What are the 5 Pillars of Islam? A Comprehensive Guide

The 5 Pillars of Islam are the fundamental acts of worship and principles in islam that serve as the core foundation of the Islamic Religion.

These five pillars of Islam outline the essential practices and beliefs that every Muslim is obligated to follow. Whether one is Sunni or Shia Muslim. If anyone don’t believe in any of these 5 pillars of Islam it means he is not following the Islam Properly.

Name of the 5 Pillars of Islam

The name of Five arakan/5 pillars of islam are following:

  1. Shahada (Declaration of Faith)
  2. Salah (Prayer)
  3. Zakat (Charity)
  4. Fasting (Sawm)
  5. Hajj (Pilgrimage)

Shahada (Declaration of Faith)

First out of 5 pillars of islam - Shahada (Declaration of Faith)

The first of the Five Pillars of Islam is shahada or the Witness of Faith. It consists of first the acknowledgement that Allah is the one true God and that no other gods or offspring are associated with him, and second, that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)is his messenger and that Allah’s word is revealed through Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

This is one of the 5 arkan of islam Which affirms the oneness of Allah and the prophethood of Muhammad (peace be upon him).

The Shahada in Arabic is: “لَا إِلٰهَ إِلَّا الله مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولُ الله” which is transliterated as “La ilaha illallah, Muhammadur rasulullah.” It translates to “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.”

When People reverts then the first thing that they need to belive is on oneness of Allah or we can say that they need to say Shahada:

أَشْهَدُ أَنْ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللَّهُ وَأَشْهَدُ أَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا رَسُولُ اللَّهِ
ash-hadu an la ilaha illa Allah wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan Rasulu Allah.

(I bear witness that there is no deity (none worthy of worship) but Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah).

Mention of Shahada (Declaration of Faith) in Quran

The Ayah from Quran which tells about the Sahada (Declaration of Faith) which is one of the Muslim’s 5 pillars of Islam is given below:

شَهِدَ ٱللَّهُ أَنَّهُۥ لَآ إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ وَٱلْمَلَـٰٓئِكَةُ وَأُو۟لُوا۟ ٱلْعِلْمِ قَآئِمًۢا بِٱلْقِسْطِ ۚ لَآ إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ ٱلْعَزِيزُ ٱلْحَكِيمُ
Allah ˹Himself˺ is a Witness that there is no god ˹worthy of worship˺ except Him—and so are the angels and people of knowledge. He is the Maintainer of justice. There is no god ˹worthy of worship˺ except Him—the Almighty, All-Wise.
(Quran 9:18)
مَّا كَانَ مُحَمَّدٌ أَبَآ أَحَدٍۢ مِّن رِّجَالِكُمْ وَلَـٰكِن رَّسُولَ ٱللَّهِ وَخَاتَمَ ٱلنَّبِيِّـۧنَ ۗ وَكَانَ ٱللَّهُ بِكُلِّ شَىْءٍ عَلِيمًۭا
Muhammad is not the father of any of your men,1 but is the Messenger of Allah and the seal of the prophets. And Allah has ˹perfect˺ knowledge of all things.
(Quran 33:40)

Mention of Shahada (Declaration of Faith) in Hadith

The Following hadith tells us about the Shahada which is one of the 5 columns of islam which is mentioned in Sahih al Muslim.

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: 'Islam is based on five (pillars): testifying that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, establishing the prayer, paying the Zakah, making the pilgrimage to the House, and fasting in Ramadan."
(Sahih Muslim, Book 1, Hadith 1)

Salah (Prayer)

2nd out of 5 Pillars of Islam - Salah (Prayer)

The second Pillar out of Five pillars of Islam is salah or the five compulsory prayers each day. The Quran teaches that prayer has been “enjoined on the believers at fixed times.” Salah serves as a direct connection between a Muslim person and Allah, providing an opportunity for the spiritual reflection, gratitude, and submission to Allah SWT. At the time of Prayer Muslims face the direction of Qiblah (Kaaba in Makkah), Which basically demonstrate unity and devotion to Allah SWT.

The five prayers are named and defined as Follows:

  1. Fajr – This is the morning prayer which is offered before the sunrise.
  2. Zuhr – This is the noon prayer.
  3. Asr – This is the prayer said after the Zuhr and before the sun sets.
  4. Maghrib – This is the evening prayer and the “time for the evening prayer is that when the sun disappears and (it lasts) till the twilight.”
  5. Isha -The last of the compulsory prayers is prayed any time
    from twilight until midnight.

