Main Frame What is Islam by Dr. Muhammad Sharif Chaudhry


What is Islam

Gist of Teachings of Islam on All Important Fields of Human Life

By Dr. Muhammad Sharif Chaudhry



Published by


Lahore, Pakistan

Copyright Notice


Rights of the book are reserved with the Author. However, you are allowed to reproduce, translate, print or publish this book with prior permission of the author and without any royalty or fee. The book must be published without any change in its matter or authorship. It will be highly kind of you if you post some copies of the publication to the author for record.


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I express gratitude from the core of my heart to Allah, the Almighty God of the universe Who enabled His humblest creature like me to undertake and complete this great work. I pray to Him on my own behalf and on behalf of my Muslim brothers and sisters:

“Our Lord! Condemn us not if we forget, or miss the mark! Our Lord! Lay not on us such a burden as Thou didst lay on those before us! Our Lord! Impose not on us that which we have not the strength to bear! Pardon us, absolve us and have mercy on us, Thou, our Protector, and give us victory over the disbelieving folk.”  (Al-Qur’an 2:286)

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This book is dedicated to ever-lasting memory of my late father and my late mother who raised me in accordance with traditions of Islam as a staunch believer and a practicing Muslim.

It is also dedicated to my wife and daughters whose love and care has helped me a lot in producing this book.

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Basic Teachings


Fundamental Articles of Faith


Islamic Laws


Judicial System


Political System


Economic System


Moral Code


Social Order


Jihad (War)


International Relations






Human Rights


Rights of Women


Rights of Minorities


Daily Life of a Muslim


Life After Death


Schools or Sects



All Books

About Author


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What is Islam? This book presents gist of all the basic teachings of Islam, as contained in the Holy Qur’an and traditions of Prophet Muhammad (may God’s peace be upon him), about every important activity of human life starting from daily life of a Muslim to socio-economic and political life of the Muslim community. It covers a wide range of subjects such as fundamental articles of Islamic faith, law, justice, economic system, social and moral order, jihad, education, science, human rights, etc. The book also attempts to answer critical questions, often raised by non-Muslims, about Islamic jihad, women’s rights in Islam, status of minorities in Islamic state, polygamy, scarf or veil worn by Muslim women, and propagation of Islam. It may help in dispelling the wrong impressions of those who, after the fateful incident of 9/11, have started perceiving Islam (which means peace and security) as religion of terrorists and militants. The book contains about 450 pages of 5.75”×9” size and is available for Rs. 200/- from Kitab Sarai, Al-Hamd Market, Ghazi Street, Urdu Bazar, Lahore, Pakistan. It must be read by every Muslim, even by a non-Muslim who intends to embrace Islam.

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In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful. “O My Lord! Relieve my mind. And ease my task for me; and loose a knot from my tongue. That they may understand what I say (Al-Qur’an 20:25-28)  

Islam or Al-Islam is religion of more than 1.3 billion Muslims who represent 20% population of the world and control 23% area of the globe. Although you can find Muslims in every country of the world but most of them live in 57 countries which are called Islamic countries and which happen to be members of Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC). Islam is a monotheistic faith and is the youngest among the three revealed religions of the world, other two being Judaism and Christianity. Muhammad (may Allah’s peace be on him), the Prophet of Islam, is the last of the Prophets of God; whereas Al-Qur’an the Holy Scripture of Islam, is the last revealed message of God to mankind.

The book ‘What is Islam’ is a humble attempt by a student and a devotee of this great religion of God to briefly explain its teachings. The book covers almost all the basic teachings of Islam about every important activity of human life. The book is also an essence of all the twenty one books written by the author so far on Islam which cover a wide range of subjects relating to various dimensions of religion of the Muslims.

After the fateful incident of 9/11 the non-Muslims living in Europe and America particularly and the other non-Muslims around the world generally perceive Islam, which literally means peace and security and which is a religion of nature and of humanity, as a religion of terrorists, militants, extremists and fundamentalists. This book may help in dispelling their misperception by providing adequate answers to some of their questions which they raise about nature of Islamic Jihad, about rights of women in Islam, about status of minorities in an Islamic state, about existence of human rights in Islam, and about practice of polygamy among the Muslims. This Book may also cater to the needs of the newly converted Muslims who are anxious to know the basic teachings of their faith but have no time to study big volumes of books on each aspect of Islam. They would get ready information in a small compendium of only 400 pages or so. The book may not provide any additional information to those Muslims who already have vast knowledge of Islam but it would certainly be helpful to students of under-graduate classes who have taken Islamic studies as one of their subjects. If the book proves useful, even a little, in understanding of Islam, I would feel my attempt is successful and my labour has been accepted by the Almighty.

Key to understand the citations and references of the Qur’an, which have been given on almost every page of this book after reproducing the verses, is explained as follows: If reference is like this (Al-Qur’an 2:150)”, it would mean Al Qur’an chapter No 2 and verse No 150. If it is like this (3:Al-Imran:42), it would mean chapter No 3 of the Qur’an, name of Chapter Al-Imran and verse No 42. If the reference is like this (7:83), it would mean Qur’an’s Chapter No 7 and Verse No 83. Translation of the Verses of the Qur’an has been mostly taken from the Meaning of the Glorious Qur’an by Muhammad Marmaduke Pickthall whereas translation of the traditions of the Prophet has been adopted from the books of various translators.

I must acknowledge my debt of gratitude which I owe to those noble souls-whether living or dead- from whose works I have derived immense benefit in writing this book. I must place on record my thanks to Dr. Murad Khan, Mr. Masood Ahmad and Mr. Ali Sufian who have composed the book and brought it online at my website.

I must also express my wholehearted thanks to my wife Dr. Nasreen Sharif without whose cooperation I would not have been able to write even a single word what to speak of writing more than twenty books. Her contribution in running the household, in rearing the children and in providing me time for studies and writing must not go unrecognized. She is indeed the real author of all these books!

Let me now conclude this foreword with my usual prayer: “O My Lord! Increase me in knowledge” (20:114), and enable me to serve the noble cause of your religion.

Muhammad Sharif Chaudhry


July 06. 2003

169-A/I Township, Lahore, Pakistan.

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Copyright ©2003 by the author, Dr. Muhammad Sharif Chaudhry

Rights of the book are reserved with the Author. However, you are allowed to reproduce, translate, print or publish this book with prior permission of the author and without any royalty or fee. The book must be published without any change in its matter or authorship. It will be highly kind of you if you post some copies of the publication to the author for record. For more details please click here.

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