Our Religion, which is Islam, is the key to happiness in this world and the hereafter. For this reason we believe and do the actions which testify our belief. The practical level of religion is called piousness or Taqwa.
According to our beliefs, humans want and need for religion is from a humans fitrah, from birth. Emaan and religion is not things that humans can gain with just thinking and learning, rather it’s a blessing Allah has bestowed upon humans.
Allah (swt) explains how to become a pious Muslim in the holy Qur’an in this way: “Righteousness is not that you turn your faces towards the east or the west, but [true] righteousness is [in] one who believes in Allah, the Last Day, the angels, the Book, and the prophets and gives wealth, in spite of love for it, to relatives, orphans, the needy, the traveller, those who ask [for help], and for freeing slaves; [and who] establishes prayer and gives zakah; [those who] fulfil their promise when they promise; and [those who] are patient in poverty and hardship and during battle. Those are the ones who have been true, and it is those who are the righteous.
According to the Ayah, religion and piety can be set upon these 4 fundamentals:
1) Eman; which is to believe in Allah, The day of judgement, The angels, The books, The prophets and The divine decree; believing that good and bad comes from Allah.
2) Amal; A requirement of eman which means to worship and do righteous actions
3) Justice; To stay away from any injustice, to act honestly, and to be conscience.
4) Solidarity; which is to give sadaqa in ease and hardship, give Infaq, always be kind and protect the affairs of the community.
It isn’t easy to live a pious life in the modern world of Europe. From one side there is freedom in religion and consciousness. Including Muslims, many members of different religions can live altogether. On the other hand, theres an approach of fear and concern towards those that try to live a religious or a pious lifestyle. Especially for those that live there religion in a visible way, for example the ones that wear the hijab (head scarf), grow a beard, those that pray at school or at work and those that portray themselves as Muslims are looked in a disliked way.
As Muslims, when we encounter concern and fear, we must act like our Prophet. As you all know in the early years of Islam, Prophet Muhammad (s.a.v.) went to Taif, however the community condemned and expelled him from the town and even injured our prophet. Prophet Muhammad presented this to Allah and made a Dua: “O Allah! Forgive my people for they do not know.”
Let’s not forget! Us living in these countries are only because of Allahs will and test. Due to this, we must in order to live our religion, work for Justice and do the needed sacrifice. However on the other hand at every opportunity we must give Dawah. The main element of our dawah should be our balance and sincerity.
May Allah allow us to be Muslims which live and present Islam in the best way.