What is Islam?

Islam is not a new religion. It is the same truth that God revealed to all His prophets throughout history. Islam is both a religion and a complete way of life. Muslims follow a religion of peace, mercy and forgiveness that should not be associated with acts of violence against the innocent.

Who are Muslims and what do they believe?

There are an estimated 1.2 billion Muslims worldwide. No more than 20 percent of Muslims live in the Arabic-speaking world. In fact, the country with the largest Muslim population is Indonesia. Muslims believe in One, Unique, and Incomparable God. They believe in the Day of Judgement and individual accountability for actions. Muslims believe in a chain of prophets beginning with Adam and including Noah, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Job, Moses, David, Solomon, and Jesus, and that God's eternal message was reaffirmed and finalized by the Prophet Muhammad (peace be on them all). One becomes a Muslim by saying and believing: "There is no deity but God, and Muhammad is the messenger of God." By this declaration, the person announces faith in all of God's messengers.

What is the Quran?

The Quran is the record of the exact words revealed by God through the Angel Gabriel to the Prophet Muhammad. It was memorized by Muhammad and then dictated to his companions. The text of the Quran was cross-checked during the life of the Prophet. The 114 chapters of the Quran have remained unchanged through the centuries. 

What are the "Five Pillars" (Basic Beliefs) of Islam?

  1.   The declaration of faith - This consists of the two sentence declaration described above.
  2.   Prayer - Muslims perform five obligatory prayers at certain times each day. Islamic prayers are a direct link between the worshiper and God, as Islam has no hierarchical authority or priesthood. The obligatory prayers can be prayed privately or with others. When praying together, a congregation chooses a respected and learned Muslim to lead the prayer.
  3.   Zakat (charitable giving) - One of the most important principles of Islam is that all things belong to God and that wealth is held in trust by human beings. Zakat, or charitable giving, "purifies" wealth by setting aside a portion for those in need. This payment is usually two and a half percent of one's capital per year.
  4.   Fasting - Every year in the Islamic lunar month of Ramadan, Muslims fast from first light until just after sunset. The fast is another method of self-purification.
  5.   Pilgrimage - A pilgrimage to Mecca, called Hajj, is a one-time obligation for those who are physically and financially able.

What about the American Muslim Community?

There are an estimated 6-7 million Muslims in America. The Muslim community in America is made up of people from a wide variety of ethnic backgrounds and national origins. There are almost 2,000 mosques, Muslim schools and Islamic centers in America. Muslims are active in all walks of life. Islam is one of the fastest growing religions in this country and around the world.

To learn more, request a free copy of Islam at a Glance, an educational booklet that gives an overview of the basic beliefs in Islam and discusses the similarities among Islam, Christianity and Judaism.  


This booklet gives an overview of the Islamic faith and basic beliefs, and gives the similarities among Islam, Judaism & Christianity.



Jennifer Nimer, Esq. – Executive Director

Jennifer has worked for CAIR-Ohio since 2004.  She is a practicing attorney and the Executive Director of the CAIR-Columbus office.  She received her bachelor’s degree from Capital University in 2000, where she majored in Criminology and Psychology.  She earned her Juris Doctorate degree from Capital University Law School in 2003 with a concentration in Family Law.   Her main practice areas at CAIR are employment discrimination and federal immigration delay litigation.

She is currently a board member at Sunrise Academy, and serves on the City of Columbus’ New American Advisory Council (“NAAC”). She previously served on the Board of Directors for the ACLU of Ohio for six years.

She is admitted to the Ohio bar and the Federal bars for the Southern and Northern Districts of Ohio, Eastern District of Michigan, and the District of Columbia.  She is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the Ohio Bar Association, and the Columbus Bar Association.

Jennifer can be reached at jnimer@cair.com.

Romin Iqbal, Esq. – Legal Director

Romin has worked for CAIR-Ohio since 2006.  He is a practicing attorney and has litigated cases of civil rights and employment discrimination throughout Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, and Michigan.

He is a member of the State Bar of Ohio, and Federal Bars of Southern and Northern District of Ohio, Eastern District of Kentucky,  Eastern and Western District of Michigan, and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. He is a graduate of Moritz College of Law, The Ohio State University.

Romin can be reached at riqbal@cair.com.

Usjid Hameed – Legislative & Outreach Coordinator

Monuza Ashraf – Communications Coordinator

Jennifer Nimer, Esq.

Executive Director

Romin Iqbal, Esq.

Legal Director

Monuza Ashraf

Communications Coordinator

Usjid Hameed

Legislative & Outreach Coordinator

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