Mention of Salah (Prayer) in Quran

The Ayah that tells about the Salah is given below:

إِنَّنِىٓ أَنَا ٱللَّهُ لَآ إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّآ أَنَا۠ فَٱعْبُدْنِى وَأَقِمِ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ لِذِكْرِىٓ
‘It is truly I. I am Allah! There is no god ˹worthy of worship˺ except Me. So worship Me ˹alone˺, and establish prayer for My remembrance.
(Quran 20:14)

Mention of Salah (Prayer) in Hadith

There is hadith which says that  The difference between a man (Muslim) and shirk and kufr is the abandoning of salaah which is given below:

It is narrated on the authority of Abu Zubair that he heard Jabir b. 'Abdullah saying. I heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace and blessings be upon him) observing this:

"The difference between a man (Muslim) and shirk and kufr is the abandoning of salaah
"
(Sahih Muslim 82b)

Zakat (Charity)

3rd out of 5 Pillars of Islam - Zakat (Charity)

The 3rd Pillar out of five muslim Pillars is zakat or charity. Abdul Hamid Siddiqi, in his
translation of Imam Muslim’s compilation of hadiths, prefaces the section on zakat by stating that it is not a “mere tax, but a form of worship whereby a man comes close to his Lord.”

The Quran states that “the adherence to charity is a characteristic of the true believers and of the God-fearing”.

Zakat or Charity is the obligation of almsgiving, underscores the importance of the social welfare and the economic equity in Islam. All the Muslims are required to donate a portion of their wealth, typically 2.5%, to support the less fortunate/poor or needy people and uphold justice in society. This act of the charity purifies the one’s wealth and fosters the compassion, empathy, and solidarity among the believers, reinforcing the principle of the collective responsibility.

Mention of Zakat (Charity) in Quran

The Ayah that mentions the Zakat/Charity in Quran is given below:

إِنَّمَا ٱلصَّدَقَـٰتُ لِلْفُقَرَآءِ وَٱلْمَسَـٰكِينِ وَٱلْعَـٰمِلِينَ عَلَيْهَا وَٱلْمُؤَلَّفَةِ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَفِى ٱلرِّقَابِ وَٱلْغَـٰرِمِينَ وَفِى سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ وَٱبْنِ ٱلسَّبِيلِ ۖ فَرِيضَةًۭ مِّنَ ٱللَّهِ ۗ وَٱللَّهُ عَلِيمٌ حَكِيمٌۭ
Alms-tax is only for the poor and the needy, for those employed to administer it, for those whose hearts are attracted ˹to the faith˺, for ˹freeing˺ slaves, for those in debt, for Allah’s cause, and for ˹needy˺ travellers. ˹This is˺ an obligation from Allah. And Allah is All-Knowing, All-Wise.
(Quran 9:60)

Mention of Zakat (Charity) in Hadith

The Hadith given below tells us about the Zakat/charity:

Narrated Ibn `Abbas:

The Prophet (ﷺ) sent Mu`adh to Yemen and said, "Invite the people to testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and I am Allah's Messenger (ﷺ), and if they obey you to do so, then teach them that Allah has enjoined on them five prayers in every day and night (in twenty-four hours), and if they obey you to do so, then teach them that Allah has made it obligatory for them to pay the Zakat from their property and it is to be taken from the wealthy among them and given to the poor."

(Sahih al-Bukhari 1395)

Fasting (Sawm)

4th out of 5 Pillars of Islam - Fasting (Sawm)

The forth Pillar out of 5 Pillars of Islam is Sawm or Fasting specifically during the month of the Ramadan (Obligatory Fasts).

Sawm, or fasting during the month of Ramadan, is basically embodies self-discipline, spiritual reflection, and communal solidarity. The Time of fasting is starts from Fajr Prayer until the Maghrib Prayer, In this time Muslims do not consume any food and drink, and starts focusing on prayer, recitation of the Quran, and acts of charity. This period of the fasting fosters empathy for the needy, purifies the one’s soul, and strengthens one’s bond with Allah SWT and Now Science is also telling us that there are many benefits of fasting.

