In Islam, worship is part of daily life and is not limited to mere rituals. The formal acts of worship are known as the five “pillars” of Islam. The five pillars of Islam are the declaration of faith, prayer, fasting, charity, and pilgrimage.
1. Declaration of Faith: The “Declaration of Faith” is the statement, “La ilaha illa Allah wa Muhammad Rasul-ullah”, meaning “There is no deity worthy of being worship except God (Allah), and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God”). The Declaration of Faith is more than just a statement; it must be shown with one’s actions. To convert to the faith of Islam, a person has to say this statement.
2. Daily Prayer: Prayer is a method by which a Muslim connects to God and gathers spiritual strength and peace of mind. Muslims perform five formal prayers a day.
3. Zakah: A type of charity. Muslims recognize that all wealth is a blessing from God, and certain responsibilities are required in return. In Islam, it is the duty of the wealthy to help the poor and needy.
4. Fast of Ramadan: Once each year, Muslims are commanded to fast for an entire month from dawn to sunset. The period of intense spiritual devotion is known as the fast of Ramadan in which no food, drink and sex is allowed during the fast. After sunset one can enjoy these things. During this month Muslims practice self-control and focus on prayers and devotion. During the fast, Muslims learn to sympathize with those in the world who have little to eat.
5. The Hajj Pilgrimage to Mecca: Every Muslim strives to make once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimage to the sacred sites in Mecca, in present-day Saudi Arabia. It is the most intense spiritual experience for a Muslim. Typically, 2-3 million perform hajj every year.