do I believe in the core of this message? Do I believe in one God and Muhammad as his last messenger? If the answer is yes then what follows is a lifelong struggle to live one’s life in accordance to that belief.

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