Mention of Fasting (Sawm) in Quran

The Ayah that Mentions the Fasting in Quran is given below:

يَـٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا۟ كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ ٱلصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ
O believers! Fasting is prescribed for you—as it was for those before you1—so perhaps you will become mindful ˹of Allah˺.
(Quran 2:183)

Mention of Fasting (Sawm) in Hadith

The Hadith that tells us about fasting is given below:

Narrated Abu Huraira:
Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "Fasting is a shield (or a screen or a shelter). So, the person observing fasting should avoid sexual relation with his wife and should not behave foolishly and impudently, and if somebody fights with him or abuses him, he should tell him twice, 'I am fasting." The Prophet (ﷺ) added, "By Him in Whose Hands my soul is, the smell coming out from the mouth of a fasting person is better in the sight of Allah than the smell of musk. (Allah says about the fasting person), 'He has left his food, drink and desires for My sake. The fast is for Me. So I will reward (the fasting person) for it and the reward of good deeds is multiplied ten times."
(Sahih al-Bukhari 1894)

Hajj (Pilgrimage)

5 Pillars of Islam - Hajj (Pilgrimage)

The fifth Pillar Which is the last pillar out of 5 Pillars of Islam is the Hajj or Pilgrimage. Hajj, the pilgrimage to the sacred city of the Mecca, represents the culmination of the spiritual journey and devotion for the Muslims. Performing Hajj at least once in a lifetime is obligatory on every person, if the person is physically and financially feasible, for those who are able.

The rituals of the Hajj/Pilgrimage, including the Tawaf (circumambulation of the Kaaba), Sa’i (walking between the hills of the Safa and Marwa), and Wuquf (standing at Arafat), symbolize the unity, equality, and submission to the will of Allah SWT.

Mention of Hajj (Pilgrimage) in Quran

The Ayah that mentions about the Hajj which is one of the 5 pillars of islam religion is given below:

فِيهِ ءَايَـٰتٌۢ بَيِّنَـٰتٌۭ مَّقَامُ إِبْرَٰهِيمَ ۖ وَمَن دَخَلَهُۥ كَانَ ءَامِنًۭا ۗ وَلِلَّهِ عَلَى ٱلنَّاسِ حِجُّ ٱلْبَيْتِ مَنِ ٱسْتَطَاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًۭا ۚ وَمَن كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ ٱللَّهَ غَنِىٌّ عَنِ ٱلْعَـٰلَمِينَ
In it are clear signs and the standing-place of Abraham. Whoever enters it should be safe. Pilgrimage to this House is an obligation by Allah upon whoever is able among the people.1 And whoever disbelieves, then surely Allah is not in need of ˹any of His˺ creation.
(Quran 3:97)

Mention of Hajj (Pilgrimage) in Hadith

The Hadith which mentions about the Hajj one of the 5 pillars of muslim faith or religion is given below:

Narrated `Abdullah bin `Abbas:
Al-Fadl (his brother) was riding behind Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) and a woman from the tribe of Khath'am came and Al-Fadl started looking at her and she started looking at him. The Prophet (ﷺ) turned Al-Fadl's face to the other side. The woman said, "O Allah's Messenger (ﷺ)! The obligation of Hajj enjoined by Allah on His devotees has become due on my father and he is old and weak, and he cannot sit firm on the Mount; may I perform Hajj on his behalf?" The Prophet (ﷺ) replied, "Yes, you may." That happened during the Hajj-al-Wida (of the Prophet (ﷺ) ).


(Sahih al-Bukhari 1513)

Conclusion

In conclusion, whether one is Sunni Muslim or a Shia Muslim, it is the binding thread of the Five/5 Pillars of Islam that link the divisions of the Islam. To be sure, the Quran is the basis for each of the Pillars, but to the clearest idea of the what each Pillar consists of, one must go to the Hadith of our Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). It is in the Hadith that the 5 Pillars of Islam are magnified so they can be clearly understood and practiced.

The 5 Pillars of Islam serve as the very important/obligatory part of the Muslim’s faith and practice, guiding the believers on a right path of the spiritual growth, moral integrity, and social responsibility. Through following the all 5 Pillars of islam i.e. Shahada, Salah, Zakat, Fast, and Hajj, Muslims affirm their commitment to monotheism, and establish a direct connection with Allah SWT, Muslim’s support the less fortunate, and cultivate self-discipline, and Muslims deepen their bond with the global Muslim community. Just By embracing these pillars, Muslims strive to attain the spiritual fulfillment and righteousness in both their personal lives and communal interactions.

FAQs

What are the correct order of 5 Pillars of Islam?

The Correct order of 5 Pillars of islam is 1. Shahada (Declaration of Faith) 2. Salah (Prayer) 3. Zakat (Charity) 4. Fasting (Sawm) 5. Hajj (Pilgrimage) This is the correct order of Five Pillars of Islam.

Can we Perform Hajj (Pilgrimage) in place of my father?

Yes you can perform Hajj (Pilgrimage) in place of your Father if you follow some guidlines of Hajj Badal.

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