Being a Muslim is a way of life. Living in America as an American Muslim, I find that the basic freedom of religion that the American Constitution provides truly works out to the advantage of all religions, especially Islam. To me, being Muslim means to follow all of the commands of God and the traditions of Prophet Muhammad, May the Peace and Blessings of God Be Upon Him, on a daily basis. For example, a typical day for me as a Muslim is as follows: as a college student in America, I observe all of my five daily prayers whether at home, college, or at the Mosque, treat my fellow students, teachers, and citizens with mutual respect and fairness, and answer any questions about Islam or misconceptions of Islam that people may pose to me. To me, Islam is beautiful because it is truly a uniquely perfect way of life in the sense that Islam has all of the solutions to any of my problems through the word of God in the Qur'an and the traditions of Prophet Muhammad, May the Peace and Blessings of God Be Upon Him. To me, being a Muslim also means to give back to the community, always speak the truth, respect the rights of my neighbors regardless of religion, and constantly do pious actions to gain the pleasure of God.When looking at the Muslim nation today, I'm greatly concerned with the state of my fellow Muslims. During the Middle Ages and Renaissance period in Europe, the Muslim nation was at the forefront of the world with regards to literature and science. With all of the internal and external violence among Muslims today, I see one main cause to the problem. We as a Muslim nation are the cause of our decline. As God says in the Qur'an, "Verily never will Allah (God) change the condition of a people until they change it themselves (with their own souls)" (part of verse 13:11, Quran). The only solution for the Muslim nation to rise up to dignity is to turn back and obey the commands of God and the traditions of Prophet Muhammad, May the Peace and Blessings of God Be Upon Him. Based on this idea, it is my hope and strong belief that, God willing, the Muslim nation will rise up to dignity once again, after we change our selves, externally and internally to gain the pleasure of God.
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