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Worship in Islam: Why Obligatory?

Why is worship obligatory upon Muslims? What does worship teaches us? What are its impacts on individual and society?

 

prayer

Physical and spiritual strength result when one amiably and privately converses with Allah.

Worship is obligatory upon every Muslim who is mentally sane and has reached the age of puberty. Performing the pillars of Islam; Shahadah (Testimony of Faith), salah (five daily prayers), sawm (fasting during Ramadan), zakah (obligatory alms) and hajj (pilgrimage to Makkah), is a means to enter Paradise after receiving the mercy of Allah (Exalted be He).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) once said to a Bedouin who came and asked:

“‘O Messenger of Allah, tell me what Allah has obligated upon me in terms of the prayer.’ He replied, ‘The five (daily) prayers, except if you wish to perform some voluntary ones.’ He asked, ‘Tell me what Allah has obligated upon me in terms of the fasting.’ He replied, ‘The month of Ramadan, except if you wish to perform some voluntary ones.’ He said, ‘Tell me what Allah has obligated upon me in terms of zakah.’ (The narrator) said ‘So the Messenger of Allah informed him of the legislations of Islam.’ The Bedouin said, ‘By Him Who has honored you, I will not do any voluntary acts, and I will not leave anything of what Allah has ordered me.’ The Messenger of Allah said, ‘He has succeeded (or, ‘He will enter Jannah/Paradise’) if he is saying the truth.’ ” (Al-Bukhari)

Individual and Social Effects of Worship

1- The believers will achieve happiness and success in the life of this world as well as the Hereafter. Allah says:

Indeed whosoever purifies himself shall achieve success, (as well as he who) remembers (glorifies) the Name of his Lord, and prays. (Al-A`la 87:14-15)

2- Physical and spiritual strength which results when one amiably and privately converses with Allah. Allah says:

Truly, Allah is with those who fear Him (keep their duty unto Him), and those who are muhsinoon (good-doers). (An-Nahl 16:128)

3- The Help of Allah and establishing His believing slaves’ authority on the earth:

Verily, Allah will help those who help His (cause). Truly, Allah is All-Strong, All-Mighty. Those (Muslim rulers) who, if We give them power in the land, (they) order the establishment of the salah, the paying of the zakah, and they enjoin all good, and forbid all evil (i.e. they make the Qur’an as the law of their country in all the spheres of life). And with Allah rests the end of (all) matters (of creatures). (Al-Hajj 22:40-41)

4- The building of ties of brotherhood, cooperation, bonding, and security between the individuals in an Islamic society as Allah says:

The Believers, men and women, are protectors one of another: they enjoin what is just, and forbid what is evil: they observe regular prayers, practise regular charity, and obey Allah and His Messenger. On them will Allah pour His mercy: for Allah is Exalted in power, Wise. (At-Tawbah 9:71)

5- The guidance of Allah and the success which is only granted by Him:

O you who believe! If you obey and fear Allah, He will grant you a criterion to judge between right and wrong, and will expiate for you your sins, and forgive you. (Al-Anfal 8:29)

6- An abundance of provision from Allah and way out of hardship. Allah says:

And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty). And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine. (At-Talaq 65:2-3)

7- A multiplication of reward and expiation of sins. Allah says:

And whosoever believes in Allah and performs righteous good deeds, He will remit from him his sins, and will admit him to Gardens under which rivers flow (Paradise) to dwell therein forever, that will be the great success. (At-Taghabun 64:9)

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The article is an excerpt from the author’s How to Become a Muslim. 

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By Hanif Kruger

BIO for Hanif Kruger

Hanif is the manager at the Assistive Technology Centre of the South African National Council for the Blind with more than 30 years of experience in the assistive technology and IT fields. Hanif’s passion is assistive technology and advocating for key issues affecting people with disabilities and more specifically the blind and vision impaired. He shares his love for Assistive Technologies through sharing information through his work and via social media and relevant events in order to spread the knowledge and awareness around new technologies and the challenges relating to AT for PWDs. A strong believer in the rights of persons with disabilities and the philosophy of “nothing about us without us”, he regularly push for the affordability and accessability of AT and matching the correct assistive technology solutions with a person in order for them to reach their full capacity. Hanif enjoys a good Netflix and Apple TV+ binge but can also be found walking both his guide dogs looking for cookies .

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