The term Islam literally means “submission.” It is based on the belief that human beings must submit to the sovereign will of Allah, the God of Islam. According to the Qur’an, Allah made human beings with the purpose of worshipping him (51.56), and a major means of Allah communicating this message was to send prophets to humanity to guide them and lead them out of ignorance (Qur’an 4.163-165). Thus, to be a devout Muslim, one must ultimately submit to the Will of Allah, his superior status, and to practice obedience in the same was an obedient slave obeys his master. The Muslim is expected to submit to the absolute truth, absolute authority, and absolute power of Allah, which includes the Muslim being aware of the things that both pleases and displeases him. The first of the five pillars of Islam, the Shahada, makes a proclamation that demands submission. The Shahada says that “There is no true God except Allah, and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.” Accordingly, every Muslim must confess that Allah is the one and only true God, that he alone is worthy of worship, and that he alone is the sovereign lord who does what he wills with whoever he wills.
James Bishop, South Africa, graduate in Creative Brand Communication and Marketing (CBC), Theology, Psychology, TESOL, Religion Studies (hon.), Religion Studies (Masters, current).