The term “Iman” basically means “faith.” There are six pillars of Iman in Islam, which consists of the following articles of faith. These 6 pillars are based on a few verses in the Quran:
“It is not righteousness that ye turn your faces Towards east or West; but it is righteousness- to believe in Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and theMessengers; to spend of your substance, out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; to be steadfast in prayer, and practice regular charity; to fulfil the contracts which ye have made; and to be firm and patient, in pain (or suffering) and adversity, and throughout all periods of panic. Such are the people of truth, the Allah-fearing.”Surah Baqara 2:177:
“No misfortune can happen on earth or in your souls but is recorded in a decree before We bring it into existence: That is truly easy for Allah.“Surah Hadid 57:22
1.Belief in Allah Most High.
To believe in the ONENESS of Allah, Almighty. (i.e. Tauhid-ar-Rububiyya, Tauhid-al-Uluhiyya, Tauhid-al-Asma was-Sifat).
“Allah forgiveth not that partners should be set up with Him; but He forgiveth anything else, to whom He pleaseth; to set up partners with Allah is to devise a sin Most heinous indeed.”Surah Nisa 4:48
- It is the foundation of the Islamic personality.
- It is a basic human need, more basic than the need for his provision and sustenance.
- Acts of worship only become real and valid with the feeling and awareness of their Object.
- Differences between the Creator and His creation.
- He is free of any need for others.
- He is the sole Creator of all that which pleases Him (and that which doesn’t).
- Allah has ordered His creation and forbidden them only in ways which are in their best interest.
- He sent the Messengers and the books with the truth Ilm-ul-Ghaib.
2.Belief in the Angels.
Angels are real beings, not illusions, a metaphysical force, or figments of human imagination. They are created from light.
A Muslim must believe specifically in all the angels named and/or described in the Qur’an and the Sunnah:
“O ye who believe! save yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones, over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe, who flinch not (from executing) the Commands they receive from God, but do (precisely) what they are commanded.”Surah Tahrim 66:6
- Mika’il: in charge of bringing the rain.
- Israfil: the blower of the horn on Qiyama (Judgement Day).
- Malik-ul-Maut: the Angel of Death who takes people’s souls at death.
- The Noble Recorders: those who record people’s actions.
- The Protectors: who keep people from death until its decreed time.
- Ridhwan: in charge of Paradise.
- Malik: in charge of Hell.
- Munkar and Nakir: the questioners in the grave.
- The Carriers of the Throne.
- Those who record the future of the fetus.
- Those who enter the Haram: 70,000 every day.
- Those who move about, descending upon gatherings at which Allah and His Book are mentioned and studied.
- Belief in the angels is an integral part of iman (faith). [See 2/285 Al-Baqarah]
- Kufr (disbelief) with respect to the angels is kufr (a state of disbelief). [See 4/136 An-Nisaa]
- Those who record the future of the foetus
- Those who enter the Haraam: 70,000 every day.
Muslims should have general belief in the phenomenon of the sending of the revealed books. Keep in mind, all the revealed books were allowed by Allah to be corrupted, except the Qur’an.
Specific books mentioned in the Qur’an:
- As-Suhuf of Ibrahim and Musa.
- Az-Zaboor given to Daud.
- At-Taurat revealed to Musa.
- Al-Injeel revealed to Isa.
- Al-Qur’an the final revelation.
Attributes of the Qur’an:
- Flawless and untampered with: [See 41/42 Fusilat]
- The final authority over any remnants of the previous books. [See 5/48 Al-Maidah]
- A guidance and a mercy. [See 10/37 Yunus]
- The Qur’an must be followed and applied. [See 6/155 Al-An'aam]
4.Belief in Allah’s Messengers:
- Belief in the prophets, prayers and salutations of Allah be upon them.
- Belief in the process of prophethood.
- Allah in His wisdom did not neglect His creation.
- Prophets sent to guide us in this life and the next.
- Specific belief in the 25 prophets named in the Qur’an: (1) Adam, (2) Nuh, (3) Idris, (4) Saleh, (5) Ibrahim, (6) Hud, (7) Lut, (8) Yunus, (9) Isma’il, (10) Is-haq, (11) Ya’qub, (12) Yusuf, (13) Ayub, (14) Shu’aib, (15) Musa, (16) Harun, (17) Alyas‘, (18) Dhu Al-Kifl, (19) Daud, (20) Zakariya, (21) Sulaiman, (22) Ilyas, (23) Yahya, (24) Isa, and (25) Muhammad, prayers and salutations of Allah be upon him and upon all the messengers of Allah.
- General belief that there are many other prophets and messengers, but never assuming anything without knowledge from Allah (i.e. Qur’an and Sunnah).
- The subject matter of the prophethood.
- Warnings and glad tidings.
- So the disobedient will have no excuse before Allah. (Prophets sent to every nation.)
- Enjoining the worship of Allah and the avoidance of At-Taghoot (Shaitaan, etc.) [Study: 4/165, An-Nisaa; 16/36, An-Nahl]
- Attributes of the Prophet Muhammad:
- Seal of the prophets; Imam of the pious; Foremost among the sons of Adam; Imam and Khatib of the prophets when they assembled; Possessor of the Praiseworthy Position which all of mankind will wish they had attained (and which is mentioned in the Du’a of hearing the adhan); Owner of the pool in paradise; Intercessor for all mankind on the day of Qiyama (Judgement Day).
