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Islamic theology (Arabic: عقيدة Aqīdah, plural عقائد ʿaqā'id) is a branch of Islamic studies regarding the beliefs associated with the Islamic faith... Any religious belief system, or creed, can be considered an example of aqidah...
However, this term has taken a significant technical usage in Muslim history and theology, denoting those matters over which Muslims hold conviction....
Literally, the word `aqidah is derived from the root word "`A-Q-D", which means to tie or knot...
Muslims enumerate their creed to include the Six articles of belief...
There is a consensus on the elements of this creed across all spectrums as they are clearly articulated in the qurʾān.... Sectarian differences between Shias and Sunnis are often expressed in differences in branches or elaboration of creedal beliefs as opposed to the core creed (aqidah)....
Muslims may have different ideas regarding the attributes of God or about the purpose of angels...
However there is no dispute on the existence of God, that he has sent his revelation via messengers nor that man will be held to account and rewarded or punished with heaven or hell.
Six articles of belief
In a hadith collected in Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim...
The Islamic prophet Muḥammad explains...
"Faith is to affirm your faith in Allah, His angels, His Books, His Messengers and the Last Day, and to believe in the Divine Destiny whether it be good or bad."
The six Sunni articles of belief are:
- Belief in God (Allah), the one and only one worthy of all worship (tawhid).
- Belief in the Angels (mala'ika).
- Belief in the Books (kutub) sent by Allah (including the Qurʾān).
- Belief in all the Messengers (rusul) sent by Allah
- Belief in the Day of Judgment (qiyama) and in the Resurrection (life after death).
- Belief in Destiny (Fate) (qadar).
يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓاْ ءَامِنُواْ بِٱللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِۦ وَٱلۡكِتَـٰبِ ٱلَّذِى نَزَّلَ عَلَىٰ رَسُولِهِۦ وَٱلۡڪِتَـٰبِ ٱلَّذِىٓ أَنزَلَ مِن قَبۡلُۚ وَمَن يَكۡفُرۡ بِٱللَّهِ وَمَلَـٰٓٮِٕكَتِهِۦ وَكُتُبِهِۦ وَرُسُلِهِۦ وَٱلۡيَوۡمِ ٱلۡأَخِرِ فَقَدۡ ضَلَّ ضَلَـٰلاَۢ بَعِيدًا (١٣٦)
" Whoever disbelieveth in God and His angels and His scriptures and His messengers and the Last Day, he verily wandered far stray"
مَن كَانَ عَدُوًّ۬ا لِّلَّهِ وَمَلَـٰٓٮِٕڪَتِهِۦ وَرُسُلِهِۦ وَجِبۡرِيلَ وَمِيكَٮٰلَ فَإِنَّ ٱللَّهَ عَدُوٌّ۬ لِّلۡكَـٰفِرِينَ (٩٨
" Who is an enemy of God, His Angels, His Messengers, Gabriel and Michael! Then, lo! God is an enemy to the disbelievers "
وَلَـٰكِنَّ ٱلۡبِرَّ مَنۡ ءَامَنَ بِٱللَّهِ وَٱلۡيَوۡمِ ٱلۡأَخِرِ وَٱلۡمَلَـٰٓٮِٕڪَةِ وَٱلۡكِتَـٰبِ وَٱلنَّبِيِّـۧنَ
"…righteous is he who believeth in God and the Last Day and the angels and the scripture and the prophets "
وَٱلۡمُؤۡمِنُونَۚ كُلٌّ ءَامَنَ بِٱللَّهِ وَمَلَـٰٓٮِٕكَتِهِۦ وَكُتُبِهِۦ وَرُسُلِهِۦ
"…believer believe in God and His angels and His scriptures and His messengers.. "
The sixth point made it into the creed because of the first theological controversy in Islām....
Although not connected with the sunni-shiʿi controversy about the succession, the majority of Twelfer Shiʿites do not stress God's limitless power (qadar), but rather his boundless justice ʿadl as the sixth point of belief. This does not mean either that Sunnis deny his justice or that Shiʿites negate his power; it simply reflects a difference in emphasis.
In Sunni and Shia view, having Iman literally means to have belief in Six articles....
However the importance of Iman relies heavily upon reasons. Islam explicitly asserts that belief should be maintained in that which can be proven using faculties of perception and conception.
One is required to examine the evidences Islam provides to be convinced to the point of having no doubt. This is indicated in the Arabic word for verse (i.e. verses of Koran)....
Which translates to mean the following: sign, miracle, proof, etc.
After all, this lays the foundation for acting on the secondary matters which would be the rights and regulations of Islam.... So a believer is not supposed to be in the position of relying only on faith as there are verses of the Koran that condemn blind following, questioning its integrity.
Types of theology
Muslim theology is the theology that derived from the Qur'an and Hadith....
The contents of Muslim theology can be divided into theology proper such as theodicy, eschatology, anthropology, apophatic theology, and comparative religion.
Kalam is the Islamic philosophy of seeking theological principles through dialectic...
In Arabic, the word literally means "speech".
A scholar of kalam is referred to as a mutakallim (Muslim theologian; plural mutakallimiin).
Eschatology is literally understood as the last things or ultimate things and in Muslim theology, eschatology refers to the end of this world and what will happen in the next world or hereafter. Eschatology covers the death of human beings, their souls after their bodily death, the total destruction of this world, the resurrection of human souls, the final judgments of human deeds by Allah after the resurrection, and the rewards and punishments for the believers and non-believers respectively. The places for the believers in the hereafter are known as Paradise and for the non-believers as Hell.
