By saying these words, we testify that there is no deity which has the right to be worshipped, but Allah.
If we think about the beliefs of todayâ€™s world, we can see that there is great variety of faiths and cults which are embraced by people in different parts of the world. However, we can simply categorize people within three groups in terms of their faiths.
1-Â Â Â Â Â Â Disbelievers: Who do not have any faith or religion.
2-Â Â Â Â Â Polytheists: Â Â Who believe in or worship multiple deities.
3-Â Â Â Â Â Muslims: Who believe in and worship to only One God, Allah.
We see some characteristics of these three groups in the Qurâ€™an, the last book of Allah, which was revealed to the last prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.
Allah Almighty says in the Qurâ€™an:
Regarding the first group;
â€œBut they wonder that there has come to them a warner from among themselves, and the disbelievers say, This is an amazing thing. When we have died and have become dust, (we will return to life?) That is a distant return.â€ (50: 1-2).
Disbelievers say: â€œAnd if you should obey a man like yourselves, indeed, you would then be losers. Does he promise you that when you have died and become dust and bones that you will be brought forth (once more)? How far, how far, is that which you are promised. Life is not but our wordly life, we die and live, but we will not be resurrected.â€ (23:34-37).
Regarding the second group;
â€œAnd they wonder that there has come to them a warner from among themselves. And the disbelievers say, This is a magician and a liar. Has he made the gods (only) one God? Indeed, this is a curious thing.â€ (38:4-5).
â€œAnd they worship besides Allah that which does not possess for them (the power of) provision from the heavens and the earth at all, and (in fact), they are unable.â€ (16:23).
â€œ(Or) of those who have divided their religion and become sects, every faction rejoicing in what it has.â€ (30:32).
â€œBut they have attributed to Him from His servants a portion. Indeed, man is clearly ungrateful.â€ (43:15).
â€œThey have taken their scholars and monks as lords besides Allah, and (also) the Messiah, the son of Mary. And they were not commanded except to worship one God; there is no deity except Him. Exalted is He above whatever they associate with Him.â€ (9:31).
In fact, these two groups can also be seen as one group because they have one common characteristic: They do not truly recognize Allah, the One and Only God.
Regarding the third group;
â€œIt is You we worship and You we ask for help.â€ (1:5).
â€œThey say, â€˜Be Jews or Christians (so) you will be guided.â€™ Say, â€˜Rather (we follow) the religion of Abraham, inclining toward truth, and he was not of the polytheists.â€™
Say, (O believers), â€˜We have believed in Allah and what has been revealed to us and what has been revealed to Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and the Descendants and what was given to Moses and Jesus and what was given to the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them, and we are Muslims (in submission) to Him.â€ (2:135-136).
â€œAllah, there is no deity except Him. And upon Allah let the believers rely.â€ (64:13).
â€œSo direct your face toward the religion, inclining to truth. (Adhere to) the fitrah of Allah upon which He has created (all) people. No change should there be in the creation of Allah. That is the correctÂ religion, but most of the people do not know.â€ (30:30).
These last verses reflect the faith of muslims (or the followers of the Ideal Path), which is based on tawhid/the oneness of Allah.
We Â will elaborate more on the statement of â€œThere is no god, but Allahâ€ and various aspects of atheism and polythesim in coming articles, from different perspectives, by referring to the verses of Allah and the sayings of the last prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.