- I.Allah sent him with the best of the books and the best of His law. Allah made his nation “the best nation brought forth for mankind.” Allah gave him (and us) all of the good that was given only partially to the previous nations. His nation is the last in creation, the first in resurrection.
- II.From the moment of his prophethood, Allah made him the criterion (Al-Farooq) for distinguishing Allah’s allies and their actions from His enemies and their actions: None can have any relationship to Allah except through belief in the Prophet (peace be upon him) and following what he brought in public and in secret. Whoever claims love or closeness to Allah while disobeying the message is actually drawing closer to Shaitaan, farther from Allah.
5.Belief in the Day of Resurrection:
Reconstruction of the body and return of the soul to it. People will come forth out of their graves like locusts. Faces bent down. Rushing to the Caller.
[See 53/76 Al-Qamar; 70/43 Al-Ma'arij; 17/49 Al-Israa; 36/78 Yasin; 20/108 Taha]
The resurrection is of the body and the soul, not some metaphysical resurrection of the latter.
“Allah is never unjust in the least degree: If there is any good (done), He doubleth it, and giveth from His own presence a great reward.”Surah Nisa 4:40:
Twelve verses from the Qur’an which prove that.
Hadith: The sun will come down toward the people on the day of Qiyamah until it is only about a mile up. The people will be in their own perspiration according to their acts: some of them will be in it up to their ankles, some up to their groin and others up to their chins, and he pointed to his mouth. Narrated by Muslim.
A disbeliever once came to the Prophet (saws) with an old bone, crumbled it with his hand and said: O Muhammad, will Allah bring this back to life after it has rotted?! The Prophet said: Yes, Allah will resurrect this and he will cause you to die, bring you back to life, and put you into the fire of Jahannam!
6.Belief in Fate (Qadr) (Pre-Ordainment)
The last pillar of iman is the belief in pre-ordainment. What this means is that everything in our lives is already written. It is our duty to know that whatever Allah wills will occur. Also He is the creator of everything including our deeds. Allah knows our past, present, and future. Our lives are set, but that does not mean that we strive any less toward perfection.
“Knowest thou not that Allah knows all that is in heaven and on earth? Indeed it is all in a Record, and that is easy for Allah.” Surah Hajj 22:70:
A Muslim believes in Allah’s predestination of all things and events (Qadhaa), His decree (Qadar), His wisdom in His actions, and His will. Nothing in the universe can occur, even the voluntary actions of His slaves, except after Allah’s knowledge, and His decree of that event.
A Muslim further believes that Allah is Just in His predestination and His decree, Wise in all of His actions. His wisdom follows His will: Whatever He wills is, and whatever He does not will is not. There is no power nor any movement except by Allah.
Allah (glory and praise to Allah) informed us of this in the Qur’an:
“Verily, We have created all things with Qadar (Divine Preordainments of all things before their creation, as written in the Book of Decrees Al-Lauh Al-Mahfûz).” [Qur'an 54/49]
“And there is not a thing, but with Us are the stores thereof. And We send it not down except in a known measure.” [Qur'an 15/21]
“No calamity befalls on the earth or in yourselves but is inscribed in the Book of Decrees (Al-Lauh Al-Mahfûz), before We bring it into existence. Verily, that is easy for Allâh.” [Qur'an 57/22]
“No calamity befalls, but with the Leave [i.e. decision and Qadar (Divine Preordainments)] of Allâh, and whosoever believes in Allâh, He guides his heart [to the true Faith with certainty, i.e. what has befallen him was already written for him by Allâh from the Qadar (Divine Preordainments)], and Allâh is the All-Knower of everything.” [Qur'an 64/11]
“And with Him are the keys of the Ghaib (all that is hidden), none knows them but He. And He knows whatever there is in (or on) the earth and in the sea; not a leaf falls, but he knows it. There is not a grain in the darkness of the earth, nor anything fresh or dry, but is written in a Clear Record.” [Qur'an 6/59]
2) The Prophet (saws), too, has informed us about the reality of Allah’s predestination and decree in many hadith:
Verily, each one of you is formed in his mother’s womb forty days as a drop, then he is something suspended for a similar period, then he is a piece of flesh like a chewed piece of meat for another period of forty days, then the angel is sent to insert the soul. This angel is ordered to record four things: the sustenance which he will receive during his lifetime, the length of his life, all actions that he will do, and whether he will end up miserable (in hell) or joyous (in paradise).
I swear by the One other than whom there is no deity, one of you may do the works of the people of paradise right up until there is only an arm’s length between him and paradise, but his destiny overtakes him, so he does the actions of the people of the fire and enters it. And, verily, one of you may do the works of the people of hell until there is nothing between them and hell except for one arm’s length, but his destiny overtakes him, and so he does the works of the people of paradise, and enters it. (Muslim)
These pillars are the groundfloor of our faith as Muslims, considering the fact that the pillars of Islam are our foundation. Having the belief in all of this means that you understand Islam and in that understanding your faith is true.