Comparative religion in Muslim theology is about the differences and similarities between Muslim theology and other theologies such as Christian, Jewish theologies as explained in the Qur'an and the Prophetic traditions.
Differences between various Muslim groups
In the history of Muslim theology, there have been theological schools among Muslims displaying both similarities and differences with each other in regard to beliefs.
Sunni Muslims hold that there are six articles of belief:
... belief in Allah, in Prophets, in four divinely revealed scripture, in the Day of Judgment or end times, in angels, and in fate or destiny....
Shia beliefs and practices
Shia Muslims hold that there are five articles of belief:
...the Divine Oneness and Justice, the Prophethood, the Imamate and Judgment Day...
The Shias do not believe in complete predestination, or complete free will...
They believe that human life is a mixture of free will and predestination...
Roots of Religion (Usūl al-Dīn)
- Tawhīd (Oneness): The Oneness of Allah.
- Adalah (Justice): The Justice of Allah.
- Nubuwwah (Prophethood): Allah has appointed perfect and infallible prophets and messengers to teach mankind the religion (i.e. a perfect system on how to live in "peace".)
- Imamah (Leadership): God has appointed specific leaders to lead and guide mankind — a prophet appoints a custodian of the religion before his demise.
- Qiyamah (The Day of Judgment): Allah will raise mankind for Judgment
- Salat (Worship) – The 5 daily prayers.
- Sawm (Fast) – Fasting during the month of Ramadan.
- Zakaat (Poor-rate) – Paying the poor-due.
- Hajj (Pilgrimage) – Undertaking the pilgrimage to Mecca.
- Khums (20% of savings of which the first half (Sihmu 'l-Imam) must be given to the Imam of Ahlul-Bayt or his representatives )
- Jihad (Struggle/Striving) – Struggling to earn the favor of God. The greater jihad, "al-Jihad al-Akbar", is the struggle against the evil within one's own soul. The lesser jihad, "al-Jihad al-Asghar", is where one fights on the battlefield in defence of his religion when attacked.
- Amr-Bil-Ma'rūf (Promotion) – Encouraging people to perform good deeds.
- Nahi-Anil-Munkar (Dissuasion) – Discouraging people from performing sin.
- Tawallá (Love) - To love Muhammad and his Ahl al-Bayt
- Tabarrā' (Disassociation) - To disassociate from the enemies of God, his Messengers and his Ahl al-Bayt
The branch of Islam known as the Ismāʻīlī is the second largest Shia community...
They observe the following pillars of Islam:
In terms of the relationship between human beings and their creator...
Mu`tazilites emphasize human free will over predestination and God's justice over God's omnipotence... Mu'tazilites also believe in the use of logic to deduct the true meanings of the Qur'an....
This, combined with the principal of Ijtihad, led to their belief in Dynamic Fiqh.
Literature pertaining to creed
Many Muslim scholars have attempted to explain Islamic creed in general...
or specific aspects of aqidah....
The following list contains some of the most well-known literature....
- Aqeedah at-Tahawiyya or "The Fundamentals of Islamic Creed by Imam Tahawi. Has been accepted by almost all Sunni Muslims (Atharis, Ash'aris, Maturidis)... It was well explained by Ibn Abu al-Iz...
- Aqeedah al-Waasittiyah by Ibn Taymiya
- Sharh as Sunnah or the Explanation of the Creed by Al-Barbahaaree... Lists approximately 170 points pertaining to the fundamentals of Aqidah.
- Khalq Af'aal al-Ibad (The Creation of the acts of Servants) by Bukhari.... It shows the opinion of early scholars (Salaf) but it does not cover all topics.
- Ulu by al-Dhahabi. Details the opinions of early scholars.
- Ibaanah by Abu al-Hasan al-Ash'ari. Accepted by Atharis and early Ash'aris.
- Shi'a Muḥammad Ḥusayn al-Ṭabāṭabāʼī: translated by Hossein Nasr
- Root and Branches of Faith by Maqbul Hussein Rahim
- Shi'ism Doctrines, Thought and Spirituality by Hossein Nasr
- ^ http://al-quran.info/#&&sura=2&aya=177&trans=en-arthur_arberry&show=both,quran-uthmani&format=rows&ver=1.00
- ^ sihmu 'l-Imam
- ^ The World Federation sends 50% of Khums to Ayatollah Al Uzma Syed Ali Husein Sistani
- ^ "Islamic Belief (Al-'Aqida)". Islamicweb.com. http://islamicweb.com/beliefs/creed/Aqeedatut_Tahaawiyyah.htm (Retrieved 2010-06-10)
- ^ "كتاب شرح العقيدة الطحاوية". Arabic.islamicweb.com. http://arabic.islamicweb.com/Books/creed.asp?book=5 (Retrieved 2010-06-10)
- ^ "Aqeedatul-Waasitiyyah – The Text". Salafi Publications. http://www.salafipublications.com/sps/sp.cfm?subsecID=AQD04&articleID=AQD040003&articlePages=1 (Retrieved 2010-06-10)
- Six Articles of Islamic Faith A description of the Six Articles of Islamic faith.
- Exhaustive Books & Articles on Aqeedah