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Also, there is a town called Shāhāda, which is now in Nandurbār district in the northwest corner of Maharashtra state in India.
The shahādah, or the Islamic creed, is a declaration of belief in the unity of God and the prophethood of Muhammad. Its recitation is considered one of the Five Pillars of Islam. When stated aloud, one is considered to have officially declared oneself a convert to Islam.
The Arabic words are: لا إلاه إلا الله ومحمد رسول الله
which are romanized:
- Lā 'ilāha 'illā llāha wa Muhammadun rasūlu llāhi.
In English, the credo goes:
- There is no god except God and Muhammad is the messenger [or prophet] of God.
Honest recitation of the shahādah once, in Arabic, in front of two Muslim witnesses, is all that is required for a person to become a Muslim.
It is considered correct to refer to previous figures, such as Jesus (in Arabic, Isa) as prophets (rasul), and some groups (notably certain Sufi mystics) will amend the declaration to mention prior prophets whose names are found in the Qur'an.
One of the earliest surviving translations of the Shahada into a foreign language is in Greek, from the reign of al-Walid I (86-96 AH, 705-715 AD): Ouk estin theos ei mē ho theos monos, Maamet apostolos theou. http://www.islamic-awareness.org/History/Islam/Papyri/enlp1.html (Literally: There is no god except the one god, Muhammad is God's messenger.")
- Shahadah, Confession of a Muslim http://isgkc.org/shahadah.htm (from the Islamic Society of Greater Kansas City)
- How to become a Muslim http://www.islamworld.net/become.html
Last updated: 02-08-2005 15:55:44
Last updated: 04-25-2005 03:06:01